Pershotravensk Territorial Community
The Pershotravensk Urban Territorial Community is located in the territory of the Synelnykove District of the Dnipropetrovsk Region.
The total surface area of the territory: 3.9 sq. km.
Population: 27,573 residents as of 2021
Working age population: 16,461 residents
The territorial community is the smallest one in the Dnipropetrovsk Region and consists of one settlement – the town of Pershotravensk.
Pershotravensk is one of the youngest towns of the Dnipropetrovsk Region. Its biography is inextricably linked to the development of the coal industry in Western Donbas. Along with the foundation of the first mines Zakhidno-Donbaska No. 1 and No. 2, a workers’ village was also built.
25 May 1954 is considered the town’s birthday. On this day, the foundation of the first building was laid.
There were great difficulties with electricity and water supply. In 1956, more than thirty one-story residential buildings were commissioned, and a school with seven students began to work. In 1957, the first phase of the electrical substation was commissioned; a dining hall, shops, and a club appeared. On 16 August 1957, the newly built village was named Shakhtarske and was classified as a workers’ settlement.
In 1996, gas was supplied to the town.
In 2001, the first Ukrainian national census was conducted, according to which 29,374 residents were registered in the town.
Economy and Wellbeing
The coal industry is the main industry in the town of Pershotravensk. A coal company operates near the town, which is the main employer for its residents. As of April 2021, it employed 2,634 residents of Pershotravensk.
In 2020, thirty-nine small enterprises and seven hundred individual entrepreneurs performed their economic activities in the territory.
The main activities carried out by small and medium-sized businesses in the community include: retail trade, household services, restaurant business and real estate transactions.
Also in the territory of the community there are enterprises that produce construction metal structures and parts of structures; install water networks, heating and air conditioning systems.
The community needs the expansion and development of tourist infrastructure, in particular, the construction of hotels, hostels, and restaurants.
Community and War
With the beginning of hostilities, residents of the eastern regions of the country were forced to leave their homes and look for housing in safer places.
Almost 4,000 such people have already found shelter in Pershotravensk. However, the problem of accommodation of internally displaced persons remains relevant even today.
There is a dormitory in the town, which was transferred to the town free of charge a few years ago. Unfortunately, its condition was unsatisfactory at that time: the roof needed to be overhauled, which affected the premises of the upper floors, and there was no heating system and water supply and sewerage network.
Last week, the first stage was completed – the roof of the dormitory was completely renovated.
In Pershotravensk, in the building of a former kindergarten, a humanitarian aid centre functions for refugees from the territories in the war zone.
Caring residents of the town provided aid: clothes, foods, medicines and hygiene products.
Aid is also provided to the military.
The employees of the municipality help with the receipt and sorting of humanitarian aid.
Recently, the community received STARLINK satellite equipment from a charity organization from the city of Warsaw. It will be installed in the Centre of Invincibility, which is arranged at the lyceum.
People of the Community
Oksana Vinnytska is the head of the community.
Several years ago, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine held a solemn awarding ceremony for the winners of the contest “The Best Initiatives of Women of Ukraine for the Development of Local Communities”, where Oksana Vinnytska won 1st prize in the management nomination.
Under the leadership of Oksana Vinnytska, the community has participated in and implemented the following projects:
- “State building and accountability in Eastern Ukraine”, which was financed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands. As part of this project, a series of trainings for representatives of the municipality, nongovernmental organizations and residents dedicated to community participation and involvement in local self-government was held in the town of Pershotravensk.
- Pershotravensk received a grant of 25,000 euros from VNG International and its partner PAX for the implementation of the project “Partnership for Development”. As part of the “Partnership for Development” project, large-scale sports and tourist competitions “Young Border Guard”, art competition “Talents of Pershotravensk”, picnic meeting “POMAHAIKA” for children with special needs were held in the town.
- The town received a grant from the Nordic Environment Finance Corporation in the amount of 420,000 euros to implement energy-saving measures and improve the energy efficiency of the town’s facilities. About 200 windows were replaced in the community’s institutions. Feed and condensate pumps were installed in the boiler room, which ensure stable operation of the facility during the heating period and significantly reduced the financial costs of the housing and utility enterprise.
- A project to improve the quality of administrative services, which is implemented and financed by the international Program “U-LEAD with Europe”. The town received furniture for staff workplaces and places for visitors, office equipment, software and specialized equipment from the grantors.
International technical assistance programs:
- the project “Reform of Local Budgets in Ukraine” in cooperation with the Ministry of Finance of Ukraine and with the support of the US Agency for International Development;
- the project “Economic Development of Cities” with the support of the US Agency for International Development;
- international technical assistance project “Local Economic Development of Ukrainian Cities”, which was implemented by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities with the financial support of the Government of Canada. (Creation of an information and service business centre in the form of a nongovernmental organization “Interregional Service Centre for Support and Development of Entrepreneurship” in the town);
- the project “One Community” of the GURT resource centre, which works with the support of the United States Agency for International Development USAID;
- the “Strength of Unity” project, which is implemented with the support of international grant organizations IREX and GURT.
At the request of the mayor, local farmers and charitable foundations have been providing substantial assistance since the outbreak of the war. These are foods and personal hygiene items for displaced people.
Since the beginning of the russian invasion, the local people have united in all the villages and towns to help the country at this difficult time. Pershotravensk volunteers from the charity fund are among them.
Halyna Donska runs the organization and heads the volunteer movement. It was she who started charity work at the beginning of the full-scale invasion and gathered like-minded people around her. For instance, since 22 April 2022, a large volunteer group has been organized, which began to help the military, and later, families who fled the war and found shelter in Pershotravensk.
Volunteers started working in the organization using the funds of the organization, and at that time it was the volunteers’ own money. They bought meat, stewed it, gathering to cook at a special apartment.
Every week, volunteers of the fund provide humanitarian aid to forcibly displaced families, and all this is hard work. Helping others takes a lot of time due to filling out documents because everything must be recorded and reported. Even for each can of food one has to fill out many documents.
In 2019, Pershotravensk took part in the project “Contribution to the Social Infrastructure Development” financed by the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany through the German Development Bank. The main goal of the project is to provide housing for internally displaced persons and repair social facilities such as schools and kindergartens. The first floor of the dormitory has already been reconstructed into residential apartments for IDPs, and the windows in the kindergarten have been replaced.
As part of the implementation of the project of the Ukrainian Social Investment Fund “Contribution to the Social Infrastructure Development – Primary Rural Medicine Improvement”, it is planned to improve the conditions of providing primary medical care at the outpatient clinic.
The priorities of the transformation of the Pershotravensk Territorial Community include:
- Transformation into a territorial community with green energy, which involves focusing the environmental aspect of the community development on people’s needs, restoring degraded territories and creating socially useful and environmentally valuable facilities for the community.
- Transformation into a territorial community with sustainable development by applying an innovative approach to its economic development by balancing the environmental, social, cultural, etc. development at the same time.
- Transformation into a territorial community that integrates residents, which involves the process of social and economic development.
The specified priorities must be implemented by achieving the operational goals of the effective and efficient transformation of the Pershotravensk Territorial Community.
Therefore, all the mentioned priorities are aimed at the dynamics of the transformation of the Pershotravensk Territorial Community in order to achieve its sustainable economic development by improving the quality of life of its residents at the same time.
Currently, the efforts to transform the Pershotravensk Territorial Community are just beginning. However, it is expected that the Pershotravensk Territorial Community will become a flagship of transformational changes among other urban territorial communities with a mono-profile economy and limited land resources in Ukraine. The priorities, operational goals and areas of their implementation determined for the Pershotravensk Territorial Community, are not an exhaustive list of examples of transformational efforts, but their scale and socio-economic focus indicate their significant potential for successful transformational activities.