Mena territorial community
Population (as of 01.01.2022) – 26 014 inhabitants
Men – 11998
Women – 14016
Children under 18 – 3901
Pensioners – 7336
Internally displaced persons – 3225, including 716 – schoolchildren.
The Mena territorial community consists of 1 city, 1 urban-type settlement, 3 settlements and 34 villages.
Mena, a crossroad cossacks’ land
Named after the Mena river, the central city of the Mena community has long been at the crossroads of important trade routes between Chernihiv, Kursk and the Don. In the olden days it was a city of the Zaporozhian Cossacks, who belonged to the Nizhyn and later the Chernihiv regiments.
Unique wooden churches of the 18th century in the Cossack Baroque style have been preserved in the community, among them the Church of the Assumption in Voloskivtsi dated as back as 1765.
The city received the Magdeburg Law in 1654. At different times it was ruled by
different empires – the Commonwealth of Poland, the Grand Duchy of Lithuania,
the Russian Empire.
The city of Mena is located at the intersection of Ukraine’s railway connection with
Belarus and land routes with Russia. Prior to the Russian attack on Donbas in 2014,
it was possible to reach Dnipropetrovsk, Kharkiv, Donetsk or the Crimea from the
local station without any problems. However, due to Russia’s occupation of
Donbass, the number of shipments has decreased significantly.
Land of Chernikhiv bandura lyrics
Mena is the homeland of famous Ukrainian kobzars, singers-musicians, who
accompany their singing by playing the national Ukrainian instrument – the
bandura. It was here that the famous Chernihiv bandura and a special Chernihiv
way of playing appeared. The Museum of Local History houses collections of
banduras by local master-maker Oleksandr Kornievsky, who was known far
Mena Zoohouses about 560 animals, which represent 120 species, 17 of which are
endangered . The area of the zoo is 9 hectares. It is visited annually by more than
30 thousand people.
Photos provided by the community
Environment protection and energy saving
The Mena community is one of the first in Ukraine to join the UN #RaceToZero
climate change campaign, which aims to unite businesses, communities and
regions to achieve zero carbon emissions. A special priority for the community is
the preservation and restoration of local forests. That is why the community
decided to allocate 500 hectares of unproductive agricultural land for
Mena City Council has been a signatory to the Covenant of Mayors since 2013.
During 2017-2019, the city implemented an energy efficiency project, which
introduced almost 1,500 LED lights in the city, along with a lighting management
system and energy monitoring.
There is a 9 MW solar power plant in the community.
Youth and cultural initiatives
Much attention in the community is paid to the development of youth initiatives.
The Mena community is a candidate community in the UNICEF Child-Friendly
Community project. The youth council has been working effectively for more than
5 years, and students are even involved in community governance.
Numerous cultural events are held here every year. In 2021, the annual open
sports and entertainment festival “Hero-FEST” named after Terenty Savych Koren,
a legendary Ukrainian wrestler and weightlifter, a native of the Mena community,
was launched. During the festival one can get acquainted with ancient sports.
About 5,000 people took part in the first Hero-FEST.
The Kumanets Pottery Festival is held as part of the annual Trinity Fair. The event
annually hosts up to 15,000 connoisseurs of modern pottery. Also, at the
exhibition «Ceramic Art Zoo» you can see ceramics with animal images.
Food processing, pulp and paper industry, wood processing as well as agriculture
(mainly growing cereals, legumes, industrial and fodder crops – sunflower, wheat,
nuts, canola, soybeans) and meat – dairy farming are well developed in the
The main resource of the Mena community is land, and the vast majority of land is
black soil. There are over 87,000 hectares of arable lands in the community and
there are more than 67 enterprises producing agricultural products work here.
One of the leading Ukrainian cheese factories, Mensky Syr, operates in the
community, processing more than 500 tons of milk per day. Also, due to the
untouched nature at a depth of 830 m, Ostrechenskaya
hydrocarbonate-chloride-sodium mineral water is extracted and produced here.
Community and the war
Since the beginning of the Russian-Ukrainian war, on February 26, 2022, fierce
battles were fought in the Minsk direction, in particular, 20 units of enemy
equipment were burned nearby. Russian occupation forces passed by, leaving the
community cut off from the rest of Ukraine. Communications and bridges were
destroyed by the occupying forces. Food and medicine under the blockade were
delivered in small batches by selfmade river crossings. Residents of the community
suffered from a shortage of gasoline and food.
IDPs in the community
«Our native Mena community hosted more than 7,000 IDPs. More than 10,000
people passed through our river crossings. Much work has been done to set up
crossings and provide assistance to those in need. We were and are constantly in
touch with Chernihiv: we delivered aid to our soldiers and hospitals. Today it is
important to start sowing, to help our companies resume production, to help
businesses restart in the conditions of life on the «island».»
Hennadiy Prymakov, Mena community head
He was elected mayor three times in 2015, 2017, 2020. Prior to that, he was the
first deputy head of the Mena district state administration. Economist by
education. A native of Chernihiv region.
Before the war, the community was actively working to create the first in the
Chernihiv region industrial park with an area of 68 hectares, which should
significantly affect the economic and social development of the Mena
community. It was planned to place industrial and research enterprises,
warehouses, a shopping mall, and a recreation area on its territory. The
community hopes to resume work on its creation after the war.
Interviews with community representatives
Information resource MENSHCHYNA
The website of the Chernihiv Historical Museum. Charnowski