VOICES June 2021

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june 2021







You can see the shine in people’s eyes when Eurovision took place with audience of 3500; the celebration might have been bigger than ever even with less people. Ice Hockey world championships took place and the nations got together to compete for the victory, to toast for an event that has been here for 101 years. Pride month is here, the time of paying more attention to human rights for all, to salute the colorful scale of us. Summer is opening for festivals all around the world, music is going to fill our hearts and artists can share the passion that truly drives them.

Можеше да се види сјајот во очите на луѓето кога Евровизија се одржа пред публика од 3500 луѓе, и самото одбележување беше можеби најголемото до сега, дури и со толку малку присутни. Светското првенство во хокејот на мраз се одржа и националните тимови се собраа да се натпреваруваат за победа, да наздрават за настан што се одржува веќе 101-на година. Месецот на гордоста е тука, време да се обрне повеќе внимание на човековите права, да се поздрави разнобојната палета од нас. Летото ги отвара фестивалите ширум светот, музиката ќе ги исполни нашите срца и уметниците ќе ја споделат нивната страст што вистински ги придвижува.

e can all agree that time had a different way of behaving during past year, for some it might feel like years; others tell how fast it went through their eyes. What was something that us, humans, social beings found most difficult, is distance from each other. Spring brought up what we were looking for; not to be separated.

What is exciting especially in Macedonia this year, is football. It’s an historical event as this is the first time that the team qualified for UEFA Euro, and the streets of Skopje are filled with enthusiasm; the citizens are thrilled, standing together, supporting their team. It is wonderful to see the unity of people through these events and rising hope of getting back together as humanity. Let’s use that unity to build ourselves a better home, let’s show the gratitude for Earth that it has been longing for ages. We are all getting back out there with million choices. What will you do next? Selina Niemi

VCS DIRECTOR: Nikola Stankoski COORDINATORS: Andrej Naumovski Goran Adamovski Goran Galabov Selina Niemi

VOLUNTEERS: Christopher Machold Clarissa Leute Yvan Barbeau Ewelina Chańska INTERN: Rute Cardoso

EXTERNAL WRITERS: Dzaner Shengjuler Lucile Guéguen Josip Gegaj TRANSLATORS: Ejona Limanaj BACK COVER: Stefan Cvetkovski

о една работа сите сме согласни, дека изминатата година донесе многу бранувања, за некого можеби изгледаше како неколку години, а други пак сведочат дека им поминала многу брзо низ нивните очи. Она што сите ние, луѓето, социјалните битија, го доживеавме прилично тешко е оддалечувањето еден од друг. Пролетта го донесе она што сите го очекувавме: да не бидеме повеќе разделени.

Она што е интересно, особено во Македонија оваа година, е фудбалот. Тоа е историски настан бидејќи за првпат националниот тим се квалификува за УЕФА Еуро, и улиците на Скопје се исполнети со ентузијазам, граѓаните се возбудени, стојат заедно во поддршка на нивниот тим. Прекрасно е да се види единството на луѓето преку сите овие настани и зголемувањето на надежта преку навраќање на заедништвото како човештво. Да се обидеме преку единство да изградиме подобар дом, да ја искажеме благодарноста кон Земјата за која копнееме со векови. Сите ние се враќаме назад со милиони отворени можности. Што е тоа што ќе го направите следно? Селина Ниеми

DESIGNERS: Selina Niemi Ewelina Chańska Rute Cardoso Christopher Machold Lucile Guéguen

CONTACT: Volunteers Centre Skopje Emil Zola 3/3-1, 1000, Skopje +389 22 772 095 vcs_contact@yahoo.com www.vcs.org.mk

PROOFREADERS: Elen Wright-Stead Edward Stead

Voices magazine is coordinated, designed and created by ESC and local volunteers with support of Erasmus+ program.

content topic of the month 4

Euro 2020: Waiting for the whistle

Yvan Barbeau


Иван Барбо

VOICES June 2021 - issue 6


Еуро 2020: Чекајќи го судскиот свиреж

reportage 6

Clarissa Leute


Lucile Guéguen


How do we feed the world – without destroying our planet? Your precious leftovers PRIDE month is here, but how was it born?

Selina Niemi


History of ice, stick and a pack. Ice hockey World Championships

Selina Niemi


Rute Cardoso


Dzaner Shengjuler


Christopher Machold

The Impact of COVID-19 on the Environment A, B, C, D, E, K’s of Nutrition


A hike to Galičnik

music 16 18


“Music is the universal language of mankind” Italy rocking the Eurovision

Ewelina Chańska

Italia tund Eurovizionin

Ewelina Chańska

erasmus+ 22

A bright European future

Goran Adamovski


Светлата европска иднина

Горан Адамовски


Josip Gegaj, Andrej Naumovski



We continue with new beginnings #TEHV Продолжуваме со нови почетоци #TEHV

Јосип Гегај, Андреј Наумовски

COVER: Selina Niemi Måneskin: Damiano David, Wikimedia CC | Hockey player: TheAHL, Wikimedia CC Football: Wesley Tingey, Unslpash | Pride: Brielle French, Unsplash Cows: Daniel Leone, Unsplash | Earth: Elena Mozhvilo, Unsplash Crowd: Nicholas Green, Unsplash


topic of the month

Euro 2020:

Waiting for the whistle UEFA Euro is always a long-awaited competition, particularly this year in Macedonia. The national team qualified for the first time in its history for this championship. But how did people in Macedonia prepare for this event? This is what we tried to find out.


тема на месецот


ports Europe is counting the last days before starting the European championship in football. For the first time in its history, this year will be organized in 11 cities around “old continent“ with the 24 best teams of Europe. For the first time since the beginning of Euro in 1960, Macedonia (independent since 1991) will take part in this biggest football competition in Europe. Because of that, the atmosphere in the country is getting warmer and warmer. In Skopje streets, the event seems to be welcomed by restaurants and pubs’ owners and workers as an event full of uncertainty and excitement. In this period of the epidemic, no one whether government officials or pub owners – knows how the curve of cases and deaths linked to the Covid-19 will evolve over the next few weeks. Likewise, they cannot anticipate what kind of measures will be implemented: for the moment, governmental regulations require separate tables in restaurants in pubs, with one-anda-half to two meters distance. The atmosphere in capital of the country towards this event is particular, reactions to it ranging from impatience to hope. People we interviewed were looking forward to experiencing the Euro, in spite of the uncertainty linked to potential harsher measures: this is of course explained by the fact that it is the first time the Macedonian football team is qualified for such an important tournament, which obviously triggers emotion across the country. Projectors and big screens are going to be set up in restaurants and pubs of the capital specially for the event to channel inhabitants’ enthusiasm, but also for business purposes. This is what a barman confided to us when we came to his place: “So many beers are going to be sold… We are going to

organize promotions on drinks to take full advantage of this event as we want to improve our sales“. Several other pubs confided to us they had a similar project in mind.

agencies throughout the town have also considered this point as they have plans to channel this wave in store: firstly, airplane and bus tickets are being sold at the moment for the fans who are willing to travel to support their team in Bucharest or Amsterdam in the group stage. Macedonian supporters can move to Romania or the Netherlands by selecting one flight or bus company among several choices, but with following the latest updates and information about traveling and going to Bucharest and Amsterdam.

The support for the national team across the city is indisputable: some of the interviewed people were very optimistic that their team might come to an end with the competition, but most of the interviewed people believe or hope that Macedonian football players can beat Austria (13 June) and Ukraine (17 June), which are their direct opponents in the group stage in which Macedonian supporters have the also is Netherlands (21 June). This would opportunity to choose accommodation be an achievement that would in Romania and the Netherlands send them straight to the thanks to these travel round of last sixteen, agencies in Skopje. something which Some of them have would represent an partnerships with It is the first time even greater feat local hostels located Macedonian players for Macedonia. have managed to reach in Bucharest and Amsterdam, the a professional level, I For the moment, towns where the think that they will be matches bartenders and involving difficult to beat restaurateurs remain Macedonia will take cautious and realistic, place. Because of the divided between those existence of these partnerships, who think the team has chances to not all local accommodations are of perform positive results and those course available, one travel agency who are much more pessimistic. telling us “that it cannot offer us Overall, most of them consider that the lodgings in youth hostels, hostels being Macedonian team currently possesses the only places we can book which are a lot of qualities: this is the message a available“. bartender we interviewed conveyed when he told us that “there are a lot of At last, among those options, good quality players in the national team; supporters could buy tickets for it is the first time Macedonian players international matches, but all of them have managed to reach a professional for sold in record time. After all, level, I think that they will be difficult everyone is aware that Macedonian’s to beat“. Another barman, who was participation in this competition is personally acquainted with some of the historical and maybe for many people, Macedonian football players involved for now, a unique chance to be part of in the Euro team, revealed to us: “I am this special event. confident. There is a good atmosphere in the team, so I think they have a chance. This good mentality among the squad is Yvan Barbeau a a good omen for success in this kind of competition”. Whatever the odds, and from the spectators’ perspective, this wave of enthusiasm throughout the capital will be difficult to overcome: a lof of travel



How do we feed the world – without destroying our planet? Globally, we consume around 350 million tons of meat every year. However, there is a limit to our current diet in western countries. With unchanged eating habits, the world population could be too big to feed itself by 2050, when we reach a global population of almost 10 billion people.

DEFORESTATION WATER USE Today you have already wasted a hundred liters of water without even realizing it. Where does that virtual water come from, you might ask? Well, it takes around 2400 liters of water to produce a single hamburger. That is the equivalent o f showering for two months. Peter Hanlon, Deputy Director at GRACE Communications Foundation, explains why that number is so large: ”It takes a lot of grains or grasses to produce and grow these larger animals for meat. And all those grains and grasses take water to grow in turn. So the water footprint of meat is greater because you’re using products from lower on the food chain to grow something larger.” The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that by 2050, 1 in 5 developing countries will face water shortages. Tensions are expected to increase, as water scarcity becomes a reality for more people.


You are probably familiar with pictures of empty areas in rainforests. In order to make the land for livestock, animal agriculture is responsible for around 80% of the Amazon destruction. Cutting down the rainforest begets species extinction. The UN is reporting an estimate of up to 100 plant and animal species lost every day. “Since 2016, an average of 28 million hectares have been cut down every year”, states The World Counts. “That’s one football field of forest lost every single second around the clock.”

FISHERIES Fisheries are not only killing fish but also marine mammals, sea turtles, sea birds, and sharks. For every 1-pound of fish caught, 5 pounds of unintended marine species are caught and discarded as bykill. Bycatch is usually thrown back dead or dying.


CLIMATE CHANGE Greenhouse gases increase the heat in the atmosphere. They are responsible for the greenhouse effect, which ultimately leads to global warming. But where do they come from? The emission from livestock is responsible for about 14.5 percent of total greenhouse gas emissions. “One reason for this high level of emissions is that cows and sheep produce large quantities of methane,” writes Forbes. “As a greenhouse gas, methane is up to 34 times more potent than CO2.” A stronger greenhouse effect will warm the ocean and partially melt glaciers and ice sheets, increasing the sea level. Ocean water also will expand if it warms, contributing further to sea-level rise.

CULTURAL IMBALANCE While one person in Bangladesh is estimated to eat 4kg of meat every year, in America, it is 124kg. When asked about the connection between diet and wealth, science journalist Marta Zaraska comments: “Over human history, meat symbolized wealth. Meat in human history was always something very hard to obtain, something that the rich were eating. Today, there is another layer. For many developing countries, in Asia, for example, a meat-based diet symbolizes the West. People are aspiring to that lifestyle.”

THE BIGGER PICTURE The background of our eating habits is concerning – but keep in mind that you can make a small change. Reducing your meat, egg, and dairy consumption can strongly cut down your carbon footprint. Our restaurant order and our grocery shopping make an impact. Whenever we go into a restaurant or a store, we make a decision. What is yours? Clarissa Leute Picture: Rob Curran, Unslpash Graphics: Selina Niemi & Pixabay

But if everyone shared the meat-heavy diet of the average American or European, we would face even stronger nutrition struggles globally. VOICES - 7


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ood waste is a far-reaching issue with tremendous social, economic, and environmental impacts all around the world. Starvation kills nine million people each year, that is to say, more than AIDS, tuberculosis, and Covid-19 combined. Today, around 25,000 people, including more than 10,000 children, have died from hunger. But at the same time, nearly one-third of the food produced in the world is lost or wasted.

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Food wastage can be divided into two categories: food loss and food waste. Food loss typically refers to food produced for human consumption and lost in earlier stages of the production phase such as harvesting, processing, storage, packaging, and transportation. Food items that are fit for human consumption but discarded are considered wasted. For example, throwing away unused food is called food waste. It occurs in the latter half of the supply chain with consumers, distributors, retailers, restaurants, and food providers.

” – planet

Food waste or loss concern all stages and actors of the food consumption chain. Food is wasted or lost for diverse reasons, ranging from crops that never get harvested, poor storage facilities causing post-harvest food losses to food left on overfilled plates or stale bread. Every year, 45% of all fruit and vegetables, 30% of all cereals, and 20% of all meat and poultry are lost or wasted. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), developed nations and low-wage nations discard similar amounts of food. However, food loss occurs at different stages in the supply chain: in industrialized countries, food is mostly wasted at the consumption stage, whereas in lowincome countries, loss occurs more often in the earlier stages, during production, primarily because of poor infrastructure, insufficient cold storage and low levels of technology in the production systems. In developed countries, consumer behavior is

responsible for most of the food waste to a great extent. In Europe, it is estimated that date labels are responsible for 10% of the 88 million tons of food wasted across the value chain. Many consumers misinterpret “use by”, “sell by”, and “best before” labels, leading them to needlessly discard edible and unspoiled food. Then, one research highlighted that over a third of the European Union’s total production of fruits and vegetables are lost for aesthetic reasons. Many fruits and vegetables are classified as marketable based on qualities such as size, shape, texture, and ripeness. The demand for perfectlooking fruits and vegetables from consumers creates huge losses in healthy and delicious foods.

are very staggering when we know that one out of nine people does not have access to enough food in the world. Minimizing food waste could mean saving agricultural land to grow food for those in need: cutting industrial food waste by 15% could generate enough food to feed 25 million people each year.

Tri s t r a m S tu

The carbon footprint of food waste is also generated by the food itself. Most food waste ends up in landfills where it rots, decomposes, and enters soil and air, severely damaging the environment. Through decomposition, perishable food waste produces greenhouse gases, such as methane, responsible for driving climate change. Methane is the second most Most food waste damaging greenhouse gas produced by In the hospitality ends up in human activity. If industry and food landfills where it service sector, more rots, decomposes, food loss and waste were a country, it than one-third of the and enters soil would be the thirdfood purchased as and air, severely largest emitter of stock for restaurants, greenhouse gases in cafes, and foodservice damaging the the world, right after businesses and half of environment. China and the United the food displayed in hotel States, as well as a significant buffets is going to waste. contributor to global warming. Food waste has a much bigger impact on the environment than Tackling food waste is crucial to one might think. In 2007, a report building a more sustainable future conducted by the FAO estimated but also mitigating climate change that the global carbon footprint and combating hunger. Efforts are of all wasted food represented already being made globally to about 7% of all global emissions. tackle food waste. In 2016, France became the first country in the The resources used for the world to pass a law prohibiting production of food that is disposed supermarkets from throwing away of, such as land for planting, or destroying unsold food products. water, and fertilizers for nurturing On top of that, French supermarkets the crops, and fuel for transport must donate their excess edible vehicles, are squandered too. food items to food assistance Food waste and loss contribute to organizations. As consumers, we tremendous wastage of natural can also prevent food waste by resources: it is estimated that 28% reinventing leftovers into other of the world’s arable land and meals and freezing food. Everyone three times the total volume of can help to make a difference. water held by Lake Geneva are used to produce food that will never be consumed. Over 70% of Lucile Guéguen freshwater, one of the world’s most precious natural resources is Sources: Food Waste used for agricultural purposes. For ICCR: Reset: Global Food Waste and its instance, the production of just Environmental Impact one apple requires an average of Too Good To Go: Date Labelling campaigns 125 liters of water. These figures IFCO: Food waste by country: who’s the biggest waster?



1978 an artist in San Francisco, Gilbert Baker, designed the rainbow flag for a Gay Pride March, which became the iconic symbol of the movement worldwide.

Gay Pride Parade, New York City, 1989, National Museum of American History, Wikimedia CC

PRIDE month is here, but how was it born?

Not so long time ago – 1969, when homosexuality was illegal and highly criminalized – the history of PRIDE began in New York.


une 28th, 1969, police arrived in Stonewall Inn, a gay bar in New York. Two hundred people inside resisted arrest as the police started homophobic violence, and it started series of spontaneous, violent demonstrations by the members of the LGBTQ+ community. The riots, as powerful moments of resistance against homosexuality laws, inspired the beginning of PRIDE.

of Pride” – Brenda Howard, a bisexual woman, worked in organizing the first Pride March and managed the whole week of activities along with the March. Alongside her, LGBT activists L. Craig Schoonmaker, and Robert A. Martin are credited with “Gay Pride.”

for the Pride movement, which is now recognized internationally all over the world. June became a Pride month, and inspired by Brenda Howard, it is often celebrated with a whole week of activities and events and finished with the final celebration of Pride Parade on the last Saturday of June.

our movement. We are no more – and no less – heroic than the suffragists and abolitionists of the 19th century; and the labor organizers, Freedom Riders, Stonewall demonstrators, and environmentalists of the 20th century. We are ordinary people, living our lives, and trying as civil-rights activist Dorothy Cotton said, to ‘fix what ain’t right’ in our society.” “Anyone can have pride Pride Parade is a celebration of – Senator Tammy Baldwin in themselves, and LGBTQ+ rights, uniting people that would make them happier as people, and worldwide by being organized Selina Niemi in several countries and cities. produce the movement The attendance is growing Sources: likely to produce each year everywhere, and Hanxofficial: Naked truths / the history change.’’ the biggest Pride Parade of pride happened in 2019 in New York, Bustle: Why is it called pride: heres why the name of junes lgbtq festivities – L. Craig Schoonmaker, 2015 with over 4 million people. is significant

The impact of the Stonewall riots was recognized by the gay communities in the United States, which led to celebrations a year later. A committee was born, and the first LGBTQ+ Pride The Stonewall riots are “All of us who are openly gay are March in 1970. The “Mother considered as the birth event living and writing the history of 10 - VOICES

Wikipedia: Gay pride historical background Wikipedia: List of Largest LGBT events

History of ice, stick and a pack


Ice hockey World Championships Players skating with such a speed next to each other, fighting for victory. Who on earth came up with the idea to put on skates, meander through the ice and make tiny puck to reach a goal?

Basch, Fritz, 1967 World Ice Hockey Championships, Wikimedia CC

Coming back closer to our days, the first officially recognized Ice Hockey World Championships was held in 1920 in the Summer Olympics, where Canada beat the USA 27–1. Now, 101 years later, the nations have been united again to compete for victory after missing the chance to play in 2020 due to COVID19.


anada is one of the leading countries when it comes to ice hockey, so it will not surprise us that the first recorded ice hockey game took place in 1875 between two teams of McGill University students. Even though the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) recognizes this famous hockey game to be the first game of organized ice hockey, the sport’s history goes further than that.

We can travel as far back as the beginning of recorded history when we think about the “stick-and-ball games” as there’s evidence in agent Egypt and Greece from such games. Games sharing a very similar basic structure as hockey have been documented from the 14th century from the British Isles, where later on, ice hockey is believed to have developed. In 1608 Scotland, players moved their stick-and-ball game to ice as what was called “chamiare”. It was

the first reported game on ice, but most likely not with skates since they were not introduced to the British Isles until 1660, when the British royal family brought the passion for skating back from the Netherlands. It didn’t take long that a game called “Bandy” was adapted to be played with skates in England, as skating became a popular hobby.

2 weeks, 64 games, 16 countries were surely waking up hockey fans with excitement. USA took 6-1 against Germany and ranked third. What might have been Déjà vu for many, Canada and Finland were against each other once again, same as in 2019 final when Finland took gold. This year however, after 3 rounds of excellent play from both of the teams, the game went overtime three against three. 6:26 minutes later, Nick Paul scored 3-2 and Canada won the Ice Hockey World Championships. This gives Canada their 52th medal in the history of World Championships, the most of any nation.

The term “hockey” has been found in the 1773 book Juvenile Sports and Pastimes, written by Richard Johnson. And because of the shape of the stick, the French word Selina Niemi “hoquet” (shepherd’s staff) seems to be the origin for the The Canadian Encyclopedia: Origins term “hockey”. of hockey



The impact of COVID-19 on the environment


ifferent impacts on the environment were felt during the COVID-19 pandemic. The air was cleaner, and the water was clearer. The trash was also more present; single-use items spread more around the globe and were thrown away after minutes of use. Experts noticed that even though the positive effects were several, they are all most likely temporary, while the negative effects will have long-term consequences. "I don't think any [positive] effect will be long-term because the long-term changes need to change the habits, to change the technology or to change something permanently, not only during a few months", explains the Dejan Mirakovski, the Dean of the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering at the University Goce Delchev in Stip. Mirakovski also doesn't believe this will be solved now, nor is it reasonable to expect it. "When you have hungry people in front of your building, you cannot say you must buy electric cars. They are surviving now, but we should learn from this and start working on the structure". There is always a solution, and the Professor, who is also specialized in environmental protection, believes that we can significantly reduce our footprint "if we reduce some things properly or organize things properly."


Positive environmental effect


Reduction of GHGs and improvement of air quality What are GHGs, and what causes them?


HG stands for greenhouse gas. It includes “any gas in the atmosphere which absorbs and re-emits heat, and thereby keeps the planet’s atmosphere warmer than it otherwise would be,” states Ecometrica, an environmental software provider and one of the top sustainability brands. Some of the most known GHGs are water vapor (H2O), carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), ozone (O3), and chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs). Despite their natural presence in Earth’s atmosphere, “human activities, such as the burning of fossil fuels, are increasing the levels of GHGs in the atmosphere, causing global warming and climate change”, according to the same source.

What are the consequences? According to National Geographic, GHGs “cause climate change by trapping heat” and “contribute to respiratory disease from smog and air pollution.” “Extreme weather, food supply disruptions, and increased wildfires” are other consequences named by the magazine. From 1906 to 2019, the global average surface temperature increased by more than 0.9 degrees Celsius, according to the U.S. Global Change Research Program, a key indicator of warming in the climate system.

Air quality is a significant issue nowadays – according to World Health Organization (WHO), 91% of the world’s population lives in places where air quality exceeds WHO guideline limits. “The combined effects of ambient (outdoor) and household air pollution cause about seven million premature deaths every year, largely as a result of increased mortality from stroke, heart disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, lung cancer, and acute respiratory infections”, states WHO.

A high reduction of nitrogen dioxide (NO2), a gaseous air pollutant responsible for 68 000 premature deaths only within the EU in 2016 and one of the causes for acid rain and several respiratory diseases suffered by humans, was observed during lockdowns. This happened because transportation was restricted, and NO2 is usually emitted from the burning of fossil fuels, 80% of which comes from motor vehicle exhaust. The European Environmental Agency (EEA) predicted NO2 emissions dropped 30-60% in many European cities such as Barcelona, How has the pandemic Madrid, Rome, and Paris, because of the affected GHGs emissions lockdowns. Due to pandemic-related and air quality? restrictions, “power generation from coal has fallen 37% and oil consumption by an estimated 1/3”, reducing the “main With entire countries in lockdown and sources of NO2 pollution and key sources economies on standby, GHGs emissions of particulate matter pollution across dropped in a short period. Recent studies Europe”, states the Centre for show that in China - the country Research on Energy and with the biggest slice of GHG Clean Air. This avoided 11 emissions, with 25,76% of 000 air pollution-related global emissions in 2016, according to Climate Watch We are the reason deaths in Europe, according to the same data – was estimated a for the pollution source. 50% reduction of N2O and because of our CO due to the shutdown of way of living However, Mirakovski heavy industries. believes this is only temporary. “Generally, this is the At the same time, other industries picture only for this period, because we speeded up their production. “Let’s say didn’t change the traffic structure, we metal’s production, for example, because didn’t change the vehicles - we just didn’t we need more computers; we need more drive them so much”, he explains. “We medical equipment and other things. So, are the reason for the pollution because of more or less, the production was not so our way of living.” significantly reduced”, states Mirakovski.

Reduction of noice pollution What is it?


ccording to several studies, noise pollution is defined as the “elevated levels of sound, generated from different human activities (machines, vehicles, construction work), which may lead to adverse effects in human and other living organisms”.

to the European Environmental Agency (EEA) report on Environmental noise in Europe – 2020, 140 million Europeans are affected by long-term noise from traffic, railways, aircraft, and industry that will probably affect their health significantly. WHO predicted that in Europe alone, over 100 million people are exposed to high noise levels above the recommended limit.

What are the consequences?

How has the pandemic affected it?

Noise pollution can negatively affect physiological health, along with cardiovascular disorders, hypertension, and sleep shortness in humans. According

Lockdown measures reduced economic and industrial activities, kept people inside their households, and therefore reduced noise levels in most cities, according to

several studies. The noise level of Delhi, the capital of India, was reduced by around 40-50% during the most recent lockdown period. Travel restrictions also helped tackle noise pollution.



Reduction of water pollution What is water pollution?


ater pollution happens when “harmful substances - often chemicals or microorganisms — contaminate a stream, river, lake, ocean, aquifer, or other body of water, degrading water quality and rendering it toxic to humans or the environment”, states the Natural Resources Defense Council. Human settlements, industries, and agriculture (cropping activities, livestock, and aquaculture) are the major sources of water pollution, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Littering – to dispose of trash incorrectly on the environment and places where the garbage shouldn’t be - is another source of water pollution. From the over 300 million tons of plastic produced every year worldwide, at least 8 million ends up in our oceans, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN).

What are the consequences?

Giving nature time to restore itself


ature is more resilient than we anticipated and very fast. As soon as we move, it comes very fast. We had a lockdown, and the animals came to the streets, which was amazing for me”, says Mirakovski as he explains how the pandemic gave nature time to restore itself. The decrease of tourism and public gatherings helped nature rest - visitors


Water pollution can kill. Not only ecosystems but also humans. According to a study published in the medical journal The Lancet, 1.8 million deaths worldwide were caused by water pollution in 2015. And every year, unsafe water sickens about 1 billion people around the globe. Infectious diseases such as diseases like Typhoid, Cholera, Paratyphoid Fever, Dysentery, Jaundice, Amoebiasis, and Malaria can be spread through contaminated water, according to The World Counts. Waste plastic makes up 80% of the trash found in the ocean, threatening “health, food safety, and quality, human health,

coastal tourism” besides contributing to climate change”, states IUCN. Then, the huge amount of plastic spread in nature starts to break down into smaller and smaller particles and finds its way to our food chain and water sources. These tiny particles are known as microplastics. A 2019 study commissioned by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and conducted by researchers at the University of Newcastle estimated that people consume about 5 grams of plastic a week, the equivalent of a credit card, through microplastics we eat, drink, and breathe. Research on this issue is still recent, and there isn’t enough data yet to reach conclusions, but “these chemicals have been linked to a variety of health problems, including reproductive harm and obesity, plus issues such as organ problems and developmental delays in children”, according to The Washington Post.

How has the pandemic affected it? The lockdown period closed (completely or almost completely) the major industries and with it, one of the main sources of waste. “If there was an industry that significantly pollutes water and it reduced production during the pandemic, they may have some improvements”, states Mirakovski. “And the tourists are a very important group of polluters - traveling, trashing”, he continues. And the results were there to see: the Grand Canal of Italy turned clear, and many aquatic species reappeared; beach areas of Bangladesh, Malaysia, Thailand, Maldives, and Indonesia had less pollution; and the Ganges, a sacred but severely polluted river in India, turned clearer on many locations during the nationwide lockdown period. “Again, we will learn that we need to change some habits, stop trashing, travel more efficiently - there are a lot of things to be changed”, he concludes.

dump waste where they “We think it’s needed shouldn’t and mess years for nature to We think it’s needed with the ecosystem years for nature to restore restore itself. This is balance. The result not true - nature can itself. This is not true of these restrictions restore more rapidly nature can restore more was, for example, than we think”, rapidly than we think the changing of the states Mirakovski. watercolor at Cox’s Bazar “Also, now we can see beach, Bangladesh – known as that if we reduce some things the longest unbroken natural sandy sea properly or organize things properly, we beach in the world – since it’s usually can significantly reduce our footprint”, turbid due to swimming, playing, and he continues. “We just need to organize. riding motorized boats. Small things”.

Negative environmental effect Increase of biomedical waste and disposal of single-use items


iomedical waste is defined as “all waste generated by biomedical research institutions, health facilities, medical laboratories, and from scattered or minor sources”, according to the study “Coronavirus pandemic and its natural environmental impacts.” Due to the pandemic, it was noticed an increase in plastic consumption and further disposal, mostly because of single-use items, besides the huge amount of medical waste produced, both situations happening for safety purposes. “Individual safety appliances, gloves and masks for medical employees, disposable plastic items for lifesupport tools, respirators, and common plastic items involving medical needles”, are some of the items involved, states the same source. This happened before the pandemic since “inappropriate treatment of medical waste” already posed “serious hazardous transmission of secondary diseases.” But with covid-19, safety procedures had to be even more careful. According to several studies, Wuhan, China, produced more than 240 tons of medical waste every day during the outbreak – 190 tons more than in the normal time. Also, in Ahmedabad, India, the production of medical waste increased from 550-600 kg/day to 1000 kg/day at the time of the first lockdown. This was observed in several other cities during the outbreaks, and such a sudden increase of hazardous waste became a significant challenge for the local waste management authorities. Also, an important reminder: single-use items are not only used in health facilities. Facemasks, hand gloves, and other safety equipment are used daily around the world. Despite its generalized use, there is still a lack of knowledge about how to dispose of these items – most people dump them in open places or household wastes. According to numerous studies, poorly disposing of these objects clogs waterways and worsens environmental pollution. Also, facemasks and other plastic-based protective equipment can be the potential source of microplastic fibers in the environment. Substances used in N-95 masks (Polypropylene) and protective suits, gloves, and medical face shields (Tyvek) can stay in nature for a


long time and release dioxin and toxic elements to the surroundings. “It’s a very big problem, and it’s not shortterm. We didn’t learn from good, but now everybody thinks it’s good to use this plastic and throw it”, says Mirakovski in a concerned voice. “We underestimated this problem totally and worldwide. Also, this causes a lot of other problems we didn’t anticipate well. I think, like climate change, this is the story we should solve. These two things: climate change and pollution from trashing are the biggest problems we are facing currently”, he concludes.

Increase of municipal solid waste and reduction of recycling Due to lockdown restrictions, most of the world’s population was confined at home. More time at home means more garbage was produced. Besides the increase in online shopping (and consequently, in wastes from shipped package materials), many countries restricted recycling programs. For instance, the USA restricted nearly 46% of the recycling programs because the government was worried about covid-19 spreading in recycling facilities. Other countries, such as the United Kingdom, Italy, and other European countries, also forbidden infected residents from sorting their waste. Several studies point out that; in general, “due to disruption of routine municipal waste management, waste recovery, and recycling activities, it was observed an increase in the landfilling and environmental pollutants worldwide.” This is worrying since “recycling is one of the most effective ways to prevent pollution, to save energy and to conserve natural resources.” Rute Cardoso Sources: NCBI: The global disruption caused by different parts of the world NCBI: Coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19) and its natural environmental impacts NCBI: Indirect effects of COVID-19 on the environment WHO: Air pollution Energy and Clean Air: Air pollution deaths avoided in- Europe as coal oil plummet NRDC: Water pollution - everything you need to know FAO: Water pollution from agriculture: a global review IUCN: Marine plastics

Washington Post: You’re literally eating microplastics. How you can cut down exposure to them. WWF Panda: Revealed: plastic ingestion by people could be equating to a credit card a week The Lancet: Pollution and Health The world counts: How does water pollution affect humans Science Direct: COVID-19 and surface water quality: Improved lake water quality during the lockdown EEA Europa: Environmental noise in Europe — 2020EEA Report No 22/20191994-2019 Forest Policy Pub: Tourism Carbon Footprint Youtube: Mahboob Rahman | RARE DOLPHIN SIGHTING as Cox’s Bazar locks down under COVID-19 Coronavirus



Music is the universal language of mankind.

– Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

We asked the local artists, musicians and creators what music is to them, what role it plays, how they got involved with it.

Aleksandra Stankoska When I started playing the guitar in primary school, it was like discovering a whole new universe. It was a world where I learnt how to express my deepest emotions and to understand who I really am. I can’t imagine life without music because, as once Albert Einstein said: “I often think in music, I live my daydreams in music, I see my life in terms of music.” IG: je_suis_bona_dea FB: BonaDeaSk YouTube: Bona Dea Trio

Behar Samakova For me, music is a way of living, expressing and reflecting. It’s a way of coping as well. It’s not a once a day thing, so it’s present all day all night... And how it started? I have visions of my early childhood begging my uncle to give me his Çifteli (traditional Albanian instrument). And then I remember my father gifting me a piano. I also sang a lot at my cousins studio in Kosovo. IG: beharsamakova

Njomza Xhaferi I started playing the piano when I was six and I haven’t really stopped since. It was always something that felt mine and made me happy. I could’ve studied anything or been anyone now that I think about it, I was always very good at school. So people often ask me why music? Why the piano? And I don’t really have an answer to be honest. If I could give you a reason, if I could tell you exactly why... Well, it wouldn’t really be love, now would it? 16 - VOICES


Darko Jovanov

It’s a soundtrack that backbeats the repetitive dullness of everyday life. I love movies that incorporate music to turn a mild scene into a nonforfeitable music video-esque piece of audio-visual art. The music I listen to and the music I play contrasts everything I do on a daily basis, whether it’s cleaning the dishes, going to the gym, solving physics problems or just chilling with my girlfriend on a damp rainy day. It just sets the mood for everything. Like with everyone, it started in early childhood. My dad used to play music on the radio for me and my brother every morning before school. Mondays to Fridays was rock, pop. disco, funk, soul; Saturdays was jazz and Sundays was classical music. This way I got a big whiff of all kinds of music that would inspire me and guide my musical tastes in adulthood. YouTube: Darko Jovanov

Jasna Trpkova It reshapes, purifies, restores and flows. It makes me more than I make it. It allows me to be a temporary vessel that passes through its various hues. It doesn’t really begin at a sharply outlined point. If you are a well functioning wire, electricity will pass through. We can realise we are the wire and decorate the conscious realisation as much as we want but it’s as simple as - you either got it or you don’t. YouTube: Jazzna IG: jasnatrpkova FB: Jazzna

Marko Gapo In those short moments when I’m creating, performing or even just improvising with music I feel like I can stop time and be where I belong for a while. It’s where I know I can get the most out of my imagination. YouTube: Vizija MK Spotify: Vizija

Srdjan Vucic (Rock) music is probably the greatest passion in my life and my primary hobby, ever since I was 6-7 years old. Somewhere in the late 80’s of the past century, my father bought me a small children’s piano. My grandmother then used to sing to me and as she did, I immediately was able to play the melody on the little piano - that is how it all began. Later, in my early teens I discovered The Beatles, switched to electric guitar and haven’t touched the piano ever since. In short, music has been acting as the main exhaust valve for all frustrations, stress and anxieties I may have had in my life, being converted into creative energy. VOICES - 17


Italy rocking the Eurovision The musical battlefield this year was a real mosaique. From always playing-it-hard Finns, through an emotional French singer, to peculiar and very funky Icelanders. But it was four young people from Rome who rocked the Eurovision 2021 song contest, claiming a victory of Italy for the third time in history.


ow does it feel, one day playing on the streets of Rome and collecting money for the guitar case and the next day being in Europe’s spotlights? The Italian band Maneskin is not the first to start from nothing and suddenly being on the tongues of the whole continent. Their energetic music and personalities are something that Italian newspapers cannot stop writing about, plus they have already been compared to the Italian football team winning the World Cup in 2006. 2021, 1990, 1964. Maneskin, Toto Cutugno, Gigliola Cinquetti. Those are three times in the history of Italian winners of Eurovision. Little curiosity is that all those three artists were singing in their mother language.

What is all about this Eurovision and omnipresent English?

Sure thing, English is an international language, most of the people speak it or at least understand it. There is a trend of artists from all over the world to sing in English, as they want to be understood widely and 18 - VOICES

get to the audience outside of their countries. But once the magic of Eurovision was about that every artist was singing in the mother language, Europe could hear the voice of every nation. Even if one language is understandable by fewer people, there is something personal and intimate when you tell the story in your language. Don’t you think so? 18 out of 26 in total contestants in the final of Eurovision sang in English. Few artists composed short elements from their languages into the English lyrics. To sum up, except for English, we could hear Albanian, French, Italian, Russian, Serbian, Spanish, and Ukrainian. Seven languages. Could you imagine that everybody sings in their language – in just one evening we would hear at least twenty different!

The flashbacks of the grand final

Telling the story of the one Eurovision final, we could write a never-ending article. What would you remember the most this year? A Russian singer jumping out of a gigantic cake in size and shape, reminding of a Matryoshka doll. A Portuguese ballad that was wrapping us all in intimacy and taking us into the cameral concert. A Ukrainian folk band coming back with sound to the traditional roots, the village, nature. Icelanders with fancy sweaters and as peculiar as funny dance choreography, which surely many people, will be learning from the YouTube tutorial. The final emotional battle between Italy and France. There were the moments... Ewelina Chańska

Sources: www.eurovision.tv RMF24: Eurowizja 2021: Zwycięstwo zespołu Maneskin z Włoch

Italia tund Eurovizionin Fusha muzikore e betejës këtë vit ishte një mozaik i vërtetë. Nga finlandezët që gjithmonë luajnë fort, tek një këngëtare emocionale franceze, deri tek Islandezët e veçantë dhe shumë shokues. Por ishin katër të rinjtë nga Roma, që tronditën konkursin e këngës Eurovision 2021, duke deklaruar një fitore për Italinë për herë të tretë në histori.


i ndihet që një ditë të jesh duke luajtur në rrugët e Romës, duke mbledhur para në një kuti kitare, dhe të nesërmen të jesh në qendër të vëmendjes së Evropës? Banda italiane Måneskin nuk është e para që fillon nga asgjëja dhe papritmas bëhet biseda e gjithë kontinentit. Muzika dhe personalitetet e tyre energjike janë diçka për të cilën gazetat italiane nuk mund të ndalojnë së shkruari, plus që ata tashmë janë krahasuar me ekipin italian të futbollit që ka fituar Kupën e Botës në 2006. Måneskin, Toto Cutugno, Gigliola Cinquetti. Këta të tre janë të vetmit fitues italianë në historinë e Eurovision. Një fakt i vogël argëtues është se të tre ata artistë po këndonin në gjuhën e tyre amtare.


italisht, rusisht, serbisht, spanjisht dhe ukrainisht. Shtatë gjuhë. A mund t’i imagjinoni të gjithë duke kënduar në gjuhën e tyre - në vetëm një mbrëmje do të dëgjonim të paktën njëzet gjuhë të ndryshme!

Flashback të finales së madhe

Nëse përpiqemi të tregojmë historinë e kësaj finale të Eurovision, mund të shkruajmë një artikull të pafund. Çfarë do të mbani mend më shumë këtë vit? Një këngëtar rus, duke dalë nga një tortë me përmasa gjigande, që të kujton një kukull Matryoshka. Një baladë portugeze që na mbështolli të gjithëve në intimitet dhe na solli brenda koncertit. Një bandë folklorike ukrainase, që përdori tingullin për t’u rikthyer në rrënjët tradicionale, fshatin, natyrën. Islandezët me trikot e zbukuruara dhe një koreografi vallëzimi, sa të veçantë aq edhe qesharake, të cilën, me siguri, shumë njerëz do ta mësojnë nga një tutorial në YouTube. Beteja e fundit emocionale midis Italisë dhe Francës. Këto ishin momentet... Ewelina Chańska Përkthyes: Ejona Limanaj

Çfarë është e gjithë kjo në lidhje me Eurovision dhe anglishten e gjithëpranishme?

Gjë e sigurt, anglishtja është një gjuhë ndërkombëtare, shumica e njerëzve e flasin atë ose të paktën e kuptojnë. Është një trend për artistë në të gjithë botën që të këndojnë në anglisht, pasi ata duan të kuptohen gjerësisht dhe të arrijnë audiencën jashtë vendeve të tyre. Por, dikur magjia e Eurovision ishte se, çdo artist këndonte në gjuhën e tij amtare, Evropa mund të dëgjonte zërin e çdo kombi. Edhe nëse një gjuhë është e kuptueshme nga më pak njerëz, ka diçka personale dhe intime në tregimin e një historie në gjuhën tuaj. A nuk mendoni kështu? 18 nga 26 garues në finalet e Eurovision kënduan në anglisht. Për ta përmbledhur, përveç anglishtes, mund të dëgjonim shqip, frëngjisht, VOICES - 19


A, B, C, D, E, K’s of Nutrition

“Today more than 95% of all chronic disease is caused by food choice, toxic food ingredients, nutritional deficiencies, and lack of physical exercise.” – Mike Adams



elieve in the power of B-complex vitamins in maintaining the well-being of individuals. The B-complex vitamins are consisted of thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6, pantothenic acid, and biotin. Consumption of all these vitamins in appropriate amounts, are important. Well, we keep saying important and healthy, so let’s dive in to the sea of B’s. B vitamins are crucial when we consider the body cells, and their functioning properly. Among many contributions, they aid the food metabolism, are involved in the creation of new blood cells, in addition healthy skin and brain cells, as well as numerous body tissues. One step at a time, let us get acquainted with the B-complex vitamins, by introducing their function, and sources, shall we?

Thiamine (B1)

Biotin (B7)

Riboflavin (B2)

Folate (B9)

aids the metabolizing nutrients, and turn them to energy. Source of this vitamin are pork, sunflower seeds, and wheat germ.

aids in turning nutrients in energy as well as functioning as antioxidants. Organ meats, beef and mushrooms are rich source of this particular vitamin.

Niacin (B3)

cellular signaling, metabolism, and DNA production and repair are the main roles of this special guy. We find it mainly in chicken, tuna, and lentils.

Pantothenic Acid (B5)

as well as metabolizing the food, it is involved in the production of cholesterol and hormones. Foods as liver, fish, yoghurt, avocado are good sources.

Pyridoxine (B6)

is involved in metabolism of amino acids, production and creation of red blood cells, and neurotransmitters respectively. Chickpeas, salmon, and potatoes contains this vitamin.

metabolizes carbs and fats, and is involved in expression of genes. Yeast, eggs, salmon, cheese and liver are good choices in getting this vitamin.

plays an important role in growth of cells, metabolizes amino acids, forming of red and white blood cells, as well as the proper division of cells. Leafy greens, liver and beans, folic acid supplements are good source.

Cobalamin (B12)

is very well known among all, and gains this popularity due to its involvement in neurological function, production of DNA, as well as creation of red blood cells. It is commonly known that it can be found in products derived from animals as meats, eggs, seafood and dairy. Next time when you prepare your plate, consider elaborating mixtures of the above-mentioned products, to make sure that you get what you need, and remember, what you need is what you deserve, a healthy life. Dzaner Shengjuler

Sources: WHO: NUTRITION for Health and Development Medical News Today: A complete guide to B vitamins Healthline: B-Complex Vitamins: Benefits, Side Effects and Dosage



A bright European future Светлата европска иднина

Yes, it was really challenging to organize an event with about fifty physical participants in a period of easing the measures and still insufficient confidence whether we beat Covid-19. But these wonderful young people deserved a chance to present their projects that changed the society for the better.


hey have worked hard for the past 15 months and now they need encouragement to keep changing things, because it is the young enthusiasts that the world needs to bring the color into the general grayness. In the period from May 29 to June 5 this year, Volunteers Centrе Skopje hosted the final conference of the project: European Youth at the frontlines of active citizenship: A Roadmap towards a collective South-NorthEast-West Momentum, organized by VCS, and supported by the European Commission through the Erasmus+ and European Youth Together programs. Representatives of the five partner countries (Volunteers Centre Skopje Macedonia, Asociacion Mundus - Spain, European Community Media Center Aarhus - Denmark and Asociatia Young Europe Society – Romania with physical presence, while CIP Citizens in Power from Cyprus virtually participated in the 22 - VOICES

sessions) learned how to become active citizens and how to take an initiative to oppose the apathy and disinterest that is present especially among young people. “This is the project that provided 5 volunteers at Young Europe Society with an excellent context in which to develop personally and professionally, and to boost their self-esteem. From 5 volunteers, now we have in our NGO 5 new project managers”, says Dan Adrian, coordinator at Asociatia Young Europe Society. Each of the five participants from each partner country had the task to bring another person who was directly involved in the implementation of the personal project in the past year, i.e. since March last year when the first workshop was held in Skopje. And it was wonderful to feel that energy and ecstasy when they talked about their projects. And they were also ambitious: they wanted to clean up all the garbage in their countries, to merge with nature, to share the food that is left in the markets and restaurants, to solve the psychological stress and problems of young people, to make films about the natural beauties with which they will warn about the dangers of the construction mafia and the negligence of the people, have opened youth centers where they can socialize and exchange ideas and plans...

“The project has been a huge inspiration for me and a great example for all of us as part of the European society. The participants are so young that it is surprising to see how committed they are. Their results are so great. I hope they can get a good dissemination, so next generations will be able to follow their steps” said Alberto Vela Santos of Asociacion Mundus. The end of the conference does not mean the end of the activities with which we will change the society. On the contrary, we are just getting started. Goran Adamovski


Да, беше навистина предизвикувачки да се организира настан со педесетина физички учесници во период на олабавување на мерките и се уште недоволна доверба дали го победивме „Ковид-19“. Но, тие прекрасни млади личности заслужија да добијат шанса да ги презентираат во живо своите проекти со кои го променија општеството на подобро.


аботеа напорно изминатите 15 месеци и сега им е потребен потстрек да продолжат да ги менуваат работите, затоа што токму млади ентузијасти му требаат на светот за да му дадат боја во општото сивило. Во периодот од 29 мај до 5 јуни годинава, Волонтерски Центар Скопје беше домаќин на завршната конференција од проектот: „European Youth at the frontlines of active citizenship: A Roadmap towards a collective South-North-East-West Momentum”, организиран од ВЦС, а поддржан од Европската комисија преку програмите „Ерасмус+“ и „Европските млади заедно“. Претставници на петте земјипартнери (Волонтерски Центар Скопје

Neda Ahchieva, project manager “It is incredibly powerful to see how enthusiastically young people can improve things in their communities despite the global pandemic. We call them “Future-Shapers” because they are brave enough to challenge things they cannot accept. The impulse of proactive citizenship that this project has created across Europe has really exceeded all expectations and with motivated young people like this, the future of Europe really looks bright!” Nikola Stankoski, director of VCS It was a great challenge and pleasure to organize the project, because it is the first international after a break of 15 months due to the pandemic. There were several stages from idea to realization, but the final result is extremely successful projects for young participants. No matter where they come from in different countries, regions and mentalities, they all managed to connect in one common goal: changing society for the better. That is one of the goals of Volunteers Centre Skopje, which this year celebrates its 15th anniversary”.

– Македонија, Asociacion Mundus Шпанија, European Community Media Center Aarhus - Данска и Asociatia Young Europe Society – Романија беа присутни во живо, додека C.I.P. Citizens in Power од Кипар со своите учесници виртуелно партиципираа на сесиите) учеа како да станат активни граѓани и како да преземат иницијатива со која ќе се спротистават на апатијата и незаинтересираноста што е особено присутна меѓу младите.

сакаа да го исчистат сето ѓубре во своите земји, да се спојат со природата, да ја поделат храната што останува во маркетите и во рестораните, да ги решат психичките стресови и проблеми кај младите, да снимаат филмови за природните убавини со кои ќе предупредат за опасностите од градежната мафија и негрижата на луѓето, отвораа младински центри каде што можат да се дружат и да разменуваат идеи и планови..

„Ова е проект што доведува петмина волонтери од нашата организација во одличен контекст да се развијат лично и професионално, односно да ја зголемат својата самодоверба. Па, така од петмина волонтери – нашата организација доби 5 нови проектни менаџери“, вели Дан Адриан, координатор во Asociatia Young Europe Society.

„Проектот ми даде огромна инспирација и одличен пример за сите нас како дел од европското општество. Учесниците се толку млади што вчудовидувачки е колку се посветени во својата мисија. Нивните резултати се фантастични. Се надевам дека ќе имаат успешна дисеминација, па следните генерации ќе можат да ги следат нивните чекори“, смета Алберто Вела Сантос од Asociacion Mundus.

Секој од петте учесници на една земјапартнер имаше задача да доведе уште една личност која беше директно инволвирана во реализација на личниот проект во изминатата година, односно од март лани кога во Скопје беше оддржана првата работилница. И беше прекрасно да се почувствува таа енергија и занес кога зборуваа за своите проекти. А, беа и тоа како амбициозни:

Крајот на конференцијата не значи и завршеток на активностите со кои ќе го менуваме општеството. Напротив, допрва почнуваме. Горан Адамовски

Неда Ахчиева, проектен менаџер „Неверојатно моќно е да се види колку младите луѓе со ентузијазам можат да ги подобрат работите во нивните заедници и покрај глобалната пандемија. Ги нарекуваме „Future-Shapers“, бидејќи се доволно храбри да ги оспоруваат работите што не можат да ги прифатат. Импулсот на проактивно граѓанство што овој проект го создаде низ Европа - ги надмина сите очекувања и со мотивирани млади луѓе како овие, иднината на Европа навистина изгледа светла!“ Никола Станкоски, директор на ВЦС „Беше голем предизвик и задоволство да се организира проектот, бидејќи станува збор за прв меѓународен по пауза од 15 месеци поради пандемијата. Од идеја до реализација имаше повеќе фази, но конечниот резултат се исклучително успешни проекти кај младите учесници. Без оглед што доаѓаат од различни земји, поднебја и менталитет, сите заедно успеаја да се поврзат во една заедничка цел: менување на општеството кон подобро. Тоа е и една од целите на Волонтерски Центар Скопје, кој годинава слави 15-годишен јубилеј“.



A hike to


On this year’s Easter weekend, some friends and I went on a beautiful day-hike to a small but prestigious Macedonian village called Galičnik.


e started our little adventure in Janče, a small village approximately 6 km away and 700 m below our destination. Here we already met this lovely elder woman in the garden of her house, who was just too happy to show us the right way. Unfortunately we couldn’t understand what she said because (shame on us) we couldn’t understand Macedonian, but her gestures definitely would have helped us in a world without smartphones and digital maps. So we found the right track but just before we left the village someone was joining our group – a dog. I called him Kuče, we called him Didier.


It was a nice hiking trail up to the village, which is known for its wellpreserved traditional architecture. It was neither too steep, nor too easy. Sometimes the path was partly covered with puddles where Didier could take a good refreshing sip of water. For us there was a drinking fountain halfway. Well, actually we weren’t perfectly sure if the water was drinkable, but the taste was just great so we filled our bottles to the brim. And if Didier can drink from the puddles we can definitely drink from this fountain. I always wonder why exactly dogs are joining us on our journeys sometimes.


Do they think we are searching for food or do they think they will eventually get some food from us? Do they just want to hang out and enjoy some company? Maybe they don’t even know it themselves. They just do what they have to do. But why exactly did we actually go to Galičnik? As much as I wonder about Didier, maybe Didier is also wondering about us. These people are taking this exhausting walk and are not even searching for food. Strange creatures those humans certainly are. There were quite some animals around. Some of us have seen deer. Someone supposedly saw a snake and was scared of it. The only things I saw were little lizards and a gigantic piece of poop that may have been from a bear. Didier has probably seen much more, but he kept it a secret. The higher we got, the better the view became. I think the others didn’t pay as much attention but I was enjoying the scenery again and again. You could see mountain after mountain, left, right, left, in the distance the Debar Lake and a bit further, probably

even Albania. It’s funny when you think about how old those mountains are, and that they also move and change as we do, but just incredibly slow. Approximately after two and a half hours we finally arrived in Galičnik. The first thing we saw was a hotel/restaurant with many people sitting at the terrace enjoying themselves. Here we said goodbye to Didier. It seemed like his mission with us had ended and he joined some other people, who were walking to the restaurant. That probably seemed more promising to him at this moment. We instead entered the village. Due to a little misinterpretation it came as a surprise to some of us that there were actually more than two houses existing in Galičnik. Even though today the village only has two “real” residents, the number of houses used occasionally for holidays and weekendtrips is much higher. On this Saturday the village was comparatively alive. Since it was the weekend of Orthodox Easter, many people enjoyed their time in the garden of their holiday

houses with barbecue and drinks. There may be just one period of the year when there are even more people coming together in this little mountain village. And by more I mean thousands more. It happens once a year in the middle of July when one of the most traditional wedding festivals in Europe takes place in Galičnik. It is one of the famous Macedonian events where couples all over the country take part in a competition beforehand to become the lucky one that is getting married in this special celebration with rituals like traditional dances, the groom getting shaved and bread getting kneaded. Maybe one day I will get married in Galičnik too, but first I would need to find a girl with roots from the village, because at least one of the fiancées has to be from a Galičnik family. But no, this is not a personal advertisement. After we passed the Church of St. Paul and Peter, where by the way the wedding ceremony takes place, a Macedonian flag came across our way. Instead of

standing strong and waving proud, the flag was partly destroyed and lying on the ground. It somehow was of symbolic nature. I tried to lift the flag a bit up but of course I couldn’t make it stand. Well, we were just some tourists. We can try to help a bit but at the end of the day we want to take a good photo. I guess that’s what tourists do. Eventually we wandered further around the village, took some unconventional paths and found our way back to the hotel/restaurant. From there we hiked and sometimes ran down back to Janče. But before we finally went back we took one last moment to watch the landscape and enjoyed this awesome (in the actual meaning of the word) view once more. Back then I was trying to capture what I saw, just like I am now trying to write down what I feel, when I think about this day of Galičnik. Christopher Machold Sources: National geographic: Things to do Galicnik wedding festival Macedonian Cuisine: Galicka Svadba Wikipedia: Galičnik



We continue with new beginnings Volunteers Centre Skopje as part of its work focused on humanitarian activities and already increased and advanced capacities through the project Towards effective humanitarian volunteering looks forward to the European Union’s new Erasmus+ program, and in particular the European Solidarity Corps. It is taking big steps towards the new challenges and the future volunteers who will be part of Volunteers Centre Skopje through the various branches of the European Solidarity Corps.


he European Commission on April 15, 2021 announced the new program of the European Solidarity Corps for 2021-2027 and issued the new guide of the ESC for 2021 which explains the goals, priorities and important features of the program and specifies the guidelines for certification of the organizations involved in it. The activities of the European Solidarity Corps support the objectives of the EU Youth Strategy for 2019-2027 which encourages young people to become active citizens, agents of solidarity and positive change for communities across Europe, inspired by EU values and a European identity. This program also includes support for volunteering in solidarity activities related to humanitarian aid with the special action Humanitarian Aid Volunteering which is a continuation of the program EU Aid Volunteers. Given the significant increase in global humanitarian needs and in order to enhance solidarity and the need for humanitarian assistance among the citizens of the Union, there is a need to develop solidarity between Member States and with third countries affected by natural and man26 - VOICES

made disasters. Helping people and communities outside the Union who need humanitarian assistance is based on the basic principles of solidarity, neutrality, humanity, independence and impartiality. Humanitarian Aid Volunteering offers the opportunity to young people aged 18 to 35 to participate in volunteer activities, in order to support humanitarian aid operations. These activities will enable volunteers to perform the tasks needed to support the activities undertaken by their host organization. Participation in this program requires a special certificate Quality Label issued by the European Education and Culture Executive Agency of the European Union (EACEA) based in Brussels. The quality certificate confirms that the organization is able to implement high quality solidarity activities in accordance with the principles, goals and requirements of the action European Voluntary Humanitarian Aid Corps. Obtaining this quality certificate is a prerequisite for participating in volunteer activities to support humanitarian aid operations. Once awarded the quality certificate, the organizations gain access to the

European Solidarity Corps Portal where they are invited to offer their activities. Organizations can use the European Solidarity Corps Portal database to search for potential partners and participants. The information in the database is published as formulated in the quality certificate form. Volunteers Centre Skopje as part of the TEHV project is getting involved in the new programs and under the mentorship and training of the organizations ADRA Slovakia and ADICE from France continues to strengthen its capacity and gain new knowledge that will be implemented and used for more successful management of the volunteer process as a host organization. With this project VCS continues its active participation in humanitarian actions and projects wherever there is a need and through practical actions, but also through training and coaching increases the awareness of humanism of young people and all those who have a desire to volunteer and help. Josip Gegaj Andrej Naumovski



Продолжуваме со нови почетоци Волонтерски Центар Скопје како дел од својата работа насочена кон хуманитарни активности и веќе зголемените и напреднати капацитети преку проектот Towards effective humanitarian volunteering гледа нанапред кон новата програма на Европската Унија за Еразмус+ и особено Европскиот Солидарен Корпус (ЕСК). Со крупни чекори граби кон новите предизвици и идните волонтери кои ќе бидат дел од Волонтерски Центар Скопје преку различните гранки на ЕСК.


вропската комисија на 15.04.2021 година ја објави новата програма на Европски Солидарен Корпус за 2021-2027 година и го издаде новиот програмски водич на ЕСК за 2021 година во кој се објаснува кои се целите, приоритетите и важните карактеристики на програмата и се прецизираат насоките за сертифицирање на организациите кои се влучени. Активностите ги поддржуваат целите на Стратегијата за млади на ЕУ за 2019-2027 година што ги охрабрува младите да станат активни граѓани, промовирачи на солидарност и позитивни промени за заедниците низ цела Европа, инспирирани од вредностите на ЕУ и европскиот идентитет. Во рамките на оваа програма спаѓа и поддршката за волонтирање во активности за солидарност поврзани со хуманитарна помош со посебната акција Humanitarian Aid Volunteering која е продолжение на програмата EU Aid Volunteers. Имајќи го предвид значителното зголемување на глобалните хуманитарни потреби и со цел да се унапреди солидарноста и потребата за хуманитарна помош меѓу граѓаните на Унијата, постои потреба и да се развие солидарност меѓу земјитечленки и со трети земји погодени од

природни и секаков вид катастрофи. Помагањето на луѓето и заедниците надвор од Унијата на кои им е потребна хуманитарна помош, се засновани врз основните принципи на солидарност, неутралност, хуманост, независност и непристрасност. Акцијата им нуди можност на младите луѓе од 18 до 35 години да учествуваат во волонтерски активности, со цел поддршка на операциите за хуманитарна помош. Овие активности ќе им овозможат на волонтерите да извршуваат задачи потребни за поддршка на активностите преземени од нивната организација домаќин. За учество во оваа програма потребен е посебен сертификат Quality Label кој го издава Извршната Агенција на Европската Унија (EACEA) со седиште во Брисел. Сертификатот за квалитет потврдува дека организацијата е во состојба да спроведува високо квалитетни активности за солидарност во согласност со принципите, целите и барањата на акцијата European Voluntary Humanitarian Aid Corps. Добивањето на овој сертификат за квалитет е предуслов за учество во волонтерски активности за поддршка на операции за хуманитарна помош. Откако ќе им биде доделен сертификатот за квалитет,

организациите добиваат пристап до Порталот на ЕСК каде се повикуваат да понудат свои активности. Организациите може да ја користат базата на податоци за да бараат потенцијални партнери и учесници. Информациите во базата се објавуваат како што се формулирани во образецот сертификат за квалитет. ВЦС како дел од проектот TEHV се вклучува во новите програми и под менторство и обука од организациите АДРА Словачка (ADRA Slovakia) и АДИСЕ (ADICE) од Франција продолжува со зајакнување на своите капацитети и стекнување на нови знаења кои ќе бидат имплементирани и употребени за поуспешно менаџирање со волонтерскиот процес како организација домаќин. Со овој проект ВЦС го продолжува своето активно учество во хуманитарни акции и проекти секаде каде што има потреба и преку практични делувања, но и преку обуки и тренинзи ја зголемува свеста за хуманизам на младите луѓе и на сите оние кои имаат желба за волонтирање и помагање. Јосип Гегај Андреј Наумовски

#tehv VOICES - 27

topic of the month

ЕУРО 2020:

Чекајќи го судискиот свиреж

Европското фудбалско првенство е секогаш долгоочекувано натпреварување, особено овојпат во Македонија. Националниот тим се пласираше за првпат во својата историја на ваков голем настан. Но, како луѓето во Македонија се подготвуваат за овој настан – истражуваме во јунското издание на „Воисес“.


тема на месецот


портската Европа ги брои последните денови пред почетокот на Европското првенство во фудбал. За првпат во историјата, ЕУРО 2020 ќе се организира во 11 градови низ „стариот континент“ со учество на 24-те најдобри тимови во Европа. Ова ќе биде првиот еврошампионат почнувајќи од 1960, на кој ќе игра репрезентацијата на Македонија. Поради тоа, атмосферата во земјата станува сè пожешка и пожешка. На скопските улици се добива впечаток дека настанот со посебно исчекување се доживува во рестораните и во пабовите. Во период на пандемија - никој не знае како „кривата“ на случаи и смртни случаи поврзани со „Ковид-19“ ќе се развива во текот на следните неколку недели. Според тоа, никој не може да предвиди какви мерки ќе бидат спроведени. Засега, владините регулативи предвидуваат посебни маси во ресторани во пабови, на оддалеченост од еден и пол до два метри. Атмосферата во главниот град е посебна, реакциите се движат од нетрпеливост до надеж. Луѓето кои ги интервјуиравме се нетрпеливи турнирот да започне што секако се објаснува со фактот дека е првпат македонската фудбалска репрезентација се квалификува на ваков важен турнир, што очигледно предизвикува емоции низ целата земја. Проектори и големи екрани ќе бидат поставени во рестораните и пабовите во главниот град со цел да се канализира ентузијазмот на жителите, но исто така, и поради деловни причини. „Толку многу пива ќе се продаваат... размислуваме да организираме промоции на пијалоци за да го искористиме овој настан во целост и да ја подобриме нашата продажба“, вели еден од вработените во скопските кафулиња.

Поддршката за националниот тим низ градот е неспорна: некои од интервјуираните луѓе беа многу оптимисти дека нивниот тим може да стигне до крајот на натпреварувањето, но повеќето се реални, па веруваат или се надеваат дека македонските фудбалери можат да ја победат Австрија (13 Јуни) и Украина (17 јуни), кои се нивни директни конкуренти во групната фаза во која е и Холандија (21 јуни). Евентуален пласман во наредната фаза меѓу 16-те најдобри би претставувало уште поголем подвиг за Македонија.

кои се подготвени да патуваат за да го бодрат својот тим во Букурешт или Амстердам во групната фаза. Македонските поддржувачи можат да се преселат во Романија или Холандија, но внимателно да ги следат најновите ажурирања и информации за патување во Букурешт и во Амстердам.

Туристичките агенции во Скопје веќе развиле партнерство со локалните хо(с)тели лоцирани во Букурешт и во Амстердам, градовите-домаќини на мечевите на македонската фудбалска репрезентација. Дел од нив веќе се резервирани, па како што ни рекоа во една агенција единствените Првпат македонски – места што можат играчи да успеат да ги понудат се да достигнат хостелите.

За момент, шанкерите и келнерите стануваат претпазливи и реални, поделени меѓу оние кои професионално ниво, сметаат дека мислам дека ќе биде тимот има шанси да Конечно, најтешката оствари позитивни ситуација беше да се тешко за било кој резултати и оние кои купи билет за мечевите, противник. се многу попесимистички бидејќи беа во ограничен расположени. Генерално, број, па рекордно се распродадоа. повеќето од нив сметаат дека На крајот на краиштата, сите се македонскиот тим во моментов свесни дека учеството на Македонија поседува многу квалитети: ова на вакво натпреварување е е пораката што ја пренесе еден историско и, можеби, за многумина, шанкер кој ни рече дека „има многу единствена шанса да бидат дел од квалитетни играчи во националниот овој специјален настан. тим; првпат македонски играчи да успеат да достигнат професионално ниво, мислам дека ќе биде тешко за Иван Барбо било кој противник“. Друг вработен, Преведувач: Горан Адамовски кој лично се познава со дел од играчите, ни откри: „Јас сум сигурен во успех. Во тимот има добра атмосфера, па мислам дека имаат шанса”. Без оглед на реалните шанси и прогнозите во обложувалниците, бранот ентузијазам низ главниот град ќе биде тежок за надминување што е и повод за многу туристички агенции низ градот да ја збогатат својата понуда. Во моментот се продаваат авионски и автобуски билети за навивачите


Once upon a time... ... among trees and mountain peaks, a group of friends stepped on something that was not on the regular sightseeing hiking list – garbage. Unselfishly, this group of young mountain hikers took their bags and filled them with garbage - as they continued to do on every hiking trip ever since.

Months later one of them, Petar, stumbled on a call published by VCS and took part in a project that kick-started an Eco-movement За Почиста Македонија where group of young people organized various cleaning actions in nature areas.

Do you have an idea that will make the world a little bit better?

A group started to form, word began spreading. Interview requests and invitations to TV programs arrived. Social media followers started to rise. The group realized what they have done; a nationwide movement for garbage free society, for healthier environment. Waking up an Eco-friendly awareness became their main goal.

Soon there was a strong group of Greenfluencers setting an example while inspiring young people all over the country to take action. Bravely, a clean society ahead they continue their mission. The story doesn’t end here.. WWW.ZAPOCISTAMAKEDONIJA.MK za_pochista_makedonija За Почиста Македонија


Our monthly magazine has a very simple, yet powerful, mission - to be the voice of youth. And how do we do that? We encourage young people to take an active part in today’s society through journalism and designing by giving them a platform to express themselves. VOICES is produced in Skopje, Macedonia, and published online every month and four times per year as a printed edition.

Join VOICES team! Contact us in our social media pages or write us an e-mail. What would you be interested in doing?

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VOICES accepts articles about anything, except politics or hate speech. Brainstorm your ideas with us and write articles once, twice, or every month!

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