The process of building an effective and democratic municipal sector in Ukraine is greatly aided by the sharing of international best practices. Municipalities in Canada, through FCM, have a critical role to play in Ukraine and internationally. They have renowned expertise in local governance, local economic development and the provision of services, with a recognized track record in delivering quality technical assistance. Recognising this expertise, the Government of Canada has been partnering with FCM for over 30 years, co-funding their international development projects in 27 countries of the world, relying on the municipal sector as its source of expertise. The start of FCM’s involvement in Ukraine dates back to 2010 with the start of the Municipal Local Economic Development (MLED) project and continues with the current PLEDDG project.
12 Canadian municipal partners – 10 municipalities and 2 associations – applied and were selected from a pool of candidates to participate in the PLEDDG Project. Below is a list of partners that have already signed Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) with FCM:
- Association of Manitoba Municipalities (AMM)
- Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association (SUMA)
- City of Abbotsford, BC
- City of Edmonton, AB
- City of London, ON
- City of Toronto, ON
- City of Vaughan, ON
- City of Yorkton, SK
- Strathcona County, AB
- Town of Paradise, NL
These Canadian partner municipalities are members of FCM. They have the interest and commitment to volunteer their human resources, share experiences and form partnerships with PLEDDG municipalities in Ukraine. Municipal experts from these Canadian municipalities – elected officials, managers, economic development officers – and representatives from the business community are mobilized to work with Ukrainian colleagues to devise solutions to various municipal challenges. Canadian municipalities support Ukrainian counterparts through a variety of ways: by offering training sessions, workshops, participating in seminars and conferences and by hosting study visits within Canada. The ultimate goal of such technical assistance is to strengthen Ukrainian officials’ capacity to analyze, formulate and implement effective policies for the common benefit of their community.
Canadian municipal partners provide in-kind support and are not financially compensated for their participation in the PLEDDG project.
How do Canadian partners benefit from their linkage with Ukrainian counterparts? Involvement with partner municipalities overseas broadens their perspective, both on personal and professional levels. It enables the municipalities and individuals to learn from their colleagues in Ukraine and to have a measurable, positive impact on the development and economic growth in their region. It also contributes to building partnership relations between cities in Canada and Ukraine.