From 30 to 31 August, THE URBACT programme “Volunteering Cities +” carried out a Viļānu voluntary group experience exchange trip to Agia municipality in Greece. In total, municipalities from five countries are participating in this project: Latvia (Viļāni, Rezekne municipality), Portugal, Slovakia, Greece and Cyprus, which is the leading partner of the project.
In order to draw knowledge and know the experience of Greece (the municipality of Agias) in the field of volunteering, as well as to tell about his work within the framework of this project, Irina Klimanova, Zoja Žugunova, Sandis Mesters, League Erte and project manager Inta Rimšāne went on an exchange of experience.
On the first day, the participants were presented with THE UN Sustainable Development Goals and methods of using these objectives in their work and preparing new project applications. The participants analysed THE UN strategy, which is implemented as from 2015, and the objectives set out in it, which are expected to be implemented by 2030. Each country shared knowledge of how these objectives are implemented in the local government.
Representatives of the municipality of Agias talked about their projects and challenges arising during the implementation of the “Volunteering Cities +” project. One of these projects was the restoration of Agias Castle ruins, where the works are carried out by local government volunteers and university students.
Viļānu participants enjoyed working in groups when delegations talked about the experience, problems, benefits and future activities of their local government. New measures were planned to be implemented until the end of the project in December, as well as discussions on how the knowledge gained during the project could be used in the future, including new cooperation projects.
Overall, the journey was very sincere and rich with new knowledge. The participants were able to explore forms of volunteering in the local government of other countries. This will help improve the understanding of volunteering also IN THE Viļānu association, which is currently actively working on the establishment of advisory councils.
League Erte, Viļānu Association of Government Procurement
Photo: Inta Rimšāne