Kateryna Yushchenko, Head of the Supervisory Council of the Ukraine 3000 Charitable Foundation, spoke at the 10th annual conference of the Grantmakers East Group, which is being held in Kyiv for the first time, President's press office reported.

In her speech, the President’s wife said she was very flattered they “made a decision to conduct the Tenth Conference in Ukraine. It is another sign of the world’s newly awakened interest in our country.”

The First Lady noted that the topic of this year’s conference, Response to Changes , was relevant to Ukraine, for it “has undergone profound changes in the past year.”

“We took a quantum leap forward in the development of our democracy and civil society. Ukraine has always been located in the very center of Europe, and has never forgotten its European roots and values, its desire for democracy and freedom,” she said.

The purpose of the conference is to exchange experience, improve the work of Ukrainian foundations and charitable organizations, and encourage corporations and businessmen to start philanthropic programs. Mrs. Yushchenko said, at this conference “not only do we expect to learn from non-Ukrainian organizations on how we can better face our own challenges – we also hope that you will find our experience valuable, especially in building democracy and civil society.”

She also recalled last year's November events. The First Lady is convinced that the Orange Revolution was “not just a culmination, but a beginning” of great changes.

“Ukraine faces formidable challenges ahead: institutionalizing democratic processes; developing and harmonizing new legislation, overcoming poverty and achieving social justice; renewing a culture of responsibility to one's community, country, and society; instilling transparency and accountability into government, business, and the nonprofit sector; dealing with the past to ensure a better future; building a society where each individual is valued and respected,” she continued.

Mrs. Yushchenko believes experience of foreign charitable foundations can help Ukraine achieve these goals.

As Head of the Ukraine 3000 Supervisory Council, she outlined three main directions of their work: Yesterday , Today , and Tomorrow . She also dwelled on their project to promote greater awareness of the 1932-33 Genocide Famine, the Hospital to Hospital program, and some other projects to help the disabled, orphans, and people with particular needs.

The Ukraine 3000 International Charitable Foundation is a co-founder and sponsor of this international conference of the most influential donor organizations from Central and Eastern Europe and countries of the former Soviet Union.

The Grantmakers East Group was founded in 1992 by an informal coalition of private and state organizations that provide grants for countries of Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet Union.


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