Project Services: Municipalities for Europe
The Project Municipalities for Europe is an initiative of the European Union which aims to increase the capacities of the Local Government Units in Albania in the framework of the European integration process of the country by setting up an EU office in each municipality that will be the point of reference in each respective municipality, not only for local administrative employees but also for all citizens and groups of interest at local level.
In the the operational level the EU Corners become the closest collaborator of the project, having two functions:
- Strengthening the capacities of their local government units in relation to their functioning within European standards and the absorption of European project-based funds.
- Serving as focal points for their local government unit, but also for the entire community in their region, with regard to information on the European Union.
A. EU Corners, with the support of the Municipalities for Europe project, play a role in strengthening the capacities of their local government units in relation to their functioning within European standards as well as the absorption of European funds on project basis. In this process, the envisaged role and project services expected by the EU Corners in each municipality is:
- Provide knowledge and clear understanding of the European Union in their LGUs, the objectives, olicies, priorities, institutions and EU perspective, as well as provide the right information on the myths of misconcpetions in the process of EU accession of Albania.
- Increase capacities in their respective municipalities to gain, asimiliate and disseminate information regarding EU, adequate for the public or their LGU administration/staff members.
- Enhance the capacities of their municipalities, either for the public in general of the municipality administration, to get information, or provide ideas and suggestions that may inform the Albanian government or other European partners on planning of future/upcoming interventions.
- Enhance the synergies of their LGUs with other actors and interested parties, especially with House of Europe in Tirana, EU Member States, aiming at receiving information on EU, sharing the best practices with EU and the process of integration of Albania in EU.
B. The EU Corners, with the support of the Municipalities for Europe project, will serve as focal points for their respective local government unit, but also for the entire community in their region, providing information about the European Union. In this process, the role of the EU Corners in cooperation with the Municipalities Project for Europe is:
- Answer questions from all citizens or groups of interest in the respective municipality on any EU-related information, including funding, policies, human rights, etc.
- Invite the citizens of all age groups and professional background to visit the EU Corner and get acquented with everything that concerns the EU.
- Disseminate knowledge, documents and publications published by the EU or translated into Albanian by different institutional or civil society actors in Albania as well as projects funded by EU, regarding EU.
- Serve as a source of information for any EU-related issue that is of concern to both municipality staff or community members, regardless of the age, social background of religious affiliation.
- Serve as a reference center for civil society in the region where it operates, providing information related to various funding programs from different EU instruments.
- Access documents and official publications of the European Union, either online or printed, and distribute them among LGU staff members as well as share them with the community members who have an interest in them.
- Organize frequent meetings with different groups of interest or community in its region, aiming at complete explanation of the EU: its policies, institutions, priorities, Albania's EU accession process, various European funds available/eligible, etc.
- In case of planning an event related to a particular EU issue, arrange through "Municipalities in Europe" project the participation of an "EU speaker" expert who can facilitate the provision of relevant knowledge to the group of interest in that sector for which the respective event was organized.
- Organize study visits with students, civil society or various groups at the EU Corner in order to provide adequate information about the EU, meeting the needs of the groups or individuals who seek an explanation for a particular issue.
- With the support of the project team, organize a major event in its respective LGU with regarding a specific topic/theme about EU.
- Make a clear timetable of informational/awareness raising activities informing citizens about the EU.
- The EU Corner and its communication channels are a local conductor of messages coming from the EU Delegation in Tirana as well as the EU member states accredited in Albania.