November 8, 2018 Print

Kyiv-based Ukrainian Students for Freedom (USF) has won Atlas Network’s 2018 Smith Student Outreach Award for its inaugural Leadership Program, which works with student leaders to provide communicative skills and knowledge on a range of activities from policy proposals to hosting events. Launched in 2013, the Smith Student Outreach Award is an annual award recognizing the best student-focused project for liberty. The winning organization receives $3,000 and is selected from among current year grantees. The award is generously sponsored by the Smith Family Foundation.

“It is a great honor to receive the Smith Student Outreach award as a recognition of our hard work during this year,” said Mykhailo Lavrovskyi, chief operating officer of USF. “With [the] help of Atlas Network and all the other generous sponsors and partners of our organization we have been able to create a student network covering 15 regions of Ukraine, which makes us the biggest student organization that defends and promotes ideas of liberty in Ukraine. After the Revolution of Dignity in Ukraine, our country is still in a transition process trying to become a freer and better place … [we are] trying to do everything possible to make our country freer fighting cronyism, corruption and inefficiency and gaining more freedom for us all.”

Ukrainian Students for Freedom engaged 1,647 students throughout Ukraine in the last year.

During its first year, USF was able to create a network of more than 100 Ukrainian students in 15/25 regions of Ukraine. The participants of its Leadership Program have since organized 24 locally held events with a total of 1,647 attendees among their local chapters.

"The work of Ukrainian Students for Freedom has strengthened my hope for the future,” said Dr. Tom Palmer, executive vice president for international programs and George M. Yeager chair for advancing liberty at Atlas Network. “In a country riven by factionalism and cronyism, war and violence, a principled group of young people have boldly stood up for liberty and the rule of law, for property and free exchange, for limited government as the framework for voluntary and peaceful cooperation, in short, for the public good. Ukrainian Students for Freedom work closely with Atlas Network's partners and their activist network stretches throughout the country. They demand a free country and they will have it."

The first winner of the Smith Student Outreach Award in 2013 was Estudantes pela Liberdade in Brazil. The 2014 winner was Association “Multi” (Bosnia and Herzegovina), for its projects that encourage students and young professionals to participate in the process of social change in the country. The 2015 winner was European Students for Liberty, for its widespread outreach to students in Europe. The 2016 winner was the Center for Free Market Enterprise, for its impressive efforts in engaging students throughout Malawi in 2016 with its Free Society Initiative. The 2017 winner was Brazil-based Instituto Atlantos for its Atlantos Conference, titled “1917-2017: From the State Revolution to the Market Revolution.”

Special thanks to the Smith Family Foundation, John Templeton Foundation, Templeton Religion Trust, and the rest of our generous sponsors for making Liberty Forum & Freedom Dinner possible.