Monday, June 18, 2012

A community with a vision to 'be the change you want to see in the world' is emerging in the heart of Ukraine. Evgeniya Koroleva writes about their journey over last two years: The ups and downs of building buildings, building a community and building people.

What Does it Take to Build a House?
Our House in Baranivka is two years old! One cannot say it has been an easy time. We've stumbled and fallen, learned from hard experience, argued, made peace, searched for money and people, looked for inspiration to continue with the project... These two years have been far from easy, but would we agree to give it up for something else?

The idea behind the project is simple: to create a meeting place, open to everyone that is aimed at the harmonious development of individuals and the creation of a community of like-minded people who will work to improve society.

'We want the house to become a place, which develops the community of people who share the philosophy "Be the change that you want to see in the world" and are ready to put it into practice,' says the project coordinator Elena Kashkarova.

3 years ago there appeared people in Ukraine who had a burning desire to put this idea it into practice. First of all, it was Valentin Bondarenko who soon inspired Sergey Tretetskiy, Nadezhda Shpytko, Margarita Sieraya, Alexey Nelup, Marina Kozhyna, Lena Kashkarova and many others to support the initiative and join the team.
 

Project participants hope that very soon the Baranivka House will be able to hold a variety of programs, workshops and seminars, and become an experimental platform for various useful cultural, environmental, educational, social etc. initiatives.
 

What has been done?

The purchase of an old adobe house in the village Baranivka and two adjoining plots of land became the first stage of the project. Later, a neighbouring abandoned house was bought. Now the "property" of the House is almost a hectare of land.

The second stage of the project was to dig a bore-hole to provide the house with drinking water and to install a 3-phase electricity system. An environmentally safe sewage system is being installed at the moment.

The extension foundation was laid, and the foundation of the existing house was strengthened. The wooden frame of the extension was built and the whole structure was roofed. The team is now preparing to build walls of straw bales and later to coat them with clay and sand.

In two years, the House has been visited by more than 220 people from 19 countries. It hosted such IofC-programs/projects/teams as "Healing the Past”, “Action for Life-5" "Farmers Dialogue," and has been the venue for annual National Ukrainian F4F meetings and F4F courses and trainings.

How can you support the project?

It is possible by taking part in the Summer Volunteer Programme or by joining our team for a longer period and fulfilling one of the ‘roles’ mentioned here. 

Financial contributions towards the development of the House will be gratefully accepted through this web-site or through ‘Baranivkan Ambassadors’ at different cities of Ukraine and other countries.
 

Learn more at the project website www.baranivka.orgwww.baranivka.org

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Evgeniya Koroleva (Ukraine)

Liubou Pranevich (Belarus)

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