Kramatorsk, Donetsk Oblast, 10 June 2021 – Some twenty target communities in government-controlled areas of eastern Ukraine have been given a visual styles developed by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Ukraine and the Brandville project team, with funding provided by the European Union.
The project brought together a team of developers and various stakeholders – representatives from local administrations, business, and education, along with civil activists and cultural actors. The communities and their residents were aided in identifying the development advantages of their territories, and transforming them into their own unique brand.
Martin Schroeder, Head of Local and Human Development Section at the EU Delegation to Ukraine, said community brands promote sustainable social and economic development.
"We’re pleased to invest in this initiative as part of the EU Support to the East of Ukraine,” Schroeder said. “Community branding strengthens local identities, pinpointing the unique features of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, and this is another step towards unlocking the regions’ potential for economic development.”
He also highlighted the importance of an inclusive dialogue and public participation mechanisms in addressing the concerns of all local residents. This would contribute to increasing people’s ownership of the development of their communities, he said.
UN Recovery and Peacebuilding Programme Manager Victor Munteanu noted that boosting a community’s skills and capacities was an equally effective tool for overcoming the economic and social consequences of the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine.
"By highlighting the strengths of communities, we focus on social cohesion and the pursuit of a common goal, especially in affected communities along the 'contact line' and those recovering from the armed conflict,” Munteanu said. “The brands we’ve developed will help local residents and visitors identify better with the community, which will contribute to the economic development of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts."
Munteanu also stressed the importance of the bottom-up approach used in the project, which allows all stakeholders, including vulnerable groups, to be involved in the decision-making process.
The marketing strategies and brands developed also contain an implementation plan at the internal and external levels, designed to engage communities in building and adopting their images and brand to produce a shared vision, a sense of belonging, and an identity. Importantly, the plans also show the communities the benefits of increasing their economic opportunities and attracting investment.
Denys Denyshchenko, the head of the Department of Foreign Relations, Foreign Economic and Investment Activities of Luhansk Oblast State Administration, said he was convinced that the initiative would help boost the Oblast's competitiveness, unite local residents, and produce innovative solutions to problems in communities.
"The Department of Foreign Relations, Foreign Economic and Investment Activities of Luhansk OSA has fully contributed to implementing a pilot project in the Luhansk Oblast,” Denyshchenko said. “I am proud that thanks to joint efforts with our reliable partners, 13 territorial communities received modern tools for the promotion of their territories, and I hope to support such initiatives and scale the project up to other communities in Luhansk Oblast."
Brandville project manager Taras Donenko said that the topic of branding was new to many residents. The project was thus also an opportunity to share insights on the essence and importance of branding.
"I’m convinced that this project is both significant and timely,” Donenko said. “Brand development brings new opportunities, increases citizen engagement, and enhances cooperation processes in communities. This is, after all, a fresh vision for a modern community, benefiting external and, most importantly, internal audiences. We can already see that these processes sparking enthusiasm and delivering interesting ideas about community development."
According to the project results, Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts are now regional leaders in the number of territorial communities with their own brands and tools for their implementation. The communities include: Bakhmut, Zvanivka, Kurakhove, Ocheretyne, Siversk, Soledar and Toretsk communities of Donetsk Oblast, and Bilovodsk, Bilokurakyne, Hirske, Kreminna, Lozno-Oleksandrivka, Markivka, Milove, Novoaidar, Popasna, Rubizhne, Sievierodonetsk, Troitske and Shyrokyne communities of Luhansk Oblast.
Developing marketing strategies and creating a visual style for 20 target communities was implemented under the UN Recovery and Peacebuilding Programme and with the financial support of the European Union.
The United Nations Recovery and Peacebuilding Programme (UN RPP) is being implemented by four United Nations agencies: the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the UN Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO).
Twelve international partners support the Programme: the European Union (EU), the European Investment Bank (EIB), the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine, and the governments of Canada, Denmark, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Sweden & Switzerland.
Maksym Kytsiuk, Communications Specialist, UN Recovery and Peacebuilding Programme, email@example.com, +380 63 576 1839.