“EcoPiriDay” has been organised by the IVY volunteers Simona di Costanzo, Clémentine Zill and Hélène Champloy in Jaca, Spain. It has been centred on ecology, recycling and inclusion in the Pyrenees and showcased five projects taking place in the region thanks to the support of the Interreg programme POCTEFA.

 

The event has gathered many local citizens and successfully informed them about topics like the protection of natural resources or how to limit climate change, while exploring  how innovation and inclusion keep bringing sustainable development in the Prenees.

The attendants have also had the chance to taste local products and to contribute to ecology in the town and learn about the many initiatives realised by local actors from Spain, Andorra and France to improve the environment together.

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"Camino de Swingtiago" has been a genuine initiative to dive into the authentic Northwestern Spanish culture. It has combined the spirit of the Camino with music and movement. Held between the 8th and the 9th of June, Ithe event has been organized by the ex IVY volunteer Maria Trinidad Giner and it has been an occasion to discover the city of Lugo, but also to learn what has been done at a local and regional level thanks to European funds.

 

Cohesion Policy has helped improve the city's architectural, historical and cultural life. With quizzes and games, "Camino di Swingtiago" has informed about the use of Cohesion Policy's funds and accompanied participants along the primitive path of St. James' way. The event has also included discussions, excursions in the nature, and, of course, swing dance sessions.

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Naujoji Akmenė goes global!

 

This year, the city of Naujoji Akmenė celebrated its 70th birthday! Since its foundation, the city has greatly changed in a positive way throughout the years, especially thanks to the support of the EU Cohesion policy.

 

To mark this milestone, engage people and showcase the positive impact of the EU, from the 12th to the 15th of August a "birthday-week" celebration accompanied the local citizens in an immersive experience throughout the city's history and its tranformations.

 

Sport competitions, youth engagement activities and public discussions, "world caffee" meetings and concerts, helped to display what has been done at a local level thanks to European funds...in an interactive and fun way!

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DisCoVeR – Discovering and canoeing on the Venta river

On Tuesday 13th August 2019, the Venta Regional Park was the venue of a fantastic event dedicated to disadvantaged people of different nationalities: citizens from Latvia and Lithuania, indeed, had the chance to canoeing together on the Venta river, discovering its hidden treasures and learning more about the importance of the Latvian-Lithuanian joint management of its ecosystem and natural resources.

 

The final stop of the river-tour is set in the Lithuanian village of Santekliai, where a public talk about cooperation between the two countries and the benefits of EU Cohesion policy took place.

Special attention was dedicated to the youth and employment opportunities for the local citizens.

 

“DisCoVer-Discovering and canoeing on the Venta river” was a perfect occasion to unite different people, enjoy the natural wonders and get to know better what the European Union does at a local level!

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WILDArt Majella

The goal of WILDArt Majella was to promote European cooperation by bringing together local communities and artists from all over Europe to promote cultural exchange and enhance local development in the Italian region of Abruzzo.

 

Through art, it was shown to people how valuable local nature and rural areas are and how the European Union and a wide variety of Interreg projects are supporting their way of living.

 

Through workshops, presentations, craft stations, a vernissage and local food tasting, people was  introduced to the wonders of Majella National Park and discovered more on the benefits of EU Cohesion Policy.

ActivArte

This innovative event took place in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. The organisers informed about the possibilities to encourage development in the Canary Islands which are promoted by the Programme INTERREG MAC.

 

The Interreg project “MACAROFOOD“ served as an example to illustrate how cooperation among local producers and entrepreneurs has helped promote typical products, creating chances for to better access labour market to the local population.

 

The event offered a platform to share ideas, learn about opportunities and start new entrepreneurial projects. Let’s share experiences, get inspiration and motivation for future projects - this is a great opportunity to build new collaboration

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A European Corner 

Every year the “European Cooperation Day” is celebrated all over Europe on the 21st of September.
Is there a better opportunity to talk about solidarity and cooperation? During the main event organised by the Interreg V-A Italy-Slovenia Programme in Divača, a real “European corner” was set up by a team of four IVYs. 

 

There, families and children met to discover more about the benefits of the EU Cohesion Policy in the cross-border area...in a funny way! In fact, they had the chance to take instant photos with a European frame and get some gadgets while exchanging ideas on the real meaning of cooperation.

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SeaBeyondBorders

It was a two-day event to discover inspiring cooperation projects about the Baltic Sea and become a real protagonist of the sustainable development of this region. Participants came to the  conference organised by our IVY volunteer Barbara Favaro and they got to know cross-border and transnational projects around the Baltic Sea;

 

- They watched  “A Plastic Ocean” film and got aware of the marine litter issue;

- They explored “A Deeper Dive” art project, which with they got inspired by the sounds of the sea and found out what was their impact;

- They took Action and participated in a beach clean-up!

The goal of the activity was to show the benefits and the good results achieved thanks to territorial cooperation in the German-Danish border regions and in the broader South Baltic Sea Region in regard to environmental protection and sustainable development of the Baltic Sea coastal areas.

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Insect Respect

Insect Respect, organised by our IVY volunteer Helena Hieke, provided the opportunity to get hands-on experience about how to contribute to keeping insect biodiversity in our focus!

 

Participants learned how important insects are for our everyday life and how we can protect them. Everybody built their own insect hotel, which they could take with them to provide the insects in their garden with a home! All the information was provided, also regarding information about EU funded projects on nature conservation.

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Respect Nature

Respect Nature, organised by our IVY volunteer Hanna Ollos, brought locals in the countryside of Austria together with organisations that were, with support of the Cohesion Policy, actively helping to protect local nature. Nature is a constant source of inspiration for us all.

 

"Respect Nature" inspired and motivated participants to actively engage in preserving the environment. After presentations and interactive workshop exercises to lay the groundwork, the team went on a field trip to put things directly into practice. At the end of the activity, each participant had a better understanding of why it is important to treat nature respectfully, and how to do it.

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Whispering of the trees

In “Whispering of the trees”, organised by our IVY volunteer Helena Hieke, students attended workshops and a field trip into one of the most valuable UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Germany, the Grumsin forest.

 

Participants delved deep into how to open all their senses and be present in nature and how to develop a story based upon personal impressions in this ancient forest. They also learned how the EU Cohesion Policy supports its protection through various projects currently under implementation in the region.

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Nature experience

This CEA, brought local communities, nature specialists and outdoor enthusiasts from different regions of Europe together in Bulgaria to promote local development, solidarity and support the safeguarding of local nature and in this case with wild rivers. Goals of the European Cohesion Policy is to support social inclusion, better education and training, alongside combating climate change and nature protection.

 

With this CEA, Hanna Ollos wanted to contribute to these goals, by creating a Nature Experience Workshop for the exchange of ideas, experiences and knowledge on nature conservation both in an indoor and outdoor environment between locals, experts and nature enthusiasts, while also highlighting the different ways in which the European Cohesion Policy is contributing to this.

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Franco-German Forum of Strasbourg 

The trade fair specializing in Franco-German higher education, brings together more than 120 exhibitors each year in a single venue, including around 100 higher education institutions, institutions and companies, France, Germany, Luxembourg, Switzerland, Belgium and Austria in particular.

 

Jules Stiffler, an IVY volunteers attended it and provided everyone with an insight into the benefits of the EU Cohesion Policy with pleasure!

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Una Europa Infinita

In the framework of the European Cooperation Day, our IVY volunteer Sara Pettinelli together with Interreg Sudeo organised this event in Cantabria University, where the participants discussed how to improve communication of European projects and later, those debates were the subject of a paper which was circulated among EU stakeholders.

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Hornad Wild River Cleaning

This CEA organised by our IVY volunteers Jonas Sommer and Hanna Ollos, displayed a free environmental film, followed by a bilingual discussion (Slovakian and English) about sustainable waste management, the value of Hornad river and the importance of clean rivers.

 

Participants learned more about the European Cohesion Policy, how it is supporting local development and what projects are helping to improve their lives.

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Discover Beech Symposium

Our volunteer Rebecca Hollely organised an interactive symposium around the theme of beech forests, with local speakers from several EU environmental projects, and international guest speakers from the European Beech Forest Network. There were workshops and open dialogue about the current situation of beech forests, and case studies from many European regions. They shared stories, experiences, good practices, and solutions to real problems faced in the forests, and engage in lively discussions about the future of beech forest and the role that cohesion policy plays in its continuance.

On the second day, they visited the beech forest Grumsin, which is an internationally important forest. They were guided through the forest and had the opportunity to reinforce and experience everything they discussed during the first day.

 

They finished informed and inspired to make positive changes for beech forests!

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Beyond Borders: A Transnational Climate Activism Workshop for European Youth

Young people came from Slovenia and its surrounding countries (Hungary, Croatia, Italy, and Austria), representing not only themselves, but also the movements and organizations with which they are associated, to share ideas, successes, failures, and gaps of knowledge, as well as problem solve and build lasting connections for future collaboration.

The goal of the workshop was first and foremost to inform participants about the long-term commitment and investment the EU has made towards environment and climate change, specifically through the lens of past and current projects, like Interreg and LIFE Programme for Environment and Climate Action.

 

A second goal was to inform participants about the relevancy and importance of forestry in the mitigation of climate change.

The third and final goal was to provide participants, specifically those from youth movements and organizations, with the opportunity to develop their potential and success as environmental advocates.

Moreover, in the framework of this Citizens' Engagement Activity (CEA), the participants created a powerful manifesto, urging people and institutions all over Europe to sensitize and take actions against climate change. You can access the manifesto here.

If you want to support this manifesto with your signature, please contact us at ivy@aebr.eu and we are happy to put you in touch with Laura Schubert, the organiser of the CEA.

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Bridging the gap

Through ‘Bridging the gap’ our IVY volunteer Leona Herrmann invited the rural agricultural and urban communities to meet and develop ideas together to find better and long-lasting ways to cooperate, becoming inspired by leading examples of support from the European Cohesion Policy.

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RECAVACA

Caribbean Cocoa Celebration (or “Journée Cacao Caribéen - projet RECAVACA” in French) has been organised to celebrate the achievements of the EU funded project RECAVACA.

 

It was also an opportunity to show the public what the EU Regional Cohesion Policy has allowed the association, Association Guadeloupe Equitable et Durable, to do in Guadeloupe and Haiti and invite new people to get involved in the development of cocoa in the Caribbean.

Furthermore, they launched the next phase of the project.

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Capturing Beech Forests

Our IVY Cristina Lemo organised a photo collection and exhibition about beech forests to show the biodiversity around Europe and how this diversity is connected thanks to European Cohesion Policy.

 

The vernissage of the exhibition included an open discussion and gathering between experts and citizens about the importance of collaboration, the threats and the actual situation of beech forests in Europe.

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Wildlife tracking

Through ‘Wildlife tracking with locals’ our IVY volunteer Hanna Ollos, invited local citizens to join us for the active outdoor wildlife tracking workshop and learn about the different projects that contribute to nature conservation in the Triglav region through the support from the European Cohesion Policy

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Youth for Future

Representatives from 20 different youth organizations from Lithuania and Latvia took part in this workshop in Balsiai Summer Camp to create a network of youth who will become ambassadors of Interreg in Akmene District and in Latvia Auce District.

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Kreativ Wald

Children and youth from Angermünde gathered together to raise their awareness of their unique natural environment and understand its importance in an active and inspiring way

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Bringer Europe Closer to Nature

The goal of this activity was to spread the message of the EU Cohesion Policy in the areas of nature and wildlife citizens passionate about nature and local schools. The quiz covered topics such as nature conservation projects funded by the EU, protected species under the Habitats Directive, and ways citizens can get involved with environmental issues in the EU, e.g. Freiwillige Ökologisches Jahr (Voluntary Ecological Year). The goal of the quiz was to make people aware of the role of the Cohesion Policy in projects that combat climate change, protect nature, and promote biodiversity.

 

Check it out here

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Cooperation as a driver for sustainable development

Our former volunteer Giuseppe Macca presented this CEA with the idea of promoting the concept of territorial cooperation and its Interreg programs and link it with the idea of a sustainable future, not only from an environmental perspective but also from a social one. The event was thought to be blended physical and digital to reach the local community and the global one.

SDGs represent a pillar of present and future development, becoming a trending topic also to the for-profit sector. How are cohesion policies related to SDGs? How do these programs foster international development and what impact do they have?

This event had the goal to answer these questions and spread them to a wide public rather them constraining them to a niche.

Giuseppe created this structure setting up monthly events, hosting different IVYs around Europe to share their story and their contents.

ActivArte 2.0

Following the frame of “Craft & Art” project Interreg MAC Cooperation Program, our former IVY volunteer Marion Charret, created “ActivArte 2.0“project, an original concept proposing a continuity of the previous CEA event “ActivArte” (held in Gran Canaria in August 2019).

In this edition Marion gathered different artists and handcrafters to propose a photo serial with colors paint and artistic chocolate illustrating cohesion, solidarity and cooperation.

With the hands, arms of models, colors and accessories; the serial showed the power of cohesion, collaboration and union. The paint made the union between the different members. The creative chocolate also represented things that we share; some of them material, others invisible; but all of them useful to grew up and build new projects together. 

After networking in “ActivArte” and create synergies; this was a new concrete action.

This project is unique and propose an original result that boosted each professional and created network. As a a follow up, it has a strong cooperation impact. The team counted with European persons from UK, France, Spain.

There was space for creativity and new techniques, collaboration teamwork and communication skills.

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Online Interreg Treasure Hunt

In this 4-days online event, participants had to solve puzzles, complete creative tasks and correctly answer questions about Cohesion Policy in Europe, Interreg projects in Klaipeda, and other topics. These questions encouraged people to search for information about Cohesion Policy online.

The winners were selected according to the speed, the accuracy and originality of the answers. Gintare created a zoom event where she explained a little bit more about the EU, Cohesion policy and Interreg projects. There was time dedicated for questions and discussion with the participants. At the end of this online award ceremony, winners were announced.

“PROMO-MED”: Promoting Silver Tourism through a MED-Diet Seminar and Workshop

15/05 - 16/05/2021

The event combined a seminar about Agro-food and tourism sector and an Interactive Q&A debate among the participants. Following, there was a workshop called “Cooking with Med Products – A New Chemistry” where traditional chefs explained the benefits of the Mediterranean ingredients in the preparation of Med recipes and they will also cook certain plates live, in cooperation with the participants, following the Covid-19 safety regulation guidelines. The 2nd day there was a training day during which, guidelines was given about the promotion activity of the EC Territorial Cooperation, as the participants will be guided to act as multipliers and use their personal and professional channels for public awareness.

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CEA Students' Lab

15/05 - 16/05/2021

In this online CEA, students from Molise Region in Italy will have the opportunity to discover more about cohesion and cooperation in Europe, and express themselves on this topic! They will be part of a workshop on EU policies and they will develop the concept for a future event that will inform and promote Cohesion Policy and territorial cooperation. 

 

All this will be possible thanks to the IVY programme, with the support of the former IVY Milena, within the CEA initiative!

ClimArte: exploring Climate Change and the Cohesion Policy through contemporary art

07/06 - 25/06/2021

Through engaging presentations and art workshops in 3 different schools, our volunteer Julia showed the young generation of La Manchuela area in Spain, how important it is to mitigate climate change, to live and farm sustainable in rural areas and how the European Cohesion Policy through a variety of Interreg projects and Regional Development Funds is supporting the region in its efforts.

GO-ORGANIC

10/07 - 11/07/2021

Organic Food is healthy food for all.  Do you have an idea, project, or innovative initiative related to organic agriculture?  Come to this seminar organised by the IVY volunteer Dimitris Sgourdos, visit their site, and get acquainted with the most innovative projects and initiatives related to organic agriculture which are financed by the EC Territorial Cooperation Programmes.

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Europe 4us

07- 10 /08/2021

This Cea “EUROPE 4US”was organized in Marathonas, Greece, aiming to promote achievements and benefits of the European Cohesion Policy for Civilians, in tourism. During this event, all the four days we were dedicated to emphasize projects and good practices, financed by European Structural Funds (part of the Cohesion Policy), regarding tourism in the EU and especially in Attica, Greece. 

Introductory presentation on EU cohesion policy and the Interreg programme

13/10/2021

Are you aware of any European project taking place in your region or city? What impact do they have on your local community?

This CEA offers you the opportunity to discuss citizens’ engagement in EU cohesion policy. In between state-of-the-art and future perspective, speakers and public will engage in a conversation on the role of citizens in decision-making related to the use of EU structural funds in their communities. A special session will be dedicated to Interreg, its opportunities for community development, and its citizens’ engagement dimension.

This CEA has been organized in an hybrid form, in Brussels and online.

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“FAME EUROPE”: Food, Art, Movement and Energy, a holistic approach of cultural, naturalistic, economic and social aspects of Europe.

16-17 /10/2021

This CEA is named “FAME EUROPE” and its main goal is to engage young stakeholders (from 15-30 years old) into discussing the added value of Cohesion Policy in their home town and region and understanding how the European Cohesion Policy is improving citizens’ quality of life, supporting local and traditional businesses increasing competitiveness in globalized market, creating integrated, modern and customized tourism offers for different target tourists based on naturalistic and cultural heritage, developing a network of economic and institutional stakeholders. 

“Join a seminar to learn about Cohesion Policy and its impact to individuals. Come to our hometown to see the benefits yourself in front of your eyes !!!”

This event took place in Aigion, Greece.

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Molise in miniatura

14-15 /10/2021

This CEA is the second part of the “CEA Students' lab”, workshop organized on the 24th - 27th of May 2021, following  the ideas developed by the high school students from Liceo Linguistico and Liceo Socio-ecomonico in Guglionesi, for promoting Cohesion Policy in Molise.
 

During the 1st CEA, students have been introduced to Choesion Policy, starting from concrete achievements and projects developed in Molise region.

Students have developed the idea of a CEA called “Molise in miniatura”, for  increasing awareness on Cohesion Policy starting from showing the achievements and actions developed within the project “Sustainable Tourism” (under the Interreg Med programme), currently running in Molise and aiming at moving from a mass tourism, which has a deep impact on Mediterranian landscapes, economies and societies, to a more sustainable and responsible tourism.

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The fourth decade of Interreg in Galicia

25 /10/2021

This Citizens’ Engagement Activity represents a multi-level conversation concerning failures and successes of Interreg from the scope of the autonomous region of Galicia and its Euroregion, while also presenting the new 2021-2027 framework. Its conclusions shall serve as a preparation for the upcoming Conference on the Future of Europe.

 

A two-hour long online-only round table about the history of the Interreg programme, as well as the new framework coming into place, combined with a virtual interactive platform.

 

The topics did include 1) Interreg milestones and success stories in Galicia, 2) the new framework and opportunities 2021-2027, and 3) a discussion over its future, which is to result in a document of conclusions for the Conference on the Future of Europe, a month prior to its second and third sessions of citizens’ panels.

 

Each topic was combined presentation and debate, and span for approximately 30 minutes, with another half an hour four public involvement.

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