By a scholarship of the Robert Bosch Foundation I could stay in Kiev from April till June 2011 (program is called “Medienmittler zwischen den Voelkern”). All three months have been packed with a lot of new impressions, as well as with interesting and exciting topics. So I reported about the preparations for the European Championship 2012, about “25 Years after Chernobyl” and the Timoshenko process.
I was working in several local media as well as an “on time correspondent” for German media. First of all, I was at the newsroom of TV channel “Inter”. “Inter” is the most popular TV channel in Ukraine. Main news program is broadcast at 8 p. m. in Russian. Most of the program is in Ukrainian – like in all other national TV channel. My second editorial department was “Kyiv Post”. The English-speaking weekly newspaper, with a circulation of 25.000 copies, is read mainly by expats, tourists and academics in the country. The articles are critical and often pro-opposition.
Finally, I gained work experience at “Radio Ukraine International.” There is a German program, in addition to an English and Romanian one, with about ten employees. Every day they are producing news and radio packages about current events in Ukraine (audio on demand: http://www.nrcu.gov.ua/index.php?id=774).
All in all the three-months scholarship made me more confident in terms of exposés, first contact with editors and issues – and I re-started working for newspapers / online, like Financial Times Germany and ZEIT ONLINE. I learned much about the mood in Ukraine after the Orange Revolution. And I travelled a lot around the country and thus appreciated the country, the people and especially their diversity.
From October 2011 I will work as freelance foreign correspondent in St. Petersburg and offer German media topics from Russia and Ukraine. The three months in Kiev have been the best preparation for that.