CThrough our grant programmes, we help financially active people and organisations that are tryingto develop their communities, villages, or towns. When we took a closer look at the cities where financial aid is going, we found thatit has not been going to some locations for a long time. At the same time, these localities have few opportunities for cultural, sporting or community activities, and people from them are more likely to leave for work and education to larger cities or abroad. TWe have called these places sleeping valleys because it is as if life stopped there, and people do not see the perspective of the future. And we decided to wake them up gradually.
In 2020 we have launched the programme Prebuďme spiace doliny (Let Us Wake Up the Sleeping Valleys). Its goal was to look for people – community leaders that can inspire and activate their surroundingsand start working together to bring about progressive change in the region. We then provide these leaders with intensive educational training where they learn practical skills in the field of community development, project management and communication. We crosslink them with each other with experts from different areas. We also financially support their perspective projects because we believe that enthusiastic leaders and strong communities can truly awaken their villages.
13 applicants took part in the first year. They completed online training on community development, community leaders and how to write a good project, selected applicants later completed project management training (bookkeeping, report writing). Funding for the programme was obtained through a crowdfunding campaign. We have raised €5,212 in December 2019 through the campaign from 140 individual donors and 3 corporate donors from Eastern Slovakia, of which €5,000 went directly to support community leaders and3 projects in sleeping valleys.
Adriana Marcinová devised a project aimed at baking traditional wafers, through which she wanted to improve community relations in the village of Ložín and pass the tradition of baking to the next generations. Not only older inhabitants, but also young children took part in the project, thus deepening the intergenerational relations. Baking wafers together restored the social life in the village.
Denisa Rusnáková organized the Aragonite climb through which she involved inhabitants of the village of Ochtiná in community life. They could meet, talk, inspire, and work together on something thanks to the sports event. The aim of the project was also to connect the inhabitants of the village the with Roma community and to establish better relations.
We grow by sorting
Lenka Leštáková revitalized neglected public spaces with the inhabitants of village Koceľovce. Inhabitants thus took part in the community project and realized that if they want to change, they can do it by themselves. They learned the basics of ecological behaviour and got to know each other better. They prepared theatrical performance
about the funny Ed Drew, who tells children ancient forest tales and teaches them to love nature.