Democracy and participation, Community development

Revive together

The revitalization of Bela krajina

Creators

Who is behind this?

Ana Marija Lukenda

Zveza društev sokolske mladine / Slovenian Falcon Youth Union

Slovenia

Idea

Idea pitch

The project will take place in a region, where the opportunities go unnoticed and unexploited. We see them and we will bring the locals (focusing on 6-30 year olds) together, activate them and give them the means to take advantage of everything that Bela krajina has to offer - being a multicultural, cultural heritage rich schengen area.

Where will your project idea take place?

The project will take place in the south-eastern rural region of Slovenia called Bela krajina.

What is the local challenge?

Bela krajina is an area that is remote and "cut off" from the rest of Slovenia (due to geographical constrictions) and major urban cities. This is confirmed by the fact that there is no regular public transport or expressway to enable residents and young people to make a regular transition. It is also a border town, next to Croatia, where the locals face refugee problems. On the other hand, the area is inhabited by the Roma community, immigrants, foreign workers, refugees and other deprived people who do not have much opportunity and support from the national authorities to develop, both from a city point of view and from a cultural and social point of view.

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

We aim to re-activate this region and its residents, focusing on young people, through regular activities, which will:
- explain how democracy and active citizenship are both part of their everyday activities and their free time activities;
- take these free-time activities (dance, folklore, creative writing, non-formal education … ) and through them show young people how to better their democratic active participation in their local environment;
- these activities will connect the vulnerable groups and strengthen their cooperation, which will lead to a more democratic region and active residents;
- these activities and the connections made will increase the competences and employability of young people in and outside of vulnerable groups.

Who are you doing it for?

Our primary focus, as a youth organization, is on young people, but we wish to take this further and involve people of all ages. We believe that only through working together will we achieve harmony and true intergenerational cooperation (exchange of knowledge, ideas, cultural heritage).
The main focus group is people between the ages of 6 and 30 years, but the project will include the older generation as well.
We will include vulnerable groups (the Roma community, refugees, immigrants, foreign workers, and all deprivileged groups), with a focus on young people in these groups. We want to include all young people regardless of their economic or social status or cultural differences and help them build a synergy between all local residents that stands on solidarity and active citizenship

How do you plan to get there?

Training of local youth workers in order for them to plan and lead workshops. They will prepare and develop a cohesive program with activities that will encourage active participation and active ways of spending free time.
Realization of activities and workshops.
Development of the internet platform, focusing on:1. connecting local organizations to establish a local community. 2. devoted to members, the residents of Bela Krajina serving as a platform for intergenerational cooperation, offering of and receiving help and an exchange of knowledge, skills, ideas.
Festival for children and young people from all over Slovenia, with the purpose of presenting the project, the achieved results and effects of the projects.
Evaluation, studying the achieved results, effects and future planning

What are the expected results?

Our own local organization will have an easier time working with the youth in the region, because this project will give them the chance to learn-by-doing. After the project is done there will be a place/platform where the local organizations and local residents can communicate, help each other and cooperate. A very possible result is the re-activation of the local youth council by the young people who will be connected through this project. The local population will have a higher awareness of fellow people. They will gain various skills and competences, raising their employability and chances of equal integration into the society around them.

How does your initiative contribute to strengthening democracy in Europe?

Europe should stand on strong local communities, that have a high rate of participation and active citizens. Strong local participation will lead to strong national and european participation. This project can be used to show the local level how important it is to be an european citizen as well as the citizen of a single country. This project can and will be brought over from this region to other regions in Slovenia and then the broader European continent as well.

What is your story?

Our motivation and idea come from the values of our organization. Our goal is to ensure that young people are well informed and familiar with their rights, are empowered to actively participate in society, and are given the respect they deserve. In order to reach this goal, we use non-formal learning practices with young people. With this in mind, we have opened up a space for all young people, who are subjected to social, financial, mental, or other forms of systematic oppression that are a product of social stratification. We are standing up for an inclusive democratic society and for socially responsible individuals. The goal of this project is to revitalize the civic desert together in the region and make an equal opportunities region that will serve as an example for all others.

€ 36750,-

Funding requested from Civic Europe

€ 36750,-

Total budget

Major expenses

Cost of labor (including honorary, external experts, trainers, web platform developer): 15.000 EUR
Material costs (including promo material): 2500 EUR
Rental costs (including accommodation and food for training, year rent for workshops, accommodation, and food for the festival): 14.600 EUR
Administration costs: 1200 EUR
Travel costs (for transport within the region for activities and for the festival transport): 3450 EUR

Team

Zveza društev sokolske mladine

Idea created on May 27, 2020

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