Fostering cooperation among Mediterranean regions for sustainable development
My name is Quentin, I am 26 and I am currently volunteering as an Interreg Project Partner for the Conference of Peripheral Maritime Regions (CPMR) in Rennes (France). More specifically, I am part of the CPMR’s Intermediterranean Commission (IMC).
Its members are the regions of the Mediterranean countries, from Europe (Albania, Cyprus, France, Greece, Italy, Malta and Spain) as well as from the southern shore (Morocco and Tunisia). Therefore, the IMC defends their interests before the EU institutions, as we recently did through the publication of a study about the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the tourism sector in the Mediterranean, including recommendations for a sustainable recovery.
In parallel with this political chapter, we work on Interreg Med projects, such as the Mediterranean Biodiversity Protection Community (MBPC) project, whose aims is to create synergies between local authorities, businesses, stakeholders and citizens from different countries to protect and restore marine or wetland ecosystems. Then, I am also part of the WINTER MED project, which fosters a sustainable and year-round tourism on Mediterranean islands.
At the beginning, I must admit that I was a little bit worried about this volunteering, given that I am based in my native area and that I am used to working abroad. Then, due to the COVID-related situation, I am mostly doing home office. Hence, I thought I could not really enjoy this experience, but the truth is that, being daily collaborating and exchanging with very varied partners in different countries, I feel like I am not just stuck at home, but like I am flying over the Mediterranean basin, having an impact on its ecosystems.
Then, regarding my professional expectations, this IVY experience gives me the opportunity to know more about European projects and cooperation, as well as it gets me in touch with many projects and partners around the Mediterranean.