Põlva imago kolme põlvkonna linnaelanike seas



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Tartu Ülikool


The image of Põlva among the three generations of the town people. Põlva is a small town and time by time small towns have had its' good and bad times. The population is small, only 6272 residents, which carves out some difficulties, but also creates a lot of opportunities. In my work I tried to find the answer to questions like, how is Põlva as an living environment among all three generations; how is Põlva evaluated as touristic sight; what is the situation in entertaining and spending free time; and who are the biggest destroyers and enhancers of the reputation of Põlva. Põlva is an attractive town first of all for pensioners, as it is quiet, safe and has pure nature and a lot of green area. Pensioners are provided with different amenities and their work and contribution is highly esteemed. The pensioners in Põlva can practice handwork, singing, dancing, sports and self-educating. Second target group, whose needs are rather well fulfilled, are the young people . In Põlva, it is possible to get high school education from two different schools. In addition exist various schools serving different interests, like art, sports and music school , a number of dancing studios and experimental theater. Young people are facing problems after graduating the high school since in their hometown is not enough work . Also middle-aged residents are admitting the same problem. Unemployment is expressly the biggest problem in Põlva. In general, residents are proud of their hometown, especially because Põlva is a scenic place, and although it does not have touristic attractions it still has some historical sights such as Püha Neitsi Maarja Church and cemetery with the graves of various historical persons. People in Põlva are also proud of Intsikurmu nature park and stage. Interviewees brought forth also the lake, located in the centre of the town, with artificial island in the middle, which has colors changing night light . The town or enterprising residents have an opportunity to create some touristic attractions that would invite us some tourists, good example is adventure park in Otepää. In addition to prior, is always a chance to advertise the town through some traditional event, which would attract the visitors from outside. Põlva needs a new trend, where the principal keyword should be business activity. It is needed to create new jobs, change the living environment more contemporary and also to create an opportunity to offer entertainment and also to divert the mind. If a person has a job, he can afford entertainment and is willing to spend his free time more active. Townspeople, despite of their generation, are agree that the biggest glory and fame to their hometown Põlva, has been brought by the handball team Serviti. Handball is certainly one of the most popular sports that residents go for and players have achieved by now remarkable results. Second most mentioned collective was E STuudio, thanks to whose good conductor Külli Lokko they have sung in different places all around the world and this has risen the reputation of an unknown small town a lot. Also was mentioned the work input of former mayor Tarmo Tamm, whose guidance has enhanced Põlva noticeably. As a negative side, was mentioned too long power of the same city government which may have led to an exhaustion of city officials and the recession of the development of the town. Residents were inable to mention somebody certain decreasing the reputation of the town, but it was mentioned that oft-times media magnifies and reflects only negative cases. In the real state, negative events happen very rare, but if media always pics them up and at the same time does not mention any positive news, it gives an impression that does not help improving our town's reputation. Special attention should be paid to some certain areas of the town - KEK, Oja street and old Linavabrik area. In conclusion, residents of Põlva are content, but it cannot be called wellbeing. More and more active townspeople is arising, but if everybody does not give his contribution, then will get tired also the activists, who are not able to carry the burden alone and encourage the others. A lot has been accomplished in the town, but even more should be done in the future. Endless amount of ideas which need realization, a lot of spheres, where active involvement is welcome and a number of areas, which have unending potential. The fact is that only cooperation will lead to success. Local government cannot accomplish alone anything, active townspeople as well. Together discussing matters and arranging brainstorms we will find a solution how to follow up achievements and solve bottlenecks. It is need to overbear the fear and be active. It is need to have a big will and courage to risk. We are a small town – green, compact and lovely – anyway, nobody has told that in a small town could not live people with big ideas and actions, who can be an example also for the bigger towns. I cordially hope that this work helped to arrange thoughts and add new ideas and visions. The basis of everything is vision!