Exchange of knowledge is key at OpenDoorUkraine.NL's humanitarian event

September 02, 2019

ODU - HUMANITARIAN · The first public meeting of OpenDoorUkraine.NL’s Humanitarian Table allowed aid organisations, both from the Netherlands and Ukraine, to showcase their work and achievements – and, at the same time, to highlight what they can learn from each other.
This event took place in the framework of the “Oekraïne Dagen” (Ukraine Days) on August 31. Set in the lush surrounding of National Park De Hoge Veluwe in the eastern Netherlands, ODU’s Economic and Humanitarian Tables received many Dutch and Ukrainian persons and partner organisations to discuss needs and opportunities in Ukraine.

Addressing the Humanitarian Table meeting, director Henk van Schoothorst of Foundation Sharing Knowledge-Netherlands Ukraine (FSK-NU) stressed the importance of exchanging knowledge. His organisation helps to strengthen basic health care in Ukraine by providing information and trainings on medical standards. “But to achieve this, we need knowledge about the culture, about regulations, social systems, the history of Ukraine.”

The importance of cooperation was illustrated by Valeriy Yefremov of the State Emergency Service of Ukraine, that helps to combat natural and other disasters – including the ongoing refugee crisis in eastern Ukraine. He took the stage to thank Jan-Toine Hooft and Eric Zigenhorn of Firefighters United NL, who support their Ukrainian colleagues by offering vehicles, helmets and other gear – and knowledge.

Psychologist Natalya Dobrova-Krol showed the value of international cooperation through her work with Eurlyaid, the European Association on Early Childhood Intervention. Experts and associations from EU member states and beyond work closely with their Ukrainian counterparts to support children aged 0-6 that may experience developmental and psycho-social problems because of traumas, health problems, war… 

Marius Stehouwer of Dorcas explained how his organisation assists vulnerable elderly people in various regions of Ukraine – not only by helping to provide assistance to the elderly, but also by promoting local volunteers and community networks that can help them. Once again, cooperation is key.  

For more information, click on the hyperlinks.

Read ODU’s article on the Economic Table Business Café during the Oekraïne Dagen here.

Photo: Eric Zigerhorn of Firefighters United NL and Ukrainian State Emergency Service’s Valeriy Yefremov exchange gifts at ODU event.

For an impression of the Oekraine Dagen, including interviews with ODU board members Robert Serry and Beja Kluiters-Albers, watch here.

Update: 1 November 2019
(by Diederik Kramers)