Active citizens

Project: „IN PURSUIT OF DEMOCRACY“

Project is financed by the EU, under the IPA for 2009

Programme: „Building Capacities of the CSOs for Monitoring and Advocacy in the Field of Democratization, Human Rights, Minority Integration and Sustainable Refugee Return in the Areas of Special State Concern“ under the IPA – Transition Assistance and Institution Building Component for 2009 (under Civil Society Facility)

Project applicant/Lead partner: Center for Civil Initiatives

Partners: Women Group Vojnić, Vojnić
Most Perna, Topusko
Humanitarian association “Breza”, Krnjak
Local Action Group Petrova gora, Gvozd

Target groups: CSOs in five target municipalities,
local institutions (Centers for Social Care, Schools, Croatian Employment Agency-Branch offices)

Specific objectives:
1. To build and develop new mechanisms of advocating for democratization procedures in relation to minority integration and return issues in two counties of special state care through a network of five CSOs situated in five cities (5 info-points)
2. To increase the level of integration of minorities’ and returnee population in local communities of two target counties

Locations: Karlovačka County, Sisačko – moslavačka County

Project duration: December 2011 – December 2013

Project budget: 160.158,22 €

Short description: The idea of the project „In Pursuit of Democracy“ is to develop strengths and capacities of five CSOs in Karlovačka and Sisačko-moslavačka Counties. The network of five organizations (Center for Civil Initiatives, Local Action Group Petrova Gora, Women group Vojnić, Breza from Krnjak and Most Perna from Topusko) will be established and developed through the project. This network will develop capacities of local CSOs to provide help to local communities in relation to minority and returnee integration.

In order to provide access to information that the returnee and minority population need, five info-points (Topusko, Krnjak, Vojnić, Gvozd, Karlovac) will be established with information-sharing and counseling services. Legal adviser and social worker will be organized on a weekly basis in info-points to assist minority integration and returnee integration procedures.

CSOs included in the project will gain basic education through five educational modules on increasing their capacities in advocating for minority and returnee population status with an emphasis on gender and youth perspective. 20 members of 8 CSOs, as well as representatives of local institutions and councils of four target municipalities, will be included in the educational programme.

Within the project, we will prepare and print 8.000 brochures on five topics important for the minorities` return and integration. The brochures will be available at the info-points, in local institutions and countries where potential returnees live.

CSOs will motivate and mobilize young members of local communities as well as potential returnees to cooperate in volunteer activities aiming to have citizens of all ethnic backgrounds (including minorities) together working on a “community cause”.

During summer vacation, we will organize a summer course « Education for civil society » with 150-200 young participants to learn about the role and importance of civil society sector, community development, democratization processes, human rights protection, gender perspective, youth activism, cooperation with local stakeholders and businesses’ representatives. During the summer course, cultural activities and sport activities will also be organized in between courses to increase socialization of youth from the region regardless ethnic or religious background. Youth participated in summer course will have several volunteer actions in order to provide something for the community which is hosting the summer camp, i.e. assistance to vulnerable population in preparing the woods for winter, organizing activities for children, preparing preschool children for school activities, assistance in gardening and work in the fields and similar.

A group of youth will create a film at the summer course about youth’ vision of democracy in local communities, improvements of the lives of minority and returnee population which will be presented at the annual Four River Film Festival in Karlovac which every year takes place in September in Karlovac.

300 films will be copied and disseminated to youth in the region, youth in Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, because the film will have a character of invitation to the youth outside of Croatia to join the activities during summer in Croatia and potentially return to their homes in Croatia.

Center for Civil Initiatives (CCI) is the lead partner (applicant) of this project in partnership with Women Group Vojnić, Most Perna, Humanitarian association Breza and Local Action group Petrova Gora.

Project: „COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT WORK IN CROATIA: EDUCATION FOR STUDENTS AND PROFESSIONALS “

Program: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Netherlands, Program MATRA

Applicant: HAN University (Hogeschool van Arnhem en Nijmegen), Faculty of Health and Social Studies

Partners: Faculty of Law in Zagreb, Study Center for Social Work; Center for Civil Initiatives

Target groups: social work students, undergraduate and postgraduate, university lecturers, CSO activists, community leaders and community workers, social workers

Befneficiaries: Village Boards and District Councils, key leaders in communities, citizens of Karlovac and Petrinja

Project Goal: To improve quality of life in communities and increase citizens participation and equal leadership of men and women through education in community development for students and professionals in social work.

Objectives:

A)    To improve the education in community development work in the Social Work Study Center of the University of Zagreb, through the development of a curriculum community development work for MA studies and extending the curriculum for students at BA level with new theory and methodologies.

B)    To provide futher education in community development work to professional social workers and the development of a summer school to provide this education also in the future

C)    To develop a new practice in community development work in pilot projects, in Karlovac and Petrinja and through this provide practice experience for students and professionals

Area of implementation: Zagreb, Karlovac, Petrinja

Project duration: 2008-2011

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