On November 16, 1945 after the end of the World War II the Constitution of UNESCO was adopted. UNESCO is a United Nations specialized agency established to promote peace and security by strengthening cooperation of nations in educational, scientific and cultural fields.
Uniting today 195 member states UNESCO stands for the ideas and principles of quality and accessibility of education for all, for the importance of culture and understanding of history, for preservation of the world heritage and cultural diversity, for freedom of expression and other fundamental human rights.
Ukraine joined UNESCO in 1954. For over 60 years of cooperation with this Organization our country has been initiating various international programs and projects, in particular aimed at more effective use of ICT in strengthening peace in the world, non-propaganda of war, violence or hatred between nations. These efforts resulted in the elaboration and adoption in 1978 of the Declaration on Fundamental Principles concerning the Contribution of the Mass Media to Strengthening Peace and International Understanding, to the Promotion of Human Rights and to Countering Racialism, apartheid and incitement to war. Ukraine was also among the co-authors of the UNESCO Declaration on Race and Racial Prejudice.
Seven Ukrainian gems of culture and architecture as well as of nature: Saint-Sophia Cathedral and Related Monastic Buildings, Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra in Kyiv, the Ensemble of the Historic Centre of L'viv as well as Ancient City of Tauric Chersonese and its Chora – are among those included to the UNESCO World Heritage List. The Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity has Ukrainian Petrykivka decorative painting.
Ukraine participates at the Associated Schools Network Project. 74 educational institutions from different regions of the country – primary and secondary schools – implement projects within the framework of UNESCO activities.
As part of the UNITWIN/UNESCO Chairs Programme, which promotes international inter-university cooperation and networking, there are 13 chairs in Ukraine launched at the higher educational and scientific institutions.
During the years of Ukraine’s membership in UNESCO our country has been four times elected a member of the Executive Board – one of the main Organizations’s governing bodies. The fourth period of Ukraine’s Executive Board membership is for 2014-2017.
Today Ukraine’s priority in UNESCO is to use every opportunity to raise awareness of the international community to the pressing problems in the territory of temporarily occupied Crimea. For the last years on the initiative of the Ukrainian delegation the UNESCO Executive Board has adopted six consecutive decisions “Monitoring of the situation in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea (Ukraine)”, which, in particular envisage establishing of the efficient mechanism for monitoring of the situation on the peninsula in UNESCO’s fields of competence.
To find out more about UNESCO and about the activity of Ukraine at this international organization, follow the Facebook page of the National Commission of Ukraine for UNESCO – facebook.com/ukraine.unesco.