...Our  environment directly influences our mental state, our human relations, and our attitude toward life.

Oleksandr Zavadovych (“Znesinnya” Foundation and Landscape Park in Lviv)

This belief united a group of enthusiasts who then became the nucleus of the Regional Foundation Znesinnya in 1990. The group began its activity informally in the area of a picturesque mountain range, surrounded by the streets and buildings of the city of Lviv. Soon they began to look for a complex solution to  pro­blems related to this unique part of the city. In 1991, the Regional Foundation Znesinnya was registered as a non-gover­nment, non-profit organization, and the comple­tion of the Regional Landscape Park Zne­sinnya in 1993 marked the first real success of the Foundation.

Cooperation with the City Hall, scientists, and lawyers made possible the creation of a park administration, support from the city budget, and discouraged unauthorized use of park land.

The goal of the Znesinnya Foundation is to preserve and promote Znesinnya — one of the most ancient and truly beautiful areas of Lviv. The mission of the Foundation is to influence the attitude of people in regard to their appreciation of the natural, historical, and cultural environment.

Znesinnya Foundation works closely  with other Ukrainian NGOs, such as the «West Ukrainian Resource Center», the «Lion Society», the « Tree of Life», «Memorial», «Eco­geofund» and the Charitable Foundation «Ecolaw-Lviv».

 Znesinnya Foundation has initiated and/or participated
in several projects:

• creating the 312-hectare   landscape park «Znesinnya» as a protected area;

• inventorying natural and historical sites and preparing an environmentally sensitive development plan for the park;

• stopping erosion of the soil and removing trash from the area;

• creating the opportunity for seasonal work for approximately 20 people.

 Due to the support of other NGOs, local businesses, and government, the Foundation has been successful in:

• supplying tools and equipment for maintaining of the park (Counterpart, USA);

• receiving environmental education materials for the future development of ecological classes in English (Environmental Education and Information Center – Kyiv, Ukraine; North American Associati­on for Environmental Education);

• organizing an international camp for promotion of the park by means of environmental education and recreation (US Peace Corps, NIS Community Development Fund, USA);

• preparing a promotional tourist brochure about the park and Foundation (Activity Fund of Milieu­kontakt Oost-Europa and the DOEN Foundation, the Netherlands; Lviv local businesses).

 A special feature of the Znesinnya Regional Landscape park is that, despite the surrounding city and human impact of a large population, the area survived as a piece of the wild nature and ancient history in the center of Lviv. In addition to the natural, historical and cultural sites, the park includes old sand pits, industrial enterprises, and traditional cottages.

 Znesinnya is one of the first areas settled by men inside the present boundaries of Lviv. From what is known at the present time, settlements were active in the ninth and tenth centuries, but there are some traces of human inhabitation from the fourth through the second millennium, before Christ.

Znesinnya (Ascension) Church should be distinguished from other architec­­tural monuments, since it is the one that gave its name to the old village, later on to the city district, and then to the foundation and park.

 The park provides a wonderful place for enjoying scenic views and recreation, and is an ideal outdoor classroom and living laboratory for ecological, botanical, geological, and archaeological studies.

 

We are planning to create long-term partnerships for the following projects:

• organizing an international, self-sustainable educational center within the park;

• creating open-air museums of geology, archaeology, and art;

• promoting  the park by printed and computerized means;

• creating a geographic information system (GIS) for the park;

• economic evaluation of the environmental resources of the park;

• preparing a feasibility study for the protection of the park through environmentally sensitive development;

• fighting erosion in sand and limestone soils; segregating and re-using waste materials and trash; creating a local system for waste disposal.

We offer the park area for activities such as seasonal camps, open-air fairs, outdoor activities in sports, art, and education. Tourists are welcome, also!

 As is the case with endangered species of plants and animals, we must protect precious areas located within large urban centers and threatened by human activity. They belong not only to one community, one city, or even one country. . . but to mankind, to the whole world. That is why it is necessary to create a working model of Znesinnya Park internationally, exchanging ideas, bringing fresh air, new visions, and optimal solutions.

 This brochure was sponsored
 by Environmental Partnership for Central Europe and supported by ISAR.