Джерело: Meaningful City Hub
On July 2, a Memorandum of Partnership was signed between the Meaningful City NGO Network and the Vinnytsia City Council, during which government and public representatives agreed to establish a platform for dialogue, cooperation, and close communication on the city’s development.
The memorandum envisions cooperation in the following areas: interaction on the community-authorities level, the development of civil society in Vinnytsia, and the search for global meanings for the development of the city. The main principles to be followed by the signatories of the Memorandum are the recognition and observance of human rights, justice, tolerance, gender equality, political impartiality, non-discrimination, and recognition of diversity.
As part of the Memorandum, it was agreed to establish a Partnership Council, which should include 5 representatives of NGOs and 5 representatives of the City Council. This collegial body shall convene regularly, at least 4 times a year, to exchange information, synchronize plans, and intentions to find common points of cooperation for the development of the city.
The parties also agreed on the following joint activities:
- holding forums, educational events, discussions, debates, consultations, round tables, workshops, conferences, social and cultural events, etc.;
- conducting public consultations on ways to solve various problems of the city;
- involve the public in the development of urban programs;
- mutual support in the organization and implementation of projects within the Partnership.
“Our city is lucky. We have a very strong civil society. It is important to involve this expert potential in the development of the city through participation in the development of urban programs and projects, as well as by attracting additional funding through international organizations. The next step after signing the Memorandum should be a meeting of the Partnership Council, and the first important topic for discussion we suggest are the tools for citizen participation in the decision-making process. This will be the foundation for further effective cooperation,” comments Olena Danilova, head of the Meaningful City NGO Network.
The text of the Memorandum was developed by the members of the Meaningful City Hub and representatives of the CE City Development Institute with the participation of experts and with the support of the international technical assistance project “Partnership for Local Economic Development and Democratic Governance” (PLEDDG). Representatives of NGOs that participate in the Hub and are members of the coordination council also took part in the signing of the Memorandum: Halyna Seheda, representative of the NGO Podillia Regional Development Agency, Yuriy Stepanets, head of the NGO Nashe Podillia, and the Director of the Department of Legal Policy and Quality Liudmyla Hryhoruk.
Vinnytsia already has significant and successful experience of cooperation between the city council and civil society organizations: the latter have initiated the Community for Equality program in the city, the adoption of the e-Democracy Concept, and the program “Vinnytsia, a comfortable community for the elderly” is under public discussion. Also, the public was actively involved in the development of the Integrated Development Concept “Vinnytsia 2030”.
Another successful case of cooperation between the authorities and the public is the Meaningful City Hub, which has in operation since the beginning of 2018, and is used by public organizations, charitable foundations, initiative groups, activists, and authorities to hold events, and acts as a platform for discussion of urban development. It was on the basis of the HUB that the NGO Network Meaningful City was created, that unites 42 civil society organizations today, and is accepting new members.