"Sources of Tolerance" International Camp Opens
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                  Euroasian Jewish News

                  "Sources of Tolerance" International Camp Opens

                  Jewish Day 2009, at the Sources of Tolerance camp

                  "Sources of Tolerance" International Camp Opens


                  Over 200 children ages 9-16 from 17 national communities took part in the opening of the international children's "Sources of Tolerance" camp, which is now taking place in the Carpathian urban-type settlement Yasenya, near the highest mountain in Ukraine – Goverla, on the premises of the "High Carpathians" resort. Both children from national communities of Ukraine, Belarus, Moldova, Armenia, and Georgia, and refugee children – Angolians, Asssyrians, Afghans, Belarusians, Bulgarians, Armenians, Greeks, Jews, Crimean and Volgian Tatars, Moldavians, Iraqui, Chechen, and others will be able to immerse themselves into the national and religious cultures of different peoples. Members of the Afghanian and Korean communities of Ukraine are joining the camp for the second year in a row. The camp employs teachers from national communities of Ukraine and professionals that have completed special preliminary training at the seminaros of the Congress of National Communities of Ukraine (CNCU) and who understand the pecularities of intercultural dialogue. This year, the camp also hosts onsite training for teachers from Georgia and Armenia.

                  The camp is to be conducted by the Congress of National Communities of Ukraine on August 11-28, with the support of the Euro-Asian Jewish Congress, Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Ukraine, the Danish Refugee Council, and other charity organizations and private sponsors. The CNCU Executive Vice President is the Euro-Asian Jewish Congress General Council chairman, chairman of the Association of Jewish Communities and Organizations of Ukraine Josef Zisels, and the CNCU Executive Director is Anna Lenchovskaya.

                  The aim of the project is to foster international and interfaith tolerance in children and youth, to counter xenophobia, to form an active civil position in represenatives of national communities, and to spread knowledge about the national and religious diversity of Ukraine.

                  The camp works through a unique method of submersion: all of the participants spend each new day as representatives of a new culture. The camp also holds Independence Day, Memory Day for the tragedies of the peoples of Ukraine, Human Rights Day, and Citizen Day.

                  Reference. The children's international camp "Sources of Tolerance" has been running yearly since 2002. It takes place in the summer, and lasts, depending on the financing, from 15 to 21 days. Every year it is held in a new place, so as to show the unique methods for working with children in different national communities in all corners of Ukraine, and so that the participants may see the various regional qualities of our country. To participate in the camp, children must submit an entry into the competition and be recommended by their national community. In the years 2006-2008, the CNCY held two sessions a year, and in 2009 there was only one shift again. In all, approximately 2000 children from almost 20 national communities of Ukraine, Belarus and Moldova were able to participate in the project. Over 120 teachers were able to learn the methods of holding the international camp "Sources of Tolerance," including teachers from Moldova, Poland, and Belarus. More detailed information can be found on the website of the project, www.tolerspace.org.ua