Association „Balta maja”
30 November 2015

Friendly experience exchange trip in Lithuania

   The implementation of the Association’s “Balta maja” project “Experience and Knowledge for the Integration of Minorities into the Latvian Society” (Project’s contract identification number:2013.EEZ/PP/2/MAC/035/050) continues. The project is supported by the European Economic area financial mechanism 2009 – 2014 period program’s “NGO fond” sub-programme “NGO project program”.

    November is a month of our national celebration, and the association “Balta maja” is pleased that at this time we have the opportunity to visit our friends, societies, associations and non-governmental organizations, as well as to get to know new associations of our close neighbors in Lithuania, Vilnius. On 2nd and 3rd November the project team, project coordinators and leaders of Slavic society Uzori” (Livani), Belarusian cultural and educational society “Uzdim” (Daugavpils), Ukrainian Cultural education association Javir” and the association Rezekne city theatre-studio “Joriks” (Rezekne) went on a two day experience exchange trip to our southern neighbour Lithuanian homes where we met approximately 20 representatives of organizations. The association “Balta maja” and its cooperation organizations already knew some of them. Nevertheless, the majority of the Lithuanian organizations were previously unknown.

   The director of the association Rezekne city theatre-studio “Joriks” Svetlana Semeņaka had skilfully organized and planned the trip as well as ensured the previous communication with the associations. As a result, the meeting was a success. Svetlana Semeņaka had invited the guide who knew how to arouse interest in the participants, conjured the sunny mood of Lithuania while driving in wet weather. Thanks to the wonderful guide it was possible to get a better and more qualitative insight into Lithuanian history, associations and the cultural and political system.

    The first organization that we visited was Dom Kultury w Polskiej Wilna, where the representatives of the organizations shared with the association’s daily and festive experience and told about the financing system. Several of organizations successfully attract funding from the projects, local resources. At the same time they are looking for additional self-financing sources as the ways to ensure a successful existence of the association with the help of its activities (hotels and services).

    Vilniaus rusų muzikos draugija Rusų classic musically welcomed the Latvian delegation of association with the children vocalists and Russian spiritual ensemble performances. We were greeted by a lot of gifted, talented children and teachers, as well as the manager Natalia NikolaevnaBazjuka, who cultivates, preserves Russian folk culture and language in Lithuania within the framework of music. It is done with the help of children who sing the songs.

   In turn, Vladimirs Charitonovs, the representative of the association Pусский Дом talked about the way of growth and cooperation of the Slavic Society in Lithuania, its challenges, experiences and future possibilities for fellowship with our organizations.

   We met 12 representatives of various associations and got acquainted with the character of each association, as well as Vilnius Tautinių bendriju namai. There the representatives of associations and communities shared their experience and discussed the working and structure principles of associations. We also met a number of knowledgeable and creative people and gained new insights from Lietuvos tautinių mažumų folkloro ir etnografijos centras, Baltarusių klubas “Siabryna”, “Lietuvos azerbaidžaniečių bendrija”, Graikų bendruomenė Lietuvoje “PONTOS”, “Vilniaus ukrainiečių bendrija”, “Vilniaus vokiečių bendruomenė”, Viešosios įstaigos ,,Slavų estetinio lavinimo centras” and from a number of other establishments visited.

   As the final organization in our experience exchange trip was Visagino Cultural Center, where we were greeted by Zigfrīds Binkevičs, representing “Zwiazek Polakow Litwy”, Ilya Churakova from Russian adult folklore ensemble Bylina”, Elena Churakova, who is the director of adult folklore ensemble Жуваронок, as well as Visaginas Ukrainian Society representatives and several other warm-hearted directors.

   The representatives of city associations quickly found a common language with the minority representatives of neighborhood associations. During the negotiations we have already arranged exchange visits and planned joint actions and projects. Experience exchange trips, meetings, and many answered questions helped us to gain new experience and initiative. This will allow improving the work of our associations broaden the unlimited possibilities in the future! Each of the project’s coordinators on their way back home acknowledged that this has been the most valuable and enriching trip to neighboring organizations – new contacts, feasible ideas, projects, friendship and integration capabilities and a successful way forward!

   The association “Balta maja” invites and wishes everyone to have the opportunity to be in the way, to meet, invite guests and to be together, implement ideas and to set out new ones for potential future! Let our project’s further work be successful!

More information:

phone: 65381707



The program is funded by the EEZ Grants and Latvian State

Supported by a grant from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway

 This publication has been prepared by the EEA Financial Mechanism and Latvian State financial support.

 For the content of this publication responsible is association „Balta maja”.