We present a few more participants of the “Metų kaunietė” project. Let’s celebrate their inner motivation, professionalism and support!
07. Gintarė Stankeviče – Director of the Lithuanian Zoo, she was offered to participate in the “Metų kaunietė” project for her efforts to preserve the interest of Kaunas and city guests in the Zoo and its animals, even when the Zoo was closed for a long reconstruction, and after this it became a focus of education and educational activities.
“My activity at the Zoo is closely related to my long-term interest in animal welfare and their protection, which has accompanied me since childhood. I am happy to be able to contribute to the well-being of animals, to participate in the creation of programs and strategies that directly affect their quality of life”, said G. Stankeviče, who uses all opportunities to contribute to the development of the Zoo, where the main focus is on the well-being of animals, and education and science integration helps spread the word about the importance of nature conservation.
The hardest part, she says, is finding a balance between the animals’ needs and the visitors’ expectations. It is also a challenge to ensure that each animal receives the care and attention it needs, feels safe, healthy and happy.
“It is important to continuously strive for the best standards of animal husbandry while educating the public about the importance of animal welfare. I want the public to understand that the zoo is not only a place where people visit, but also a place where important scientific and conservation work takes place,” said the Kaunas woman about public education.
In a professional sense, G. Stankevičė is proud of the development and modernization of the Lithuanian Zoo, the fact that she was able to lead its renovation, which was not only a construction project, but also a commitment to animal welfare and environmental protection.
“As a Kaunian and a citizen, I am happy to contribute to the city’s cultural and educational life, increasing people’s understanding of nature protection and the importance of preserving biodiversity,” said the participant of the Kaunian of the Year project.
I am happy to be able to contribute to the welfare of animals, participate in the development of programs and strategies that directly affect their quality of life.
To other women, girls, she wishes to pursue their dreams and never give up, regardless of what challenges arise. “Be brave, be creative and trust in your own strength. It is important not only to achieve personal success, but also to contribute to the well-being of the community, to share knowledge and experience with others. In the professional field, I recommend you to constantly learn and improve, and in a human way – to be open and helpful”, said G. Stankeviče.
In her eyes, Kaunas, starting with the old town and ending with the corners of nature, is a wonderful city. “Walking around the old town with a cup of coffee in the evening, visiting the town hall and enjoying the narrow streets full of history is a real moment of pleasure. The architecture of the old town and the pulse of the city provide a unique atmosphere that allows you to forget the daily hustle and bustle,” described the manager of the garden.
Being energetic, she likes to spend her free time with her family and in a calm, relaxing environment, especially in nature, which provides an opportunity to recover after a stressful work week.
05. Evelina Šimkutė to participate in the project “Metų kaunietė” was offered for long-term “Šilainiai gardens” and other projects involving the residents of Šilainiai: for working for the benefit of the community, regardless of whether the projects will receive funding or not.
“When people ask me why I do all this, I say that I just can’t help it. Creativity, art, community spirit are my vocation,” said E. Šimkutė, who has been organizing various cultural and artistic activities in Šilainiai for the ninth year.
“I grew up here and I really want and dream that culture is accessible to everyone, regardless of age, education or social status. From practice, I see that this can be achieved by inviting artists and creators of various fields to present their creations in places easily accessible to everyone, for example, in the courtyards of apartment buildings, parks, squares. That’s what I’m doing,” said the activist, who broke the ice in Šilainiai and showed an example that the aforementioned spaces are suitable for the spread of cultural initiatives.
“Šilainiai gardens” in Fort VIII are the largest public community gardens in Lithuania. “The news about the value of these gardens to local residents inspired me a lot to spread the word about urban gardening, to work, to do everything I can to preserve this very important part of Lithuanian culture,” E. Šimkutė was happy.
According to seniors, this is a place that prolongs life. Here they not only get the opportunity to garden, but also the opportunity to chat, move, be in the fresh air, and make friends. It is also useful for families with small children who do not have their own village or garden. Children can learn here, watch how vegetables grow, and learning takes place in a playful way, because children are allowed to get dirty and wet. “Šilainiai gardens” are also relevant for young people. Activities or just being in this green oasis help reduce stress.
Creativity, art, community spirit are my vocation.
“We can do many things in our city, in our environment, by ourselves. Without waiting for huge investments or for someone else to take care of it,” said E. Šimkutė.
The informal education program “Nature in the City” was born from the experience in “Šilainiai Gardens”, which the Kaunian woman is currently developing with her colleagues. “We see that schools lack knowledge and ways to integrate experiences about nature, biodiversity and the food chain in the learning process, how to create interesting outdoor educational spaces in schools that involve the entire school community in activities,” said the šilainiškė.
Next year Šilainiai will celebrate its fortieth anniversary, so this year E. Šimkutė and her like-minded people, in cooperation with the Kaunas City Museum, will aim to finish recording in photos and videos the interesting stories of many people from Šilainiai, reflecting the development of the district.
You can vote:
• NEWSPAPER: Send the cut-out and filled-in special coupon to the following address: Metų kaunietė, “Kauno dienos” newspaper editorial office, I. Kanto str. 18, 44296 Kaunas, or put in a special ballot box in the subscription section I a. 1 coupon = 10 votes. If possible, please send newspaper clippings to the editorial office by post.
• SMS: send a short message (in Lithuania) to the number 1679 with the text “MKA XX”. XX – the candidate’s number, which is next to her profile in the portal. SMS price – 1 EUR. 1 SMS = 10 votes.
• PORTAL: kaunodiena.lt in the column “Kaunietė of the Year”. On the portal, you can vote for one candidate once a day from one IP address. One online vote equals one vote.
From January 25 until February 6 12 o’clock by voting, you will choose the ten most deserving people from Kaunas. February 8 we will announce the top ten and continue voting until February 20. 12 o’clock
February 22 we will announce the final six applicants.
From February 22 until March 4 12 o’clock you will choose the winner from the six finalists by voting. March 5-6 we will sum up the results.
March 7 We will announce the Kaunian of the Year at the final event.
The daily “Kauno diena” thanks the main sponsors of the project: “Kaunas tiltai”, “Bosca be alkoholu”, “Vikonda grupė”; for sponsors “Jukata”, “Kauno grūdai”, “Heiga Group”, “Volfas Engelman non-alcoholic”, “Mano būstas”; partners Etapas Group, Center Credit Union.