Training Programs

Since 1989, CKSCP volunteers have been involved in a variety of training and educational programs funded through U.S. government programs or grants.

Community Connections (1997-2004)

Since 1996 the Cincinnati-Kharkiv Sister City Partnership has received grants from the U.S. Department of State to run Community Connections programs. The grant covers all costs for three to five weeks of practical training in the U.S for Kharkiv business entrepreneurs and professionals who have been selected through a competitive process. While in the U.S. participants receive not only training specific to their expertise, but also exposure to the day-to-day functioning of a free market system. Participants, ranging in age from late 20s to late 50s, live with host families and enjoy a full range of cultural activities in addition to the scheduled professional program. To date, the Cincinnati-Kharkiv Sister City Partnership has completed 21 Community Connections programs for groups of approximately 10 each in the areas of: Business, Law, Local Government, Hotel/Restaurants, Print Media, Broadcast Media, Public Health (HIV/AIDS), Higher Education Administration, City Services, NGOs, and Arts Management

…our visit to the Cincinnati Enquirer gave us… a full picture of marketing, distribution, the subscription and advertising situation in leading U.S. dailies. I got a better understanding of many ideological and philosophic aspects of relations among the owner, the publisher, the editor and the staff… an enjoyable many-hour meeting is awaiting [my colleagues at home].

-Olena Stronova,

Community Connections Participant from Ukraine

Community Partnership Project (1998-2005)

Under a grant from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and in partnership with the U.S.-Ukraine Foundation, CKSCP has conducted three three-part training programs which included on-site needs assessment and work plan development, internships for Kharkiv municipal professionals in Cincinnati, and implementation and evaluation of project effectiveness in Kharkiv. The project was intended for U.S. public officials to work with their Ukrainian counterparts to solve concrete problems in budgeting, housing and communal services, transportation, and economic development or citizen participation. The City of Cincinnati has been instrumental in the implementation of the program.

The program is ongoing through continued exchange of expertise, and participation of Cincinnati specialists in seminars and training sessions in Ukraine.

Open World Leadership Program (2009)

The Open World Leadership Program, founded by Congress in 1999 and located in the Library of Congress, provides funding to bring emerging political and civic leaders from Eurasia to the U.S to experience American democracy and civil society. CKSCP organizes and implements a program in Cincinnati that provides Ukrainians with an opportunity to work with their professional counterparts, live with American families and participate in community activities. Our visitors leave with new ideas to implement change at home. In May 2008 CKSCP was honored at the Library of Congress by the Open World Leadership Center for its successful Open World programs for Ukrainians.

Since 2003, CKSCP has organized and implemented 6 Open World Programs in Cincinnati. Each group, consisting of 4 Ukrainian professionals and an escort/facilitator, spends 10 days in the U.S., including a week in Cincinnati. Themes to date: Journalism, NGO Development, Media, Public Health (2), and Accountable Governance. Scheduled for 2009 are programs in NGO Development and Accountable Governance.

I feel that after this study trip I got a second breath. I feel like getting down to work immediately with my new knowledge and sharing the information with my colleagues… a priceless experience which will change my attitude to work and to life in general. (Naturally, for the better.)

-Iryna Gorbacheva,

Community Connections Participant from Ukraine

Domestic Violence Prevention Training Program (1999-2002)

Sister Cities International (SCI), through the sponsorship of the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement (INL), created a two-year pilot project, the Domestic Violence Prevention Training Program (DVP), to address the importance and urgency of the issue of domestic violence in NIS communities through a multifaceted, sister city approach. This program built upon established US-NIS partnerships to provide theoretical and practical education and training on domestic violence in twelve cities in Kazakhstan (2), Moldova (1), Russia (6), Ukraine (2), and Uzbekistan (1). Cincinnati and Kharkiv were chosen as one of the partner pairs.

The purpose of the program was to develop an exchange between communities as they addressed the high costs of domestic violence, and to provide theoretical and practical information and training as these partnered cities shared commonalties and differences in their approaches to preventing and intervening in domestic violence issues.

From May 1999 through March 2002, Cincinnati and Kharkiv exchanged multiple groups of professionals. Aspects of the subject matter included non-governmental agency (NGO) participation, medical involvement, and legal and law enforcement entities. American professionals conducted a seminar and conference on the subject of domestic violence in Kharkiv, the first such event organized in Kharkiv by international partners.

MCSCP Municipal Problem Solving Program (1997-1998)

The U.S-NIS Municipal and Community Problem-Solving Program (MCPSP) was funded by the United States Information Agency (USIA) through a grant to Sister Cities International, and was designed to strengthen ongoing cooperation between the local governments of Kharkiv and Cincinnati. It offered the opportunity for U.S. professionals to become directly involved in municipal problem solving in their counterpart city. CKSCP was selected to implement the program together with its sister city partner, Kharkiv.

New ideas for human resource management, organizational development, and citizen participation were the themes of the exchange between senior staff from the City of Cincinnati and the City of Kharkiv in spring, 1998. Ukrainian staff traveled to Cincinnati to lay the groundwork for the project, followed by Cincinnati staff travel to Kharkiv. Their purpose was to analyze how City of Cincinnati civil service procedures might be utilized in the City of Kharkiv local government structure. In particular, the team of U.S. and Ukrainian staff jointly reviewed how selection decisions might be made for management-level positions, by applying merit, fitness, and performance evaluation criteria to the process.

Numerous beneficial spin-offs to this exchange were also realized. As the City of Kharkiv was undergoing organizational restructuring at the time, the team studied the impact of those changes, which included the consolidation and downsizing of various departmental operations.

In addition, Kharkiv staff expressed strong interest in implementing an innovative citizen participation program called the Cincinnati Neighborhood Action Strategy (CNAS). CNAS is a new approach to service delivery whereby interdisciplinary teams of city employees are assigned to every neighborhood to collaborate directly with residents to improve City services and to address community needs and problems.

Finally, both sides undertook the creation of a local government Internet directory, so that new ideas and new solutions to common problems could be shared among counterparts in both cities. Work continues in all of these areas.

What I have seen in the Water Works will help me to avoid “reinventing the wheel” to fix our problems. I will simply implement in our system all the best from what I saw here.

-Iryna Gorbacheva,

Community Connections Participant from Ukraine

Iodine Deficiency Disorder Program (2000-2004)

The program began in May 1999 as the Program Against Micronutrient Malnutrition (PAMM) with USAID as the original grant sponsor, The Rollins School of Public Health of Emory University (Atlanta, Georgia) as the grantee, and Sister Cities International as the sub-grantee. PAMM was a pilot project in Kharkiv, chosen because of the strong sister city relationship with Cincinnati. The goal was to eliminate micronutrient malnutrition in Ukraine through public education and fortification of flour with iron and salt with iodine.

Since January 2003, the program is supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, working directly with CKSCP. The program against iodine deficiency disorders (IDD) has been successful in reintroducing iodized salt into the Kharkiv marketplace. Now plans are in place for a large Kharkiv bakery to produce a “healthy” bread, which will be fortified with iron and folic acid. This aspect is called the flour fortification initiative (FFI).

Municipal Training Program (1992)

The United States Information Agency (USAID) through a grant to the International Executive Service Corps (IESC) funded the Municipal Training Program, and a one-year training project dealing with public policy and administration training in Ukraine and Kazakhstan. The Cincinnati-Kharkiv Sister City Partnership (CKSCP) was chosen to organize and implement a program for officials from the Kharkiv area. In the fall of 1992, several Cincinnatians conducted training in Kharkiv on principles of democratic government, and then invited 10 officials to intern in March 1993 with Cincinnati-area government officials and agencies. A mentor system paired two American public administrators with one from Kharkiv. Within these partnerships, the Kharkiv-area interns explored areas of specialty such as economic development, environment, international trade, law enforcement, and social services.