Russia: ‘Subbotnik’ in Rostov Veliky
Thirteen Russian alumni of Dutch universities joined forces to clean up a section of the unique earthen fortification, built in 1632-1634 by Jan Cornelius Rodenburg. The mayor of Rostov also lent a hand during the clean-up, which is to be repeated in the spring of 2017. Photos from the subbotnik (a volunteer cleaning day) are available here.
The next day the participants visited the nearby village of Porechye, which boasts a Dutch connection: local peasants learned agronomy techniques in Holland under Czar Peter the Great, laying the basis for the village's prosperity in the 18th century. The clean-up project was an initiative of the Netherlands Alumni Network in Russia (NANR) which meets regularly to discuss different themes.