Project “Areas of inspiration” launched!

On June, 22-25, 2017 the Machaon International in cooperation with NULK organised the inception meeting in Straznice attended by representatives of all     project partners with the following purposes:

  • To introduce and present each partner to others;
  • To facilitate exchange of experience about project’s topic and relevant issues;
  • To discuss the objectives, work plan, roles and contributions of partners to the project (basis for cooperation agreements with each partner);
  • To establish the project management structure which will provide efficient coordination of the project and disseminate relevant information at all levels, and decision making process;
  • To present EU requirements for financial management, reporting, and
  • visibility;
  • To discuss project style and communication plan;
  • To discuss the capacity-building programme for co-applicants and key stakeholders (including networking opportunities).

Important part of Inception meeting was the living presentation of experience of project co-applicants NULK and MAS Straznicko in the organisation of art-actions Plain air and folklore event ‘Sheep for the White Carpathians’, and Festival Straznice (including folklore performances, craft fair with master-classes and plain-air event).

In addition, NULK organised seminar ‘Guardians of heritage’ (Authentic crafts as cultural heritage) and shared experience of support the revival of  handicraft traditions which has high social impact for life in rural areas in gen­eral and, specifically, in diversifying income sources for rural families. Generation after generation, skills and traditions grounded in local nature were passed on through handiwork and craft. Materials, techniques and patterns are inspired by nature and are given added value with the accumulated experience and knowledge of the ancestors during centuries of history. Preserving the connection between generations, transferring skills from old masters to younger people, initiated through the proposed project, are crucial to revive and preserve handicraft skills in the long run.

The introduction to marketing emphasizes the importance of the quality of each product right down to the details. In the modern world flooded with goods, handicraft products are sold only when their utility and design live up to the expectations of very demanding custom­ers. During the seminar (training)  representatives of project partners and craftsmen had an opportunity to explore rich experience of the Czech partners in the revival of traditional crafts (i.e. production from wood and fleece) and to learn about the system of marketing support for craft masters (e.g. internet and handicraft shops, labeling, participation at fairs, etc.)

Inception meeting was organised during International Folklore Festival Straznice – the oldest Folklore festival in the Central Europe.   The first independent children´s performance appeared at the Festival already in 1951. Between 1957 and 1979, the Children´s Strážnice was, even though an irregular, part of the Festival, and it was mostly organized one week before the “adults´” Festival. Children´s performances were a regular part of the programme at the Strážnice International Folklore Festival. In 2000, the Children´s Strážnice was renewed as an independent festival running at the turn of May and June as part of the Children´s Day celebrations. Since 2009, both festivals have been held together, which is very good.

Posted by: Svetlana Belova, July, 2, 2017

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