Grabovka first for virtual tourism

Teacher from Gomel Region creates electronic map of Belarusian settlements

By Polina Yevgenieva

The map enables us to tour rural villages without even leaving home. “By clicking on the name of a settlement, a website user can ‘promenade’ its streets and view sites of interest, while learning of its history from photos,” explains Kirill Demusev, a teacher of computer science from Grabovka kindergarten and school.

Kirill has long wanted to create such a programme and it was his pupils who finally inspired him to do so. “We often take the children walking and take many photos,” continues Kirill. “The children were keen to collate these into an album but I suggested a virtual alternative: placing them on a website.”

Grabovka is the first settlement in Belarus to enjoy virtual tourism, with Kirill planning to extend the project, inviting schoolchildren from across Belarus to send shots of their villages to be included on the website; schools from neighbouring villages have already joined in.

Kirill is submitting his programme for the 100 Ideas for Belarus project, hoping to attract as many people as possible in the creation of the map. “Applications have been received from over 1,100 entrants,” notes Maxim Basalyga, the second secretary of the Central Committee of the Belarusian Republican Youth Union. “The number of ideas increases each day.

Around a hundred applications are arriving daily, so the expert council has extended the deadline to December 1st.”
Young Belarusians living abroad are also entering the contest, with seven proposals received from Moldova, one from Canada and several from Russia.

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