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Invitation to ERB Members EU Offices and Representatives in Brussels 28.01.2020

The meeting will take place in:

Brussels, Belgium

Skåne European Office

Rue du Luxembourg 3

1000 Bruxelles

„Nordic House”

Planned agenda of the meeting:

28th  January 2020 Meeting with ERB Members EU Offices representatives
9.00 Welcome and introductions  
ERB in a nutshell – presentation by Magda Leszczyna-Rzucidło, Head of the International Permanent Secretariat  
EU Office’s engagement in South Baltic related tasks & initiatives; discussion on common goals for the future cooperation between the ERB and ERB Member regions EU Offices  
10.30 Coffee break  
Interreg South Baltic Programme “state-of-the-art” – outcomes of the informal Monitoring Committee Meeting on 19th Nov 2019, ERB position papers, Joint Programming Committee, future South Baltic CBC priorities etc.  
Interreg South Baltic Programme discussion on possible joint initiatives, actions and lobbying in EU institutions  
12.00 End of the meeting, joint lunch (ordered to the Office)  

Guldborgsund Municipality, together with UMBRELLA Interreg South Baltic project partners is pleased to invite you to attend the 2-day cross-border conference with EUSBSR Tourism PA panel in Sakskøbing (DENMARK) on 25th – 26TH February 2020 (from lunch-to-lunch).

The objective of the cross-border conference is to bring various tourism stakeholders that show a common interest in international cooperation in the region of the Baltic Sea together. The conference offers an excellent opportunity to learn about future trends concerning the on-going discussions on sustainable tourism in the South Baltic Sea, extending your international network, and get inspiration for future international cooperation and projects.

Preliminary Programme

Tuesday 25th February 2020 (12:00-17:00 & dinner)

Presentations and debate about future trends of sustainable tourism and the objectives in the EU Baltic Sea Strategy.

Wednesday 26th February 2020 (9:00-13:00)

Parallel workshops in the areas of:

·         Cultural / Heritage Tourism

·         Nature / Coastal Tourism

·         Food / Gastro Tourism

·         Specialised „Microactivity on cycling tourism” – The UMBRELLA project offers an opportunity for experts related to cycling tourism to develop ideas into potential projects. Please let us know specifically if you want to give a presentation about your project idea.

Registration:

Registration is now open CLICK HERE.

Conference participation is free of charge but there is a limited number of seats. Presentations will be held in English.

The venue:

The conference is taking place at Hotel Saxkjøbing in the beautiful old town of Sakskøbing in Guldborgsund Municipality. There is easy access from Copenhagen airport by car or train taking approximately 2 hours or from Germany by ferry from Puttgarden or Rostock.

For international participants, the Umbrella project offers a possibility of funding opportunities towards travelling and accommodation expenses.

Hotel Saxkjøbing // Torvet 9, 4990 Sakskøbing, Denmark // https://hotel-saxkjobing.dk/ There is a limited number of rooms at a reduced conference price of 655 DKK for standard rooms and 855 DKK for standard plus rooms. Please contact Anna Topp Gustavsen: atg@guldborgsund.dk.

The UMBRELLA project:

The event is funded by Interreg SBP Umbrella project with project partners from the South Baltic region. Read about UMBRELLA // http://umbrellaproject.eu/

For further information, please contact:

Anna Topp Gustavsen, International Coordinator, Tlf. +45 2518 0030, atg@guldborgsund.dk

On 2nd and 3rd December 2019, our Europe for Citizens project partners travelled to Gdansk, Poland, to visit us and engage in a conversation centring around the theme of Solidarity.

What is the Connect Europe project about? This project aims to connect citizens and civil society representatives with the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights. The European values are threatened with increased populism and nationalism around Europe. We want to raise awareness about the EU charter and discuss our fundamental rights as citizens of the EU. It is essential for all the partners in this project to counter these right-wing movements and instead promote a visionary and factual based discussion. In this project, we aim to take a different approach when it comes to communicating EU issues. Our strategic point of departure is starting a conversation about the common, cross-border challenges that will create a fora where common solutions can be discussed in a constructive manner. The topic of a common future is the starting point for citizens-to-citizens dialogue. This will move the discussion from a pro- or against the EU towards a more visionary, value- and fact-based discussion.

In a tour of the city we learned of the hardships, battles and historical events that had taken place in this war-tormemded city – historically a place for outside forces to claim with little disregard for the existing population. But also, a city that should come to play a profound role in the healing of Europe and fall of the communist regime.

The key to this story we found at the old shipyard. Today a peaceful sight and build in its place, the European Solidarity Center, a museum, but in earlier days a centre of deadly worker struggles, a fight for justice and – in the end – the birthplace of free trade unions in Poland. Sparks may have flown here but as it turned out, the same sparks that sprung from the suffering of suppressed workers lighted the fire of democracy and foresaw the end of communism.  

Solidarity

The European charter for fundamental rights has a chapter especially suited to converse about in this historical place, Chapter IV, Solidarity and especially Article 28:

Article 28

Right of collective bargaining and action
Workers and employers, or their respective organisations, have, in accordance with Community law and national laws and practices, the right to negotiate and conclude collective agreements at the appropriate levels and, in cases of conflicts of interest, to take collective action to defend their interests, including strike action.

Solidarity was also the name of the first free trade union in Polen, Solidarność, who’s leader, Lech Wałęsa, was later elected for president and awarded the Nobel Peace Price. But in the beginning, it was a social movement that trough civil resistance worked to ensure social change and workers rights.

A place for solidarity

European solidarity centre today houses the story of the struggles of Solidarność and the Polish struggle for democracy. This special day it also housed us, a school class of youngster who was to learn about the story as well as debating amongst themself what the idea of solidarity meant for them.

When asked to reflect upon the meaning of solidarity the students came up with many responses – it’s about teamwork, coming together, acceptance. But also, it is about power and action. The power of the many was not lost on the youth who was inspired by the stories of the past.

As Jacek Koltan, deputy director of European Solidarity Center puts it, one of the most important demands today is the need for physical spaces where we can create a sense of community and debates the struggles of today. The issues we face, such as climate changes and social division, is those of great complexity that we need to come together around if we are to find sustainable solutions.

Perhaps that is also what we need today. New spaces to reflect on our shared interest. Together we stand, divided we fall.​

See more in the video from Gdansk here:

On 11th December we have participated in the Workshop on future Pomeranian initiatives in the Interreg South Baltic 2020+ Programme organized by the Pomorskie Region contact point and Joint Secretariat.

The workshop was an opportunity to discuss the needs of beneficiaries that can be implemented in the future South Baltic 2020+ program, and their readiness to engage in new EU projects. We also had a chance to present complete UMBRELLA project offer and invite the interested stakeholders and newcomers to reach us and use our project offer.

The workshops were conducted modularly, i.e. a plenary session and a workshop part led by experienced experts. It was also an opportunity to exchange experiences and share your own thoughts on the shape of the future program, improvements in the implementation system and the scope of future projects.

We are happy to report that one of our ERB projects, where we act as a Partner – Interconnect was mentioned a few times as the “best practice” example. The #Interconnect project was noted by the moderator, Mr Adam Mikłajczyk from Pomorskie Marshal Office as an extremely creative example of a project, where intelligent use of the Interreg South Baltic Programme funds supports the implementation of the project’s main assumptions. 

For more information on workshops and the presentations from the South Baltic Programme, visit ewt.pomorskie.eu

Program of the meeting

08:00 – 08:30

Registration of meeting participants/coffee break

08:30 – 09:15

Opening of the event – Adam Mikołajczyk Director of DRRP UMWP

Summary of the Interreg South Baltic Program 2014-2020 – Dominika Butkiewicz Head of the Joint Technical Secretariat

Presentation of Umbrella project results – Magda Leszczyna – Rzucidło Head of the Euroregion Baltic Secretariat

09:15 – 09:30

Coffee break

09:30 – 14:30

Workshop part – moderators:

Workshop 1 – Joanna Przedrzymirska
Workshop 2 – Robert Mazurkiewicz
Workshop 3 – Jakub Fedorowicz
11:30 – 11:45 Coffee break
13:00 – 13:15 Coffee break
14:30 – 15:25

Workshop summary

15:25 – 15:55

Lunch

We encourage you to check our presentation regarding the UMBRELLA project!

In the Umbrella project framework, we organized this month another seminars and training on project management. The meetings on 28th Nov in Gdansk, 5th Dec in Kalmar, Sweden and on 10th Dec in Klaipeda, Lithuania.

You can still register for the meetings we will have in January and February 2020, they are all for free, but we have a limited number of places. Register using this link:
https://bit.ly/2IuFu7B

Agenda for the training on BASIC/ELEMENTARY level:

Welcome and introduction to the UMBRELLA Project Management Framework – fundamental concepts

  • UMBRELLA Framework vs. Project Life-Cycle
  • Analysing needs
  • Generating Ideas
  • Estimating Long-Term Effects
  • Problem and Objectives Tree Analysis
  • Reviewing Available Funding Programmes
  • Initiating a Project
  • How Detailed is the High-Level Planning
  • Stakeholders
  • Identifying Project Partners
  • Developing a project logical framework
  • Work Breakdown Structure
  • Main planning tools
  • Risk Management
  • Project Closure
  • Sharing the results
  • New project ideas
  • Submitting the project application
  • Developing the project logical framework

Read about our project SIA4Y  “Strengthening civil society rights by information access for European youth” both financed in terms of EU programme “Europe for citizens” (2014 – 2020) meeting on 6 and 7th Nov 2019 in Brussels.  This convention about Freedom of Information (FoI) was organised by one of the partners –  WeCitizens, in partnership with EESC and the University of Louvain, in the framework of the SIA4Y project, 14 speakers of 11 different nationalities intervened during these two half-days.

International trends

According to Ms Adlin Hulin, the promotion of freedom of expression is high on the agenda of UNESCO, which has competencies in the field of culture and education.

Transparency International actively fights against corruption. Matilde Manzi, from TI-Europe, explains the slow process of increasing protection for whistleblowers. EU Member states need to transpose a recent EU Directive and should extend its scope. They also need to decide whether anonymous denunciations of crimes are accepted.

Mrs Assya Kavrakova, from ECAS, shows that we have in 2018 an unprecedented increase in civic engagement. Taking into account that young people act differently, we should be quick enough to grasp the opportunity to enhance democracy.

Mr Alvaro Gonzalez Perez presented two initiatives of his European students federation, AEGEE: http://yvote.eu and Generation Climate Europe (http://gceurope.org). The latter fosters youth climate dialogue, in order to reach joint statements and require stronger climate change policies.

Mr Jean-Paul Pinon, CEO of WeCitizens (Belgium), insists on measures that make politicians more accountable. He also advises a general measure to increase the interest of the average citizen for politics: removing the withholding tax (the tax paid directly by the employer to the State, on account of the employee).

Mrs Rachel Hanna, from Assess Info Europe (Madrid), reminds that we must find the right balance between access to data and protection of privacy. Concerning lobby, everything should be transparent.

Mr Jean-Marie Sohier, from Sealord (Belgium), suggests that citizens set commonly accepted policy standards and investigate how politicians comply.

Country experiences

Mrs Eila Heikkilä presents the Ohjaamo system in Finland: a network of One-Stop Guidance Centers that offer support to persons under the age of 30 for various issues (career planning, life management, participation, etc.).

Ms Wilma Haan, CEO of Open State Foundation, reminds also the economic benefits of transparency by public bodies. Her Foundation publishes big databases: Open Spending (financial data of all the local governments in the Netherlands), Open ‘Poen’, Open municipality, Open multilateral, PoliFLW NL/EU.

Mr JP Pinon shows some Belgian initiatives. WeCitizens started publishing a transparency index of political parties, and a database of politicians (PoliticiansOnline.be). Among many other initiatives, the portal Transparencia.be is more directly helping citizens to access documents from public bodies.

Mrs Magda Leszczyna-Rzucidło, explains how they intend to make young people familiar with their right to know, through Youth Advisory bodies like Youth Councils, Youth Boards in various organisations including Euroregion Baltic Youth Board, also represented at this meeting by the YB Chairwoman – Ms Julia Orluk.

Mr Alexander Fanta, an investigative journalist from Netzpolitik (Berlin), gives some examples of how citizens can make an interesting investigation using access to public information. He tells that schools for journalists in his country (Austria) to not really teach the rights of such access.

Mrs Carina Paju mainly commented to initiatives of Transparency International Estonia: Transparency in capital cities (about response time) and Political party financing data.

Mr Johannes Filter, from FragdenStaat.de (Germany), says that involving people will not happen, in the first place, with a heavy investigation about corruption, but with very local questions. To get a youngster more involved in FoI, give him opportunities to find easily information he is personally interested in. FragdenStaat has a webpage allowing students to easily send requests concerning past examination questions for the General University Entrance Qualification.

Guide of good practice

Prof. S. Mrozowska and B. Kijewska, from the University of Gdansk, presented the outcome of their work about FoI, structured in three parts: (I) legal grounds, (II) youth policy and (III) examples of initiatives in the five partner countries.

You can now download our SIA4Y project Code of Good practice – “Youth access to public information. Towards a better understanding of democracy”.

To download the document click below:

SIA4Y_Code of Good Practice

The right to freedom and access to public information, enabling young people to search for and receive public documents, serves as a vital tool in the fight against corruption, facilitates full participation in public life, increases governing efficiency, encourages investment and helps enforce fundamental human rights. The openness of public authorities’ actions is an indicator of a democratic state. It is the fundamental guarantee of citizens’ trust in the state and its law, without which the harmonious functioning of society is not possible. Information on the activities of public bodies may be relevant for both the individual and the general public. Access to it is one of the essential tools enabling citizens to exercise control over those in power.

That is why it is so vital to ensure the broadest possible access to public information. At the institution level,
it means creating conditions for sharing information, and at the citizen level, the ability to exercise this right (I know how and for what). Only those young people who are informed about their rights and obligations can independently make decisions and pursue their goals as full citizens.

Visit our project website: www.civicyouth.eu

This month we’ve participated in 12h Baltic Sea Tourism Forum #BSTF in Brussels. One of the panels: Success stories of international tourism cooperation in the Baltic Sea Region was moderated by Magda Leszczyna-Rzucidło, Head of the ERB International Secretariat.

13 November 2019 | Brussels/Belgium 12th Baltic Sea Tourism Forum SHARE | INSPIRE | CREATE

Baltic Sea Tourism Forum In 2008 the then Ministry for Economy, Employment and Tourism and the Tourist Board of the German state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern initiated the first Baltic Sea Tourism Forum (Summit) which took place in Rostock / Germany. Core aims of this touristic rapprochement process were to develop forms of collaboration, which complement the countries’, and regions’ own tourism strategies in a meaningful way and give the Baltic Sea as a tourism destination a better place on the market.

Major aims are:

 Support a sustainable and balanced development of tourism and voice the interest of the tourism economy in the Baltic Sea region.

 Strengthen the sustainable and responsible cooperation of all Baltic Sea region countries and exploit the existing international development potentials more efficiently.

 Provide and secure a permanent platform for information and know-how exchange with the Baltic Sea Tourism Forum at its core for continuous collaboration on the basis of a multilevel process.

 Position the Baltic Sea as a coherent travel destination on the global tourism market and promote the area as an attractive, safe and natural destination for international travellers.

Since 2012, the annual forum is closely linked to the implementation process of Policy Area Tourism in the EU Strategy for the Baltic Sea Region. It contributes strongly to the aims of the macro-regional strategy, the revised action plan and defined actions adopted by the European Commission in 2015. Objectives of the 12th Baltic Sea Tourism Forum For the first time in the history of the annual tourism conference, the venue is located outside the Baltic Sea region – and for a good reason. With the participation of the European Union, this year’s forum aims to bring together stakeholders from the Baltic Sea region with institutions and representatives in Brussels. In the context of international cooperation successful examples from the Baltic Sea Region will be presented, suggestions for strategic and innovative approaches will be given and insights with regard to the Multiannual Financial Framework 2021-2027 provided. Inspiring keynotes on sustainability and the future of tourism will complement the agenda.

Under the motto SHARE | INSPIRE | CREATE the forum underlines the reasons for cooperation beyond national borders in a macro-regional context.

SHARE achievements, as the first session of the day, concentrates on the potentials and challenges of cross-border work by focusing on the overarching macro-regional strategies as well as on examples of interregional project initiatives. The exchange on experiences and future needs aims at helping to clarify commonalities as well as emphasising the advantages of sustainable cooperation at macro-regional level.

A more detailed insight on innovative approaches will be given in the session INSPIRE partners. BSR tourism market data & trends and international product & service development can mean long-term benefits for the tourism sector in the BSR and should be considered as an imperative when positioning the tourism industry on international level.

In terms of the new multiannual financial framework of the EU for the period 2021-2027, the third session is dedicated to CREATE perspectives. The new EU funding period will not just affect international cooperation, as it influences the funds available in programmes such as Interreg, but will also define thematic priorities of EU policy. A comprehensive outlook will provide a better understanding of how conditions need to be adjusted for the future of BSR tourism cooperation.

Date and Venue Renaissance Brussels Hotel // Rue du Parnasse 19, 1050 Brussels, Belgium www.marriott.com/hotels/travel/brubr-renaissance-brussels-hotel Contact point of the BSTF Baltic Sea Tourism Center Johannes Volkmar // j.volkmar@auf-nach-mv.de // +49 381 40 30 663 Anne Vollerthum // a.vollerthum@auf-nach-mv.de // +49 381 40 30 653

Presentations

Michael Cramer, MdEP
Asa Bjering, Baltic Sea Commission
Anna Pollock, Conscious.travel
Maciej Hofman, DG EAC | European Commission

Session 1: SHARE achievements

Blanka Belosevic, EUSAIR
Magda Leszczyna-Rzuidlo, Euroregion Baltic
Tomasz Naprawski, Baltic Museum: Love IT!
Ira Lahovuo, Archipelago Access
Niclas Fjellström, Baltic Sea Food
Constanze Metzger, Routes4U

Session 2: INSPIRE partners

Prof. Björn P. Jacobsen | Tjark Schlegel | Christopher Blank, University of Applied Sciences Stralsund
Karin Melbye Holm, Danish Tourism Innovation

Session 3: CREATE perspectives

Ramune Genzbigelyte-Venturi, DG Grow | European Commission
Joanna Mouliou, DG Regio | European Commisison
Andrea Krabbe, PAC Tourism (EUSBSR)
Lidija Bajaruniene, Ministry of Economy and Innovation of the Republic of Lithuania

We recommend visiting #BSTC profile: Balticsea.travel for inspiration on your future journeys.

#sustainabletourism #SouthBalticSea

Do you have a concrete project idea that you would like to submit in upcoming call for proposals? Umbrella project gives you the opportunity to “Rent-an-Expert”!

How does it work?

A pre-selected Expert will support you in assessing and developing a complete project application in your organisation:

  • Providing information on the application procedure
  • Tailoring project ideas
  • Helping to find partners
  • Developing part of the application- Budget
  • Developing part of the application- Description of the activities

All you have to do to apply for this service is to fill in the project framework we prepared for you (you can download it below). Your project ideas will be collected and categorized; later on, the most suitable expert from our “Pool of experts” will be assigned to your organization and single meetings for project development will be scheduled.

Download our Project idea form

If you would like to apply to receive Umbrella’s support, please fill in the form  Umbrella_project_idea  and send it by email to the Umbrella’s partner competent for your territory: http://umbrellaproject.eu/partners/

N.B.  We do not substitute the EU Programme’s Contact Points. We do not only provide consultations, but we aim at transferring knowledge to help our stakeholders to become independent in future cross-border cooperation.

Join us for the Umbrella project management training in Telsiai on 22nd November 2019. 

You can register to his training, as well as all the others (in Lithuania, Sweden, Poland and Denmark) using this registration link: https://bit.ly/2IuFu7B

You can choose the training on the following dates and cities:

  1. 21/10: National training in Kristianstad (SE)- Basic
  2. 28/10: National training in Chojnice (PL)- Basic
  3. 28/11: National training in Gdansk (PL)- Advanced
  4. 22/11: National training in Telsiai (LT)- Basic
  5. 04/12: National training in Ringsted (DK)- Basic
  6. 05/12: National training in Kalmar (SE)- Basic
  7. 10/12: National training in Klaipeda (LT)- Advanced
  8. 10/01: National training in Alvesta (SE)- Advanced
  9. 24/01: National training in Elbląg (PL)- Basic
  10. 28/01: National training in Nida (LT)- Basic
  11. 20/02: National training in Roskilde (DK)- Basic

All the material for the training are available on our Moodle platform here: https://umbrellainterreg.moodle.school/login/index.php

Simply register and use them for free!

The content of this website is the sole responsibility of the author and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Union, the Managing Authority or the Joint Secretariat of the South Baltic Cross-border Cooperation Programme 2014-2020. The project UMBRELLA is partly financed from the Interreg South Baltic Programme 2014-2020 through the European Regional Development Fund.