On December, 24, 2015, results of the contest «Providing Assistance to Refugees and Solving Their Problems: the International Reality and Belarusian Perspective», which was held by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and International Non-governmental Association for Scientific Research, Information and Educational Programmes «Evolutio», were summed up and winners were awarded. 47 works participated in the contest representing 16 higher education institutions of Belarus.
Victor Shadurski, Chairman of the INA «Evolutio» Observation Board, Dean of the Faculty of International Relations of the Belarusian State University, opened the awarding ceremony. He stressed that participating works represented higher education institutions from all Belarusian regions, and winners represented Minsk, Grodno and Gomel. There were several works written in Belarusian among the winners. He also gave a piece of advice to winners to write a research article based on the contest work for further publishing.
Then the floor was given to Jean Yves Bouchardy, UNHCR Representative in the Republic of Belarus. It was pointed out that the Contest is being held for 15 years and does not lose its applicability and practical importance, especially in the light of current situation in Syria and Ukraine. At this moment over 60 million people are under mandate of the UNHCR, this is the highest number ever recorded.
Statistics was given by the UNHCR Representative in the Republic of Belarus, reflecting the engagement of Belarus in solving Syrian and Ukrainian refugees’ problems: in 2014—2015 Belarus became a new home for 160 000 internally displaced persons from Ukraine; 1 100 asylum applications were received from Ukrainian, Syrian and Afghanistan citizens.
Current topics for the contest research were chosen not by chance, and participants well-deserved managed to make a research on given topics. Topics ranging from the analysis of the refugee crisis in the European Union, the issues of Syrian refugees in Turkey to the study of the emotional experiences and integration process of the forcibility displaced persons from the southeast of Ukraine in Belarus were researched in particular. All works contributed a lot to developing long-term solutions of solving refugees’ problems.
Jean Yves Bouchardy congratulated all the winners with deserved victory and wished Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
After this the floor was given to the jury of the Contest. Olga Emelyanovich, Senior Lecturer of the Department of International Law of the Faculty of International Relations of Belarusian State University, noted the high level of scientific works and wished the participants not to stop and continue their scientific researches.
Timofey Solodkov, Protection Officer of the UNHCR Representation in the Republic of Belarus, made a point on a unanimous decision by the jury on the winner-works, which impartially evidences the high quality of works. He also expressed his wish to winners not to stop on this achievement and use the contest works for further scientific researches.
Andrey Selivanov, INA «Evolutio» Executive Director, noticed special relevance and high level of works. He also urged participants to use more theoretical basis while preparing and writing a work. There were citizens of Lithuania and Turkmenistan among the winners, which also proves the interest towards the Contest from the side of all students of Belarusian higher education institutions.
Winners received diplomas and commemorative prizes.