A Forum to promote regional tourism in Georgia

On August 21st, 2020, the Local Democracy Agency Georgia held the Forum of Regional Tourism of Racha-Lechkhumi Lower Svaneti in Ambrolauri, with the aim of promoting the tourism and the agro-touristic opportunities of the region.

Among the guests present at the Forum, we mention Danielle Meuwly Regional Director of the Swiss Cooperation Office in Southern Caucasus; Anna Chernyshova, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative in Georgia; Mzia Giorgobiani, Deputy Minister of Regional Development and Infrastructure of Georgia; Giorgi Gonadze, Deputy of Acting state representative of Racha-Lechkhumi Lower Svaneti region; Dimitri Khorava, Head of Investment Department at partnership fund; Medea Janiashvili, Deputy head of the National Tourism Administration of Georgia; David Melua, Executive Director of the National Association of Local Governments.

A Forum to promote the tourism and the agro-touristic opportunities of the region

The first part of the event was dedicated to panel speeches, focused on the future of tourism in Georgia, the main challenges after covid-19 and the high potential in tourism of the Racha-Lechkhumi Lower Svaneti region.

The second half of the Forum was dedicated to the exhibition-sale of products crafted by local entrepreneurs and farmers, while a dedicated space was arranged to showcase the works of local artists and craftsmen, everything accompanied by the music played by local folk groups.

Regional Tourism Forum of Racha-Lechkhumi Lower Svaneti was organized by LDA Georgia within the framework of the project “Racha-Lechkhumi and lower Svaneti Regional Development Initiative”, which is undertaken within the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) “Fostering Regional and Local Development-Phase 2” project, with the financial support of the Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation (SDC), the Austrian Development Cooperation (ADC) and the Government of Georgia. 

On August 21st, 2020, the Local Democracy Agency Georgia held the Forum of Regional Tourism of Racha-Lechkhumi Lower Svaneti in Ambrolauri, with the aim of promoting the tourism and the agro-touristic opportunities of the region.

Among the guests present at the Forum, we mention Danielle Meuwly Regional Director of the Swiss Cooperation Office in Southern Caucasus; Anna Chernyshova, UNDP Deputy Resident Representative in Georgia; Mzia Giorgobiani, Deputy Minister of Regional Development and Infrastructure of Georgia; Giorgi Gonadze, Deputy of Acting state representative of Racha-Lechkhumi Lower Svaneti region; Dimitri Khorava, Head of Investment Department at partnership fund; Medea Janiashvili, Deputy head of the National Tourism Administration of Georgia; David Melua, Executive Director of the National Association of Local Governments.

A Forum to promote the tourism and the agro-touristic opportunities of the region

The first part of the event was dedicated to panel speeches, focused on the future of tourism in Georgia, the main challenges after covid-19 and the high potential in tourism of the Racha-Lechkhumi Lower Svaneti region.

The second half of the Forum was dedicated to the exhibition-sale of products crafted by local entrepreneurs and farmers, while a dedicated space was arranged to showcase the works of local artists and craftsmen, everything accompanied by the music played by local folk groups.

Regional Tourism Forum of Racha-Lechkhumi Lower Svaneti was organized by LDA Georgia within the framework of the project “Racha-Lechkhumi and lower Svaneti Regional Development Initiative”, which is undertaken within the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) “Fostering Regional and Local Development-Phase 2” project, with the financial support of the Swiss Agency for Development Cooperation (SDC), the Austrian Development Cooperation (ADC) and the Government of Georgia. 


Circus-adapted psychomotor activities for people with disabilities! LDA Tunisia's experience

At the beginning of September 2020, Local Democracy Agency Tunisia coordinated a two-week training on psychomotor activities as part of the project Ricomincio Da Te, i.e. “I Start With You” in Italian. Sponsored by the Italian Agency for Cooperative Development and carried out in partnership with COPE Italy, Cope Tunisia, and care centers for people with disabilities, this 3-year project aims to consolidate the rights of people with disabilities in Tunisia and help them access services as well as create a culture of inclusion, acceptance, and tolerance.

The trainers were Cirque de Soleil experts Tommaso Negri and Leonardo Varriale, while the participants to the training were mostly professionals who work in specialized care centres, students, and workers from the sport and education fields, who belonged to different age groups (from 20 to 50 years old) and had different physical abilities (including football and basketball national team players; people with disabilities who were champions in javelin, shot put, or discus throw; and normal people who don’t usually exercise…).

Over the course of the two weeks, the learning atmosphere was dominated by joy, fun, interaction, participation, cooperation, and inclusion, and the participants were extremely eager to learn the new movements and psychomotor activities, how to adapt them and implement them to different contexts and people. Indeed, the occasion constituted an extraordinary and fortunate discovery and a delightful learning experience for all, as the adaptation from the circus offered innovative approaches to teaching that cherish diversity and encourage openness to change according to the needs and abilities of the learners, while also aiming to engage, spread joy, increase self-confidence, and value participation over competition.

Ricomincio da te: a project to consolidate the rights of people with disabilities in Tunisia

Though the start of the training was filled with uncertainty due to the unexpected difficulties imposed by the second wave of Covid-19, besides, its success was ensured by the unwavering devotion of the LDA team, its partners, the trainers, and the participants: due to travel restrictions, in fact, the trainers had to lead all activities online, which was clearly exceptional as these were based on sports and body movements that normally require the physical presence of the trainer to ensure the safety of participants and their precise application of the techniques and instructions. This was however overcome by strong team work, and by the presence of helpful and energetic sportspeople among the participants who voluntarily co-facilitated the training and ensured that participants follow the instructions.

All in all, the project offered a golden opportunity to delve even deeper into the local Tunisian community and explore people’s needs and aspirations, just like LDA Tunisia aspires to do at the core of its scope of intervention. It was also a precious chance to collaborate with dedicated centres and energetic participants who will now be a future asset for the organization, as most of them are expected to take part in future events and activities, too, and contribute to the LDA’s efforts to create a powerful and authentic platform of communication, inclusion and civic engagement.

For more information, contact ldatunisia@aldaintranet.org.
Enjoy all photos of the event HERE and HERE!

At the beginning of September 2020, Local Democracy Agency Tunisia coordinated a two-week training on psychomotor activities as part of the project Ricomincio Da Te, i.e. “I Start With You” in Italian. Sponsored by the Italian Agency for Cooperative Development and carried out in partnership with COPE Italy, Cope Tunisia, and care centers for people with disabilities, this 3-year project aims to consolidate the rights of people with disabilities in Tunisia and help them access services as well as create a culture of inclusion, acceptance, and tolerance.

The trainers were Cirque de Soleil experts Tommaso Negri and Leonardo Varriale, while the participants to the training were mostly professionals who work in specialized care centres, students, and workers from the sport and education fields, who belonged to different age groups (from 20 to 50 years old) and had different physical abilities (including football and basketball national team players; people with disabilities who were champions in javelin, shot put, or discus throw; and normal people who don’t usually exercise…).

Over the course of the two weeks, the learning atmosphere was dominated by joy, fun, interaction, participation, cooperation, and inclusion, and the participants were extremely eager to learn the new movements and psychomotor activities, how to adapt them and implement them to different contexts and people. Indeed, the occasion constituted an extraordinary and fortunate discovery and a delightful learning experience for all, as the adaptation from the circus offered innovative approaches to teaching that cherish diversity and encourage openness to change according to the needs and abilities of the learners, while also aiming to engage, spread joy, increase self-confidence, and value participation over competition.

Ricomincio da te: a project to consolidate the rights of people with disabilities in Tunisia

Though the start of the training was filled with uncertainty due to the unexpected difficulties imposed by the second wave of Covid-19, besides, its success was ensured by the unwavering devotion of the LDA team, its partners, the trainers, and the participants: due to travel restrictions, in fact, the trainers had to lead all activities online, which was clearly exceptional as these were based on sports and body movements that normally require the physical presence of the trainer to ensure the safety of participants and their precise application of the techniques and instructions. This was however overcome by strong team work, and by the presence of helpful and energetic sportspeople among the participants who voluntarily co-facilitated the training and ensured that participants follow the instructions.

All in all, the project offered a golden opportunity to delve even deeper into the local Tunisian community and explore people’s needs and aspirations, just like LDA Tunisia aspires to do at the core of its scope of intervention. It was also a precious chance to collaborate with dedicated centres and energetic participants who will now be a future asset for the organization, as most of them are expected to take part in future events and activities, too, and contribute to the LDA’s efforts to create a powerful and authentic platform of communication, inclusion and civic engagement.

For more information, contact ldatunisia@aldaintranet.org.
Enjoy all photos of the event HERE and HERE!


Get free ALDA membership - A call for municipalities

In its 20 years of activity, ALDA – the European Association of Local Democracy has strenuously supported good governance and empowered local communities all over Europe and in neighbouring countries by sharing best practices in order to encourage a resilient approach to new challenges. In these unprecedented times, dismayed by the Covid-19 pandemic, we are all aware that local authorities are confronted by significant defies. For this reason and in line with its mission, ALDA wants to offer everything that is in its power to support and assist particularly affected municipalities, and to share new tools to overcome these challenges as well as respond effectively to the needs of their communities.

 CALL FOR PARTICIPANTS: in order to support Local Authorities heavily affected by the Covid-19 crisis, ALDA is selecting a group of 30 municipalities, that are not yet members, which are creating impact in severely affected communities and providing services to people that have been adversely touched.

ALDA will offer the selected candidates a one-year free membership that will give the municipalities access to a number of services in order to assist the new members in the recovery process with ad-hoc information on specific funding programmes, free training and capacity-building opportunities, invitations to events and networking occasions.

ALDA’S BENEFITS FOR MEMBERS: being a member of ALDA already normally offers a scope of opportunities such as information exchange, participation in international events, opportunities to join EU consortia and transnational projects, assistance in finding the proper funding opportunities (we regularly monitor 400 public and private funding programmes), searches for international partners, and visibility and promotion of the member’s activities within our network.

"A one-year free membership for the municipalities most affected by the pandemia"

In addition to that, ALDA has launched a few new activities that are member-specific to celebrate its 20th Anniversary:

  1. The ALDATalks, monthly webinars on a specific topic of interest involving the Association’s members as speakers, with a chance for them to showcase their projects;
  2. Two free trainings per year, including a presentation of the main funding opportunities for the new programming period (2021-2027) and new tools to face the consequences of the covid-19;
  3. Weekly visibility on our social media to one of our members;
  4. Coming soon: a new dedicated section for members within our website.

Interested in joining us for free and receiving the support from our big network?

HOW TO APPLY: municipalities wishing to apply to this call are requested to fill in the registration form by October 31st, 2020including precise information regarding:

  • number of inhabitants
  • number of infected people
  • number of covid-19 related deaths
  • main affected sectors (education, tourism, agriculture, industry…)

You will also be requested to upload a text file describing at least one example of good practice that the Municipality has put in place in order to contain and fight the disease and the social and medical effects of it – highlighting, if possible, the cooperation that was established with the local Civil Society.

Be one of those 30 and take advantage of the benefits of ALDA membership… contact us before 31st October 2020!

In its 20 years of activity, ALDA – the European Association of Local Democracy has strenuously supported good governance and empowered local communities all over Europe and in neighbouring countries by sharing best practices in order to encourage a resilient approach to new challenges. In these unprecedented times, dismayed by the Covid-19 pandemic, we are all aware that local authorities are confronted by significant defies. For this reason and in line with its mission, ALDA wants to offer everything that is in its power to support and assist particularly affected municipalities, and to share new tools to overcome these challenges as well as respond effectively to the needs of their communities.

 CALL FOR PARTICIPANTS: in order to support Local Authorities heavily affected by the Covid-19 crisis, ALDA is selecting a group of 30 municipalities, that are not yet members, which are creating impact in severely affected communities and providing services to people that have been adversely touched.

ALDA will offer the selected candidates a one-year free membership that will give the municipalities access to a number of services in order to assist the new members in the recovery process with ad-hoc information on specific funding programmes, free training and capacity-building opportunities, invitations to events and networking occasions.

ALDA’S BENEFITS FOR MEMBERS: being a member of ALDA already normally offers a scope of opportunities such as information exchange, participation in international events, opportunities to join EU consortia and transnational projects, assistance in finding the proper funding opportunities (we regularly monitor 400 public and private funding programmes), searches for international partners, and visibility and promotion of the member’s activities within our network.

"A one-year free membership for the municipalities most affected by the pandemia"

In addition to that, ALDA has launched a few new activities that are member-specific to celebrate its 20th Anniversary:

  1. The ALDATalks, monthly webinars on a specific topic of interest involving the Association’s members as speakers, with a chance for them to showcase their projects;
  2. Two free trainings per year, including a presentation of the main funding opportunities for the new programming period (2021-2027) and new tools to face the consequences of the covid-19;
  3. Weekly visibility on our social media to one of our members;
  4. Coming soon: a new dedicated section for members within our website.

Interested in joining us for free and receiving the support from our big network?

HOW TO APPLY: municipalities wishing to apply to this call are requested to fill in the registration form by October 31st, 2020including precise information regarding:

  • number of inhabitants
  • number of infected people
  • number of covid-19 related deaths
  • main affected sectors (education, tourism, agriculture, industry…)

You will also be requested to upload a text file describing at least one example of good practice that the Municipality has put in place in order to contain and fight the disease and the social and medical effects of it – highlighting, if possible, the cooperation that was established with the local Civil Society.

Be one of those 30 and take advantage of the benefits of ALDA membership… contact us before 31st October 2020!


EPIC’s highlights from ALDA Talk 2.1

We receive and share the following news from the EPIC project:

On the 22nd of September some of EPIC partners, Solidaridad Sin Fronteras, ALDA and kitev, joined for the 1st session of a new edition of the ALDA Talks to share with the audience what the EPIC project is about and what integration initiatives the different partners are carrying out in their territories.

Dolinda Cavallo, project manager at ALDA and project coordinator of EPIC, started introducing the project, highlighting our keywords: cooperation among local authorities (LA) and NGOs.

Starting with a series of research activities (surveys, interviews, focus groups and desk research) about migrants’ integration in the 8 cities covered by EPIC, the project will identify thematic priority areas where the partners will exchange knowledge and experiences via job shadowing activities to, later on, be able to test new local services for migrants’ integration.

Irene Soria, project manager at Solidaridad Sin Fronteras (SSF) in Madrid presented the cooperation model that her NGO has with the municipality of Alcorcon, a city in the south of Madrid where 11% of the citizens are from migrant background. Among a large number of current projects (first reception and legal counselling, social and health support, etc.), SSF and the municipality of Alcorcon have teamed-up to set up a cooperation protocol in the field of access to employment for migrants.

A total of 1,300 users have already benefited of this initiative that provide both individual and group support through individual intervention, workshops, internships, capacity building, job placement, or psychological support. They do a closing monitoring of each beneficiary and every 2 months, SSF sends a report to the social workers. The coordination system between the municipality and SSF (employment workgroup with regular meetings, calls, online interaction, monitoring reports, etc.) has been key to ensure the success of this joint collaboration. Now other municipalities in Madrid are asking to replicate this model in their territory.

Gianna Gardeweg from the organisation kitev in Oberhausen shared then the socio cultural initiatives they are implementing to revitalise the area and change the narrative on migration through cultural exchanges.

Who builds, changes. And who knows that they can change something becomes a player in an active community

Based in the old water tower at the central train station in Oberhausen, kitev works with other artists Europe-wide to transform the area into a vibrant quarter using art and culture. Following a renovation, largely stemmed by the association itself, the tower hosts events, workshops and workspace for creative people from all over Europe. In kitev’s work, participation is a crucial principle and culture is a fundamental dimension of sustainable development.

Recently, kitev has been testing collaborative working methods. One of those is the Free University they started two and a half years ago. Following consultations with the Oberhausen neighbours, kitev launched this initiative that currently includes 20 courses focused on participation, addressing the bottom-up needs and feedback received from the local citizens.

Their main objective is to empower people, create new stories to be shared with all the live together in the city and to change wrong perceptions and stereotypes about migration. Their motto: ‘Who builds, changes. And who knows that they can change something becomes a player in an active community’.

See the original piece of news here and explore the EPIC website!

We receive and share the following news from the EPIC project:

On the 22nd of September some of EPIC partners, Solidaridad Sin Fronteras, ALDA and kitev, joined for the 1st session of a new edition of the ALDA Talks to share with the audience what the EPIC project is about and what integration initiatives the different partners are carrying out in their territories.

Dolinda Cavallo, project manager at ALDA and project coordinator of EPIC, started introducing the project, highlighting our keywords: cooperation among local authorities (LA) and NGOs.

Starting with a series of research activities (surveys, interviews, focus groups and desk research) about migrants’ integration in the 8 cities covered by EPIC, the project will identify thematic priority areas where the partners will exchange knowledge and experiences via job shadowing activities to, later on, be able to test new local services for migrants’ integration.

Irene Soria, project manager at Solidaridad Sin Fronteras (SSF) in Madrid presented the cooperation model that her NGO has with the municipality of Alcorcon, a city in the south of Madrid where 11% of the citizens are from migrant background. Among a large number of current projects (first reception and legal counselling, social and health support, etc.), SSF and the municipality of Alcorcon have teamed-up to set up a cooperation protocol in the field of access to employment for migrants.

A total of 1,300 users have already benefited of this initiative that provide both individual and group support through individual intervention, workshops, internships, capacity building, job placement, or psychological support. They do a closing monitoring of each beneficiary and every 2 months, SSF sends a report to the social workers. The coordination system between the municipality and SSF (employment workgroup with regular meetings, calls, online interaction, monitoring reports, etc.) has been key to ensure the success of this joint collaboration. Now other municipalities in Madrid are asking to replicate this model in their territory.

Gianna Gardeweg from the organisation kitev in Oberhausen shared then the socio cultural initiatives they are implementing to revitalise the area and change the narrative on migration through cultural exchanges.

Who builds, changes. And who knows that they can change something becomes a player in an active community

Based in the old water tower at the central train station in Oberhausen, kitev works with other artists Europe-wide to transform the area into a vibrant quarter using art and culture. Following a renovation, largely stemmed by the association itself, the tower hosts events, workshops and workspace for creative people from all over Europe. In kitev’s work, participation is a crucial principle and culture is a fundamental dimension of sustainable development.

Recently, kitev has been testing collaborative working methods. One of those is the Free University they started two and a half years ago. Following consultations with the Oberhausen neighbours, kitev launched this initiative that currently includes 20 courses focused on participation, addressing the bottom-up needs and feedback received from the local citizens.

Their main objective is to empower people, create new stories to be shared with all the live together in the city and to change wrong perceptions and stereotypes about migration. Their motto: ‘Who builds, changes. And who knows that they can change something becomes a player in an active community’.

See the original piece of news here and explore the EPIC website!


A Europe in solidarity must be “a community of communities”

RIGHT NOW: we shall all together believe in our common European project that has to demonstrate its capacity to overcome the sanitary and economic crisis.

 

In these difficult days, all our thoughts go to all the people suffering and to the families of the victims, too many. Our mourning is infinite, and we keep it in our heart. We shall thank all those who work with dedication every day to heal the ill people, and those who keep the flow of goods circulating for the sake of the European families.

In this period there were actions of solidarity and mutual support among member states, as well as from European institutions. This must also be recalled loud and clear. This solidarity has also been expressed worldwide, with support coming from all over the world especially to Italy, very heavily affected by the crisis. This is a very encouraging sign that shall guide us also in the future.

Read the whole statement here

RIGHT NOW: we shall all together believe in our common European project that has to demonstrate its capacity to overcome the sanitary and economic crisis.

 

In these difficult days, all our thoughts go to all the people suffering and to the families of the victims, too many. Our mourning is infinite, and we keep it in our heart. We shall thank all those who work with dedication every day to heal the ill people, and those who keep the flow of goods circulating for the sake of the European families.

In this period there were actions of solidarity and mutual support among member states, as well as from European institutions. This must also be recalled loud and clear. This solidarity has also been expressed worldwide, with support coming from all over the world especially to Italy, very heavily affected by the crisis. This is a very encouraging sign that shall guide us also in the future.

Read the whole statement here.


ALDA at work to build more Europe

Statement by ALDA President Oriano Otočan

 

Today we celebrate Europe and the Schuman declaration signed in 1950. Europe was given birth with the aim to create a community of peace, stability, and prosperity for its citizens. Today, the very same Europe is affected by economic and migration crisis, and is surrounded by wars in its neighbouring areas. But even more important, we are witnessing a crisis of the European values.

We need more solidarity and less selfishness. We need a Europe without borders, offering free movement to people, goods, and ideas, which could meet the needs of its citizens and of people in our Neighbourhood. Europe should also find ways to enlarge faster.

Read the whole statement here

Statement by ALDA President Oriano Otočan

 

Today we celebrate Europe and the Schuman declaration signed in 1950. Europe was given birth with the aim to create a community of peace, stability, and prosperity for its citizens. Today, the very same Europe is affected by economic and migration crisis, and is surrounded by wars in its neighbouring areas. But even more important, we are witnessing a crisis of the European values.

We need more solidarity and less selfishness. We need a Europe without borders, offering free movement to people, goods, and ideas, which could meet the needs of its citizens and of people in our Neighbourhood. Europe should also find ways to enlarge faster.

Read the whole statement here


New Governing Board of ALDA - The sky is the limit!

Statement by ALDA President Oriano Otočan

 

Dear members, dear friends,

I am happy and proud to have been re-elected as the President of ALDA for the next four years. I thank all members of the Governing Board mandate 2012-2016, an incredible group that managed to develop the activities of the Association beyond any possible objectives.

In light of the fantastic results achieved so far, I cannot but express all my joy, hope, and thrill by chairing the new Board, which will lead the work of ALDA until 2020. Its members are a true reflection of the soul of the Association – a balanced mix of representatives of local authorities and civil society, from the EU, enlargement, and neighbouring countries, women and men, of all ages.

Read the whole statement here

Statement by ALDA President Oriano Otočan

 

Dear members, dear friends,

I am happy and proud to have been re-elected as the President of ALDA for the next four years. I thank all members of the Governing Board mandate 2012-2016, an incredible group that managed to develop the activities of the Association beyond any possible objectives.

In light of the fantastic results achieved so far, I cannot but express all my joy, hope, and thrill by chairing the new Board, which will lead the work of ALDA until 2020. Its members are a true reflection of the soul of the Association – a balanced mix of representatives of local authorities and civil society, from the EU, enlargement, and neighbouring countries, women and men, of all ages.

Read the whole statement here


There are no alternatives to the European project

Statement by ALDA President Oriano Otočan and

ALDA Vice President Alessandro Perelli

 

Today is a sad day for the European Union. It marks the start of a period of uncertainty for the EU, as well as for the United Kingdom. After the referendum result deciding that the United Kingdom will leave the European Union, we cannot close our eyes. Very recently and for different reasons, we faced the possibility of the exit of Greece, risk that is still present.

In the EU countries, with few exceptions, we witness growing support to populist and Eurosceptic movements. Those who love Europe, those who believe in Europe, cannot limit their action to a mere technical and economical defence. We have to relaunch the political project of our common destiny. We need to act fast, with the spirit and the values of the founding fathers of the EU – Adenauer, Churchill, De Gasperi, Monnet, Schuman , Spinelli. There are no alternatives to the European project – our citizens need more Europe, our Member States need more unity! The European project has to be relaunched with the creation of the United States of Europe, and the creation of a real, operational government.

Read the whole statement here

Statement by ALDA President Oriano Otočan and

ALDA Vice President Alessandro Perelli

 

Today is a sad day for the European Union. It marks the start of a period of uncertainty for the EU, as well as for the United Kingdom. After the referendum result deciding that the United Kingdom will leave the European Union, we cannot close our eyes. Very recently and for different reasons, we faced the possibility of the exit of Greece, risk that is still present.

In the EU countries, with few exceptions, we witness growing support to populist and Eurosceptic movements. Those who love Europe, those who believe in Europe, cannot limit their action to a mere technical and economical defence. We have to relaunch the political project of our common destiny. We need to act fast, with the spirit and the values of the founding fathers of the EU – Adenauer, Churchill, De Gasperi, Monnet, Schuman , Spinelli. There are no alternatives to the European project – our citizens need more Europe, our Member States need more unity! The European project has to be relaunched with the creation of the United States of Europe, and the creation of a real, operational government.

Read the whole statement here


Factors affecting participation: the challenges and opportunities in Eastern Partnership countries

Citizen participation: an essential tool in local democracy

Chisinau, 16 November

 

Antonella Valmorbida,

Secretary General of ALDA The European Association for Local Democracy

 

1. Rationale

Local Democracy is essentially not a legislative and institutional process. It has its anchorage in local elections, decentralisation processes and public administration reform, of course, but it must be accompanied with a full understanding and involvement of citizens that will experience the laws and these structural process and who will be able to use them and be engaged. Without participative and aware citizens, laws and structure are useless boxes and non-realistic instruments. For this reason, our efforts in building good institutional frameworks, must include, since the very beginning awareness raising and capacities within both the elected bodies and administration and civil society group and citizens. Improvements of local and national situation will be the results of this joint work.

Read the whole statement here

Citizen participation: an essential tool in local democracy

Chisinau, 16 November

 

Antonella Valmorbida,

Secretary General of ALDA The European Association for Local Democracy

 

1. Rationale

Local Democracy is essentially not a legislative and institutional process. It has its anchorage in local elections, decentralisation processes and public administration reform, of course, but it must be accompanied with a full understanding and involvement of citizens that will experience the laws and these structural process and who will be able to use them and be engaged. Without participative and aware citizens, laws and structure are useless boxes and non-realistic instruments. For this reason, our efforts in building good institutional frameworks, must include, since the very beginning awareness raising and capacities within both the elected bodies and administration and civil society group and citizens. Improvements of local and national situation will be the results of this joint work.

Read the whole statement here


Ahead of 2019, democracy support should become a pillar of the EU narrative and action. Let’s be clear and brave.

Statement of Antonella Valmorbida,

Secretary General of ALDA – the European Association for Local Democracy Agency

Chair of the Board of Directors of the European Partnership for Democracy

 

Ahead of 2019, with a new Parliament and Commission coming up, the EU should definitively take a stand and say loud and clear that democracy is part of our essence and raison d’être. Without this clear vision, many other aspects of the EU project could become irrelevant and be challenged by the many illiberal alternatives, which are mushrooming these days. This concerns the EU’s internal rules and the Member States’, and how we operate in external affairs. In a recent high-level meeting at the Finnish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, organised by DEMO Finland, the challenges and opportunities where outlined, by looking at the future Finnish Presidency of the EU.

Read the whole statement here

Statement of Antonella Valmorbida,

Secretary General of ALDA – the European Association for Local Democracy Agency

Chair of the Board of Directors of the European Partnership for Democracy

 

Ahead of 2019, with a new Parliament and Commission coming up, the EU should definitively take a stand and say loud and clear that democracy is part of our essence and raison d’être. Without this clear vision, many other aspects of the EU project could become irrelevant and be challenged by the many illiberal alternatives, which are mushrooming these days. This concerns the EU’s internal rules and the Member States’, and how we operate in external affairs. In a recent high-level meeting at the Finnish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, organised by DEMO Finland, the challenges and opportunities where outlined, by looking at the future Finnish Presidency of the EU.

Read the whole statement here