International Conference on Decentralised support for Ukrainian communities: Vicenza becomes centre of collaboration for the reconstruction of Ukraine

Nov 15, 2023

Good governance

As the Russian aggression against Ukraine continues to inflict severe damage on the country’s infrastructure and society, the need for decentralised support and collaborative efforts from municipalities and local communities has never been more critical. Recognising the urgency of the situation, ALDA has embarked on a significant initiative in 2023 to expand its network of Local Democracy Agencies (LDAs) in Ukraine. This endeavour aims to enhance community resilience and promote decentralised multi-stakeholder cooperation.

ALDA’s initiative aligns with the principles of the Lugano Declaration, which emphasises the importance of inclusive recovery and decentralised cooperation between Ukrainian and EU local democracy actors. This approach recognises the pivotal roles that local authorities and civil society play in ensuring fair and inclusive reconstruction.

Ukraine has been the focus of ALDA’s engagement since 2014, with the establishment of two LDAs, one in Dnipro in 2015 and one in Mariupol in 2017 (now operating from Kyiv). Over the years, ALDA has actively supported these LDAs, involving them in transnational cooperation projects that focus on good governance, civic participation, training, and capacity-building for local authorities. The LDAs in Dnipro and Mariupol have been crucial in addressing local needs, especially since the full-scale invasion began in February 2022.

In June 2022, ALDA’s Governing Board made the decision to scale up this approach by establishing new LDAs in various cities across Ukraine, including Odesa, Vinnytsia, Bucha, Rivne, Mykolaiv, Kharkiv, and Lviv as part of the ambitious Flagship Initiative in Ukraine of the Association.

International Conference on Decentralised Support for Ukrainian Communities in Vicenza (Italy) on 23 & 24 November, 2023

In a continuous effort to promote and support the reconstruction of Ukraine and the recovery of its population, ALDA, ALDA Italia APS and the Municipality of Vicenza are organising a prestigious International Conference on Decentralised Support for Ukrainian Communities in Vicenza (Italy) on 23 & 24 November, 2023.

The event will take place in the splendid setting of the Sala Bernarda of the City Council, on 23 November, and the Hotel De La Ville, on 24 November.

The “International Conference on Decentralised Support for Ukrainian Communities: The Role of Municipalities, local communities and the Territorial Approach”, will provide an opportunity to reflect on the role assumed by Italy and its local and regional authorities in addressing the humanitarian emergency caused by Russian aggression on Ukrainian territory. It will consist of two days of high-level meetings and debates involving various representatives of local, European and international institutions, as well as representatives of civil society, to propose cooperation between cities and between local communities as an effective tool for peace building and sustainable and lasting reconstruction of Ukraine.

Organised in collaboration with the Municipality of Vicenza and with the support of the Central European Initiative and U-LEAD with Europe, the Int. Conference will be attended by more than 50 international participants and an equal number of local and national participants, among which several leading figures from Italian, Ukrainian and international institutions, such as the Mayor of Vicenza, Giacomo Possamai, the Special Envoy from Italy for the Reconstruction of Ukraine, Davide La Cecilia, the Vice-President of Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, President of the CIVEX Commission of the Committee of the Regions, Patrick Molinoz the Vice-President of the Defence Commission of the Chamber of Deputies, the Honourable Piero Fassino, the Mayor of Mykolai (Ukraine), Oleksandr Syenkevych, the Mayor of Zhytomyr (Ukraine), Sergiy Sukhomlyn, the Representative of the Central European Initiative, Ugo Poli, the Director of Programmes of U-LEAD with Europe, Andrej Horvat, the MEP, Alessandra Moretti (online).

Representatives of local authorities such as the Deputy Mayor of Trento, and of solidarity and cooperation from the city and region will also be present. 

A public event is also planned for the evening of 23 November in cooperation with the Centro di Servizio per il Volontariato della provincia di Vicenza (CSV) from 20:30 at Contrà Mure San Rocco 37/A (Vicenza) to meet stories and protagonists of solidarity from Vicenza and beyond.

On the occasion of the event and at the proposal of ALDA, a path will be inaugurated in Vicenza to enhance and capitalise on the cooperation of cities and communities, a bottom up approach, for the future of Ukraine but which can be designated as a guideline for other scenarios in stages of stabilisation and development. This programme proposes the Declaration of Vicenza, which will form the basis of this model of cooperation, and which will be approved at the end of the work and allow the friendship pact between the cities of Vicenza and Zhytomyr to continue.

ALDA is proud to be a part of this prestigious initiative and is committed, together with its partners, to ensuring the widest possible use and success locally and internationally.

The Agenda of the event will be published on the website in the next few days. Stay tuned for updates from this crucial conference!