Remarks by Chargé d’Affaires Kristina Kvien at the Go Camps Grand Opening

June 7, 2019 at 11a.m. 

Доброго дня! Good morning everybody, it’s great to be here.

I’m so happy, I’ve only been in Ukraine now for one week and I’m very happy to be here in such a beautiful and important place.

And I’m very happy to kick off Go Camps, which – as you’ve heard from Oksana – has been supported by the U.S. Embassy since its inception in 2016.

And I’d like to thank a few folks who have also contributed to this successful program. First of all, the government of Ukraine, the Ministry of Education and Science, the Go office, and the British Embassy, and all of the other embassies and volunteers who have made this possible.

And then just a very special thanks to all of the volunteers – and particularly the international volunteers – who have come at their own expense to help with the programs.

And perhaps maybe just a few words to the international volunteers based on my 27 years with the State Department: that the work you’re doing really makes a difference, not only in people’s lives in terms of advancing their ability to communicate in English, but also for many of the kids who are participating, this will be their first interaction with a foreigner or with an American.

And I can say from years of experience in talking to adults who participated in programs like this when they were children that these programs really make an impression on them and oftentimes will open up their horizons to the international community. And oftentimes they go on to actually focus on international work because of this really early experience and a chance to meet foreigners.

So I’ll just say again thank you very much to everybody here. Thank you to the partners and contributors, and we’ll go to the next speaker.