Dr. Milen Vrabevski: Bulgarians abroad are indispensable part of the nation

Photo: Photo:BGNES
Dr. Milen Vrabevski is the president of the Bulgarian Memory Foundation. It promotes and supports love and respect to Bulgarian history, culture and national values, as well as including them into the set of pan European values. An initiative of the foundation is called Bulgarian identity - European identity. Dr. Milen Vrabevski is winner of the Bulgarian European Citizens' Prize of the European Parliament for 2013. European integration of Bulgarian Diaspora in non-EU countries such as Ukraine, Moldova, Serbia and Macedonia is a very important part of the activities of the foundation. This goes primarily by promoting the merits of Bulgaria and the EU.

For this purpose, twice a year Bulgarian Memory Foundation organizes workshops for young people from the Bulgarian communities abroad. The latest edition took place in Varna and included over 250 children. A total of 3000 children have already passed through this training.

"Bulgarians abroad are an integral part of our nation,” Dr Vrabevski says. “In times of demographic crisis each Bulgarian is important. The battle for the hearts of the young Bulgarians, regardless of where they were born is worth it. Do not forget also that a number of people who speak pure Bulgarian language live abroad. These are elderly people whom we pay little attention to. And we have to fight in order for their children and grandchildren to keep the same warm attitude towards the homeland. Possibly the state should provide the necessary resources to enable them to come to Bulgaria and pass a training for free. We work with the Association of Bulgarians in Ukraine, with an Association for Friendship with Bulgaria in Macedonia, with the Association of Bulgarians in the Western Outland and others. We support Diaspora organizations financially and logistically. We also finance educational and cultural and programs in the country and provide training on the best practices in European integration.”

Here is more about the activities of the foundation from Doctor Vrabevski:
"Thanks to educational courses financed by the foundation, a number of students from the Western Rhodopes were accepted to universities. We pay teachers to organize trainings and they have had a great success. There are many children who come from regions with predominantly poor people and can not pay for educational courses.”

What made you take up this important mission?

"It is my desire for my children to live in a more beautiful Bulgaria, which was built with my efforts, too,” Dr. Vrabevski says. “When they ask me what I've done to make our country a better place to live I will be able to say: ‘Everything possible.’ I want our children to stay in Bulgaria and be proud of being Bulgarians. We are currently working in four main spheres. They are: combating demographic crisis; reintegration of Bulgarian Diaspora; preventing emigration, and preservation and promotion of Bulgarian cultural and historical heritage." 

English version: Alexander Markov
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