Meet the Winners of the Best Impact Story Competition
At the end of May, the Docudays UA Best Impact Story Competition among the permanently functioning film clubs for human rights media education was finalized. The winners were awarded on June 7 in Kyiv during the Conference of Film Club Moderators.
18 June 2024

The DOCU/CLUB Network team organized this competition to give film club moderators the opportunity to share stories of change, ways to involve community members into active participation in advocacy campaigns and promotion and support of democratic reforms in communities. 

Thirty-two film club moderators submitted their applications for participation in the competition. Among them, the Network team selected 10 winners who received handout materials power banks and external hard drives that will help in their film club work.


Tetyana Doronina award


Tetyana Doronina, moderator of the Docudays UA Film Club at the Dnipro Regional Children’s Library, organized her first film club back in 2013 in the town of Kamyanske. Last year, Tetyana registered a film club in Dnipro. Every month, she invites schoolchildren, students, representatives of the communities of Bakhmut, Lysychansk, Mariupol, and students of the University of the Third Age to the screenings. After the screening of the film “Language” by Serhiy Lysenko and the discussion with the audience, the library organized Ukrainian language courses for elderly people and IDPs.

Maria Tyshchuk award


Maria Tyshchuk, moderator of the Docudays UA Film Club at the Bohun district department of the “Probation Center” State Institution in Zhytomyr region, registered the film club in 2021. In the course of its work, Maria realized that documentary films are an effective tool for influencing behavior and lifestyles, stimulating the analysis of mistakes, and developing critical thinking in probation clients. Now her clients always ask her when the next screening will be and whether they can invite their relatives and neighbors to watch. Maria Tyshchuk shared a story about convicts who, after watching and discussing with experts the film “Sick People” directed by Yuriy Rechynskyi, turned to the International Anti-Drug Association and underwent a drug rehabilitation course. Currently, they themselves join the discussions in the film club as experts on overcoming substance abuse and share their success stories with other people.

Anzhelika Penkina


Anzhelika Penkina is a moderator of the Docudays UA Film Club at the Shostka City Central Library “Promin” in Sumy region who has been cooperating with the Network since 2015. Anzhelika submitted three stories of her film club's impact to the competition. The first one started with “The Punk Syndrome” by Jukka Kärkkäinen and J-P Passi. This film inspired the moderator to organize daily free book readings by phone for blind, elderly, and ill people. The phone readings have grown into strong friendships. The film club also organizes online screenings for this category of viewers and tries to solve their problems at the city level. The second story of impact came from the screening of the film “Bully” by Lee Hirsch, which was held for 5th grade schoolchildren at the request of their teacher to help a child who was being bullied by his classmates. The discussion of this film helped children hear each other and take steps towards their peers. The problem was solved. The third story shared by Anzhelika Penkina is an environmental one. The films “Out of Fashion” by Jaak Kilmi and Lennart Laberin and “The Price of Fashion” by Andrew Morgan encouraged the audience from the “Vilna” women's space to start a month without buying new clothes and shoes. Students of the Shostka Vocational College watched the films “E-Wasteland” by David Fedele and “Welcome to Fukushima” by Alain de Halleux and held an exhibition called “Gray on Gray,” where they collected things that pollute the environment and suggested spending a month without bags and other plastic items.


Yulia Davydiuk award

Yulia Davydiuk, moderator of the Docudays UA Film Club at the Pokaliv Lyceum in Zhytomyr region, last year implemented an advocacy project called “We Will Not Forget and We Will Not Forgive” to honor the memory of the fallen Heroes in the Pokaliv Village District. The exhibition “Heroes Do Not Die as Long as Their Memory Lives” encouraged the executive committee of the Ovruch City Council to borrow this experience and install similar exhibitions in all village districts. Yulia Davydiuk's advocacy project has intensified decommunization processes in the community: this year, 7 Soviet-era monuments in Ovruch Territorial Community were removed from the State Register of Immovable Monuments of Ukraine. Now the moderator and her team are working to have them demolished. 

Oleksandr Boychenko


Oleksandr Boychenko, moderator of the Docudays UA Film Club at the Pryluky District Department of the Probation Center branch in Chernihiv region, opened the film club in 2019. In his competition story, Oleksandr told how the documentary “Lisa, Go Home!” by Oksana Buraja helped change the life of a minor probation client for the better. During a family conference (a practice that involves the entire family of a juvenile offender and uses a comprehensive approach ed.), organized by the film club moderator and attended by all parties, solutions to family problems were found, and options for the boy's education and employment were offered. During the discussion of the film, the minor promised to change his behavior and has not committed any offenses since.


Lyudmyla Mishchenko award

Lyudmyla Mishchenko, moderator of the “DOCUPANORAMA” Film Club at the Okhtyrka City Museum of Local Lore in Sumy region, decided to open a film club after the Russian invaders destroyed the museum premises. Despite all difficulties, the film club is now actively working in the community. Lyudmyla said that, after watching the film “Cutting Loose” by Finlay Pretsell and Adrien McDowall, a probation client from the Okhtyrka branch enrolled in the city's vocational education center to learn the crafts of hairdressing and fashion design. Having watched the film “Askania Reserve” directed by Andriy Lytvynenko, museum workers and volunteers cleaned the banks of the Okhtyrka River, organized a natural water source, and planted an oak alley in the city park.



Tetyana Lekhnyuk award

Tetyana Lekhnyuk, moderator of the Docudays UA Film Club at the secondary school №62 in Lviv, also registered her film club last year. Tetyana submitted a story of the ways the film club helps internally displaced children and children who lost their relatives in the war. Thus, one of the schoolchildren became a volunteer in the advocacy project “Synytsia” initiated by the film club moderator. This helps the student fight depression after her father died in the war. A discussion of the film “Bully” by Lee Hirsch helped a displaced girl find a friend in class and finally stop feeling lonely.



Natalya Mosentsova

Natalya Mosentsova, moderator of the Docudays UA film club at the Krasnohrad District Sector 2 of the State Institution “Probation Center” in Kharkiv region, conducts screenings in the smallest village in Kharkiv region. Natalya noticed that the absence of a culture of waste sorting, waste removal, and recycling in rural areas turns the natural environment of the village into a large landfill. After two screenings of the documentary “E-Wasteland” by David Fedele at the GarDen Youth Center, the students cleaned the area surrounding the center and planted a colorful flower bed around it. The youngest participants of the event grew enthusiastic about the idea of sorting garbage and told their parents about it. The moderator was convinced that, even in the smallest villages, it is possible to identify agents of positive change and create a culture of respect for human rights. Natalya Mosentsova also shared the story of an underage probation client with a difficult life story. The documentary “My Happy Complicated Family” by Tessa Louise Pope helped the girl open up, learn to express her thoughts, share her problems and achievements. The moderator invites her to screenings with teenagers who model law-abiding behavior so that, after the end of her probation, she does not lose sight of the life guidelines she has gained. 



Yuriy Chumak award

Yuriy Chumak, moderator of the Docudays UA Film Club “DUMAy!” at the “DUMA” Center for Legal and Political Studies, which operates in Kharkiv and Cherkasy regions, shared the results of his advocacy campaign launched in 2021. Human rights activists managed to get the Ministry of Social Policy to approve a form for referring victims of domestic violence to free secondary legal aid centers nationwide. This significantly contributed to ensuring the right of such persons to free legal aid from the state. In addition, Yuriy Chumak shared his experience of popularization of the work of film clubs. Thus, after the screening of the film “Lisa, Go Home!” by Oksana Buraja at the Sumy Regional Youth Forum “Northern Border: Youth Club,” a number of new film clubs appeared in the Sumy region, including such prominent ones as the Docudays UA film club at the NGO “Youth Center ‘SHUM’” in Shostka and the Docudays UA film club at the Center for Extracurricular Education in Severynivka. Moreover, discussion of the film “Starting Point” by Michal Szczesniak with the staff of the Cherkasy branch of the Probation Center inspired the opening of 12 new film clubs in the Network. 



Oksana Sushchuk

Oksana Sushchuk, moderator of the film club “Opening New Horizons” at the Kivertsi Local Lore Museum, told how the film club helped turn the museum into an important public space accessible to everyone, regardless of origin, religion, gender, age, or social status. During the discussion of the films related to active citizenship, a conversation about volunteering and its development in the Kivertsi community arose. The moderator decided to implement an advocacy project to help local volunteer organizations create a public council of volunteers at the local government that would allow them to communicate, support their activism, and make various volunteer initiatives visible to the community. This was the impetus for the development of youth volunteer initiatives in the community. The screening of the film “Language” by Serhiy Lysenko in a hostel for IDPs helped provide them with volunteer assistance and support. After the screening, local authorities provided some of the hostel's residents with new housing in the community on a permanent and free basis. 

The DOCU/CLUB Network team would like to thank all the moderators who submitted their stories to the competition. We are convinced there are many more amazing stories about the impact of film clubs than we’ve received. We are proud of the changes initiated by our moderators and encourage you to share your inspirational stories. 


Photo: Dmytro Shatskyi


The development of the DOCU/CLUB Network is funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the Embassy of Sweden in Ukraine, the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) and Fondation de France. 


The opinions, conclusions, or recommendations are those of the authors and compilers of this publication and do not necessarily reflect the views of the governments or charitable organizations of these countries. The authors and compilers are solely responsible for the content of this publication.


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