Eastern Partnership Leaders for Change

The first two regional seminars in 2018 in Zaporizhzhia and Kyiv

Also available in Deutsch, Українська

“The European Union is just so much more than economic wealth, it means to fight corruption and to foster freedom of speech.” This is how one of the participants of the seminar Eastern Partnership Leaders for Change stated the meaning of the European Union for the three countries with EU- Association Agreements.

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Workshop Kyiv - Family photo

Workshop Kyiv - Family photo

Encouraging ambitious young professionals and empowering them to civil and political activism, that´s the aim of the project “Eastern Partnership Leaders for Change”. The first two regional seminars of four in total this year, took place from May 31st until June 6th with participants from the three countries that implement the Association Agreements with the European Union. The first 30 participants met in Zaporizhzhia, subsequently the same seminar was carried out with new participants in Kyiv. Within the three days participants from Moldova, Georgia and Ukraine discussed European values, challenges of the Eastern Partnership and of the Association Agreements. Interactive workshops and practical case examples - regarding issues like corruption and social media - are supporting a new generation of political leaders and civil society. The working languages were English, Ukraine and Russian. The project is organized by the Konrad Adenauer Foundation and the Ukrainian Institute for International Politics in partnership with Eduardo Frei Foundation from the Netherlands.

Launching the three-day seminar, the representatives of the cooperation partners were welcoming the participants. Regarding the three present countries Evelina Schulz in Zaporizhzhia and H.E. Ambassador Hugues Mingarelli from the delegation of the European Union gave insights into the implementation and challenges of the European Association Agreements and the DCFTAs. Jan Mulder (Eduardo Frei Foundation) followed with a session discussing basic political and democratic concepts. One of the participants summarized the interactive discussion with following words: “Democracy is in the heart and mind. It has to grow from bottom up”. Bringing the day to a conclusion, participants watched a movie from Konrad-Adenauer-Foundation Ukraine, which is called the “Way towards European Unity” (Шлях до мрії Літопис європейської єдності).

The second day started with a presentation on christian-democractic and european values. Referring to it, Rostylav Tomenchuk (Ukrainian Institute for International Politics) followed with in interactive discussion on the role of the future leadership. In the afternoon an introduction to the concrete programs and tools regarding the Association Agreement exemplified the possibilities of cooperation between the European Union and the countries of the Eastern Partnership. After that, Jan Mulder introduced the group to the topic of international crisis management. One of the Ukrainian participants described the meaning of the European Union as following: ”The European Union is just so much more than economic wealth, it means to fight corruption and to foster freedom of speech.” In the end of the second day Diana Dutsyk in Zaporizhzhia and Roman Kufliuk (The National Television and Radio Broadcasting Council of Ukraine) in Kyiv, covered the topic of social media and politics. Based on their individual experience, they explained the connection of media and politics. At the traditional Ukrainian dinner, the participants exchanged their views on common challenges and opportunities and expanded their network on pro-European thinkers. They highly appreciated “to gain a new perspective”, one of participants said. During the last sessions of workshops Jan Mulder dealt with the topics of corruption and integrity, which generated a very positive response of the participants.

Evaluating the seminar, the participants confirmed the success of the project, to support multipliers of the european idea, giving them the opportunity to network and exchange between the three countries, as young professionals will carry their knowledge into the regions. One of the participants summarized: “I have learned many practical things, I want to share it with the teens in my town”. One other participant spoke about the vision of forming an international cooperation between Moldova and Ukraine. Two additional regional seminars will take place in the west and south of Ukraine during fall. The 60 most successful participants out of the four regional seminars will have the opportunity to get invited to the International Forum in Kiev in spring 2019.

Author: Daniela Glatz

Publication series

Event Reports


Ukraine, June 8, 2018


Isabel Weininger

Program Assistant (Kiev)

Isabel Weininger
Phone +380 44 492 7443
Fax +380 44 492 7443
Languages: Deutsch,‎ English,‎ Français