On October 30, Artek International Children’s Center hosted a workshop on cooking a popular traditional Serbian dish “cevapcici.” Serbian children, who are now on vacation at Artek, took part in the workshop.
Four Serbian children have arrived at Artek after an agreement between Artek, the Serbian Ministry of Education, Science and Technological Development and the Federal Agency for CIS Affairs, Compatriots Living Abroad, and International Humanitarian Cooperation (Rossotrudnichestvo) was signed in Belgrade in September. This is the first agreement with Artek International Children’s Center signed at interstate level. In particular, it envisages the participation of Serbian children in Artek’s thematic educational programs and involvement of Serbian teachers and students, who study or teach the Russian language, in volunteer activities at the children’s center.
Children have come from Belgrade and Pancevo. They are now part of Camp Morskoi (Marine) and take part in the 3rd Artek Youth Media Forum, organized with support of Artek’s partner, the League of Young Journalists. Children are learning the basic skills of television journalists and cameramen.
Director of the Artek International Children’s Center Alexei Kasprzhak noted that children from various countries make life at the children’s center more interesting: “When children from various countries meet each other, they learn many new things. I can see that with the arrival of Serbian children the life at Artek has become livelier, and both Russian and Serbian children learn a lot.”
Alexei Kasprzhak also commented on the Serbian cooking workshop that “this is the first, the simplest, but a very important step in the implementation of the agreement.” “A child who comes to us from another country should feel at home, including with the food. After we returned from Serbia, where we had signed this agreement and had tried this magnificent dish, cevapcici, we’ve decided that it should definitely be on our menu. National cuisine is part of every people’s culture. For example, Serbian people traditionally eat a lot of meat. And in this case, we do not only use our dining room as a place where children eat five times a day, but as a place where foreign children can teach their new friends something about their country’s culture and traditions.”
The workshop where children cooked ciorba and cevapcici was held as part of the project “International Cuisine”, where Artek’s children can learn about traditional dishes of over 20 peoples and broaden their knowledge about their culture and traditions.
“The national menu of our “International Cuisine” now includes ciorba soup and cevapcici sausages. These are the most authentic Serbian dishes, good and delicious. Now they are offered at the distribution table in our dining room, and all Artek children can taste them. Serbian children held the cooking workshop led by our chef,” noted Artek’s Catering Director Andrei Semyonov.
The Serbian children praise their vacation at Artek highly. Tijana Yakovlevic from Pancevo says: “Everything has fascinated me at Artek: nature and people. Today we are cooking very old dishes that were cooked in the time of the Ottoman Empire. It is cool that people in Russia know about them.”
David Kovacevic from Belgrade adds: “Artek is a children’s paradise. It is hard to believe that all this is for children. Artek brings out talents. I am a journalist, and I’ve tried my hand with the camera for the first time, and it turns out that I am good at this. I am sure that when I grow up, I’ll come back here as a volunteer.”
Artek is an internationally recognized center of children’s diplomacy: during the last three years, almost 2,500 children from 60 countries came to Artek.