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“Neighbours Inspire!” is the key message of our special section on the Poland-Belarus-Ukraine and Latvia-Lithuania-Belarus programmes of Cross-Border Cooperation. They are aimed to provide a response to the challenges faced by the participating countries in their regions. The projects implemented within these programmes facilitate social and economic development, environmental protection, border safety, mobility of people, goods and capital.
The six brief video stories present the project heroes: doctors, museum and tourism sector staff, officers of the Ministry for Emergency Situations and customs officers from various parts of Belarus. They have one thing in common, though: together with their colleagues from Poland, Ukraine, Latvia and Lithuania, they are striving to achieve a vital result for both sides. These individuals inspire each other with their efforts to take up new ambitious projects. Many heroes represented in the Faces of Projects sections have many years of experience under their belts, as well as a long list of deeds one can be proud of. Let’s get acquainted — “Neighbours Inspire!”

Faces of Projects

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“Our projects helps to improve the quality of healthcare services in border areas!”

Alexander Panko
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“Safety is never too much!”

Nikolay Kuzmitsky
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“I would like to make more people aware about the beautiful corner of Belarus – Zaliessie!”

Lyudmila Groditskaya
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“Cultural heritage + transboundary cooperation + tourism initiatives = successful tourism product”

Sergey Koleda
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“The Nioman is our shared river, let’s keep it clean!”

Irina Zenkevich
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“We restore the continuity of time!”

Vitaly Bedritsky
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“Early diagnosis will help prove to people that osteoporosis is not a life sentence”

Lyudmila But-Gusaim
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“Dive into the world of the natural and historical heritage of the Bug river!”

Natalia Yanchuk

Video stories

"Polish-Belarusian Cross-Border Safety. Strengthen of fire and rescue services potential"

Renovation of the fire brigade building, where everything – from the architectural concept to virtual technology adoption in personnel training, meets the latest standards – is going to be completed soon in Kamieniec, which is one of the oldest Belarusian towns. Another high-tech facility – the MES Safety Training Centre is also to be finished soon under the project in Brest. In the course of the past 13 years, the MES Brest Regional Directorate, in cooperation with its foreign partners, has implemented eight international technical assistance projects, which, in particular, include the opening of the International Volunteer Firefighters/Rescuers Centre and the Firefighting Service Museum, while the MES motor pool received 15 fire engines and other special equipment.
More details about the project…

“The Dukes Radziwills' heritage preservation and adaptation for tourism in Kėdainiai and Niasviž”

The Radziwiłł princes’ unique burial vault has been preserved in the Corpus Christi/Parish Church in Niasviž, the first baroque shrine in Eastern Europe. Tourist still are facing difficulties with getting access to this crypt. After some academic research, it was decided to move some unique items from the crypt to the exhibition of Niasviž National Historical and Cultural Museum in the Radziwiłłs’ Palace, 500 meters away from the church. The special exhibition equipment procured under the project will be installed in the palace chapel after the renovation. The project is implemented by the Belarusian party in close contact with the Kėdainiai Regional Museum (the largest protestant church with a crypt of the Radziwiłłs is situated in the Lithuanian town of Kėdainiai). The cooperation between Belarusian and Lithuanian scientists will help tourists to make a personal discovery of the history of Lithuania and Belarus along the routes united by the common history of the Radziwiłł family.
More details about the project…

“Model health care program to fight osteoporosis in area of Polish-Belarusian borderland”

Early diagnosis and treatment of osteoporosis are the goals of the joint project of Belarusian and Polish medics. Approximately 30% of people over 50 years of age suffer from this disease, which is manifested in bone mass reduction. Absence of early diagnosis is one of their common problems.
A transboundary centre for osteoporosis diagnosis and treatment will be established in Hrodna City Urgent Care Clinic; it will apply X-ray densitometry, laboratory detection of osteoporosis markers among risk groups The trauma care unit will be equipped with endoscopic equipment, motor system, heated operating tables and other state-of-the-art equipment. The Ludwik Rydygier hospital in Suwałki will also be upgraded. Common action standards will be developed, joint conferences and training courses will be held for the personnel of both hospitals.
More details about the project…

“Actualisation and Restoration of the European Cultural Landscape on the Lithuanian/Belarusian border”

The world-famous Michał Kleofas Ogiński lived and created his masterpieces in Zaliessie Manor (now, in Smarhoń District of Hrodna Region).Despite the challenges of time, the manor has been preserved, and it is currently a monument of the 19th century manor and landscape architecture. Back then, the park was created by the renowned Vilnius botanists: Stanisław Jundziłł and Józef Strumiłło. Restoration and development of the park complex is a key task of the staff of Ogiński’s Museum/Manor in Zaliessie. Under the project, the Belarusian specialists are going to adopt the best practices of their Lithuanian colleagues (the project partner is the Trakai National Historical Park Administration). In particular, they are interested in the park management methods used in the town of Užutrakis, where the estate, which once belonged to Count Tyszkiewicz, accommodates a landscape and architectural reserve. Volunteer centres will be set up in Belarus and Lithuania to bring together young people interested in the historical heritage.
More details about the project…

“By the Trail of Tyzenhaus — creation of a tourist route to promote cultural and historical heritage of two cities: Sokółka and Hrodna”

The Polish city of Sokółka is located 40 km away from the Belarusian Hrodna. They have a lot in common including the personality of Antoni Tyzenhaus – since 1765, he had been in control of the economy of the region that used to include both cities back then. The project provides for the creation of a unique transboundary tourism product – the Tyzenhaus Trail bicycle route between Hrodna and Sokółka, with a total distance of about 59 km (26 km – on the Polish territory, 33 km – on the Belarusian territory). Four cycling rallies will be organized along the new route. There are plans to reconstruct several historical buildings that will perform a cultural and tourist function. A tourist information centre will open in Sokółka, and the Hrodna tourist information centre will expand the range of its services after renovation.
More details about the project…

"Strengthening the capacity of the dog service of the customs authorities of the Republic of Belarus and Republic of Poland"

Under the project, three Volkswagen Caddy 3006H special vehicles were received by the border checkpoints. The vehicles is fitted with seats for transporting service dogs, and independent heating/ventilation systems. The vehicles are equipped with required inspection toolkits. In all, six special vehicles will be procured under the project to help significantly cut the customs inspection time. The project will provide support with the combat with organised crime and illegal transportation of tobacco products and narcotic substances. The project locations: Brest, Hrodna and Minsk regions including the city of Minsk; Bialystok, Łomża and Suwałki counties of Poland.
More details about the project…

Project Gallery

“Reinforcement of states' cooperation and creation of prerequisites for solving common environmental challenges”

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A suction excavator is the state-of-the-art technology actively used by utility services for excavating operating underground sewerage and water supply systems, soil removal at collapses and spillway cleaning. Such work in confined urban development are always associated with a high risk of damaging gas pipe lines, power cables and various service lines. The suction excavator ensures safety of such work, it is less disruptive for pavement and allows for prompt response to accidents.
These machines, at euro 415,000 each, will be procured under the project aimed at improving the environment in the neighbouring regions of Lithuania and Belarus. Prompt response to accidents and diagnostic support will facilitate the environmental sustainability and protection of water resources. The project is implemented in the cities of Alytus (Lithuania) and Hrodna (Belarus) that are situated in the basin of the Neman, the transboundary river between Belarus and Lithuania. The project also provides for professional development of utility service personnel and for conducting an awareness-raising campaign among residents of the pilot cities.
Project Manager: Irina Zenkevich, Chief Technologist, Grodnovodocanal Utility Company
+375.152.70.29.17, pvkh_grp@tut.by

“Free Access to Medical Services in the Cross-Border Region”

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The medical gas generation and distribution system will be upgraded, the oxygen station room will be fully renovated, and special equipment will be procured and installed in the Brest Children’s Regional Hospital in the next 12 months. The new oxygen supply system will allow Belarusian medics to provide for an uninterrupted operation of the critical care, neonatal intensive care and operating units.
The project will also develop a volunteer system for the palliative care wards: training courses on working with child patients and their families will be arranged there. With the new equipment, the hospital Polish partners from the Łosice Town Hospital will provide for a full-scale diagnosis of neoplasia and heart disease-related medical conditions.
Project Coordinator: Alexander Panko, Department Chair, Brest State University
+375.29.529.86.42, adpanko24@gmail.com

“The Bug Unites Us” – development of two transboundary kayaking tourist routes within the 2014-2020 Poland-Belarus-Ukraine Programme of Cross-Border Cooperation

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A stunningly beautiful waterway runs along the Dniaproŭska-Buhski Canal, the Muchaviec and Bug rivers. However, the lack of adequate infrastructure and promotional support did not allow to unlock the full potential of that natural treasure. The project will provide for the development of two tourist kayaking routes with a total distance of about 800 km.
The first route will start in Verhobuzh (Ukraine), run along the Bug River and its section along the border to Gmina Wyszków (Poland) in the Western Bug waters. The second will spring up in Drahičyn District, run along the Dniaproŭska-Buhski Canal and the Muchaviec River to Brest, where it will join the first route.
The project plans provide for the establishment of the Kayaking Tourism Centre, arranging recreation sites and berths, installation of information signs along the water route, procurement of kayaks, tents, as well as containers for storing boats and tourist gear. The new transboundary brand creation will facilitate the development of the tourism potential of the three countries’ transboundary zone.
Project Coordinator: Natalia Yanchuk, Methodologist, Brest Regional Institute for Education Development
+375.29.226.92.32, yanchuk.natalya.79@mail.ru

Reduction of Negative Impact of Alien Invasive Plant Species on Ecosystems and Human Wellbeing in Cross-border Region of Lithuania-Belarus /Alien Invasive Plants/ 7

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Invasive (lat. invasio – incursion, violent seizure), alien invasive plant species (hereinafter, AIPS) are one of the most rapidly growing threats to food safety, human and animal health, and biodiversity in general.
The project is aimed at improving the skills of Belarusian and Lithuanian nature conservation and environmental organisations in addressing the spread of AIPS. Experts from both sides are going to improve the competencies of regional and local authorities, as well as other public organisations.
On July 2019, the project participants began an all-out inventory of eight the most hazardous invasive plant species on the Belarusian/Lithuanian border. In future, updates on the invasive plant spread and an online web map will inform the development of techniques to reduce such hazardous species. The project participants have also developed a special online questionnaire (https://arcg.is/0Drb1u) for collecting data on the spread of 20 alien hazardous plant species in the cross-border Lithuanian/Belarusian region from residents of the border areas. A Joint Strategy and a Plan of Actions to Prevent the Spread of Hazardous Plants will be developed. As a result, they municipal authorities of Varena (Lithuania) and Hrodna will sign a partnership agreement, which will foster further cooperation after the project.
The project Belarusian participants are Janka Kupala State University of Hrodna, Agriculture and Food Directorate of Hrodna Regional Executive Committee, and Aziory National Landscape Reserve.
Project manager: Aleh Sozinau, Head of the Department of Botany of Yanka Kupala State University of Hrodna, +375.29.783.20.66, o.sozinov@grsu.by

Restoring the common cultural heritage as a basis for the development of the Cross-Border Cooperation between young people and creative teams from Poland and Belarus

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The future of the Rejtans’ Estate (Hrušaŭka, Liachavičy District) has been at risk until recently, when the joint project of Gmina Puchaczów (Lublin Voivodeship, Poland) and Liachavičy District Executive Committee was awarded with a grant totalling EUR 2,374,000. The project is to provide for a partial restoration of the manor house and conservation of a chapel within the estate complex. The manor house area will serve as a tourist historical/cultural centre to be used as a venue for miscellaneous cultural events. It is expected to welcome tourists from both Belarus and Poland, where the Rejtans family is widely known and esteemed
Project coordinator: Dzmitry Makaruk, Director of closed joint stock company «Brest Science and Technology Park», +375.29.728.86.27, fyordmdg@gmail.com

The project “Clean River is the Main Priority” provides for the construction of a new water treatment plant with a full-cycle biological sewage purification in a district capital Žabinka

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The Clean River is the Main Priority Project participants are Žabinka Utilities Company and the Polish Eko-Bug Utilities Company (Gmina Terespol), as well as Polesian Agrarian-Ecological Institute of the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus
The population of Žabinka, a district capital and a satellite town of Brest, is expected to increase by the year 2025 from 13,500 to 22,000. The town’s water treatment plant was built more 40 years ago and it does not meet modern requirements.
The project provides for the construction of a new water treatment plant with a full-cycle biological sewage purification, removal of biogenic contamination with nitrogen and phosphorus, mechanical dehydration of the processed wastewater silt or sludge. The new treatment plant capacity will amount to 3,000 cubic meters a day. A centralized sewerage system is to be built in one of Terespol residential areas.
The Hydroecological River Monitoring Centre will also be established in Polesian Agrarian-Ecological Institute to provide for water management monitoring, research and consultations.
Project coordinator: Aliaksand Kandratyuk, Engineer, “Zhabinkovskoye ZhKCh”
+375.29.795.54.16, a-kondratyuk1976@mail.ru

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The 2014-2020 Latvia-Lithuania-Belarus Cross-Border Cooperation Programme within the European Neighbourhood Instrument. The programme provided for the organization of three contests of project proposals. 46 joint projects with a total EU funding of about euro 27.6 mn were selected after the first and second contests. At least one organisation from Belarus, Latvia and Lithuania took part in each contest. Only those legal entities, which activities are not aimed at generating profits, are eligible to take part in the projects. The organisations must come from the following regions: Hrodna, Viciebsk, Mahilioŭ and Minsk regions, and the city of Minsk (Belarus); Latgale and Zemgale regions (Latvia), Vilnius, Kaunas, Utena and Panevėžys counties (Lithuania).
EU also allocated euro 22 mn for the implementation of six major infrastructural projects. They are aimed at arranging transport infrastructure and expanding the throughput capacity of the three countries’ border checkpoints, improving the lifestyles of illegal migrants and refugees, as well as the conditions of education in Belarusian and Lithuanian educational institutions.
176 organisations from Latvia, Lithuania and Belarus take part in the implementation of the approved projects. More details about the projects and EU funding opportunities are available at the Programme’s web site: http://www.eni-cbc.eu/llb/en/

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The Poland-Belarus-Ukraine Cross-Border Cooperation Programme (TCP) has been functioning for 15 years. All projects funded within the programme are non-commercial and aimed at improving the quality of life of people in East Poland and Western Ukraine and Belarus.
The first programme period was implemented in 2004-2006. It provided funds to 167 border areas development project totalling euro 45.8 mn.
During the second programme period, 2007-2013, the EU funding exceeded euro 170 mn. It provided funds to 117 projects in healthcare, education, tourism, culture, safety and border infrastructure.
The third period is designed for 2014-2020; the programme functions within the European Neighbourhood Instrument. It supports sustainable development along the EU outer borders, reduces differences in the lifestyles and helps address issues on both sides of the border. The budget of the Poland-Belarus-Ukraine Programme for the period is euro 202 mn (EU contribution: euro 186 mn).
More details about the projects and EU funding opportunities are available at the Programme’s web site: https://www.pbu2020.eu/en