Over 1000 young people attended the Youth Festival in Ungheni and participated in the marathons, and in the drawing and photography exhibitions organized with the support of the European Union.
Over 1000 young people participated in the Youth Festival in Ungheni, organized in the context of the 2022 European Year of Youth, on the National Youth Day, which is traditionally celebrated on the second Sunday of November.
Aiming to celebrate and support young people as promoters of change, the Festival was organized by the Ungheni City Hall, with the support of the European Union under “EU4Moldova: Focal Regions” Program, which is implemented by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and contributes to the development and modernization of Ungheni.
Valeria Hanganu, a Young European Ambassador from Ungheni, expressed her conviction that young people from Ungheni will continue to be the community’s voice, will contribute to the modernization of the city, and will promote European values.
“I am thrilled to see so many young people participating in the Youth Festival today, confirming once again that their voice matters and thanks to them, change is happening in this region. The Young European Ambassadors initiative aims to communicate the opportunities offered by the European Union to Moldova and to encourage the civic involvement of young people.
It is essential for young people to be civically involved, to know and benefit from all the opportunities available to them to develop personally, and also to contribute to the development of the community. By working together, we can ensure that our city is growing despite the challenges we face at this time because we are stronger together!”, said Valeria Hanganu, who attended the event.
“Ungheni is truly a city of youth, with one of the largest share of young people in total population among Moldovan localities. It is hence the right place to organize a festival celebrating young people as promoters of change. We are glad that our traditional partners, the European Union, UNICEF, and UNDP, have joined us in this endeavor. Together we want to achieve beautiful things for the benefit of Ungheni and the Republic of Moldova”, said the Mayor of Ungheni, Alexandru Ambros, at the opening ceremony.
The young people enjoyed a diverse and exciting program, encouraging them to adopt a healthy lifestyle, to be creative, and to get actively involved in the social, cultural, sports, and economic life of Ungheni municipality.
“We are glad to be able to contribute to the development and integration of young people from Ungheni in the social and economic life of the city, encouraging them to be the engine of change. Every child must have access to development, education, and health activities. That is why we will continue to support, together with local partners and UNDP, opportunities for the inclusion and development of young people in Ungheni. It is also important to invest in a modern and community-friendly social infrastructure for children and adolescents”, said Jana Midoni, UNICEF Education Officer in Moldova.
Children and adolescents presented their work in the drawing exhibition “Youth – Ambassadors of Change” and in the photo exhibition “Young people in action”. However, the “Youth 2022” marathon, consisting of four running races of 5.5 km and 10 km, was the most important part of the festival. This running event has a long history of 24 years and gathers hundreds of sports enthusiasts every year.
The youth received trophies, medals, and participation diplomas for their achievements.
The program also included a fair of local products and handicrafts, a quiz about the EU and young people, and a concert with the participation of young talents from Ungheni and national artists.
As part of “EU4Moldova: Focal Regions” Program, EU offered MDL 2.8 million in financial support to rehabilitate one of the largest and oldest kindergartens in Ungheni – Tereza Sobolevschi. Delia kindergarten also received EU support worth MDL 310,000 MDL (EUR 16,763) for the procurement of furniture, teaching materials and cognitive toys . The kindergarten reopened after being closed for ten years and can accommodate 130 children aged between 2 and 7.
“EU4Moldova: Focal Regions” Programme (2019-2024) supports the development of smart, inclusive, and sustainable regional growth poles in Ungheni and Cahul to improve the quality of life and new opportunities for citizens. The Programme has a total budget of EUR 23.3 million, is financed by the European Union, and is implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).