Community development, Social inclusion


Model for self-government and development of local communities with Roma population.


Who is behind this?

Elena Ivanova-Kiricova

Association “Development of Personality and Human Communities”



Idea pitch

This is a pilot project. A social experiment is conducted in 3 small settlements with a high level of Roma population on the territory of Northwestern Bulgaria. The experiment develops and tests a practical and innovative model for stimulating the civic engagement, civic participation, self-government and development of local communities.

Where will your project idea take place?

Northwestern Bulgaria – 3 settlements up to 20000 inhabitants with a high level of Roma population.

What is the specific societal challenge faced by this region?

The challenge is to turn the citizens in segregated Roma communities in small settlements from a passive object into an active subject of their management and development:
1.Increasing of awareness and civic engagement in the local communities.
2. Approbation of the models for self-organization and self-government with direct participation of the citizens.
3. Increasing of citizen`s solidarity and responsibility for the development and well-being of the local community.
4. Affirmation of the principles and values of the civil society and increasing the quality of life in these communities.

Who are you doing it for?

Target group in this current project are the citizens of small settlements with a significant level of Roma population.
1. Authentic leaders in the local community - 18 participants go through a training within the project. For a period of 6 months they are organizers and coordinators of local advocacy campaigns and initiatives, they provide support to their fellow citizens in their relations with the institutions, in the implementation of their civil rights and responsibilities.
2. Citizens from the local communities involved in the implementation of local initiatives and campaigns - about 300 participants.
3. Representatives of local institutions and stakeholders - 60 participants in forums and working meetings.

How do you plan to get there?

1. Information campaign and working meetings with stakeholders - identification of leaders, motivation for participation and cooperation.
2. Training for leaders - 18 participants: 20 hours of theory: Topography of power, interaction with institutions. Advocacy and lobbying. Team interaction and conflict management 10 hours practice-design and project of a campaign / initiative.
3. The leaders appointed for a period of 6 months carry out advocacy, mediation, organization, coordination, activation and involvement of over 300 citizens in the implementation of specific local initiatives.
4. Evaluation and dissemination of the results among all stakeholders - a study is conducted /on the effect and evaluation of the applicability of the model /. The results are discussed and promoted in a public forum.

What are the expected results?

1. No less than 18 local leaders and 300 citizens will raise their civic awareness and competence.
2. Over 300 citizens will become organizers and participants in 3 local campaigns / initiatives - their civic engagement and responsibility for the development of local communities will increase.
3. A local model for self-government and citizen participation in the decision-making process will be implemented and approved.
4. Intercultural interaction will be improved and value will be added to the implemented policies and practices for empowering citizens at the local level.
5. In the long run: Social conflicts and contradictions will be permanently overcome, the quality of life in local communities will be improved.

How does your idea strengthen active citizenship at a local and community level?

Our initiative will increase the awareness and competence of the citizens. It will empower them and encourage their engagement and participation in the decision-making process at the local level.
The project meets the need for an innovative approach that guarantees real empowerment of the representatives of ethnic minorities and their active participation in the decision-making process at the local level.
Long-term efforts, resources and funds for the integration of ethnic minorities have not brought yet satisfactory results. The situation can be improved if from an object of influence the citizens become an active subject and a bearer of positive changes.

Why is this idea important to you?

In its long history, the Association has implemented over 30 projects in the region of Northwestern Bulgaria. Most of them are related to the improvement of the educational environment, the quality of the social services, increasing of employment and improving the status of Roma in the labour market. Permanent ties of partnership and cooperation have been established with more than 20 municipalities on the territory of Northwestern Bulgaria. The team involved in the implementation of the project consists of 3 experts, each of whom has over 5 years of experience in management of innovative projects, providing support and services among ethnic minorities.

€ 35000,-

Total budget

€ 35000,-

Funding requested from Civic Europe

Major expenses

Information campaign: - 1000 euros
Training of leaders: Remuneration for trainers, training materials, rent of halls, transport and accommodation 6000 euros.
Remuneration of 18 local organizers / mediators for a period of 6 months 20000 euros.
Representative survey to evaluate the results in 3 local communities with 2100 respondents, data processing and report 5500 euros.
Reproduction of a report and conduction of a final one-day forum 1500 euros.
Office expenses 1000 euros.

What do you need from the Civic Europe community?

Every feedback, opinion and recommendation for the improvement of our initiative will be useful to us.


Association DPHC

Idea created on April 25, 2021
Last edit on April 26, 2021

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