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TOWN TWINNING: a vehicle for European integration

The present proposal - starting at the beginning of 2009 - aims at promoting town-twinning, focusing in particular on the multilateral decentralized cooperation approach, as a vehicle to foster European Integration and to promote, develop and strengthen twinning agreements relations amongst local authorities in the enlarged Europe.
More specifically, the project will aim at:
a. promoting the concept of town twinning;
b. starting, revitalising, and developing town twinning relationships;
c. improving the quality of the activities within existing twinning relationships, especially by means of developing thematic cooperation;
d. developing new skills amongst those who are responsible for twinning activities at a local level.
The proposal seeks to reach a large number of municipalities (around 110 institutions directly involved in the events) and will therefore have an important multiplier effect.
The present action is structured in 7 different steps grouped in 3 main phases and a transversal action, as shown in the following chart:

Concerning the implementation phase:

Training: capacity building for Local Authorities in the field of twinning, addressed to local authorities to develop their knowledge of the concept and practice of town-twinning - duration: 3 days - venue: Shkodra, Albania
On-line advisory service, to support the preparation and the implementation of good quality projects.
International workshop "Building Europe through town-twinning", mainly promoting the different forms and concept of town-twinning amongst local authorities and networking - duration: 1 day - venue: Croatia
The variety of forms of the activities proposed seek to provide municipalities a "full" support, providing them: a. new information and knowledge on the concept of town twinning, through all the activities foreseen; b. capacity building, through the training addressed to those responsible for twinning activities; c. consultancy, through the training and the On-line Advisory Service; d. tools facilitating partner search and networking, especially through the international workshop; e. the opportunity to exchange best practices and experiences, through the training, the international workshop and especially the final publication.
I. First step of the implementation phase:  Training on town twinning in Shkodra, Albania, 8th-11th June 2009
There will be about 30 participants from all-over Europe. Participants from the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia and Albania, two new eligible countries under the programme Europe for Citizen, will attend the training. The training is addressed to Local Authorities representatives, especially to those in charge of twinning activities, and to other organizations having a specific knowledge and experience of the topic (i.e. twinning associations). The training seeks to provide new knowledge, skills and capacities, as well as to promote the creation of new and the revitalization of already existing - town-twinning relationships.





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