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Where there is no law, but every man does what is right in his own eyes, there is the least of real liberty
Henry M. Robert

Ukrainian didukh instead of a New Year tree

Activists call upon their compatriots to meet the New Year eco style
27 December, 2012 - 11:36
Photo by Yevhen KRAVS

The environmentalist action “Not a New Year Tree-2013” has been launched on the eve of New Year’s Day in six big cities of Ukraine, Dnipropetrovsk, Kyiv, Kharkiv, Odesa, Poltava, and Simferopol.

During this civic initiative its activists will be handing out leaflets with recommendations on how to celebrate the New Year’s Day without doing harm to nature. At the same time they are going to talk to passers-by. The interviews will be recorded on video and the most interesting and funny ones will be edited to make a single New Year video and uploaded on the Internet. People will be recommended to visit special websites launched on Facebook and VKontakte social networks on the eve of the action.

As the authors of the eco-friendly initiative told a press conference, their movement emerged in Dnipropetrovsk. In the course of preparation for the current action, they processed a great deal of information, starting with the number of firs being annually cut in Ukraine and finishing with what the candy wrappers are made of. Four main directions have been analyzed: buying firs, decorations, presents, and food. Initiative groups have also been shaped in other cities in order to hold the action “Not a New Year Tree-2013” and share the information.

The initiative has also drawn sponsors who supported the action. During the days before the holidays young activists went out to the streets to urge their compatriots to celebrate the New Year in an eco-friendly manner, without doing any harm to nature, hence to themselves. Instead of plastic decorations they offer handmade decorations made of pressed carton or paper and put a live fir-tree in a special pot or no New Year tree at all.

The young people say that to prepare eco-friendly New Year festivities requires more money and efforts, but the thing is worth the effort. “One of the variants is to place at home a Ukrainian didukh, which is made of grain ears. Other ideas are possible, if one switches on his/her imagination,” volunteer Liubomudr Nazariiev says. Within the framework of the action its participants announced the all-Ukrainian competition of alternative New Year Tree to be held on the Internet.

The tree must be made of ecological materials, pine or fir cones, colored paper, maybe even vegetables, which can be eaten at the festive table. Three winners will be selected among all the participants and they will be given ecological prizes. The results of the competition will be announced before the Orthodox Christmas.

By Vadym RYZHKOV, The Day, Dnipropetrovsk