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DOOR - Pursuit the Common Sense | Civic Europe
Community development, Patriarchal common sense & local leadership

DOOR - Pursuit the Common Sense

Civism Was Born in the Village - Advocacy for Recovering Authenthic Spirit of Citizenship


Who is behind this?

Ioana Cornelia Cristina Crihana

The Regional Economic Development Alliance – ADER


Who is joining forces?

The National Association of Public Librarians and Libraries in Romania


"Marin Grigore Năstase" Technological High School


"Ion Ghica" Racari Theoretical High School


ADER has previously implemented successful projects in Dambovita County, in collaboration with local high schools. So we intend to involve this time school institutions from Racari and Tartasesti.


Idea pitch

Amid of the accelerated alienation of the sons of small towns & villages due to a permanent exodus of labor force abroad and to the main Romanian cities, the spiritual identity, economic power and community development of small towns and villages in South-Eastern Romania tend to be disolved. Starting from what the locals have dearer and more authentic in their own consciousness, but also in the collective mentality, we intend to rebuild by advocacy the local and regional models and reputation.

Where will your project idea take place?

Racari City, Dambovita County, South-Eastern Romania, and Tartasesti village, 35 km near Bucharest

What is the specific societal challenge faced by this region?

Racari & Tartasesti, a small town & a commune (6,930 / 5,874 inhabitants) face a profound depopulation and an accelerating community members’ aging, due to adults’ exodus to major cities for a better life. The core production units’ dissolution determined the majority inhabitants to practice agriculture. Much divided and lowly interested in democracy and social involvement, inhabitants are overwhelmed by a deep apathy and helplessness. By advocacy & informal trainings, we'll strengthen their feeling of solidarity and belonging to a democratic community and increase their confidence in civic activism principles. As a sustainability measure, we will support 4 local informal leaders’ task forces to encourage, on long term, income-generating activities and attracting investors & entrepreneurs.

Who are you doing it for?

a) Direct beneficiaries
- 200 people with local initiative or decision makers: mayors, librarians, writers, artists, craftsmen, local entrepreneurs, teachers, educators, priests, etc.
- 500 members of 4 urban and rural communities in Dambovita County: Racari, Baldana, Tartasesti and Gulia (including belonging to vulnerable groups-families with limited financial possibilities, people with disabilities, mono-parental families, ethnic minorities, etc.)
b) Indirect beneficiaries
- 100 members of the 4 communities involved who will get in touch with the campaign activities - 50 potential promoters and supporters of the campaign, beneficiaries and collaborators of the ADER association and partners, to whom the results of the project will be disseminated

How do you plan to get there?

- a TOT program for 20 adult learners (5 participants/locality x 4 localities) on “Understanding Democracy”, “Active citizenship”, using Digital Storytelling, Theatre Forum and Living Library techniques
- A 5 days face-to-face training for 40 adult learners (10 participants/locality x 4 localities) – 3 days on the “Understanding Democracy” 2 days on“Active citizenship” - basic and easily comprehensive information ref. Democracy, Civil Rights, Response to Crisis and other current challenges
- Promotion of DOOR trainings locally & regionally
- Creating & disseminating an online collection of citizens’ input on How We Can Influence Our Future (relevant scenarios and digital stories produced by participants)
- Local outreach initiatives in 4 localities
- Final conference -Tartasesti

What are the expected results?

- Improving the non-formal education of inhabitants in 4 localities in terms of democracy and active citizenship to increase the beneficiaries’ life quality, including disadvantaged groups
- Developing, testing & disseminating a model educational program to improve active citizenship at the grassroots level, as a way to strengthen local and regional identity and empower local communities to assume the regional development, even in times of crisis
- Assisting rural citizens to answer questions such as “How can I have impact on my standard of living and that of my fellow citizens? What future do I see for my community? How can I shape this future? How can I make my voice heard? Why do I love my community and why is it important to me?; What do I represent for my community and my country?

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

The project proposal has at its center the psychological profile of the Romanian citizen from the small-urban and rural area, slanderous and interested only in gaining, who has become more and more alienated by the idea of community and the city collective identity. We want to restore the honor of belonging to a community, to cultivate the spirit of co-creation of values for our own city, based on the promotion of private initiative and individual and collective creativity. Starting from what the locals have more dear and authentic in their own consciousness, but also in the collective consciousness of the city, we want to reconstruct themodels of local initiative, based on respect, their own example and local and regional reputation, in the respect of democracy and authentic citizenship.

Why is this idea important to you?

Amid of the increasing exodus of labor force abroad and to the main Romanian cities, the small towns/ villages in SE of Romania have become depopulated. In recent years, the spiritual and economic identity of these spaces has suffered greatly. We intend to give small towns and rural settlements near Bucharest a new hope of reconstruction, based on promoting local initiative models, based on respect, self-example and local and regional reputation. Through this initiative, we aim to restore the honor of community belonging, to cultivate the co-creation of values for our own city, based on promoting private initiative and individual and collective creativity on the principle Romanian is the bread of God. As long as he knows how to make bread and will share it with others, no one will starve.

€ 45000,-

Total budget

€ 43000,-

Funding requested from Civic Europe

Major expenses

- Personnel – 10500 EUR
- Office Supplies – 3000 EUR
- TOT Understanding Democracy&Active Citizenship – 4000 EUR
- Scenario Workshop – 2500 EUR
- Forum Theatre - 1000 EUR
- Digital Storytelling Workshop – 3000 EUR
- Awareness Campaign - Forum Theatre – 2500 EUR
- PR&Promotion – 2500 EUR
- Equipments – 5500 EUR
- Travel&Accommodation – 2000 EUR
- Digital Stories Collection – 3000 EUR
- Collecting & Publishing citizens’ input – 3500 EUR
- Final Conference – 2000 EUR (co-participation)

What do you need from the Civic Europe community?


Ioana Crihana

Idea created on May 4, 2020
Last edit on May 8, 2020

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