‘Inclusive Events Make the World a Better Place’
HSE volunteers together with the HSE Theatre have held a New Year event for the children and grandchildren of the university staff and students of the ‘Pokrovsky Kvartal’ school, where children with disabilities also study.
The ‘The Elf Workshop’ was crowded: children and volunteers worked hard to create gifts and cards for relatives and friends, painted t-shirts, made toys out of candy and exclusive Christmas caps. For one night the HSE Cultural Centre on Pokrovsky Boulevard turned into Father Frost’s workshop.
‘Today we’re working in two shifts. First, we held an event for children from three to six years, now we celebrate the New Year with those who are older, from six to eleven years. We have prepared different programmes for different ages. The kids love all of it! The younger ones felt very happy after the celebration and a bit upset that the event had come to an end,’ says Anastasia Nemykina, coordinator of the volunteer association ‘Open Your Eyes’".
Over 150 children took part in the event. Gennady, a student of the ‘Pokrovsky Kvartal’ school, was among them. The 14-year-old boy was taking part in the HSE celebration for the second time: ‘I like everything here! The main thing is to have fun, as the New Year is a fun holiday.’
Anastasia Gorbunova, a teacher at ‘Pokrovsky Kvartal’ school, says that this type of inclusive activities are important for all children regardless of their condition: ‘First of all it is very useful not only for our students but for those who do not have serious health problems, so they can see that children with disabilities are no different from them: everyone is playing, everyone is having fun, there’s no difference between us."
In addition to master classes, there were also sweets, games with animators, dancing and, of course, a fabulous show based on the popular cartoon ‘Frozen’ for HSE young guests.
This is not the first time HSE volunteers and the Centre for Leadership and Volunteer Workhave held events focused on inclusivity. Last year, a New Year celebration was organised for all children including children with disabilities, while in spring the children celebrated Maslenitsa together, and on June 1 the first inclusive urban festival organized by the HSE was held in Baumanskaya Park.
Tamara Protasevich, Director for Occupational and Gifted Student Guidance came to the festivities with her granddaughter: ‘I think that inclusive events for children make the world a better place. Sometimes children are kept in the dark about some diseases, and then, as they become older, they do not know how to behave around people with disabilities. It is much better if children learn about everything naturally, as part of their life, because people with disabilities are just the same as people without them.’
Russia is becoming an increasingly popular study destination for African students, and HSE University is actively seeking to attract more students from African countries. Bakary S. Sonko, from Gambia, is a master’s student at the Graduate School of Business and an active member of the volunteering community both at HSE University and beyond. In this interview, Bakary recounts his achievements as a volunteer and talks about how African students at HSE have built a supportive and welcoming community for each other.
Sheripher Dinala, from Malawi, is a student of the Master’s in Political Analysis and Public Policy at HSE University in Moscow. With her busy summer over and the new academic year in full swing, Sheripher shares her stories of moving into a university dormitory, volunteering at international conferences, and nighttime dancing by the Moscow River.
From August 7 to 9, the annual All-Russian Forum of Medical Volunteers took place at HSE University’s Cultural Centre. The event was held for the seventh year in a row. This year, 300 medical volunteers from all over Russia took part.
The Green HSE student organisation recently held the ‘Green Conversation’ festival at the Cultural Centre on Pokrovsky Bulvar. At the event, participants discussed the planet’s main ecological problems and the steps required to start building a green future today.
HSE University is known for its active extracurricular life. There are many student organisations at the university, so everyone can find something for themselves. Anna Lulikyan, fourth-year bachelor student in Sociology, told the HSE News Service about the Best Buddies HSE volunteer club.
HSE University researchers together with colleagues from Erasmus University in Rotterdam and the University of Pennsylvania examined the determinants of episodic volunteer satisfaction and its impact on the motivation to continue volunteering.
HSE University graduates and the Nochlezhka charity organisation have launched a social media project called ‘Gde-to ryadom’ (‘Somewhere Nearby’) about volunteering to help homeless people. The project offers a look at volunteer work from various perspectives through personal stories, expert opinions, and interactive cases.
HSE Rector Nikita Anisimov met representatives of the HSE Situation Centre to discuss the results of its volunteers’ efforts. The meeting focused on new forms of support and the problems faced by students.
Researchers from HSE University Compare Motivations of Volunteers at Winter Olympics in Sochi and Beijing
The Sochi 2014 Olympics volunteer programme involved 25,000 people. It was the first such volunteer project in Russia and was organised with support from the government, educational institutions and non-profit organizations.
HSE University Student Development Office held its traditional Charity Xmas festival from December 1th to 5th. The event was open to HSE University students, staff and graduates, and anybody else who wished to attend. This year for the first time, it was online, but nonetheless brought together a large number of guests and speakers. The HSE News Service spoke about volunteering and charity in the Coronavirus era.