"Active Communities: Building Capacity for Change"
The project objective is to develop, strengthen and promote a sustainable model of empowering communities based on local leadership, active citizenship behaviour and mobilization of local resources.
- representatives of local authorities from the municipalities included in the project;
- Chitalishta, NGOs and informal groups on the territory of the participating municipalities;
- informal civic leaders and activists with outstanding citizenship and behaviour;
- Chitalishte secretaries and chairpersons of Chitalishte Boards from the target and outside the target municipalities;
- young artists, involved in advocacy campaigns;
- journalists from local and regional media.
The project activities build on the results achieved in the implementation of the previous two stages, supported by the America for Bulgaria Foundation: "Active communities through Chitalishtes" (First Phase) - 2009 - 2010 and "Active communities through Chitalishtes" (Second Phase) - 2010 - 2013. They are bound in such a way as to offer an overall model of a civil behaviour, aimed at social and local development with an emphasis on the process sustainability.
The model will be implemented in 12 Bulgarian municipalities, located throughout the country. Eight of them are municipalities, where the AGORA approach was implemented in the previous two projects and sustainable results in the implementation of community initiatives were achieved. Four will be selected among the municipalities, which were not targeted in previous AGORA projects and the model will be tested as a pilot one.
Traditionally, the local Chitalishtes will be the partners 'on the spot' that are the entry points to the communities and local authorities, according to the application of the AGORA approach.
The activities are a complete process of empowerment of the local community, which starts by bringing out the untapped potential for development in the target municipalities and ends by ensuring various options of support to the community initiatives, aimed to the implementation of this potential.
The project activities are grouped in the following several components:
I. Local potential for development
II. "Leadership in the community"
III. "Chitalishte" Laboratory
IV. Sustainable local resources for development
The project is directed towards effective policy making for sustainable community empowerment. In the project implementation period, AGORA will propose to the municipalities a set of mechanisms and models for establishment of sustainable recourses for civic participation and community development.
• The sustainability of model of empowering communities in 12 municipalities is achieved.
• Permanent local resources in support of community initiatives ensured.
• Capacity for participatory community development built and operational in the 12 target municipalities.
• Local authorities' long-term commitment to the civic activities ensured and mechanisms for civic participation in decision-making process developed and introduced.
• The local authorities' structures allocate and vote annually a municipal budget necessary for the regular operation of the funds.
• Advocacy campaigns are perceived as permanent civic instrument for local policy-making by all local stakeholders.
• The participatory model for community empowering is multiplied in other municipalities outside the project operation.
The project budget is 475 000 BGN, funded by the America for Bulgaria Foundation.
Association "Platform AGORA - Active Communities for Development Alternatives",
43 Totleben Blvd., floor 2, apt. 6, phone/fax: 02 462 7111,
Emilia Lissichkova, Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of Platform AGORA