For 30 years, the organization has united Abkhazians and Abaza all over the world. It preserves traditions, language, culture, strengthens civil society.
HISTORY OF THE CONGRESS
In October 1992, in the midst of the Georgian-Abkhazian war, representatives of the Diaspora from all over the world gathered in the village of Lykhny for the I World Congress of the Abkhaz-Abaza (Abaza) people in order to unite the people to protect their historical homeland - Abkhazia.
The main decision of the Congress was the creation of the International Association of the Abkhaz-Abaza People (IAAAP), whose president was elected a prominent public figure, Doctor of Law Taras Shamba.
The main goal of the work of the Congress is to unite Abkhazians and Abaza, regardless of their place of residence, and to include them in the processes of creation in the interests of the people. This becomes possible when conditions are created for the realization of the potential of each representative of the Abkhaz-Abaza people. The joint efforts of the Congress team are aimed at strengthening the unity of the ethnic group, promoting the economic development of Abkhazia, creating favorable conditions for the return of compatriots from abroad, strengthening and developing civil society. The Congress implements the idea of preserving and developing the Abaza people in all countries of residence of representatives of the ethnic group.
CHAIRMAN OF THE SUPREME COUNCIL OF THE WAC MUSSA EKZEKOV
The seventh congress in 2017 is the beginning of a new stage in the work of the organization. The participants officially approved the name - the World Abaza Congress. State and public figure, philanthropist Mussa Ekzekov was elected Chairman of the Supreme Council of the Congress. He determined the strategic direction of the work of the WAC - the creation of a network of regional and local offices - and emphasized the need to develop and implement individual development programs for each settlement. Particular attention is paid to information work that increases the efficiency of uniting representatives of the Diaspora living in different countries.
KEY OBJECTIVES OF THE CONGRESS TEAM
- Revival of the ethno-cultural unity of the Abkhaz-Abaza (Abaza) people;
- Creating favorable conditions for facilitating the return of representatives of the Diaspora to their historical homeland;
- Participation of compatriots in the economic, social and cultural development of Abkhazia;
- Preservation of intangible cultural heritage: national identity, traditions and customs of the Abkhaz-Abaza (Abaza) people.
Based on the mission and goals of the Congress, seven main areas can be distinguished in its work:
– Preservation and development of the native language,
– Culture, – family and children, – youth, – education, – healthcare, – sport.
WHO CAN PARTICIPATE IN THE WORK OF THE CONGRESS
Today the Congress unites more than two thousand Abkhazians and Abaza from all over the world. These are only those who went through formal procedures and became members of the organization. More than 80 people maintain daily work.
Any representative of the Abkhaz-Abaza and Ubykh peoples can become a part of the Congress. It is enough to write an application and send it by e-mail or transfer it to any representative of the Congress in your region. In this case, the place of residence and citizenship do not matter. Each member of the Congress can participate in the activities of the organization, be elected as a delegate to the Congress and elected bodies of the Congress, and take part in the meetings of the Supreme Council.
By joining the Congress, you become part of a large family united by the common idea of preserving and developing the ethnic group, culture and history of the Abaza people.
Everyone can participate in the work of the Congress and help in the implementation of programs.
HOW THE CONGRESS SOLVES THE CHALLENGES
The key tool is the representative offices of the Congress, created in each locality. They allow to quickly involve local residents in solving the most important tasks for a particular territory.
The Congress team implements a variety of projects: educational programs, charity events, major sports, cultural, commemorative events, reading contests.
The Congress initiated a charitable action "Soul Warmth", meetings of the Discussion Club are regularly held at the venues of the organization, a large-scale cultural and sports festival "Abaza" is organized. All events meet the main goal - to promote the values of the Abkhazians and Abaza, to unite the people to preserve the historical heritage.
WAC INTERNATIONAL ACTIVITIES
Congress projects are being implemented in all countries where representatives of the Abaza people live. This allows not only to unite representatives of the ethnic group, but also to acquaint citizens of these states with its culture, traditions, values, and to develop intercultural communication. Representative offices of the WAC, in addition to Abkhazia, work in several regions of Russia: St. Petersburg, Moscow, Karachay-Cherkessia, Kabardino-Balkaria and Stavropol Region - as well as in Turkey, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium and Great Britain.
Over the past few years alone, the leadership and participants of the Congress have held dozens of meetings, signed agreements on cooperation in various fields. Interaction has been built with the Federation of Abkhazian Cultural Centers in Turkey, the Egyptian Foundation for the Development of Culture and Art. The head of the Supreme Council of the WAC, Mussa Ekzekov, constantly holds meetings with the leadership of countries where representatives of the Diaspora live: Deputy Foreign Minister of Russia Andrey Rudenko, Vice-Chairman of the Senate of Jordan, member of the Italian Parliament Matteo Dall-Osso and many others. The President of Abkhazia, Aslan Bzhania, also attended the conference, organized by the Congress Team in the Italian Parliament. The event was held in an online format, the topic of discussion was "The right of peoples to self-determination. Abkhazia and Greater Europe".
The active international activity of the Congress and, in particular, the opening of foreign representations are dictated by the understanding that Abkhazians and Abaza, regardless of their place of residence, are a pillar in strengthening the state.
In 2021, an Alley of Memory was planted in Sukhum in honor of the people of Abkhazia who died in the Patriotic War of 1992-1993. Every year on the Day of Remembrance of the Victims of the Caucasian War, a ritual of lighting the traditional Abkhazian Ashamaka candle and the Nart fire is held on the seashore. The Day of the Flag and Emblem of Abkhazia, the holiday in honor of Children's Day, New Year's holidays, literary evenings - the Congress constantly organizes cultural events together with partners.
SOUL WARMTH: CHARITY ACTION
This action was unprecedented in scale for Abkhazia. In a few months, with the support of the "Alashara" Foundation and the Federation of Abkhazian Cultural Centers of Turkey, more than 1,000 children received warm clothes, shoes and other winter clothes. The project covered all regions of Abkhazia, and the lists of those in need were supplemented by the local residents themselves, which once again confirms the correct course of the Congress to work through local branches and the participation of the residents themselves.
PARTICIPATION IN POLITICAL LIFE
In 2022, four representatives of the Congress decided to participate in the elections to the People's Assembly of Abkhazia. It was a personal decision for each candidate. Members of the Congress visited almost all settlements of Abkhazia. Thus, a socially oriented program was born, the implementation of which would be more effective if it were possible to participate in decision-making on a national scale. Such an instrument, of course, is the Parliament of the Republic of Abkhazia. Following the results of vote, the Executive Secretary of the Congress Inar Gitsba became a deputy of the People's Assembly of Abkhazia. The duty of a deputy is to uphold and protect the interests of the citizens of Abkhazia, and the Congress Team follows these principles.
IMMEDIATE PLANS OF THE CONGRESS
The immediate plans of the Congress include the completion of the process of creating local branches in all settlements of Abkhazia.
The ultimate goal of the Congress is to build processes in such a way that the system starts working on its own. Each person must realize that the basis of success in the future, the basis of harmonious existence is the maximum preservation of the identity of one's own culture, traditions, and language.
To preserve your native language and multiply it constantly. For this purpose, it is necessary to create a system of scientific and educational projects, a sufficient motivation to captivate young people with science, such areas as language, history, ethnography, which describe our history, culture and traditions.
To create a successful, active media system, where we would unite all the people of the Abaza, Circassians and all our fellow citizens, where they would be in a single information space, where anyone can find the most convenient opportunities for learning and preserving the language, history, involvement in cultural ethnic space.
ABKHAZIA DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM
The current generation faces a historic task - to develop and implement reforms in the field of education, culture and sports, to form a reliable civil society and work on its development, increasing investment in human capital. These directions are decisive for the successful development of the state and strengthening the sovereignty of Abkhazia.
Based on this, the Congress Team has developed a Development Program covering the areas of sports and science, demography and culture, health, security and foreign policy. Together they determine the level of well-being of the citizens of Abkhazia.
The Congress Team has extensive experience in involving residents in solving everyday tasks. We have traveled all over the country and we indeed know what different localities need.
We are faced with the task of formulating individual development plans for each of them in order to form a comprehensive long-term program for the development of the country.
We sincerely want to turn this idea into reality together with you.
WAC OFFICES NETWORK
Local branches are already successfully operating in 43 towns and villages of Abkhazia. The Congress plans to expand this format throughout the country, to cover all 150 settlements. Outside of Abkhazia, representative offices operate in 10 countries and regions: St. Petersburg, Moscow, Karachay-Cherkessia, Kabardino-Balkaria, Stavropol Region, Turkey, Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium and Great Britain.
In order to create conditions for the involvement of representatives of the ethnic group in this work, regardless of their place of residence, representative offices of the Congress are created in settlements, the core of which are the most active residents who are ready to change life around them, participate in solving issues of improvement, and create a comfortable environment. It is they who influence what tasks for a particular locality will become paramount, with what cases the work of the WAC will begin. These problems are common to many families in a village or town.
This approach allows residents to be included in the process of studying problems and developing, together with the Congress team, a plan to solve them.
The Congress team pays special attention to the personal potential of each resident. This potential is actively involved in the formation of a development plan for the settlement. Moreover, the knowledge and experience of compatriots who live outside their homeland - scientists, doctors, teachers, business representatives - are used.