Citizens Participation

Vacancy: Project Manager on Citizens Participation

ALDA is looking for a Project Manager with a focus on ‘Citizens Participation’. He/she will work under the supervision of ALDA’s Secretary General, the Head of the Implementation Unit and/or the EU Coordinator, responsible for the topic “Citizen Participation”.

Among main tasks and responsibilities:

  • To focus on the CERV Operating Grant of ALDA;
  • To be responsible of the subgrants as contact person who overviews the subgrants both in terms of activities and budget;
  • To plan and implement the action plan of the project, organizing events and other initiatives described in the programme;
  • To identify possible sources of co-funding and facilitation as for the project implementation, together with the Secretary General and with the Resources and Development office of ALDA;

Among the skills needed:

  • Proved experience on reporting;
  • Good interpersonal and communication skills;
  • Proper work autonomy and proactive skills;

Among the education, languages and tools required:

  • University degree
  • Languages: English professional working proficiency. French and Italian language is an asset;
  • Previous experience in project implementation of at least 2 years;

Where and when:

ALDA office in Vicenza (Italy) or Brussels (Belgium).

How to apply:

Interested applicants should fill in the following template a Letter of Intent and Curriculum Vitae (CV) in English.

Applications must be received on or before 15th January 2023.


Entering the new year with renovated energy and hope: together with members and partners to safeguard local democracy

“The unhuman and unjust war that the Ukrainian people are now fighting, urges me to further reiterate the endless commitment of ALDA for peace and reconstruction”, with these words Oriano Otočan, ALDA’s President, addressed members, partners and friends in his letter.

As usual, every December Mr. Otočan dedicates his time to recall the achievements of the Association, the challenges posed on a global scale and the commitment of ALDA to overcome those difficulties, next to people, local communities and institutions.

2022 marked a year of sorrow and pain. Yet it was a year of courage and unity: Ukrainian people showed to the world how powerful values can be: their cause in safeguarding freedoms and democracy is also a European cause. “Ukraine needs us” has been the campaign that united all ALDA’s initiatives in collaboration with, and for, Ukrainian people. By constantly being in touch with delegates from the Local Democracy Agencies, the Association proved its role as peace-builder, with other stakeholders and institutions.

Hence, the necessity of implementing local actions, with local communities proved to be, once again, the keystone in spreading good governance: “ALDA has consolidated its role, it has demonstrated its service to democracy, peace and humanity. Moreover, 2023 will mark the 30th anniversary from the establishment of the first Local Democracy Agency in the Balkans: a milestone that will invite us to reflect on three decades of work in the Balkan region, in which we have acted tirelessly in support of civil society and towards European enlargement. But above all, it will motivate us to continue with renewed energy and new strategies our work “with” and “for” the ever-widening network of LDAs present today throughout the European neighbourhood. On this solid milestone we will enter the 2023, with a spirit of collaboration and mutual growth” – stressed Mr. Otočan.


ALDA President and Secretary General’s wishes to members and partners


Similarly, Antonella Valmorbida, ALDA Secretary Generalwishes the upcoming year to be a year of peace, rebirth and renovated energy […] working together with members, partners and each of you in Europe and beyond”.

Watch the following video to listen to the whole message.

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Play the video and listen Mrs. Valmorbida’s winter greetings in Italian or French

👀 To read the full new years’ message by ALDA President, click on the languages below

In English In French In ItalianIn Russian In Serbo/CroatianIn ArabicIn ArmenianIn GeorgianIn RomanianIn Ukrainian


EUSAVE

EuSave - Activity Report Template

Take a look at the Activity Report of «#EuSAVE- EU Citizens’ Action for Smart Historic Villages» project, funded with the support of the European Union under the Programme “Europe for Citizens”

READ THE REPORT IN 🇬🇧READ THE REPORT IN 🇮🇹

Prijedor

Public services for efficient and responsible management in Prijedor

Within the framework of the “LINK4 Cooperation project funded by the European Union, the second Forum for sharing best practices of CSOs and LAs cooperation was held in Prijedor on 9 December 2022, gathering over 60 participants.

In addition to representatives of the international community the Forum was attended by representatives of local authorities and CSOs from:

  • Berkovici, Jablanica, Kostajnica, Maglaj, Mostar, Nevesinje, Novi Grad, Prijedor, Ravno, Trebinje, Zavidovici and Zepce

who jointly identified specific challenges of cooperation and expressed readiness to find optimal solutions to strengthen cooperation. Moreover, as the key tools in the context of joining the European Union an assessment of the impact and importance of the ELoGE process and the Leadership Academy (LAP) program of Council of Europe was also carried out.

Slobodan Javor, Mayor of the City of Prijedor and one of the hosts of the Forum, emphasized the importance of commitment to continuous improvement of public services and achieving more efficient and responsible management:

”The very fact that we are part of such an important project testifies how important it is to us to strengthen local participation and cooperation with the non-governmental sector. Also, through the segments and opportunities provided by the project, we strive to take into account the recommendations, all with the aim of improving local self-government, openness and transparency towards citizens.”


"The reform of local government in Bosnia and Herzegovina must achieve a high degree of direct participation of citizens" Dzenana Dedic at the second forum in Prijedor


Referring to the importance of participatory processes as a key factor in the development and stability of local democracy, Dženana Dedić, director of the Local Democracy Agency Mostar, emphasized: “The reform of local government in Bosnia and Herzegovina must achieve a high degree of direct participation of citizens, which is in accordance with current strategies and recommendations of international organizations“

Bearing in mind ALDA’s experience in launching the ELoGE program in Croatia, North Macedonia and Kosovo*, Antonella Valmorbida, ALDA Secretary General, addressed the participants of the Forum, saying: “Good governance is the foundation of a functional and lasting democratic system. ALDA is honored to receive accreditation for the ELoGE – European Label of Excellence in Governance. An important program that, thanks to the partnership with the Council of Europe, contributes to the strengthening of democracy around the world and the establishment of a closer relationship between local authorities, civil society organizations and European institutions.”

A detailed presentation of the ELoGE process in BiH was conducted by the project partners. The findings from the benchmarking process were used as a base to detect most recurring weaknesses in municipalities that finalized the ELoGE process and were evaluated. The findings were presented by Ivana Velkova, project manager from ALDA Skopje, during the Zero document session and the participants were then asked to propose ideas on how to overcome those weaknesses during the World Cafe session “Moj grad, moja ulica”.

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“LINK 4 Cooperation” project aims to strengthen the capacity of local authorities and civil society organizations in conducting participatory processes in order to jointly identify specific problems of communities and, thanks to a participatory approach, find the best solutions. The project consortium consists of the Local Democracy Agency (LDA) Mostar, the Local Democracy Agency (LDA) Zavidovici, the Local Democracy Agency (LDA) Prijedor, the Center for the Development of Herzegovina (CRH), the European Association for Local Democracy (ALDA), and associate partner ALDA Skopje. Implementation began on January 1, 2021 and will last until December 31, 2023. Its value is over 540,000 EUR, of which the European Union provided over 490,000 EUR in grants.


accountability

Empowered 24 CSOs for increased social accountability in Moldova

24 Civil Society Organizations from the districts of Cimișlia, Florești, Străseni, Ștefan Vodă and Telenești, received the grant award contracts under the “EU4Accountability” project. The event was organized by ALDA, at Europe Café – EU Information Center, in Chisinau.

The “EU4Accountability” project is funded by the European Union and aims to improve social responsibility at the local level and to create sustainable cooperation mechanisms between local public authorities in the Republic of Moldova and civil society organizations (CSOs), in order to better respond to the needs of local communities.

“The financial support offered today by the European Union will allow CSOs to strengthen their efforts to improve democratic participation and respond to the concrete needs of citizens in Cimișlia districts , Florești, Strășeni, Ștefan Vodă and Telenesti” said Jānis Mažeiks, the Ambassador of the European Union to the Republic of Moldova, invited to the event


“I would like to congratulate the civil society organizations awarded grants under the EU4Accountability action and thank them for their dedication to promoting social responsibility in the Republic of Moldova" Jānis Mažeiks


“This will include public campaigns to raise awareness of the budget process, civic engagement to monitor public spending and policy-making, and participatory budget consultations – all to get citizens and local authorities to jointly choose the investments that are most needed in their communities” continued the Ambassador “I would like to congratulate the civil society organizations awarded grants under the EU4Accountability action and thank them for their dedication to promoting social responsibility in the Republic of Moldova. With your country’s new EU candidacy role, the importance of civil society in moving forward on the accession path is even more evident.”

Similarly, ALDA colleague Alexandru Coica, thanked the European Union for its continued support of the Republic of Moldova on its European path and the development of communities through participation and an inclusive approach. In addition, he underlined the expected improvement in social responsibility in the target areas and the positive impact of small project grants on almost 140,000 citizens from 50 localities throughout the country

To be noted that the 24 projects selected for funding aim at strengthening the social responsibility of local initiative groups and organizations and enhancing the civic engagement of different target groups. The projects submitted by local CSOs are particularly aimed at young people, women, and people from vulnerable groups and provide for: (1) the development of initiative groups, advocacy campaigns and consolidation of local coalitions, (2) strengthening the capacities of CSOs in the regions and implementing of the participatory budgeting mechanism, (3) the development of civic and youth organizations and the creation of information centers for citizens.

 

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The “EU4Accountability” project, which runs from 2022-2024, is implemented by a consortium of three organizations: the European Association for Local Democracy ALDA, the European Partnership for Democracy EPD and the Czech non-governmental organization People in Need PIN, extends over 10 districts (Cahul, Comrat, Cimișlia, Fălești, Florești, Glodeni, Rîșcani, Străseni, Ștefan Vodă, Telenești), and provides for a total budget of 1.5 million EUR.

 

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water

The importance of water: an Erasmus+ project to train students to become water experts

water

The Erasmus+ Water’s Experts project represents a valuable opportunity to underline the importance of water resources and raise awareness among young people and citizens on their role on the planet. 

Climate change has a huge impact on water resources, causing droughts, floods and rivers’ transformation, then endangering the ecosystems and human life. Hence the need to create suitable methods to monitor the main issues of rivers, especially in hydro-rich areas where agriculture and nature-based tourism are highly dependent on climate.

The project aims to create a new professional profile, the Water Expert, capable of understanding the geographic and biological specificities of the watercourses and able to identify and handle the critical issues. Thanks to a 4-month training course, students attending the last year of vocational schools will acquire specific knowledge and professional skills in water resources management.


Students will acquire specific knowledge and professional skills in water resources management


Together with ALDA, four partners are involved in the project, and the activities have been taking place in four European countries (Italy, Portugal, North Macedonia and France). The project partners met on the occasion of the Kick-off Meeting in Portugal on 3 and 4 September 2022, that has been an essential moment to coordinate and set the following step in the project activities.

In the last few months, the project partners have been in touch with schools to present the project and identify the students who will attend the training course. Many schools have shown interest in the project and are already onboard. In the meanwhile, they  have been working to finalise the training course contents and identify the experts who will train the students in each country.

ALDA is enthusiastic to contribute to such an interesting project, and is looking forward to sharing the upcoming news on the training courses.


CoFoE

Europe and its next steps: ALDA for the Conference on the Future of Europe

As emerged from all the initiatives, ALDA is strongly advocating not only for a closer collaboration between CSOs and institutions but also for a greater citizens’ involvement. Hence, the Association will further stress the importance of participatory democracy;  while urging for an electoral reform as well as accountability assurance as resulted from the surveys undertaken within the CSOCoFoE.

ALDA is very much in favour of this bottom-up democratic approach, and it congratulates all the institutions, organisations, partners and members which also actively participated in the CoFoE


ALDA is very much in favour of this bottom-up democratic approach developed within the CoFoE


Read the Publication

ELoGE

ELoGE Award Ceremony: a success of good governance and democracy together with our members

November 22, 2022, marked a milestone for the the implementation of the European Label of Governance Excellence (ELoGE) in Croatia, North Macedonia and Kosovo*. 

On this date the Award Ceremony of ELoGE took place in Skopje (North Macedonia), and with all the activities and evaluations finalised, ALDA presented the label to the achieving municipalities on behalf of the Council of Europe. 

The crystal dodecahedron engraved with the 12 principles of Good Democratic Governance was presented to 9 municipalities from North Macedonia, 6 from Kosovo, and 3 from Croatia who earned the label and will hold it for one year.

65 mayors and representatives from the various participating municipalities attended the event. The ceremony was opened by a speech from Risto Penov, the Minister of Local Self-Government of North Macedonia, Elbert Krasniqi, the Minister of Local Self-Government of Kosovo, Oriano Otocan, President of ALDA, and Antonella Valmorbida, ALDA Secretary General. 

The event continued with an in-depth discussion on the importance of the European Label of Governance Excellence, led by Niall Sheerin of the Center of Expertise for Good Governance. It was followed by brief interventions on the ELoGE experience from the representatives of each participating country and it concluded with the handover of the awards. 


The success of the ELoGE implementation is mostly due to the fundamental cooperation and partnership between ALDA and its members


The success of the ELoGE implementation is mostly due to the fundamental cooperation and partnership between ALDA and its members. 

The Municipality of Novaci, a long-term partner and member of ALDA, took part in the project and successfully finalised the ELoGE process. The municipality showed a high level of good governance and Stevce Stevanovski, Mayor of Novaci, received the crystal dodecahedron during the award ceremony. ALDA’s partnership with Novaci stays strong, and will continue to further nourish in the future. 

Another member which was directly involved in the project was the Association of financial officers (AFO) from Veles. Their director, Zoran Jankulovski, was a valuable member of the Evaluation Committee and assessed the dossiers of Macedonian municipalities. AFO’s experience in cooperation with local authorities proved to be fundamental in the process. 

In addition, the Municipality of Gjilan took part in the implementation of the European Label of Governance Excellence in Kosovo. After showing a strong level of good governance it was awarded with the label. The Mayor of Gjilan, Alban Hyseni, received the crystal dodecahedron during the ceremony.  

The ELoGE project represented a great opportunity to further enhance the cooperation between ALDA and its members and contributed to the strengthening of democracy and good governance in all cities involved in the process.

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Read more about the ELoGE programme


"Impariamo il Domani": environment and technology; courses for the over 65s

“Impariamo il Domani” aims to propose and promote inter- or intra-generational training with the participation of the over-65s in the role of teachers or learners through the involvement of teachers and training interventions to be implemented at schools or in local training courses. The project, by means of specific courses, made it possible to learn more about the world of new technologies, bridging the intergenerational digital divide.

“Impariamo il Domani” has been a great success; and now the project partners have the pleasure of sharing with you the stages of this 2022…

1️⃣ The first meeting: the greenhouse
“But how is it possible to create a greenhouse with digital tools?” “But how can a computer design a greenhouse?” There were many questions from participants at the first meeting on building a greenhouse, but gradually, thanks to professionals and lecturers, each question was answered. Using new technologies to unite two worlds that at first seemed so distant: the environment and the digital.

From the basics of electronics to the use of the open source Arduino board, these were two of the topics addressed during the course, which was held at Megahub’s fablab.


"Impariamo il Domani" has been a great success; and now the project partners have the pleasure of sharing with you the stages of this 2022...


2️⃣ The second meeting: “digital garden”
They are increasingly taking shape: digital greenhouses are now something real and tangible. It seems impossible, yet it is true: look at this orchid how lush it is!

The course on 3D printing and electronics for people over 65, the project’s target audience, attracted a lot of interest among the participants, who smiled and were amazed at how environment and technology are not so distant worlds.

3️⃣ The third meeting: smarphone
“Turn off the Bluetooth, and turn on the Wi-FI”.
“I don’t understand why this app doesn’t give me notifications”

Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, App… so many new terms but what do they mean. Now entering the common vocabulary, these neologisms are the order of the day. How to use them, and what their function is, is not always so straightforward, which is why targeted training on the subject of smartphones was organised as part of the “Impariamo il Domani” project.

Thanks to the lecturer’s explanations and advice, the participants were able to find out more about the different functions possible within their mobile phones and thus optimise their use.

 

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“Impariamo il Domani” saw the five partners (ALDA+, Fabcube, Verona fablab, Megahub Association, Marano solidarity) engaged in various activities aimed at promoting inter- or intra-generational training for the over-65s. This year’s events focused on two major themes: green and digital, through interactive and participatory courses; from the creation of ‘digital greenhouses’ to the use of smartphones.

The activities organised at MegaHub in Schio, are free training opportunities, organised in collaboration with Samarcanda Cooperativa Sociale Onlus and the Veneto Region


ALDA Advisory Board: apply and become our internal expert

Since 1999, ALDA has been working to promote and encourage civic engagement as a key in the creation of a democratic and participatory reality. It is guided by its Governing Board, whose role is to define the future steps and path of the association.

In light of its great engagement both at local as well as at international level, ALDA has now launched a call for expression of interests, addressed to members, partners and external experts. This call consists of identifying and selecting five candidates to form the Board of Advisors. The role of the latter is to directly support the Governing Board, by giving technical advice and by sharing professional knowledge.

The Advisory Board will focus on the following specific areas, in accordance with ALDA’s main themes:

  • Citizens engagement
  • Environment & climate
  • Gender, Inclusion & Human rights
  • Youth empowerment & Education
  • Migration
  • Digital & innovation
  • Territorial and local development

The Advisory Board will be approved by the Governing Board in its session early March 2023 and possible interviews and exchanges could take place in this occasion. The candidates will be selected based on their experience and field of interest. They will be considered on their personal capacity. Their participation is pro bono while their costs will be reimbursed in case of meetings and travels. The Advisory Board meetings will be in English or French only.

Please note that the call is not addressed only to members of ALDA, but it is open to anyone interested in the position and in contributing to the mission of ALDA.

To get more information, read the call for Interest

For any further enquiries, please write to: alda@alda-europe.eu

 

🇫🇷READ THE CALL IN FRENCH🇫🇷

 

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