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Monday 27 March

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Youth Festival in Kondopoga, 1st-3rd May 2009
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In May 1-3 in Kondopoga the Cultural Youth Centre of Kondopoga (Karelia) and The Center for Interethnic Cooperation in the framework of a partnership project of the CIC and UNITED "Utilizing the Network of Ethnic Associations in Russia to provide support for youth organizations in Russia" organized youth festival "The City of The Young". Around 80 high school students from Kondopoga, Petrozavodsk and other Karelian cities took part in this festival.

The most remarkable thing of this festival was that all the organizational work and the conduction of it was done by the young members of The Cultural Youth Centre -Lena, Pasha, Misha, etc.

The festival started with the grand opening. The national anthem of Russia was played; the representatives of the city administration shared some nice thoughts about the Year of the Youth in our country. After the opening the participants have been divided into groups. During the coming three days the organizers were directing trainings sessions and practical labs on how to form tolerance among the youth, ethics of cooperation, and understanding of your social responsibilities, civilized relationship with your health state, those around you and nature.

The majority of the events took place at the Kondopoga's school Nr. 3.

The training session on tolerance was carried out by the members of The Center for Interethnic Cooperation. The school's sports hall happened to be the most suitable spot for this kind of training. The students from Karelia turned out to be incredibly intelligent and active. We were astonished by their ideas on the reasons for the emergence of aggressive people and youth gangs. As a result, we decided to make this event a tradition and asked young people to think about what they would like to see in this festival next time.

The results of the previously mentioned survey:
1. Debates with representatives of authorities
2. Round-table discussion with guests from other countries
3. Lectures on ethnicities, cultures, religions and traditions from professionals
4. Analyzing problematic situations after the actual examples
5. Experience exchange (NGO work)
6. Conducting a social event with participation of guests (a trip to an orphanage, cleaning up in the town, etc.)
7. Stage performance about their native cities;
8. An essential generation of project ideas, which could be applied by the participants after returning to their home towns
9. Certificate proving the implementation of trainings
10. Special games by professional psychologist
11. Visiting or taking part in the May-Day events
12. Normal housing conditions for the participants
13. More profound information about the events: advertising, invitations to the schools, etc.;
14. Preliminary selection of the participants for the trainings
15. Coffee breaks
16. Sports, outdoor activities
17. Giving participants the opportunity to take part in the organization of leisure activities
18. Transportation of the participants
19. Excursions;
20. Encouraging of active participants with gifts
21. Some free time after lunch
22. Discussing the daily results with participants
23. Acknowledging festival plan for the nest year
24. Music

Well, we are surely going to take the students' wishes into consideration while organizing the next year's festival "The City of the Young". We, the Center for Interethnic Cooperation and the Cultural Youth Center have already signed an agreement in January confirming our cooperation. We do enjoy working in this city and feel that our work here is indeed required and for us it is a fact of great importance.