In 2007, our organization joined the Traveling Festival, and since then Poltava residents have the opportunity to watch documentaries about human rights every autumn.
The films of Mandrivny Docudays UA are true and important films about the current challenges of today: the victory of justice, environmental problems, preservation of cultural heritage.
The central theme of 20 Docudays UA — “Image of the future” — is what we should imagine and start realizing now.
This is a conversation about justice – the inevitable punishment of those guilty of war crimes, documenting the testimonies of their victims and destruction. About how to cope with injuries, preserve and pass on to future generations the memory of relatives and friends who died in this war.
About rebuilding after our victory — without plastic swans and painted tires on lawns and playgrounds from condominiums. About how to really modernize our cities, towns and villages, make them beautiful and convenient, modern, accessible, pedestrian-oriented – old and young, and crippled by war. This is a conversation about how to clean our waters and lands from pollution and mines, which the occupiers leave us in large numbers.
19 films from 13 countries: Ukraine, Switzerland, France, Belgium, Germany, Poland, Italy, Denmark, Czech Republic, Ireland, Great Britain, USA, Canada. 7 Ukrainian and 12 foreign films, 9 full-length and 10 short films.
This year’s special event was the showing of the tape “Invincible Kherson” from the “Up” Media Platform. This is a movie about the work of Kherson journalists. From the beginning of the full-scale invasion, the newspaper’s correspondents recorded everything that happened in the city. Together with the people of Kherson, they survived the capture of the regional center by the Russians, rallies, occupation and liberation of their hometown. The film contains unique footage that shows what the past year and a half have been like for Kherson and its residents.
During the two weeks of the Poltava Fest from October 17 to 29, we held 11 screenings.
Three of them are abroad in the Norwegian town of Bude and in the Irish city of Kilkenny. Our foreign moderators Anastasia Kelym and Olena Mohylna put in a lot of effort to do the almost unbelievable. The audience, and there were a total of 50 of them in both countries, were so fascinated by the idea of “watching and discussing documentary films” that it was decided to continue holding such meetings in the future, outside the Festival. We believe that this is one of the positive results! Screenings have already been planned as part of the documentary film club, which was recently registered by our organization.
This year there was another unique experience – showing a film with audio description or typhlo commentary (a voice description of what is happening on the screen) for people with visual impairments. 15 blind citizens of Poltava came to watch the film “Bird”, and its author and director Alina Maksymenko joined the discussion of the film. All this became an extraordinary event for our special guests. And we can note this as another important result. By the end of the year, we will watch several more films with an audience that needs it so much, because the collection of the Festival, which is becoming more and more accessible, still has tapes with audio description. Again, let’s do it in the format of club views.
Active participation in discussions of directors Maksym Lukashov, Andrii Melnyk, Alina Maksymenko and the heroes of the films can be considered an asset of this year’s Festival. Nelya and Oleksandr Rozhko, the tape “Guests from Kharkiv”, became guests of the offline show in Poltava. They even managed to invite the director of the film “Young Plato” Nas Ni Hinaan to an offline meeting with the audience in Ireland.
In total, 360 viewers from five cities watched our films.
All events were held with the support of our local partners:
Poltava Regional Youth Library named after Oles Honchar, Poltava Regional Universal Scientific Library named after I.P. Kotlyarevsky, Branch Library No. 4 of the Poltava City Centralized Library System, Municipal Institution “Center of Culture and Leisure” of the Krasnolutsk Village Council, Municipal Institution “Center for Professional Development of Pedagogical Workers” of the Karlovy City Council, Institute of Culture and Art of Taras Shevchenko Luhansk National University, Educational House of Human Rights in Chernihiv, NGO “Common Cause of Poltava Region”, NGO “Union of Active Women “Vulik”.
More than 30 publications about the festival events, total media coverage of 63,400 people in the media: “News of Poltava Region”, “Poltava Wave”, “Typical Poltava Region”, “Public Poltava Region”, Television: “Public Poltava Region”, IRT, Ukrainian Radio “Poltava”.
In order for the Festival to take place successfully, a lot of effort was made. However, we could rely on our long-term partners, make the most of our experience, and ask for help from those who are already friends of the Festival and support its ideas.
This year’s Traveling Festival ended with a viewing and discussion of films by talented directors: “Three Women” directed by Maksym Melnyk and “Our Robot Family” directed by Anastasia Tykha. The final events took place in the Ukrainian Sunday School in the city of Bude, Norway and in Poltava, the space of the Poltava Region Community Action NGO.
Screening moderators Andriy Kinash, Anastasia Kelym, Olena Mohylna, Iryna Tseba, Svitlana Vorontsova, Iryna Orlova, festival coordinator Olena Burim
Organizers: Poltava branch of the Public Service of Ukraine, Public organization “Dokudayz”, Ukrainian Helsinki Union for Human Rights, Charitable organization “Mercy and Health Fund”, NGO “Center of modern information technologies and visual arts”.
20 Traveling Docudays UA takes place with the support of the Embassy of Sweden in Ukraine, the Embassy of Switzerland in Ukraine, and the US Embassy in Ukraine. The opinions, conclusions or recommendations do not necessarily reflect the views of the governments, charities or companies of these countries. The author(s) are solely responsible for the content of the publication.