Student village to be built… by students

Over 9,000 people will join volunteer groups this summer, taking part in the construction of residential houses and landmark sport facilities of the capital
By Yury Pinchuk

Those in the Belarusian Republican Youth Union know that young people have a great deal to offer and love to be involved in worthwhile projects. For a while, we seemed to forget the great value of volunteer groups but the student labour movement in Belarus has been revived, enabling those on their summer holiday to help in major projects of national importance, including building works.

Legendary Shurik, in the famous film by Leonid Gaidai, recorded ‘folk tales and legends’ in the Caucasus Mountains, as well as working part time on a construction site. In Soviet times, such work by students was considered honoured and important: rightly so. This summer, about 9,000 students will take up a spade or wheelbarrow, with many helping build the new student village — of course, some may end up living there! Others will be seen at the emerging site of Chizhovka-Arena while a great many will be helping reconstruct the capital’s Young Spectators’ Theatre, the athletic arena on Pobediteley Avenue, the Stepyanka Water-Rowing Base and Raubichi Sports Complex, among other facilities. About 4,000 students are helping build dairy farms in the Mogilev Region: almost double last year’s number.

The construction companies have created a pot of at least Br4m with which to pay the students: a great help to those who wish to no longer be reliant on parents’ generosity. No doubt, some will then use their earnings to travel abroad, or to buy their own laptop or other major item long yearned for.

Minsk students will also be a wonderful addition at children’s camps around the capital area, joining Russian and Ukrainian students across Belarus. Some of our students will even travel to the Golden Spike camp in the Tuapse District of Krasnodar Krai.

Certainly, such opportunities are fantastic for our students, giving them a chance to flex their wings, make a worthy social contribution, build confidence and to expand their experience of working in the ‘real world’.
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