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International Financial Corporation (World Bank subdivision focusing on the private sector) on the preparation of the Sakhalin Indigenous Minorities Development Plan:

Since most consultations took place during the winter months, a special focus was on enabling the most disadvantaged members of the local community, such as senior citizens, to attend. Vehicles were provided to those who needed them, and younger community members escorted the elderly. Where possible, the consultations were timed to start after the end of the days fishing trips. Time was allocated for the participants to share their problems and concerns. The organisers made sure that all those present were treated respectfully, and efforts were made to reach a consensus. As a result, the meetings turned out extremely long, but people felt that their presence mattered.

See International Finance Corporation. Stakeholder Engagement: A Good Practice Handbook for Companies Doing Business in Emerging Markets 



From the Remote Past for Descendants to Remember the new project launched on Sakhalin

“From the Remote Past for Descendants to Remember” project was launched in the village of Nekrasovka, Okha District. It is implemented under the Sakhalin Indigenous Minorities Development Plan — a tripartite programme whose partners are the Regional Council of Authorised Representatives of the Sakhalin Indigenous Minorities, the Sakhalin Oblast Government, and Sakhalin Energy.  Representatives of public associations and SIM communities, students of the Nekrasovka Boarding School and residents of the village took part in the test run of the ethnographic dictation titled “Homeland: Origins and Modern Time”. Many of the participants were awarded the highest score for the good knowledge of history and law, local place names, traditional crafts and culture of the indigenous community. Now the project implementers have a considerable amount of work to do — they are to analyse the results of the ethnographic dictation, the purpose of which was to promote the participants’ interest in their roots, the customs and traditions of their ancestors, and to encourage them to learn more about people living in their area. The project participants showed great enthusiasm about the workshops held during the event: both children and adults eagerly learnt, under the guidance of Victoria Aranova, how to make Nivkh beads from special clay, and followed Nadezhda Mashkina’s instructions on how to correctly cut fish for yukola (sun-dried fish). Each pupil of the Nekrasovka Boarding School for SIM children contributed to the common cause during the workshop conducted by Elena Ochan from the village of Nekrasovka, which was devoted to cooking Nivkh dishes according to ancient recipes. The best connoisseurs of the national cuisine were determined by tasting the dishes cooked in a special mini-contest. The ma tevi (grated rosehips with lingonberries and nuts), prepared by Elena Ochan, was announced the best dish, since it received the votes of all the children who had learnt to make it. Vyz’g als — a dish from boiled fish with berries, cooked by Raisa Fadeeva from Okha — was given the second place by the participants of the tasting.  The yukola prepared by Andrey Ronik from Nekrasovka also entered the top three dishes of the contest, and the berry juice made by his fellow villager Natalia Kelman, who delighted the tasters with the rich flavour and aroma of the northern berries, was exceptionally relevant and perfectly complemented the Nivkh hot cakes fried by the children under the guidance of Elena Ochan during the workshop. A special prize went to the seventh grade student Regina Markina for the dishes she had cooked for the contest.

The traditional dishes made by adults and children after the presentation about the Slow Food international movement were a sort of embodiment of its famous slogan “Good, clean, fair”. Slow Food supports the right of indigenous peoples to food independence and the use of their lands. The main line of activity pursued by the organisation is the promotion of traditional unique and high-quality foods.

According to Ekaterina Koroleva, a member of the Board of the Sakhalin Indigenous Minorities Development Plan, the goal of the event was successfully achieved. “I am grateful to Sakhalin Energy for its support in the project implementation and the consolidation of efforts for the benefit of the indigenous community of the island, to our partners — the Nekrasov Boarding School and the Kykhkykh public organisation from Okha, as well as to all members of the initiative group. The coverage of the event was impressive: it was attended by many people, including students, teachers, and members of the community. As a moderator, I received a lot of positive feedback from high school students and teachers,” added Ekaterina Koroleva.

The long-term project is to be implemented over the years 2018 and 2019. Next year, for example, it is planned to organise mini-studies in the areas of traditional residence of indigenous ethnic groups. The project will be concluded by shooting a film and publishing a book with the same title — From the Remote Past for Descendants to Remember.


/ Photo gallery

Master class of Vyacheslav Nilov, professional choreographer and specialist on Indigenous People dances, October 2007

/ Achievements

Received the main award in the all-Russian Corporate Philanthropy Leaders contest in nomination The Best Programme for Corporate Philanthropy Policy and Companys Social Investments Principles

Winner of Vitus Bering International Award

Winner of social investments contest Corporate Donor of Russia 2008

First prize at the Far Eastern International Festival of Indigenous People