The audience for our project, aimed at addressing information requests from residents in our community, has already reached 7,200 people and continues to grow rapidly. This includes 3,000 subscribers to the print edition, 4,000 followers on the Facebook page, and 200 followers on Instagram.

We are an editorial office with almost a century of history, but, let’s be honest, in recent years, we have been stagnating and contemplating, inspired by our peers, the possibility of discontinuing the newspaper’s existence. Such a sad story. We are unable to launch the website because the old computer doesn’t even support the installation of basic programs, and there’s a lack of funds to purchase a new one. The future prospects are evidently challenging. The UMBA project turned out to be a chance that gave hope for the future. Already in the process of implementation, we were repeatedly thanked for their training and for teaching us how to expand our horizons. For example, we have received certificates of media literacy trainers. And we kept them in files, little in demand. We were grappling with the challenges of managing our newspaper, let alone organizing training sessions. We became visible as those who abandoned the printed press a long time ago. Now we have requests for training from authorities, veteran organizations, and companies. We are now perceived from a different angle: not as a dying newspaper but as a team moving forward.

We work for IDPS

We found supporters among internally displaced persons. Their stories touched Znamianka residents, and they engaged in volunteering more actively. We conducted round table discussions with the participation of public organizations, collaborating to establish a rehabilitation room. It is operational and people go there for help.

All places of compact residence of IDPs have our booklet-guidebooks, with a circulation of 4 thousand copies.

Photo to the material of Victoriia Mirkevych “They found support and assistance in Znamianka” about IDPs living in Znamianka.
Training sessions and round tables

The project included 6 training sessions and 4 round tables. More than 150 people participated in round tables and trainings.

Photo of the round table for IDPs in the place of their compact residence, attended by Viktoriia Zelenska, City Council Secretary, and Oleksandra Ostapova, Head of Povernennia do Zhyttia Charity Fund.

Everyone was involved in the project. Mayor Volodymyr Sokyrko (who initiated media literacy training for the members of Executive Committee and deputies), and deputies. It seems that the project lasted for years, not four months, because we were everywhere. In hospitals, dormitories, volunteer centers, and other communities. What is the most important thing? The project is not over yet. It gained momentum, we believed in ourselves, others believed in us. If there is such momentum surrounding the newspaper, why close it?

Developing social media

Special thanks to mentor Borys Rodiievskyi. He professionally, tactfully, and delicately shared his knowledge, presentations, and personal achievements, doing so subtly. Every Wednesday we learned something new, checked our knowledge, and moved on. This time was more dynamic for us than the years before.

Our website doesn’t work yet, but there is Telegram and Instagram. We already had a Facebook page at the beginning of the project. Thanks to the acquired knowledge, we started to actively enhance our Facebook page, resulting in a growth of 1000 subscribers. The Facebook page “Znamianski Visti” now has 4,000 followers.

We initiated an Instagram page for our newspaper, where we share the latest news from the Znamianka community. We already have 200 followers.

New equipment is already working, and we are making new plans for the future. To sustain our progress, we harnessed the opportunities and knowledge afforded to us. We move forward.

AUTHOR:Victoriia Mirkevych, Editor of Znamianski Visti newspaper

This publication was created with the financial support of the European Union. Its content is the sole responsibility of “Znamianski Visti” and does not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union.