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15 November 2019
This week, we started visiting the English for NGOs and Civil Society classes outside of Kyiv. The first visit was to Zaporizhzhia, an important industrial center, where the course brought together 13 representatives of eight NGOs working in the city.
The two-hour class included a variety of fun activities and the time passed quickly. The Zaporizhzhia group is very friendly; the students were enthusiastic and active, while the teacher kept them focused on the topics. The class started with the topic of Youth Participation and they discussed the work of Greta Thunberg, the world-famous young environmental activist on climate change.
Natalia Zhukova, our brilliant teacher from Zaporizhzhia, said, “English for NGOs and Civil Society in Zaporizhzhia is driving us to be eco-friendly.” She described the class on Wednesday, saying,
“There was an engaging discussion of Greta Thunberg’s activity, how the Fridays4Future movement and climate strike spread all over the world. Ecology is a burning issue for our city, thus the topic resonated powerfully with us.”
We were especially interested to hear what participants from the All-Ukrainian Environmental League and Initiative Youth Network of Zaporizhzhia think about Thunberg’s work.
After the class, we asked the students why they joined the English for NGOs course and what do they think about it now. The replies were diverse. One participant simply said that he wanted to develop his professional vocabulary and is happy to be learning new words at every lesson three times a week. Another noted that she mainly joined the course for networking with other NGOs in the city. There were also people who joined thanks to recommendations from their colleagues who attended the previous offerings. One participant mentioned that she simply wants to have more speaking practice since she is working on a UN Women project right now.
After we finished talking with the group, one of the participants came up to thank us and express her opinion about the class. She said:
“I’m really enjoying these classes. Two hours fly by every time. Today, I was exhausted after a work trip outside the city but decided to attend the class anyway. It is so inspiring and uplifting, I definitely don’t want to miss it!”