On Nov. 10, teenage students of the FreedomUkraine journalism school welcomed Danish Foreign Minister Martin Lidegaard as their guest. Lidegaard gave a training news conference for the students and helped them distribute their self-produced newspaper in Kyiv streets.
In his fourth official visit to Ukraine this year, Lidegaard found time to be interviewed by the aspiring journalists age 11 to 17 from all over Ukraine who undergo a 10-day course in the FreedomUkraine journalism school in the National Art Museum.
Upon arrival, Lidegaard got interviewed by the students, imitating a real news conference.
After the meeting, Lidegaard went to the streets with the students to distribute the newspaper that the students were working on for 10 days. The two issues of the newspaper called “Your choice! #FredomUkraine” has become a result of FreedomUkraine journalism school. The school is a part of the Museum of Maidan/Museum of Freedom project devoted to Ukrainian EuroMaidan Revolution and supported by international media-project MyMedia.
The young journalists were impressed by their guest.
“He is so open-minded and easy going. And he is the first minister I’ve met in person. This is so cool,” said one of the youngest school participants, 13-year-old Oleksiy Kasianenko from Kremenchuk, Poltava Oblast.
The boy instantly added that he didn’t really believe he could walk like that with one of Ukrainian ministers once.
“Maybe once we are in EU? But that will take a long time. The foreign minister himself said so,” he said.
According to the minister, there should be no corruption in the country, the improved media should work on better communication between Kyiv and the villages, Ukraine should use more of its own resources to become fully financially independent, and many reforms in different spheres should be passed. “And that’s where we depend on you,” Lidegaard said. “We in the EU can help, but you should be the ones working on the reforms.”
The minister shared his own experience about travelling around Ukraine by bicycle, asked the children’s opinions on different issues and seemed to be satisfied after all.
“These young people give me high hopes, very high hopes. They are intelligent and thirsty for improving their own skills and Ukrainian media in general,” Lidegaard said.
In the end the Danish politician and young Ukrainians shared warm goodbyes.
“Now you should come to Denmark. Maybe in a few years I’ll be a prime minister and you will get an exclusive interview,” the minister joked as he was already hurrying to his cortege to make it in time for one of his more formal official meetings.
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Originally published - Kyivpost