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Ukraine/ 8.4 Amateur arts, cultural associations and civil initiatives  

8.4.2 Cultural houses and community cultural clubs

The preservation of the network of cultural clubs and centres inherited from Soviet times has been a priority of the Ministry of Culture over the last years. The new Law on the Budget 2015 has changed this priority to some extent (see chapter 6.2.1).

In the rural communities these clubs and centres remain the main centre of cultural life and the platform for the development of amateur arts. For example, there are 976 clubs in the Poltava region with a population of 1.7 million. These clubs run 5 250 amateur circles, groups and associations, with 63 434 persons attending. In Kirovograd region with a population of 1.05 million, there are 582 clubs, which run 2809 amateur groups.  Lack of financing and the transformation from state run institutions into community property led to a significant decrease in the number of clubs and cultural centres (see Table 24). The main problems of these institutions are maintenance and personnel: only about 5% of all clubs and cultural centres in the rural areas are provided with modern technology, and only 60% of staff are cultural specialists, 6% of whom have higher education. 35.7% of existing cultural clubs (or 6589) require repair or renewal; in some regions (Dnipropetrovsk, Zaporizhia, Odessa, Poltava, Donetsk, Kherson) this number is above 50%. In most regions, many cultural clubs are not heated in winter.

At the same time, new institutions were built recently in some towns and villages. For example, the House of Folklore was opened in the village of Kozatske and the Youth Cultural Centre in the village of Kryskiv (both in Chernihiv oblast). In the town of Dolyna (Ivano-Frankivska oblast) the Centre of Culture with 600 seats was built, and the Palace of Culture with 500 seats appeared in the city of Kirovograd.

Table 24:   Number of cultural clubs in Ukraine, in thousands, 1992-2013





























Source:     State Statistics Committee, 2014.

Recent and important policy measures include:

  • the cultural and art action "Arts of a Single Village" ( since 2002);
  • All-Ukrainian Review of Folk Art (since 2002);
  • participation of amateur collectives of Ukraine in CIOFF (International Council on Organising Folkloric Festivals); and AITA / IATA (International Association of Theatres Amateur) activities;
  • Order of the Minister of Culture "Provision on a Club Establishment" (2007). It should strengthen the status and competence of cultural club establishment, especially in rural areas;
  • governmental programme for development of Ukrainian villages for 2015 adopted by the Resolution of Cabinet of Ministers of September 2007;
  • Action Plan for development of handicraft activities for 2015 approved by the Resolution of Cabinet of Ministers of September 2009; and
  • Action Plan for preservation of Guzul intangible and tangible culture for 2015 approved  by the Resolution of Cabinet of Ministers of January 2010.

New multi-functional cultural institutions were formed during last years in many regions, like cultural centres, folk and craft centres, club-museums, club-libraries, etc.

The Ukrainian World Music Festival "Kraina Mriy" is the international musical folklore celebration which is held every year since 2004 in Kyiv during a few days on the celebration of Ivana Kupala (Bathed Ivan) – a traditional Ukrainian saint of the summer solstice, at the end of June – beginning of July. The main aim of the festival is a revival of traditional Ukrainian culture, support for modern musical ethnic styles, and exposing Ukrainian spectators to culture of different peoples. The initiator, founder and artistic director of the festival is Oleg Skrypka, leader of the legendary Ukrainian rock band Vopli Vodopliassova ( The title song written by the band ("Kraina Mriy" – "Land of Dreams") gave the name to the festival.

In 2013, more than 54 events were organised with the support of the Ministry of Culture of Ukraine to develop amateur art, and to protect and popularise cultural traditions. Among these events were: III International festival "Sunny little chestnut"; XIV International festival of variety and circus children and youth groups "Pontus Arena-2012" (Sevastopol); VI All-Ukrainian Festival "Pysanka-2013" (Kolomyia, Ivano-Frankivska oblast); International festival of young singers "Young Halychyna" (Novoyarivsk, Lvivska oblast), etc.

Chapter published: 05-06-2015

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