This is a beautiful time of the year; the nature has become alive once again and by now has awakened even in the northernmost parts of our region. Usually, spring is filling us with joy and hope for new beginnings. This year is different. Events in Ukraine are on our minds and in our hearts constantly, sorrow and heartbreak have overshadowed our lives.
As you will read the Spring Newsletter, our Partnership and cooperation in the Northern Dimension has also been affected. While the turn of events has shocked and shaken us, we will not give in to a paralyzing melancholy. Our Partnership is continuing the work, and some highlights are presented in this newsletter.
You will read about our ongoing work on active and healthy ageing, which our Partnership has prioritized. We have also included some highlights from our flagship project, which we implement together with the Northern Dimension Partnership on Culture, “The Art of Staying Healthy,” which explores the links between culture and increased well-being. Our Polish colleagues give an update on the situation with the burden of Tuberculosis infection, that remains a public health threat, and needs particular attention due to Russian military aggression in Ukraine. The war has badly affected all aspects of life in Ukraine, including health systems and disrupted care for patients with the TB disease.
Finally, we write about our new priority, the promotion of economy of well-being. Nations are becoming increasingly aware of the fact that GDP cannot be the one and only measure of success. Remember the tale of King Midas, who wished that everything he touches turns into gold, until he realized it means his food became inedible, the water undrinkable and the roses didn’t smell anymore. We advocate for sustainable growth that is good for the people and good for the planet.
With this, I leave you to read our newsletter and I wish you and your loved ones a peaceful and healthy spring.
Dr. Ülla-Karin Nurm
Director, NDPHS Secretariat