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MAY 2024

Campaign News


Together We Act, at the festival and forever and a day

More than 3,000 people attended the Together We Act Fest, which took place on May 25 at the Mystetskyi Arsenal in Kyiv. Public discussions, workshops, competitions, information displays, and other interesting venues were set up to highlight the importance and role of civil society and independent media, as well as the EU’s support for them.

Being part of the fest, this is exactly what the ‘Together we act. Together we are Europe’ communication campaign focuses on.

The tireless will to fight for and defend freedom and democracy in Ukraine is an effort of the whole society. Many people who are actively involved in civil society organisations and the media are an integral part of this process. Against all odds, Ukrainians have shown unprecedented strength and resilience, as well as a deep commitment to European values. The EU appreciates our close partnership with civil society and independent media and will continue to rely on it as Ukraine’s integration into the EU continues,” said Katarína Mathernová, EU Ambassador to Ukraine.

Media figures, civil society activists, and diplomats took part in an open discussion ‘The impact of EU support on CSOs and media in Ukraine on its path to the EU. The place and role of CSOs in Ukraine’s recovery process’. A number of CSOs and the outcomes of their work were presented at the CSO Alley and in the dedicated tents. The media tent featured discussions about media literacy, the use of artificial intelligence in journalism and fact-checking. ‘Docudays UA organised a screening and discussion of the 89 Days documentary.

At the EU pavilion, visitors could learn more about Ukraine’s relations with the European Union and its assistance during the war, including to civil society and independent media.

The event’s unique centrepiece was a ceramic panel ‘Ukraine — Europe’, which had miraculously survived the destruction of part of the building of the Mykhailo Boichuk Kyiv State Academy of Decorative and Applied Arts and Design after a shelling. During the festival, the EU map on it was symbolically supplemented with a map of Ukraine.

However, this is not only symbolic but also relevant, as Ukraine is preparing for accession negotiations.

I really hope there will be a technical kick-off at the end of June, because the political signal, the political agreement of the leaders was ready back in December. And today is the day when we celebrate resilience, courage, love of freedom, the importance of dialogue and the common will of not only Ukrainian leaders and authorities, but also Ukrainian citizens to join the European Union,’ said Katarína Mathernová.

On May 26, the Ambassador opened an exhibition on St Sophia’s Square in Kyiv showcasing the achievements of EU-supported CSOs. The exhibition will remain there for two weeks and then travel to four more cities.

More information:
Press release
EU Delegation to Ukraine Facebook page
The story by ‘Espresso’ TV channel
A story by the Kyiv TV channel about the opening of the exhibition at St Sophia’s Square

“Cooperation with civil society remains a key priority for the EU”

Ukraine is close to the start of EU accession negotiations, and this encourages civil society, government institutions and EU partners to work together. Such cooperation was discussed at the EuroSummit of CSOs held on Europe Day, May 9.

More than 200 participants discussed the challenges of the upcoming negotiation process and ways to overcome them, as well as the role of civil society organisations and their contribution. The Delegation of the European Union to Ukraine was one of the partners in the summit as part of the ‘Together We Act. Together We Are Europe’ campaign.

Ukrainian society has demonstrated resilience, viability and an unwavering will to embrace democracy, human rights and European values. The European Union has supported and will continue to support Ukrainians on this path. Cooperation with civil society remains a key priority for the EU,” said Stefan Schleuning, Head of Cooperation at the EU Delegation to Ukraine.

For the European Union, Ukrainian civil society has long been a partner in advocating for and evaluating the reforms necessary for approximation with the EU. Now this experience can be used in negotiations. For example, last December, the European Union, together with the International Renaissance Foundation, launched the project “Assisting in the preparation and start of negotiations on Ukraine’s accession to the EU’, within which 18 civil society organisations from various fields are working on negotiation topics.

Sometimes, when only representatives of states sit at the table, certain steps are limited. Instead, civil society can communicate broadly enough to express its opinions,” said Oleksandr Yarema, State Secretary of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine. “It is precisely the interaction and joint work of the state and civil society that will strengthen Ukraine’s negotiating power and bring about better outcomes.”

The summit participants were introduced to a number of presentations on civil society engagement in various aspects of accession negotiations. They had the opportunity to discuss ways to engage civil society. The summit also included dedicated workshops and experience exchange sessions.

Developed civil society is a significant indicator of a country’s values and freedoms. Among the leaders today, there are experts who understand their domain from the inside as deeply as possible and are able to significantly strengthen Ukraine’s standing in the course of negotiations on its accession to the EU,” said Volodymyr Sheyhus, Executive Director at ISAR Ednannia, one of the summit organisers.

Media figures gathered for a Work Party

The ‘Together We Act. Together We Are Europe’ communication campaign was presented to the participants of the first all- Ukrainian Media Work Party held in May at the G.N.R.T.R. coworking space. More than 100 bloggers, media professionals and public figures took part in the event.

The event was geared towards sharing experience, exchanging information between them and discussing ways to solve common problems.

In particular, with the support from the European Union. The key event of the Media Work Party was a roundtable discussion on ‘What are the development opportunities for Ukrainian media figures, bloggers and modern media on Ukraine’s path to victory and the EU’. The participants were told about the EU-funded programmes ‘Communicating EU for Ukrainians’ (CEU4U), ‘Creative Europe’ and ‘ Young European Ambassadors’ (YEAs).

Despite a full-scale war, Ukraine and its citizens have shown fantastic courage in defending and transforming the country. The EU stands side by side with Ukraine and its civil society and will continue to provide both financial and technical support to enable the many services that civil society provides across Ukraine,’ said Jenny Lundmark, Sector Manager at the EU Delegation to Ukraine. “Consistent reforms supported by civil society and media will pave the way for Ukraine’s accession to the EU.”

After the discussion about opportunities offered by the European Union, the participants worked in a networking format to discuss cooperation between bloggers, journalists and creative businesses, the use of artificial intelligence, improving fact-checking and other important issues.

Project News


Anti-war media project: showing the truth and ridiculing propagandists

In May, a video posted by blogger Denis Kazanskyi on his YouTubechannel,whichfeaturestheresignationofSergeiShoigu as Russian Defence Minister and the related ‘manoeuvres’ of Russian propagandists, received over 1.2 million views. There are about 6,000 comments under the video, where users share their impressions of what they have seen and heard.

This video is one of many produced as part of the EU-funded Anti-War Media Project: Raising Awareness of Russia’s Crimes in Ukraine and Combating Russian Military Propaganda and Hate Speech. The materials are posted on a number of platforms and translated into several languages. The project was launched in early 2024, and by the end of May, the combined reach of publications and videos on YouTube, X, Telegram and TikTok had reached almost 200 million users. A total of about 2,400 materials were produced.

Denis Kazanskyi is the project’s headliner. His YouTube vlog and relevant materials on Telegram and TikTok provide people in the occupied territories and Russians themselves with truthful information about the war, its senselessness, and show Russia’s human and economic losses. These videos also highlight the Russians’ aggressive and xenophobic attitude towards other nations — even countries that continue to maintain political and trade relations with Russia.

With my videos and their translation into English, I am trying to reach out to our Western partners by telling the stories of people who have become victims of Russian military aggression, as well as highlighting the daily horrors that Ukrainians are experiencing,” says Denis Kazanskyi.

Therefore, in addition to Russian speakers, the project’s target groups include English, French, and Spanish speakers. Geographically, the countries of the Global South are an important area of work, where the project tries to draw attention to developments in Ukraine and to racist statements that are often heard on Russian television.

The population of the Global South can push their governments to be more active in helping Ukraine, thus encouraging Russia to stop its offensive. Foreign audiences will also get to know better how Russian disinformation campaigns work in practice. In addition, they will gain a deeper understanding of the latest developments in Ukraine,” says Denys Kaplunov, project analyst.


Babyn-Bakhmut: a documentary about defenders and volunteers

The degree of anxiety increases with every minute and every kilometre closer to zero line. And gradually you take a deeper breath and calm down coming back to the mountains,” says Olia Mykhailiuk, an artist from the Carpathians describing her experience of travelling to the warfront. “Then you see fresh tombstones and flags flying over the mountains. And you feel that all these are different pieces of the same story that is unfolding in our Ukrainian time and space right now.”

Olia is the author of the Babyn-Bakhmut film, which is being developed by the ArtPole agency. In particular, with a grant received from the Izolyatsia platform as part of the EU-funded Zmina.Rebuilding programme.

The film will be about how volunteers from Ivano-Frankivsk region deliver aid to their countrymen at the frontline in Donbas and Zaporizhzhia, maintaining a connection between them and their native land.

Usually, we go to Kramatorsk with volunteers, spend one night and at dawn we go to the 10th Mountain Assault Brigade ‘Edelweiss’ in a village 10 km from the frontline,” says Olia. “The soldiers come here for a short rest, and we have the opportunity to meet, deliver aid, and talk. This is if we are lucky and there is no urgent call. From there, we go to Hulyaypole to the 102nd Territorial Defence Brigade of the Ivano-Frankivsk, where the situation is similar.”

The film showcases the stories of people from Ivano-Frankivsk region, volunteers, and the military.

One of the heroes is a village municipality leader who takes the wounded from the battlefield near Bakhmut. Another is a veterinarian who had to become a military medic and serve for more than a year and a half on the frontline. The third is a village priest who became a chaplain.

Instead, life in their villages goes on. Lack of communication between those at the front and those who stayed behind threatens to alienate them mentally. Volunteers are now one of the ways to communicate, and this is what the film is supposed to highlight.

It’s so strange to travel about 3,000 kilometres for a few hours and sometimes even minutes of conversation. But these minutes are worth it, they are very emotionally dense. Thanks to them, we keep in touch with the different realities the country is experiencing,” says Olia Mykhailiuk.

She decided to shoot this film in the spring of 2023, when she saw a red volunteer van outside Babyn village council. At that time, an Easter fundraising campaign was announced for the frontline. The villagers raised money to buy the ammunition their countrymen needed, but before that, they brought Easter cakes and pysankas.

It was very important for them that these Easter eggs arrived. This Easter, in addition to drones, we also brought Easter eggs and cheese horses from the Carpathians. I saw one of the men crying when he picked up a cheese horse,” says Olia.

The film is currently being edited and will premiere in a few months.

We want to show how relationships are maintained and how new ones emerge. Many servicemen from the west of Ukraine have been at the warfront for two years, and a certain distance arises not only in the geographical but also in the emotional sense,” emphasises Myroslava Ganyushkina, chief executive of the ArtPole agency. “That’s why volunteers are extremely important liaisons, because they bring not only useful things, but also messages from western Ukraine to the east and back.”

What meanings or scenes will appeal to the viewer the most in the upcoming film?

I think what appeals to me is something irrational and extremely strong in these people who are ready to go from the Carpathians to Zaporizhzhia and Donetsk to defend the nation,” says Olia Mykhailiuk.

More information:
ArtPole Facebook page


Students learn self-governance

13 training sessions were held as part of the aGAIN 2.0 Student Self-Government Development Workshop. It was organised by UNDP in Ukraine with financial support from the EU under the EU4Recovery — Community Empowerment in Ukraine project and the Government of Denmark.

Training is the main and largest component of the workshop. It involves 12 student self-government bodies (SSGBs) from higher education institutions and one college. These are schools from Chernihiv, Mykolaiv, and Dnipro regions, as well as eight internally displaced institutions.

One of them is Donetsk National Medical University, which is currently operating in Kropyvnytskyi. As in other institutions, the training focused on the key tasks of student self-government bodies, their functioning, organisational structure and project management.

The training filled in some gaps,” says Oleksandra Kiritseva, a 5th year student and head of student self-government at one of the university’s departments, “There are many first and second year students in our body who have no experience yet. During the training, we were told in a very structured way about the opportunities and benefits that student self-government offers. Students had the opportunity to consolidate their newly acquired theoretical knowledge with practical exercises.”

According to her, when the university moved to Kropyvnytskyi from Mariupol, the student self-government played a major role in integrating students into local communities. Nowadays, the SSGBs continue to advocate for the interests and needs of students, their rights, and deals with international exchanges.

Student self-government is a very cool platform for developing students’ personalities and capacity to make changes,” says workshop coordinator Dmytro Tomenko. “Here one can also explore how an educational institution operates, because the SSGB participants not only learn but also develop understanding of the system from the inside.”

Although the aGAIN 2.0 Student Self-Government Development Workshop has completed its largest milestone, it will continue to run until the end of June. During the training sessions, each SSGB developed its own projects and submitted them as part of the call for proposals. As a result, six initiatives were supported. In addition, a final debriefing event will take place bringing together 10 students from each school.

A student self-government body from Donetsk Medical University is one of those whose initiative was supported by the workshop.

Our project aims to teach students how to write grant applications. We have planned 10 classes with successful practitioners as coaches,” says Oleksandra Kiritseva. “And the participants will be leaders of student self-governments. Our objective is to train those responsible for certain areas, and they will pass on the knowledge to other students.”


Carpathian farmers prepare for EU accession

What are the needs and expectations of Carpathian farmers from Ukraine’s upcoming accession to the European Union, and are they able to meet the requirements of the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy and the commitments implied by the European Green Deal?

The issue was raised during a discussion platform held in May by the Green and Inclusive Agricultural Policy — Steps Towards project. It is implemented by the Green Dossier Information Centre with the support of the EU and the International Renaissance Foundation.

The project is geared specifically towards working with Carpathian cheese makers, beekeepers, winemakers, mushroom and berry pickers, herbal tea producers, etc. Public events are held, and information materials are published to help farmers better understand the CAP and its environmental pillar.

If a farmer’s goal is to produce and sell as much produce of any quality as possible, then the CAP and EU standards in general are going to be a challenge for that farmer,” says Tamara Malkova, director of the Green Dossier Information Centre. “And if the farmer is not seeking extremely huge profits, but a decent life and secure future, and is aware of his/her dependence on safe environment, then CAP and EGD rules will be a source of support and opportunities.”

The European Green Deal is already firmly embedded in the EU’s Common Agricultural Policy. And the national strategic plans under CAP (to be developed by all member states) should help integrate climate action into EU policy and achieve the overall goal of 30% of EU budgetary spending to support climate goals. This is stated in one of the latest publications released as part of the project.

Tamara Malkova notes that Ukrainian producers of traditional Carpathian products already operate according to the European standards.

Geographical indications, organic products, support for pastures, and sustainable tourism,” she lists. “Of course, not all of them, but we have the experience, and it is worth promoting it and showing this to our neighbours as well.”

The EU has long been helping Carpathian producers achieve compliance with CAP rules. In particular, in 2017-2021, the project called ‘Support to the Development of a Geographical Indications System in Ukraine’ was implemented in Ukraine. With its assistance, in November 2019, Hutsul Bryndza (sheep cheese) was registered. This was the first geographical indication in Ukraine.

Producers should pay special attention and take time to learn how to properly utilise grant support mechanisms and manufacture products in accordance with safety and quality standards. This makes it possible to bring Ukrainian farmers to a qualitatively new level and new markets,” says Oleksandr Martyn, chairman of the Traditional Carpathian Cheese Producers Association.

Carpathian farmers also benefit from Ukraine’s participation in the Framework Convention on the Protection and Sustainable Development of the Carpathians (Carpathian Convention), together with Poland, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania and Serbia.

It has never been easy for the Carpathian countries to negotiate, but they have managed to create a platform within the Convention where they can do so,” says Tamara Malkova. “Through this cooperation with our neighbours, we can identify common interests and challenges facing small farmers in our countries, share best cooperation practices, and encourage them to support our European integration.”


What the new EUAM mandate in Ukraine will bring

On May 14, the Council of the European Union extended the mandate of the European Union Advisory Mission for Civilian Security Sector Reform in Ukraine (EUAM Ukraine) for another three years. It will now run until May 31, 2027.

The Mission has been operating in Ukraine since 2014. Its partners are the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the National Police, prosecutor’s offices, National Anti-Corruption Bureau, Prosecutor General’s Office, Economic Security Bureau (ESB), and other civilian security sector agencies.

According to Rolf Holmboe, Head of EUAM, the mission has four priorities under the new mandate.

The first is continued support for deep civilian security sector reforms. Particular attention is paid to the implementation of the Comprehensive Strategic Plan for Law Enforcement Sector Reform approved by President Zelenskyy in May 2023. This document represents a significant political commitment to Ukraine’s EU integration. EUAM has been providing support since the plan’s development phase.

Secondly, EUAM will step up its support to the Ukrainian authorities in bringing to justice those responsible for the numerous war crimes committed in Ukraine,” continues Rolf Holmboe. “The third priority is to assist in the stabilisation and reintegration of the liberated areas by building the capacity of law enforcement agencies to support the returning civilian population through the concept of Stability Policing — so that people can live in safety, prosperity and well-being.”

Finally, the fourth priority of the mission is to support Ukraine in developing its border management in line with EU standards and best practices. This includes the fight against smuggling, human trafficking, organised crime, and the proliferation of small arms and light weapons.

A new component of this area will be support for maritime border management and security as part of Ukraine’s efforts to meet EU and international standards and requirements, as well as to increase exports,” adds the EUAM Head of Mission.

The importance of the mission is well illustrated by the last year’s results. In particular, 21 draft laws were prepared and adopted with EUAM support, and 25 strategic documents were approved.

At the same time, the Mission assisted its Ukrainian partners with in-kind support. Almost EUR 1.3 million worth of laptops, communications and IT equipment, portable charging stations, solar panels, backpacks, radios, body cameras, docking stations, trailers for the National Police K-9 unit, and more were provided.

On the very day that the Council approved the next extension of the mandate, EUAM organised a strategic session for the D30 (Digital Detective) programme. The programme aims to strengthen the capacity of Ukrainian partners in digital investigations — as more than 80 per cent of crimes today have a digital component.

The ultimate goal of D30 is simple yet complex. It is to support Ukraine’s civilian security sector in its development and evolution, and to keep pace with technology used by criminals and criminal organisations,” says Markus Mitterer, EUAM’s Head of Criminal Investigations and Organised Crime.



With financial support from the EU, the Seeds of Bravery is holding a call for proposals for Ukrainian technology start-ups and SMEs offering innovative solutions, services or products. Grants of EUR 10,000 to EUR 50,000 are available. The call is ongoing with interim deadlines.

The deadline for the current round of applications –
25 June 2024

Read more

The EU-funded Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs programme has launched a call for applications to select intermediary organisations to implement the initiative at the local level in Ukraine and Moldova. They will act as local points of contact for the programme and help aspiring entrepreneurs find host companies for internships.

Deadline – 27 June 2024

Read more

As part of the Erasmus for Young Entrepreneurs programme, there is also an opportunity to travel to the EU to work side by side with experienced entrepreneurs for several months, exchange experiences, better understand the foreign market, and expand your professional network. The programme will cover accommodation costs.

Deadline – 30 June 2024

Read more


EU4Youth IV: Youth Engagement and Empowerment, in partnership with the Ukrainian Youth Foundation, is launching a small grants call for Ukrainian civil society organisations working with young people. They are invited to submit project proposals in two thematic areas: engaging young people with disabilities and youth participation in Ukraine’s recovery.

Deadline – 26 June 2024

Read more


Creative Europe Desk invites performing arts sector enthusiasts to learn about grant opportunities for the sector, network with colleagues, share their ideas and find partners for cooperation at the Perform Ukraine offline event on June 13.

Deadline – 9 June 2024

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The House of Europe, together with Netflix and the New York Film Academy, invites screenwriters and film producers to apply for free workshops. For screenwriters, the topic will be ‘Trends and Genres in Screenwriting’. For producers — ‘What Does a Film Producer Do’.

Deadline – 17 June 2024

Read more:
for screenwriters
for film producers

Non-profit organisations and independent initiatives registered in Ukraine, the EU and third countries participating in the Creative Europe programme can receive up to EUR 5,000 for a cultural project to support Ukrainian refugees.

Deadline – 21 June 2024

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The European Commission invites aspiring journalists from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine to participate in the Youth4Regions programme. The events will take place on 5-11 October 2024 in Brussels. The programme includes trainings, mentoring from experienced journalists, and visits to media organisations and EU institutions.

Deadline – 8 July 2024

Read more

Interregional cooperation

The Interreg Europe Programme has launched a call for proposals for projects from organisations in the EU and seven candidate countries (including Ukraine) to improve interregional cooperation and regional development policies. The call is focused on innovation, sustainable development and inclusiveness. The call is open to public authorities, legal entities under public law and private non-profit organisations.

Deadline – 27 June 2024

Read more

‘Communicating the European Union for Ukrainians’ (CEU4U), an EU-funded project

All rights reserved. The contents of this media digest do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.

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