Blog

      • A step towards justice – a step in the right direction

        21 Jul 2016

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        Photo Credit: Meri Bekeshova

        Orok ayil aimak is located very close to Bishkek. It might seem the access to justice and legal opportunities of the residents of this municipality are much more favorable than in other remote localities of Batken and Naryn oblasts, however we all should remember the increase of the legal literacy and awareness of citizens of their rights is an extremely important task for the Government and citizens themselves including the most remote rayons. Recently the staff members of the family doctors group in Orok ayil aimak approached me to ask if there was an opportunity to provide finance assistance to a young lady Nargiz as her 4 years daughter urgently needed operation on a liver. The girl was infected with echinococcosis and was several times operated but as her health was deteriorating, a new surgery was needed. Besides her two children, Nargiz had to look after several brothers and sisters. The only source of income was occasional work in Dordoi market. According to Nargiz, doctors in one of hospitals in Bishkek requested 30 000 kyrgyz soms for making a surgery. I wanted to contact my colleagues from UNDP and launch money collection campaign - we had a good tradition of donations earlier  Read More

      • Being a blood donor: if I give it, people need it

        12 Jul 2016

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        Photo Credit: Akyn Bakirov

        “People are so busy with themselves that they do not have time to penetrate and understand others. Therefore those who have many advantages, but more modesty often remain in the shadow.” © Jean de La Bruyère During my study in Greece, there was organized the center for blood donation inside the campus… Once after medical examination, I was informed that because of the low pressure I might not be admitted for blood sampling. They recommended coming after week when the pressure would be stabilized. A week later, I did not come ... I was scared. I did not know anything about the donation. Different sorts of information read from Internet, talks about bad feeling after giving blood served became an excuse for me and strengthened my fear. Nowadays Media intensively keeps feeding us with various sorts of negative news. Especially two tragedies occurred one after another: a car accident in Kadamjai rayon, where several people died and a fire in a sewing shop in Moscow, which took the lives of the families, including the life of a child. What happens to those who remained alive after such tragedies? Certainly, they might had serious damages, someone might lost a lot of blood.  Read More

      • I know of no other such country

        21 Jun 2016

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        Photo Credit: Vlad Ushakov. Illustration: Ilias Makeev, (15 years old). "Kan Achuu" area highlighted in red on the map of the Kyrgyz Republic

         “I know of no other such country” - belts out a popular Russian song, which you unwittingly start singing, when driving on mountainous roads, passing the famous Naryn river, or the hilly slopes of Jalalabad oblast. You see how spring flows into summer, and suddenly you are ambushed by thick snowfall. A team of UNDP experts recently visited the newly established “Kan-Achuu” natural park in the Toguz-Toro rayon. If you look at the map of Kyrgyzstan, the park is located in the very heart of the country, surrounded by the majestic Western Tian Shan. A place of incredible beauty, with its richness of natural landscapes and rare animals, such as the snow leopard (Panthera uncia), the Tian Shan white-clawed bear, the lynx and the golden eagle. Without guides and horses it is nearly impossible to reach these places therefore it retained untouched. However, it is also famous for many mysterious legends.               Local residents, the old-timers tell mystical stories about “Kan-Achuu” convincing they saw the Yeti and his footprints. “Jeztyrmak” (Yeti’s Kyrgyz version) often appears in the snowy mountains. “…There are two types of them. One is big and does not come down to the  Read More

      • Solar power impacting the peace and saving the budget

        02 Jun 2016

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        Photo Credit: Sarvar Turdiboev

        The word “peace” is pithy in lettering and so comprehensive in meaning. Moreover, if you live in border village, you have to intensify your efforts every single day to save a fragile peace with your neighbors. It usually happens that even a small dispute whether on joint use of natural resources or dark streets along border can shatter peace.  Only wisdom and experience can help to find balance between personal and general interests. In January 2016, a new street lighting system was installed on two near border streets of Borborduk village, Zhanyzher rural district of Batken oblast. One may wonder how street lighting can contribute to peace in border village. Preliminary research interviewing not only local villagers, but also the rural police department revealed that in 2014-2015, many people had returned to village after being deported from Russia and it resulted in the growth of crime rate in Borborduk village with more than the population of 4000 citizens.  According to village police department, only in the summer 2015, there were several cases of theft in Borborduk. Definitely those cases brought about some disputes and misunderstandings between locals and people of neighboring Tadjik village Histevarz. In fact quite frequently, people tend to  Read More

      • Early Response to Early Marriages

        29 Mar 2016

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        Photo Credit: Participant of the "Y-peer" Forum Theatre on Early Marriages . National Forum of Women of the Kyrgyz Republic, Bishkek, March, 2015, Umutai Dauletova, UNDP Gender Mainstreaming Specialist

        Every so often, browsing news feeds, I think about how the information life is short-lived. Daily news are being lost so much in other news and it seems that human mind can fit everything, nevertheless how is it analyzed and conclusions made after all, since there are in the queue dozens of other news? Certainly, there are news that live in our environment of the discussions for several days. Unfortunately, for the most part, these are the news that have negative content, where it is addressed to the consequences of any cruelty, violence or even maybe involuntary engagement in the marriage? Why do we pay attention only when there happens something worse? How to draw attention of the society to the problem long before the consequences happen and perhaps preempt them? These and other questions have been raised recently in Osh at the hearings dedicated to discuss the societal consequences of early marriages, which was attended by representatives of the Committee on Social Affairs, Education, Science, Culture and Health of the Jogorku Kenesh. The event, of course, seems like ordinary meeting, where representatives of the Parliament, civil society and development organizations have been gathered, however, right there we touched upon the  Read More

      • Active citizens improve the lives of others

        22 Mar 2016

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        Photo Credit: Meerim Abdyeva, Test shopping team member

        Public service delivery system reform The services have a vital part to play in sustaining and enhancing the social and economic prospects and environmental quality of towns and countryside. When an ordinary citizen faces a public authority? When he requests for a public service: he meets with them in the passport offices, clinics, social fund departments. The public services can have a profound effect on the opportunities and quality of life of the people who live and work there. One of core issues of service system was lack of quality standards for services provided by the state, and therefore was not possible to assess them and appeal the actions of state bodies. The current system often provokes the appearance of corruption schemes in state bodies and municipalities. The quality standards of services As a taxpayer, can a citizen require from the government bodies to provide quality services? Can a citizen to carry out public monitoring services? Answer: Yes, every citizen can and should demand the performance of qualitative service standards. Within reform of public service delivery system, which is aiming to improve quality and accessibility of services, the Government approved a template of service standard in 2012. It is a basis  Read More

      • Jamila and the strength of Kyrgyz women

        07 Mar 2016

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        Photo Credit: www.kino-teatr.ru Natalia Arynbasarova (Actress), "Zhamilia", 1968, Producer: Irina Poplavskaya, "Mosfilm".

        Over ten years ago, for my birthday, my childhood friend Piero gave me as a present the book the “White steamboat” from Chyngyz Aitmatov. In handing me over the present he explained that the author was the most famous Kyrgyz writer. Truly I didn’t know Aitmatov before that day and the book seemed to me a great opportunity to learn more about the land of the Kyrgyz Republic, which I had already admired in its beauty in some photographic reportages. I must confess I read the story in one day and was totally fascinated by the fantastic description of the landscape, the nature and the most humane story of the main character. The lake of Issyk Kul then became one of my dream locations to visit. Enchanted by the story, I decided to read more works of Aitmatov and came across the novel Jamila which, if possible, moved by imagination even more.  The plot, construed in a perfectly harmonious manner, allows the author to powerfully describe the moral and physical strength, as well as the beauty of the protagonist Jamila. I will not give any spoiler of the story and invite everybody to read the book. To my mind Kyrgyz Republic  Read More

      • Fair and True: How to hold elections and do it right

        25 Feb 2016

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        Photo Credit: www.kabar.kg

        In Kyrgyzstan, the two previous rounds of elections – in 2005 and 2010 – resulted in civil unrest, with complaints regarding lack of transparency and restricted freedoms. As a result, the country leadership committed themselves to holding transparent and fair elections in October 2015. When the government approached us to ask for support in conducting the upcoming elections, we thought it would be a straightforward process.  After all, UNDP has long-term experience with supporting fair elections in many countries around the world; how challenging could it be? But the process turned out much more complicated than we could have ever imagined. First, we conducted a needs assessment to identify electoral needs. The process showed us our plan of action: to build the capacity of Central Electoral Commission, train voters, and strengthen national capacity to resolve potential disputes. We also decided to support the government’s intentions to introduce modern information-communication electoral technologies (ICT). The equipment would automate voters’ identification process on Election Day in order to prevent multiple voting. Next, we began rallying together many different donors in order to make sure we had enough budget to fully realize our vision. Danish and Swiss governments generously provided financial support, and UNDP poured  Read More

      • Stats on the go

        16 Feb 2016

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        The concept of open data, reflecting the idea that information should be made available in machine-readable format for further use and distribution without copyright restrictions, patents or other controls, is widespread throughout the world. Government initiatives such as Data.gov influenced the growth of interest in open data. In turn, these initiatives contribute to the improvement and acceleration of the economies of countries that have adopted the principles of open data. Thus, according to research institute ETLA, small and medium enterprises that have access to public data, in the year grew by 15% more than the businesses that could not obtain such data . Open statistical data in machine-readable format hold a special place in the general category of open data, as they are of great interest to the public, including investors, journalists, activists, NGOs and especially for those who seek the openness and accessibility of public information. The National Statistical Committee of the Kyrgyz Republic, with UNFPA support, has already done significant work in the field of electronic data, namely, launched a new version of the official web site at www.stat.kg: it has uniform design style, simplified navigation, and easily retrievable statistics. Unfortunately, users can not always go to the site  Read More

      • If nobody respects the laws, why should I be the first one?

        03 Feb 2016

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        The flash mob is being performed by students on Anti-Corruption day. Photo Credit: Arslan Sabyrbekov, Communication specialist for UNDP project "Enhancing the Democratic Rule of Law to Promote Peace and Stability in the Kyrgyz Republic"

        Civil society as a key tool for improving the Rule of Law The road to an effective Rule of Law in Kyrgyzstan and elsewhere is a difficult one. The first obstacle is probably the pessimism about the public respect of the Laws, also called legal nihilism.  If nobody respects the laws, why should I be the first one to do so? The general answer to such question is that if nobody would respect the Laws, the State would resemble chaos and anarchy where the rule of the strongest prevails.  Not convincing enough? I agree, we should do better than this! To give a better answer, then, we should look at reformulating the question as it implies that the Justice -- or by extension the Rule of Law – is something external to you, a remote concept in which we have a passive role. No! This is not true! Justice is --or should --administered on behalf and for the protection of all the people, nobody excluded.  How can we then correct this misunderstanding? I suggest that we should all ask ourselves what we can do for the Justice, not only what the Justice can do for us. With this aim in mind  Read More