czech

Position on the Czech Republic Presidency at the European Council

The Czech Presidency, as previously done by the other Countries, has set its guiding lights to be carried out during its mandate, for the second semester of 2022.

Following the “three R” of its motto: “Europe as a Task: Rethink, Rebuild, Repower”, priorities can be unfolded as follow:

  1. Managing the refugee crisis and Ukraine’s post-war recovery
  2. أمن الطاقة
  3. Strengthening Europe’s defense capabilities and cyber-space security
  4. المرونة الاستراتيجية للاقتصاد الأوروبي
  5. مرونة المؤسسات الديمقراطية 
These five pillars are also met and pursued by ALDA in its commitment to empower European citizens, and fostering the role of Europe as regional and international strategic actor.


ALDA's strategies meet the Czech Republic Presidency priorities 


Starting from the first priority, on Ukraine’s post war recovery, since the very beginning, back in February 2022, ALDA has launched not only a series of initiatives; but it has also concretely contributed to provide tangible support to the local communities. The “Call to open new LDAs” is among the latest.

At the same time, the Association is in line with Czech Presidency’s priority in terms of energy security. Thus, benefitting from the development and implementation of several projects, ALDA has been able to foster energy security by engaging with people. More specifically, by supporting local actions activities to fight climate change, while focusing on clean and renewable energy; great commitment has been devoted to sensitize citizens on this matter.

The above-mentioned are just few examples of the work done by ALDA. For further information please read the “Paper on Czech program for the Presidency of the European


ukraine

Join the call: Support the Local Democracy Agencies in Ukraine

Join the call: become a partner of the Local Democracy Agencies in Ukraine, support democracy and community engagement now and in the months and years to come!

Ukraine has been experiencing an unjust and inhuman invasion from Russian troops since February 2022. Yet, the resistance and resilience of Ukrainian people is heroic and without precedent. It is for those people that are now living under the war, that the Association has strongly worked, as also demonstrated with the campaign #ALDAforUkraine.

Since the very beginning, ALDA has been active in Ukraine, with members and partners developing a series of initiatives aimed to improve people’s lives. Thus, thanks to the Local Democracy Agency Dnipro, established in 2014 with the support of Lower Silesia – Poland; and Democracy Agency Mariupol (funded in 2017 with the support of Gdansk – Poland), the Association is a strategic player in the Country. Specifically, the  two above-mentioned LDAs, based on the decentalised cooperation mechanism, work together with civil society to support peace, and community development.


Take action: get to know more about the current LDAs’ activities in Ukraine or join the call and become a partner in the opening of the new ones


For almost 10 years, ALDA has thus worked and built strong relations with local actors, and communities. This is why it is now in the front line to provide help to Ukrainian citizens, as also marked by the “Donors Conference”, one of the most recent events, organised within this framework.

In light of this, the Association is now willing to further encourage its network, partners and friends to also take part in this commitment to support people in Ukraine. How?

  1. By asking for more information on the overall work of ALDA and the LDAs in Ukraine
  2. By joining the call and becoming a partner of the LDA Odessa and LDA Vinnytsia, which soon are going to be open (apply by 30 October 2022)

Let’s work together for Ukraine, and its people!

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For more information you can email the ALDA4Ukraine unit

To become a partner, read the call


Membership

Membership Days: from the ALDATalk to trainings and funding possibilities

Membership Days: 26 September; 3-6 October 2022

Members are a vital part of the Association. That is why ALDA is now presenting a five-day event specifically dedicated to its network!

From a general perspective, through this tailor-made meeting, ALDA is willing  to provide participants with the latest news and updates not only on the activities of ALDA, but also to further illustrate the possibilities and benefits of joining the network. Furthermore, the event will be the perfect occasion to gain necessary knowledge and learn new tools necessary when operating within the field of citizens’ participation and EU Project Development. 


Membership Days: to further engage the network, and to build stronger relations


Therefore, the agenda has been structured as follows:

  • 26th September: ALDATalk on the elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina with ALDA Governing Board Member and Secretary General of the مركز مؤسسة الديمقراطية" ناتاشا فوكوفيتش
  • 3rd October: Meeting the new Members
  • 4th October: Working Groups meeting – plan and debate about the topics and proposals that the WGs could work on
  • 5th October: From European to local level – Training on local events and citizens’ engagement, with European Programme Manager of “Democracy International” Daniela Vancic 
  • 6th October: Training on EU funding and Project Cycle Management

Those attending will receive a certificate awarded by ALDA, strategic partner of the European Commission and of the Council of Europe!

Overall, since its first day, ALDA is stimulating and fostering exchange with its network, willing to promote and improve the exchange of best practices in the field of local governance and citizens’ active participation. Thanks to the variety of origins and the different field of actions of each member, the network is a multicultural professional group that enriches not only the Association, but the participants themselves.

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For further information please email the Membership Officer through this link


Antonella Valmorbida stands for the position of Secretary General of the Congress of the Council of Europe

September brings great news and opens up to new paths, not only at ALDA’s but internationally! With great enthusiasm, colleagues from Strasbourg, Vicenza, Skopje, Moldova and Tunis offices are happy to support the candidacy of Antonella Valmorbida for the position of Secretary General of the Congress.

Based on her previous experience not only as Secretary General of ALDA and President of EPD – European Partnership for Democracy; but also as Steering Committee member of the Civil society Convention for the Conference on the Future of Europe, and more recently as Chair of the Jury of the European Capital of Democracy, Ms. Valmorbida puts the value of democracy as guiding light in her daily work and commitment.


Antonella Valmorbida’s candidature: “for a stronger, more relevant and strategic” Congress


As further stressed in her manifesto “it will be necessary to identify and valorise the strong added value as a unique local democracy assembly, representing a large Europe”. Hence, the current ALDA SG has, since the very beginning, worked with local communities, starting from people’s needs and fighting for their rights.

The latter are also at the core of many trainings delivered by Ms.Valmorbida in different areas, from North Africa to Western Balkans and Caucasus, together with professionals and stakeholders such as UN Habitat و UNDP. Furthermore, with experts from the United Nations, Ms. Valmorbida has been fully involved in “participatory democracy” courses in أوكرانيا, thus having a deep and profound understanding of the local context.

Now, at ALDA’s everyone is thrilled for this new adventure that our Secretary General is undertaking. Each of us is supporting her, sure that her passion and expertise will be essential for the next year and the future of the Congress of the Council of Europe.

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Visit Antonella Valmorbida website and read her manifesto


LIBYA

“Promoting democracy through local authorities”: fostering community engagement in Libya

From 5 to 11 September 2022, ALDA Secretary General Antonella Valmorbida together with ALDA Trainer Anna Ditta delivered a course on “Promoting democracy through local authorities” with special focus on Libyan realities.

Taking place in the framework of the REBUILD project, funded by the European Commission and led by the Autonomous Province of Trento, this course, specifically called “training of trainers” (ToT), was addressed to 20 professors of 10 Universities dislocated in 10 different Libyan municipalities. 

More in details, ToT tackled 3  different modules: 

  1. Transparency, accountability, ethics and good governance; 
  2. Crisis management;
  3. Strategies and tools for inclusive civil participation in decision-making process. 

Hence, participants have been guided in learning and debating about the features and principles of good local governance, according to the “European Charter for Local Self-government”; while working on crisis management and assessment of the risks.


"Training of trainers” was addressed to 20 professors of 10 Universities dislocated in 10 different Libyan municipalities


Moreover, the training marked the occasion also to go through the different steps of civil participation and learnt about the principles and tools useful to make it effective.

Overall, theory was combined with individual and working groups, role plays, presentation of both case-studies and field-visits. The 20 professors joining the ToT are now expected to deliver the training to their municipalities. 

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The training was delivered by ALDA, in cooperation with the International Cooperation Centre (Trento – Italy), and it took place in Kairouan (Tunisia)


ALDA at the "International Democracy Day 2022" hosted by the Committee of the Regions in Brussels

ALDA took part in the International Democracy Day on the 15th September 2022, hosted by the Committee of the Regions in Brussels. 

The day was split between different sessions with a wide range of high-level speakers, international democracy advocates and activists from both sides of the Atlantic and the Global South, that addressed the challenges of the new world order for democracy.  The focus was the mechanisms to protect and support democracy around the world.

The morning session tackled democracy in the era of geopolitics, and was hosted by International IDEA. It opened with the key speech by Rana Ayyub, an Indian journalist working for the Washington Post, who pointed out the situation in India, with particular reference to human rights violations in the largest democracy in the world.

The discussion then continued with exchanges with Jerzy Pomianowski, Executive Director of European Endowment for Democracy, and Christina Kokkinakis, Deputy Managing Director Global and Director for Values and Multilateral relations at the European External Action Service (EEAS).

The second panel focused on EU Presidencies and the EU External Democracy Agenda, with uninteresting input by Cecilia Ruthström-Ruin, Sweden’s ambassador for Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law on how democracies do not wage war against each other, and Sweden’s commitment in the defense of democracy. 


International Democracy Day 2022: ALDA present at the Committee of the Regions to share with other CSOs and Institutions


The day ended with a panel by the European Partnership for Democracy (EPD), network within which ALDA is an active member, on the political participation of young people, with interventions of different speakers, among whom Chiara Adamo, Acting Director for Human Development, Migration, Governance and Peace at the European Commission. 

Thus, the democratic dimension is at the core of Association’s work and events such as the one held in Brussels are a good example of how to engage with others and exchange ideas on the status of democracy around the world, since ​​​2021 was a year of further democratic backsliding in many countries worldwide. Hence, ALDA’s principles rely on the belief that a global democratic world can lay only on democratic local communities as also testified by the events and initiatives organised; among them the General Assembly 2022.

Finally, the ALDA team participated actively and had the chance to exchange views on the theme of democracy, its challenges and how to engage people in the political processes. 


DEVOTE: Course & Community of Educators now online

DEVOTE project’s philosophy is “you never stop learning!”. This is why project’s partners have dedicated months of work to the development of an online course for teachers to enhance the integration of students with migrant backgrounds in schools.

Today, DEVOTE has reached its objective: the publication of our Massive Online Open Course directed to teachers, educators, parents and school personnel. Along with the MOOC, the Community of Educators, an interactive platform where the course participants can exchange ideas and best practices between themselves, has been designed.



More in details: to access both tools you can subscribe here (it’s free, and in seven languages – English, French, Italian, Dutch, Slovenian, Greek, Turkish): and just choose one or several modules that are most interesting to you:

  1. The Whole School Approach
  2. Assessing students with migrant backgrounds
  3. National linguistic support
  4. Parental involvement
  5. Psycho-social support
  6. Best practices for Intercultural Education.

The Forum proposes various sections where you can interact with your fellow educators and propose your own experiences and initiatives.

DEVOTE team is looking forward to your feedback on the platform, so do not hesitate to let them know about your experience through this form. ALDA hopes that thanks to the project, professionals will enjoy the course, and that they will share their own practices and experiences with us DEVOTE partners and fellow educators.

Do you want to know more? Have a look at the video:


pomme

ALDA at the "Pomme de Terre en Fête" to promote the local initiatives and its resources

On the 9-10-11 September, in Ploeuc l’Hermitage, took place the Festival Pomme de terre en fête”. Invited by Thibault Guignard, mayor of Ploeuc l’Hermitage and President of LEADER France, ALDA joined the event to promote and illustrate different possibilities, also in terms of European funding, aimed at safeguarding the environment, or the territory.

The latter not only celebrates the “resource of the territory”, such as the potato, but is also an exchange and sharing time, in which the importance of European and international cooperation within rural territories has been recalled by the mayor itself. This is the reason why the municipality welcomed different European delegations from Romania, Poland, and Czech Republic, within the framework of three projects supported by the town hall.


Democracy school, and climate protection at  “Pomme de terre en fête”Festival in Ploeuc l’Hermitage


Part of ALDA’s team took part in this mission, which started on Friday the 9th September, with a training session on the European Funds and Programmes in the municipality, as before mentioned, and a mini-democracy school in the afternoon with more than 60 participants, from local high schools.  Thanks to the use of interactive online platforms, ALDA colleagues were able to engage everybody with enthusiasm around European Union values and processes. 

Furthermore, during the weekend ALDA had a stand in the Festival “Pomme de terre en fête”, where it was able to promote the petition for مناخ التغيير and sensibilise the community on environmental issues, such as climate-induced migration, which is at the core of the project. 

Overall, this occasion also represented a great opportunity to get in touch with people from different backgrounds, interested in European projects and in ALDA’s work and network.


Festival

ALDA at the “Festival Les Solidarités” and “Le Village des Associations” for the #ClimateOfChange campaign

ALDA participated in the “Festival Les Solidarités” in Namur  and in “Le Village des Associations” in Strasbourg to raise awareness on Climate Change

Funded by the DEAR programme (Development Education and Awareness Raising) of the European Commission, End Climate Change, Start Climate of Change is an ambitious project that aims at raising awareness of climate change induced migration. The project addresses young EU citizens in order to empower them to understand the interconnections between climate change and global inequalities and become advocates of a more sustainable model of development that includes climate mitigation measures and protection schemes for climate migrants.

 

#ClimateOfChange involves 13 countries, 16 partners and 14.000 students. The project is supported by a far-reaching campaign that embraces presence both online and on the ground. Moreover, the #ClimateOfChange consortium has organised a petition to call for more concrete policy actions to tackle climate change and its impacts on migration. The petition will be handed over to the President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, during the 27th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP27) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) which will take place in Egypt in November 2022.

As one of the partner organisations, ALDA has taken part to the #ClimateOfChange campaign by joining fairs and festivals of the countries impacted by the project. At the end of August, ALDA colleagues participated in the “Festival Les Solidarités” in the Citadelle de Namur (Belgium) and on the 10th and 11th of September, ALDA Strasbourg office joined Le Village des Associations” festival in the Parc de la Citadelle in Strasbourg (France).


At the end of August, ALDA staff participated in the “Festival Les Solidarités” in the Citadelle de Namur (Belgium) and on the 10th and 11th of September, ALDA Strasbourg office joined “Le Village des Associations” festival in the Parc de la Citadelle in Strasbourg (France)


At the “Festival Les Solidarités” in Namur, ALDA had a stand to present the project and collect signatures for the petition. ALDA’s participation in the festival has been a great opportunity not only to promote the #ClimateOfChange campaign but also to engage with people and associations that share ALDA’s values. Even children wanted to contribute to the cause by symbolically signing the petition. In Namur, ALDA collected more than 450 signatures!

Two weeks later, ALDA took part in “Le Village des Assos” in Strasbourg with a stand in the “Education and training” sector of the festival. During the week-end, ALDA presented itself, its work and values while campaigning for #ClimateOfChange. In addition, the Strasbourg staff familiarised with several associations based in Strasbourg and operating in the same fields of ALDA.

Finally, on the one hand, both festivals have been an integral part of the role of ALDA as a partner of the #ClimateOfChange project and a demonstration of ALDA’s commitment to environmental awareness. On the other hand, these noteworthy events benefited ALDA’s visibility within the associative world.

 

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Read more details on #ClimateOfChange project here 

End Climate Change, Start Climate of Change by signing the petition


water

Water’s Experts: Kick-off Meeting in Oporto underlining the importance and the role of it

The Water’s Experts project has started, with the kick-off meeting which took place in Oporto (Portugal) on 3 and 4 September 2022. The partner Geoclube – Associação Juvenil welcomed ALDA and the other project partners to their office in Rio Tinto, municipality of Gondomar. In addition, as President of the association “Paese dell’Acqua” and leader of the consortium, Mr. Iamiceli was present at the meeting, being also an ambassador of ALDA!

On the first day, some aspects of the project have been defined, among them the main objectives of the training courses; as well as the “communication and dissemination strategy”.  The second day of the event was devoted to visiting the so-called Pavilion of Water, in Oporto, a small-scale project that aims to raise people’s attention on the issues of water scarcity and pollution of the oceans.  In addition, guided by Geoclube, the partners were able to enjoy the charms of Oporto and learn some of the city’s river characteristics, particularly in the Rio Tinto area.


Water’s Experts: raise awareness on climate change adaptation, underlining the importance and the role of water


From a general perspective, the project aims to adequate school studies to the job market needs, using training methods which are new, practical and more relevant for the work contest. On the other hand, the project’s goal is to raise awareness on climate change adaptation, underlining the importance and the role of water.

Finally, the kick-off meeting in Oporto has been a unique opportunity to coordinate with partners and set the agenda for the next steps. In the upcoming months, the partners will involve schools ready to join the project and identify students willing to take part in the training course. Meanwhile, ALDA, as the partner in charge of the project’s communication, will develop the web page and manage the social media together with partners.