On August, 25 at 17. 00 a transformed banquet space located in the centre on Dovatora street will hospitably open its doors.

The space gets the name "ART DEPO" and will be used jointly by NGOs and activists to implement socio - cultural projects. That became possible thanks to the support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Germany, the Foundation Bosch Foundation and the Foundation EVZ (Germany) and cooperation of organizations of NGO "Cultural Di @ logue" (Kremenchug), Institute for Cultural Policy (Vinnytsia) and youth organization MITTENDRIN (Germany) as well as due to the promotion of Zhmerynka City Council.

"The room was empty for 20 years. Having visited the town of Neuruppin (Germany) in January 2016, we met with several successful examples of youth social entrepreneurship. I was personally impressed with the brave move of city authorities to transfer the German city abandoned space station and the brewery to the NGOs - says Anatoly Kushnir, Zhmerinka Mayor. – Therefore, when we returned home, we were lit up by the idea of creating a similar centre here. "Cultural Di @ logue" (Kremenchug) and the Institute for Cultural Policy (Vinnytsia) supported us and today the work on the transformation of Dovatora has been continuing for the third day and involves the young from Zhmerynka, Kremenchug and Neuruppin."

"When we first saw the transformed station – continues Pavel Tretyakov, an expert – it became instantly clear the importance of the authorities, who entrusted these objects to the youth. The station was in the process of repair. However, we were surprised at how young people feels space development, functional zoning and their own social responsibility."

In February this year, two Irynas, namely Kats and Frenkel, decided to write a project and find funding for its implementation in the framework of youth exchange between Germany and Ukraine. So the idea ART DEPO was formed, based on joint work with the youth of the two countries. "Having experience working with Belgian experts on Transformation alternative cultural space #ADAPTER, we created and developed at their own Kremenchug forces – says Iryna Kats – I was fascinated by the idea to try to work in another city. I understand that it will be difficult because we must consider the interests of Zhmerynka and serve as a bridge for Zhmerynka agents of change, but the team decided to take a chance. During the discussions, joint planning and now shared physical work we daily feel a change in relations, the formation of new structural connections. I am glad that the alternative cultural centre «ART DEPO» is open for change and development."

After the first days of German cooperation with Ukrainians, youth gladly talked about the improvement of their spoken English and experience that they gain through working together. "For me it is very important to study the experience of active cultural organizations to create informal ART spaces – says the chairman of the NGO "Association of Young Zhmerynka Residents" Tetiana Shevchenko – Today we not only rethink public space, we change our own minds as well." "The main discovery for me was a huge strength of purpose – joins in Catherine Semes, a public figure – when people from around the world are united by common purpose, burn with a single idea and are actively working on its embodiment in life. When time and resources are strictly limited - secret reserves of imagination open, as how to do something extraordinary from "nothing". I look at old and new friends and understand that each of them is a spark, able to kindle in the hearts of people thr desire to change the world around."

"Today, during work, we see extraordinary processes of change of minds of the young in Zhmerynka. It happens in the eyes. This knowledge is especially valuable to us as experts, as in the life of Zhmerynka young people it is the first experience. They open new horizons of opportunities, start to believe in themselves and realize that not everything is decided by money. And this is important for the implementation of changes, especially at a time when Ukraine should integrate into the post-industrial world economic environment - said the head of the Institute for Cultural Policy Iryna Frenkel. – It has become a cultural policy to change our country – a path used by world states for the creation of conditions for the development of a creative class and creative economy".

"I want to note that we witness the liberation of our youth stereotypes, the main one is the fact that the teacher is always right. I'm glad the way children begin to make decisions. I am inspired by their tolerance when discussing controversial issues. This project is the first step in transforming the minds of our youth. " – said the head of the education ZHCC Svitlana Somash.
The work continues until August, 24. For the Independence Day of Ukraine the youth of Germany and Ukraine will present Zhmerynka new creative prospects which are becoming clearer thanks to the emergence of such a space.