1. Description of our team
The team is a mixture of creativity
The team is a mixture of students with the following characteristics: creativity, open-mind-ness, responsibility and ambitions for making the world a better place for living. ENTHUSIASM is the key word they use for realizing the goal they have set: reducing child poverty as much as they can with their pure hearts and simple desire to do something for the mankind.
Ana is 18 years old and she the most devoted webmaster. She will very soon enter University in Belgrade, in our north neighboring country Serbia and Montenegro. Her specialty will be software engineering. Having proved her skills, all we can do is support her with her work.
Zoran is 18 and he is data assistant in our team. After his first love (our lady webmaster), he claims philology to be the second object of his admiration. In future, he will go into the depths of English language and literature.
Elena is 17 years old and she is the data manager of the team. Her future education plans are entering the Electro-Technical Faculty in Skopje, Macedonia, department for hardware. She wants to pursue her career as a political leader in her country (our hardened patriot). We are happy to have our chatterbox (Elena :))!
Zikica is 17 years old and he is PR of our team. In a year he will enter American University in Bulgaria. He simply loves studying the art of DIPLOMACY. We expect him to be future ambassador or our country in UN. He is good in making people believe him, even when he makes excuses for being late, real diplomat a :)?
Roza is math and programming professor in our school. Her responsibility is coordinating our activities. As we have mentioned the diversity of the personal characteristics of the team members, we simply can’t forget to give you the following information: she is also our idol fashion designer and her gorgeous appearance makes one think that she has come out of a fashion magazine.
Linguistics, languages, literature…are Natasha’s favorite objects of interest. If you come across to grammatical mistake in the contents of our website, please don’t tell her :) We have promised her a present she likes the most: our fluency in English, so that millions of people can receive the message we are sending to the world.
2.Summary of Our Project
Living in the modern society, we came to the sad conclusion that child poverty is huge problem for the mankind. Great number of internet and media analysis prove the same thing. And we also came to the fact that unemployment, enlargement of the human population, terrorism, crime and corruption are some of the main factors which cause child poverty. We are also aware that most of the children who suffer the consequences of this problem don’t have homes, food, clothes, and of course they don’t have possibilities for good education. We send our voice to everybody, we are in a way exercising our power to be the real world leaders in future, now we want to improve the living conditions for the children who live in poverty.
This project came as an idea of 4 students whose creativity and awareness of the problem gives opportunity for its promotion and further solutions. The successful implementation of the project involves the following goals:
So, according to the motto:
‘The future belongs to the youth. We are the youth. And we are the future!’
‘Let’s help the children who live in poverty!’
‘Let’s start doing it today, because it might be late tomorrow.’
4. Problems we had to overcome
There are many issues which influence our lives this way or the other. First of all, we had to overcome the huge flow of ideas, which problem to work on. We decided ‘Child Poverty’ to be the issue we will be working on, under the second category ‘Peace and Democracy’. The process of spreading the news about our work appeared as a second obstacle which was time consuming. The easier part was: involving our families, friends, schoolmates, professors, mayor, delegate of our municipality in the National Assembly of R. Macedonia and all the other authorities we could come in touch with in our town. The fact that we live in a small town in the east of Macedonia was a reason to face with the long distance from the capital, where important events take place and where the government institutions, international organizations and embassies are located. The third problem we had was the quality of the internet access, taking into account that the ADSL connection was used in our country only in the last 6 months. Speaking of technology we also had problems to supply with digital cameras, scanners, computer software. ..There were many programs we had to learn, so that we could make our web site correctly. As a last obstacle we will mention the time. We had homework assignments, which had to be completed in time, and we run other school projects and community service activities as directly involved individuals in many NGOs, which work on current issues, child poverty being one of them. To conclude, we started putting our wish into practice. In order to make a change we started from ourselves, our families, friends, professors…we are doing well. We are willing to go on, there is still a lot to be done for our world.
5.Our project sound bite
We have organized many workshops and debate discussions on the topic in order to have a clear view including all the aspects. We also presented it in front of present politicians, as well as in front of former ones, in front of NGOs working on the same issue and they are all supporting us (as you can see by the interviews). We are experienced in PR work, as well as in newspaper publishing.
Having had pleasant cooperation not only with the regional, but also with the national media we have their support for presenting all our activities. We are ready to present our work personally in other areas in our country, the Balkans, Europe, the World…
6.How did your activities and research for this international project support standards, required coursework and curriculum standards?
After the establishment of the team, we divided the tasks among ourselves and started organizing the web site. During the process of turning our ideas into physical realization, we caught ourselves in describing child poverty with all the necessary facts and methods for complete analyses of the problem. Our web site has first of all educational purpose. It is created according to the concepts of the sociological research. Many of the secondary school students visited our web site as part of their lessons of the subjects: sociology and basics of law. That was the method we used for the realization of the educational purpose, directly. Furthermore, in this way we encourage the youth to promote other problems which they cope with, just like we are promoting ‘Child Poverty’. Internet is the widest source of information and we made our web site open for the ideas of everybody willing to give some kind of contribution, by using our forum.
1)What information tools & technologies did you used to complete your project?
Technology is in constant progress nowadays. Most of our work was done at school. We used the classroom with 8 computers with dedicated Internet access. Thanks to our mobile phones we could arrange our meetings easily (big thanks to our parents who paid the bills :). We used HP Photo smart Digital Camera, HP Scanner, our school/city library, lots of books we supplied from various sources, newspapers, magazines…We used the opportunities offered by Macromedia Flash MX for creating the Flash intro presentation. We used Adobe Photoshop for the photos and Front Page for completing the web site. We presented the web site thanks to the local, regional and national media (MTV-national TV, A1-popular TV station, SITEL-popular TV station, CHANNEL 5-popular radio station, ANTENA 5-popular radio station….). We are grateful to the editors of the following magazines for youth: ‘Srednoskolski zbor’, ‘Vinozito’, ‘Karavance’ and the well known newspaper : ‘Dnevnik’.
2)In what ways did you act as "ambassadors" and spokespersons for your project both on-line and in person?
As ambassadors of our project we started presenting it in front of ‘small group of thoughtful committed citizens’ and step by step we come to the point of representing our school, town and our country. As we have mentioned above, we did that through presenting it in front of the NGOs representatives, the governmental institutions such as: the department for justice, the delegates in the National Assembly, media… and they gave us their support to go on representing it to the world. A great significance was the Second National Session of the Macedonian Committee of the European Youth Parliament, on which our data manager Elena Georgievska participated. She was part of the committee that worked on the resolution on the topic of: ‘What needs to be done to reduce child poverty, taking into consideration that 50% of the world’s children live in poverty?’ She was ambassador of her town there, and was selected as one of the best delegates to represent her country on the 51st International Session in Paris, France (23.03-02.04.2006). The project was also presented to the president of the R. Macedonia, Mr. Branko Crvenkovski, the Minister in charge of social issues Ms Meri Mladenovska.
3)What has been the impact of your project on your community?
We are promoting the project, so that the educational purpose will be achieved, and that people’s conscience of the problem will be raised. The youth that we involved in the project are now aware of their power to influence the things going on around them, they are aware of their own rights and duties. We are talking not only about the youth in Macedonia, but as we have already stated we used our personal contacts all over the world, so our friends who live in other places in the world are promoting our project in their schools. We are proud of are activities for collecting money, clothes as initiatives that came out of our project. Thanks to the Red Cross organization we organized 10 charity activities all over Macedonia. Being directly involved in the project ‘Youth for Democracy’ we promoted the children’s rights in the capital of our country. We are happy to say that our web site was accepted with content everywhere, and we were treated as individuals who did something for the people. And Mr. Kennedy was right when he said: ‘Ask not what your country can do for you, but ask what can you do for your country’. We received many invitations to help various NGOs and other humanitarian organizations in their activities.
4)How did your project involve other members of your community as helpers and volunteers?
We are all active citizens, involved in current projects in our society, and we are in touch with many people with different professional and social status. We already said that we involved in the project on the first place our families and friends, then all our schoolmates; professors; the headmaster of our school; SOROS, NGO Supporting Center in our town, which gave us free access to their library and computers; Red Cross, local organization; European Youth Parliament with the process of writing Resolution on the topic we are working on; Search for Common Ground, NGO whose activities are focused of the youth; MMUN (Macedonian Model Of United Nations) with its activities, CRS (Catholic Relief Services) and School Connectivity Project in our school, by connecting us with secondary school students from USA and South-east Europe; Peace Corps Volunteers in our town…and all the other individuals whose names aren’t mentioned but who contributed, like some of the employees in our school who prolonged their working hours, so that we could stay in the school classroom longer.
5)Discoveries, lessons and surprises (optional)
Elena: I gained precious experience during the 6 months work on the web site. I feel the other 3 friends of mine in the team as part of my family, and now I know what is it like to be part of a team. I learnt to select correctly the contents of a web site. I improved my orator skills, thanks to the discussion for the project, which is a big help for my participation on the coming 51st International Session of EYP in France. I learned that ‘the impossible is not some kind of a state one can be stuck in, but just a way of thinking’, which can be changed. We are actively working on that everyday, this web site is just step which gives us other areas to work on.
Ana: As a webmaster I learned many software programs, so that I could make the web site properly. I also improved the use of technology, various effects for the creation of the web site. I’m also happy to say that now I know much more about declarations and conventions on children rights.
Zoran: I improved my English which will help my in my professional orientation. I have practice in dealing with piles of documents and loads of information. I was in contact with lots of people, with some of them I have made close friendships. I’m now aware of my ability to calm down other people when they have to work under the pressure of time.
Zikica: I enjoyed working with my friends for the good of the society. I improved my personal skills, such as: working as a PR and coordinating the activities and the people in time. I had the precious experience of getting in touch with local and national newspaper journals and editors as well as with local, regional and national TV Stations.
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