ProSkills: 350 adolescents from Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts learned the skills of the future

26 September 2019

September 25, 2019, Kyiv. This summer, about 350 14 to 17-year-old teenagers in the 10 summer municipal camps of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts obtained skills that will help them not only in communication, but also in choosing their future, career path, as well as be prepared for the challenges of the future.

Most of the children participating in the ProSkills program are orphans, internally displaced persons and children with disabilities. In the summer camps, they completed the 21st Century skills program: critical thinking, conflict management, and engagement with others in difficult circumstances.

“The ProSkills program opens up new horizons for young people who usually do not have access to various skills development programs or cannot afford it for economic, social and other reasons. The United Nations Population Fund takes care of every young person, regardless of their life circumstances and status. It is important for us that every young person in Ukraine is able to pursue his or her own interests and dreams”, said Yuliya Novak, Youth and HIV Advisor to the UNFPA in Ukraine.

Before the program was implemented in the camps, trainings were conducted for the teachers. In May 2019, a training seminar was held for 31 teachers and 10 summer camp educators. Participants received methodological materials for further implementation in the camps.

Teacher and youth camp educator Volodymyr Spitsyn, who implemented the program at the "Pearl of Donetsk Region" children's health and leisure camp  in Svyatohorsk, said that other leaders were interested in the activity and he shared the new knowledge with them: "It is very helpful during the first two days, because in essence the camp educators do such work - on group cohesion, communication, on finding out the inner interests of the child, understanding what they want, and this is a more expanded program, which is its benefit. If previously the educators invented or selected the programs on their own, now such a program exists and should be introduced for everyone. I was the only one in my camp who mastered it, so I offered short courses to other educators".



"The program is very interesting even for adults. And even while we have a creative camp and a busy program, we still met almost every day. The children showed positive response, they were ready to continue, but the camp stay period was over. Sometimes I meet the children who were there and they remember the trainings. We plan to continue next year because it is interesting to this age group. It is communication in an informal environment and getting to know yourself", added Olha Bolotina, the trainer of the program at the Zorya children's health and leisure facility in Kreminna town.

The ProSkills Program was developed by experts from the United Nations Population Fund and the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine under the guidance of UNFPA Ukraine consultant Nataliya Leshchuk. The program consists of 6 blocks: communication, logic and thinking, cooperation for success, creativity, career development, responsibility.

In the summer municipal camps of Donetsk and Luhansk, the initiative is being implemented within the framework of the UN Recovery and Peacebuilding Program, implemented by four UN agencies: the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the UN Entity on Gender Equality and Women's Empowerment (UN Women), United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

The program is supported by eleven international partners: the European Union, the European Investment Bank, as well as the governments of the United Kingdom, Denmark, Canada, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland and Japan.