I will put you in jail!

That's what a policeman said to me and my friends in Washington near White House, when we arrived on Saturday evening to Washington.
That is my first time here, in the USA and now I am in Washington D.C., take part in International Visitors Leadership Program, which is organized by the US Department of State. That is three-week program and we are going to visit several cities across the country. They are Washington D.C., Milwaukee, Seattle, Boston and New York. Just look on the map below in order to get a better idea, where these cities are located.

The first impression, when I came to the USA: country as a country, normal positive people, nothing extraordinary (that is probably because we do not meet yet Lady Gaga). We are a group of five people, which were chosen from Ukraine particularly for this program. There are no any other groups of other people.  We live in the Washington Plaza, four-stars hotel, 600 meters to the White House in double-rooms, but everyone has his/her own. In truth, despite the fact that is really great, I would prefer to live in the American family in order to better understand who they are - these all-time smiling and positive people.

Unfortunately, I can't share with you the content of our meetings, but generally speaking we are here in order to learn about sivil society in the USA; to meet with youth NGO leaders, who are dealing with the same issues, which we do in Ukraine; to establish a network and find future potential partners for common projects. Before the visit, I established three main goals why I participate and what I would like to get:

  • to learn an experience of the USA in the NGO field, understand the interplay between business-government-society and figure out how this experience can be applied to Ukraine;
  • to meet with JCI USA members, share experience, realize what they do and what we do.
  • to meet with young activists in the USA, learn what they do (what kind of specific activity, which issues and challenges they tried to overcome), how they are thinking, and just make friends.
Everyday we have three-four meetings with different people and organizations, like Young Democrats of America, Kennan Institute, National Endowment for Democracy, the US Department of State, United States Student Assosiation, etc. Later on I will write how am I going in process of achieving the goals for this trip and of course share as much as possible photos.

Here I would like to put here some pictures:
A Painting of Vincent van Gogh near the entrance of a toilet (restroom)
in the National Museum of Art, Washington D.C.

A line to free concert of classical music one of the most respective musicians in the world with 50 years experience

China Town in Washington D.C.: a place where I was lost
Meeting with people, who actually managed our program at Graduate School, Washington D.C., the USA


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