Activism

Roma youth took part in the international conference “Power of Youth”

More than 60 young activists and public figures from Ukraine, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Germany, the Republic of Moldova and Belarus gathered in Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia, to discuss the current issues of the young generation, expand their opportunities for engagement and provide a platform for sharing experiences, communications and common ideas.

For almost five days, from 21 to 25, September the participants held discussions, debated, and looked for new ideas for inspiration and creation of new prospects for the development of the young generation in modern realities. “Power of Youth” as the main slogan of the international conference in Tbilisi, became the basis for debates and panel discussions: involving young people in times of crisis, achieving success in their communities, challenges faced by modern youth, new perspectives for building an open society, where young people are the driving force of change.

Tetiana Storozhko – co-founder of the public organization “ARCA” (Agency for the Advocacy of Roma Culture), historian and researcher was one of the participants and speakers of the international conference in Tbilisi, where she had the opportunity to tell more about the current context of Ukraine, Russian aggression and the struggle of Ukrainians during the war against the Russian invaders.

“7 months ago, I woke up at dawn to the sounds of sirens and was forced to leave my home, my dreams, everything that was precious to my heart. I was saving my life,” Tetiana Storozhko told a foreign audience, speaking about the Ukrainian context and the war in Ukraine. At the same time, the historian added that presenting Ukraine and telling more about what is happening today is an important component of the common struggle of Ukrainians and the whole civilized world, adding that Roma young people, as part of Ukrainian society, take an active part in the fight against Russian aggressors, replenish the ranks of the Armed Forces, participate in volunteer, educational and socially important projects in Ukraine and abroad.

“For me and my team, it is especially important that the world knows about the stories of Ukrainians. I represent a Roma youth organization here and I must admit that now, in the conditions of war in Ukraine, there is a great opportunity to see how Roma communities defend their right to live in a democratic state by serving in the Ukrainian army and becoming volunteers. Roma in Ukraine are proud to be part of the struggle for the victory not only of Ukraine as a state, but also for the victory of democracy, freedom and human rights throughout the world. In order for the stories of young active people from Ukraine to be heard, ARCA created Information Platform “Djanes”, where we tell their unique stories,” concluded Tetiana Storozhko during her speech in Tbilisi.

As Tatiana said, many young people in Georgia fully support the Ukrainians in the struggle, root for our victory and desire change together with the whole Ukrainian society. Such narratives were present during the international conference “Power of Youth” in Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia. The organizer of the international conference “The Power of Youth” was the German institution EVZ Foundation (Foundation “Remembrance, Responsibility and Future”), which is a German Federal Organization. It holds youth meetings in an international format not for the first time, forming a community of active and ideological people around it, and as well as those who seek to change society both locally and globally.

At the same time, one of the projects implemented by the German EVZ Foundation for several years in a row is the programme “MEET UP! German-Ukrainian Youth Encounters”, which unites youth and public organizations, as well as activists, scientists and public figures from all over the world.

Author: Marianna Maksymova

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