Babylon 2023 1st Award Winner
Reflecting on the Babylon Award Experience
It all started on the 26th of September in Europe House. It was a day filled with excitement as the ceremony for the ninth edition of the Babylon Award for Best Young Translator was being held. That was the day I learned what the Babylon Award meant for someone just starting to thread their translation path. So, my journey began.
Ireland is the only country within the European Union whose official language is English. It was only natural, therefore, to start my research process with Irish literature. Upon days of research, I stumbled upon an author by the name of Colm Tóibín. Tóibín is a recognized author who has received many awards for his works, covering themes like Irish society, experiences of exile, the lasting impact of Catholicism, personal identity, masculinity, fatherhood, and sexuality. Most of these themes were present in the work I have chosen to translate, The Magician.
I started with the pre-translation phase, which included researching the author’s writing style and themes, World War II, and Thomas Mann. Once the pre-translation stage was over, I began translating. While translating, I would turn to relatives and friends to ask questions regarding architecture, Macedonian archaic words, and religious terms. I worked on my translation for almost six days, ensuring that each day ended with a translation worth reading. I spent the seventh day proofreading, triple-checking and making the final edits.
The overall experience was phenomenal. At the 2023 Babylon Award ceremony, I had the great opportunity to speak to several previous winners, H.E. Ambassador David Geer, and a group of remarkable translators. Lastly, I would like to express my deep gratitude to all my university professors who helped shape my translating process, especially Prof Milan Damjanoski, Prof Jane Bozinovski, Prof Rumena Buzarovska, and Prof Rajna Koshka.
– Babylon 2023 1st Award Winner, Blagoja Jovanovski
We marked the 10th anniversary of the Babylon Award for Best Young Translator in the distinguish space of St Clement of Ohrid National and University Library. The award went to Blagoja Jovanovski for his translation from English into Macedonian of an excerpt from Colm Tóibín’s novel The Magician.
In addition to the award ceremony, we premiered the new short documentary film entitled The Home of the Language, based on a script by Vladimir Jankovski dedicated to the first school lesson in Macedonian in the village of Podvis. Through the Babylon Award program, we emphasized the importance of respecting culture, language and identity because translation helps to share the ideas, thoughts and culture of each other, builds a bridge between us, and gives us a window into new worlds.
Babylon Award represents the substrate of the translation world among young people, thus obliging us to upgrade its form and invest in novelties that respond to the challenges of today’s age and according to the spirit of the new generation.
Green and small, but with a planetary mission – A Bazaar of Eco-Friendly Small Businesses
Kate (Katerina Ilijovska) and Sara (Sara Kocevska) are two young women who have shown enthusiasm and commitment in initiating the YesForLess platform, thus inspiring us to host a joint event during October – the Bazaar of Eco-Friendly Small Businesses dedicated to #SupportLocalBusiness.
At Bistro Komedia, we have brought together many small green entrepreneurs dedicated to creating a positive impact through their business ideas and raising awareness about environmental issues.
Biodegradable tights, jewellery made of recycled plastic, second-hand clothes and natural materials, and room fresheners made of orange peel are some of the Macedonian innovative green products offered at the bazaar.
Visitors could learn more about the small local eco-friendly businesses and get practical tips on how to lead a more sustainable life through a range of practices such as reusing, refurbishing and recycling products to minimize waste and resource depletion.
Why was this event so important to us?
- To encourage responsible consumption
- To support the small local eco-business community
- To raise awareness about ecological alternatives
- To educate
- To exchange sustainable business and lifestyle habits and practices
We want to thank and express our gratitude to Kate, Sara, and all the small eco-friendly businesses for their iron will and commitment to a sustainable future and driving innovation. We are happy that we are all making a difference.
Let’s talk about important issues, but speak to me in the language of art
The broad spectrum of #SupportLocalBusiness also includes local freelance artists using their work to reflect on social, political, and environmental issues. We had a wonderful conversation with a famous urban artist to encourage young people to look for one within themselves.
By learning more about Dread Pen’s graffiti alphabet techniques and painting canvas shoes, we wanted to raise awareness among the younger generation about the importance of maintaining an active life by valuing culture and keeping the language and the alphabet alive.
We demonstrated all the fun ways to do this artistic expression and how much one can learn through play and exploration by having just a little curiosity.
After the sneaker drawing workshop, the participants left with a “new” pair of shoes, whereas following the graffiti alphabet tutorial, all participants and the graffiti artist himself, Dread Pen, had the opportunity to paint the bench in front of Europe House Skopje with Cyrillic letters in a graffiti style.
These initiatives related to three seemingly unrelated topics showed us that with a little bit of creativity and support, new universes of interests could be stimulated and stirred up.
Kriva Palanka #GoingDigital far beyond Internet usage and e-book reading
Did you know that the digital world extends far beyond Internet usage and e-book reading? Well, Europe House Kriva Palanka’s STEM for Kids Workshop has proved this to be true. By integrating simple digital tools, various hardware components, and the practical application of diverse software, this initiative looks at how to make the best use of digital tools and empower diverse talent.
During the workshop, we combined puzzle pieces with robotics hardware and user-friendly software environments. This experience not only enhanced our technical and digital skills but also bolstered our confidence and teamwork abilities. However, our October digital skills development didn’t stop there.
At Europe House Kriva Palanka, we take pride in staying attuned to the evolving needs of the youth, and we adapt our workshops accordingly. We introduced the Digital Heroes Workshop to address one of these needs and emphasize responsible navigation in the online world with a strong sense of respect and responsibility towards others.
In a time when digital citizenship, internet security, and responsible online behaviour are crucial for people of all ages, it’s especially vital for young individuals. We are delighted to report that we have successfully mastered these essential skills, ensuring a safer and more respectful online environment for all.
#GoingDigital #EuropeanYearOfSkills #EuropeHouseKrivaPalanka
Erasmus Chronicles – Erasmus Days 2023
Our special guests, the Erasmus+ Alumni and the National Agency for European Educational Programs and Mobility representatives, shared their experiences by introducing and informing the young people about the Erasmus+ Program in a fun and creative way. They answered all the questions and dispelled the myths related to the program.
The young people who attended had the unique opportunity to put a pin on the digital map of the places they have visited or want to visit as part of the Erasmus+ Program, hear about their experiences and connect with other Erasmus enthusiasts.
Erasmus Days are an ideal opportunity for participants to discover new cultures, strengthen their language and intercultural skills, develop their employability and better understand the European values of tolerance, mutual respect and diversity.
Breaking stereotypes about rural women!
Europe House Bitola, on October 15, marked the International Day of Rural Women, exploring the rural areas around Bitola.
World statistics show that rural women make up one-quarter of the world’s population, a fact that undeniably makes them significant agents of change and drivers of local economies.
The potential of the Pelagonian rural region encouraged the two young women, Nazar Salievska and Nikolina Petkovska, to leave their mark on society, break stereotypes and contribute to the local economy. Nazar is a young student who is primarily engaged in tobacco farming. She is also an activist at the forefront of her family business and involved in social impact activities. Nikolina and her husband, on the other hand, are engaged in beekeeping, describing their life in the countryside as a form of therapy, helping them lead a relaxed rural life away from the city hustle and bustle.
By sharing their story and lifestyle, these two girls aimed to inspire and encourage young people to take action and develop an alternative lifestyle, highlighting the cultural and social segments and perspectives of rural livelihood in the affirmation and promotion of the region both locally and internationally.
For the Europe House Bitola’s team, this was an invaluable and exciting experience and a motivation to continue acti
vely exploring rural areas in the Pelagonian and Prespa regions, introducing the general public to the stories of our rural youth and the opportunities offered by life and work in the countryside.
See you soon! #InternationalRuralWomenDay #RuralYouth
Digital Dreams: Where Ideas Turn into Reality
Last month, Europe House Veles was part of a unique journey for digital art and innovation-Digital Dreams by Loreta Stefanovska. Young brilliant minds, aspiring tech enthusiasts, and visionaries came together to explore the limitless possibilities in the world of technology.
Accompanied by the experience of one of the most creative local artists, Loreta Stefanovska, the participants aimed to learn the process and techniques of making a digital work from zero to hero.
In a world where digital is the new normal Digital Dreams was a unique event of exploring a fusion of new skills and experiences.