January 29, 2019 a start-up conference dedicated to the launch of the project "Networking for Improvement of Job Opportunities in the Rural Areas of the Mogilev Oblast" (hereinafter the Project), funded by the European Union and implemented by the Slavgorod, Bykhov, Klichev, Krasnopole and Cherikov District Executive Committees and the International Foundation for Rural Development was held in the city of Slavgorod, Mogilev region.
The conference was inaugurated by Konstantin Zhigutsky, the Chairman of the Slavgorod District Executive Committee; Mr. Berend de Groot, the head of Coperation of the Delegation of the European Union to Belarus; Tatiana Kononchuk, the Chairperson of the Standing Commission on Environment, Natural Resources and Chernobyl Catastrophe of the House of Representatives of the National Assembly of the Republic of Belarus; Dmitry Kharitonchik, the Chairman of the Mogilev Regional Council of Deputies. In welcoming words, the speakers noted the significance of this event, the importance and uniqueness of the project to improve the sustainability of the Mogilev region rural development.
Sergey Tarasyuk, the Director of the International Foundation for Rural Development presented the project content. In particular, he noted: "The project goal aiming to increase employment and self-employment of more than 1.5 thousand people is a very ambitious goal! However, thanks to the productive cooperation of the districts during the previous years, the overall support of the Mogilev Region Executive Committee, the high level of cooperation of the five Executive Committees, non - profit organizations and the public of these areas and, more than that, the EU resources - this goal is achievable".
The key to the project success is the Regional Council for support of local initiatives in the field of sustainable development, thanks to this, seven districts of the Mogilev region cooperate today. Alexey Polovikov, the Chairman of the Regional Council, the Deputy Chairman of the Klichev District Executive Committee, noted that the Regional Council is a new pilot format of public-private partnership for sustainable development, uniting local authorities, business and the public. He drew attention to the fact that by cooperating it becomes easier to develop their competitive advantages, and the key to successful interaction is trust and openness towards each other.
Tatiana Kononchuk highlighted the need to integrate the project activities with the plans of socio-economic development of the districts and with a set of measures for the implementation of a number of state programs. In this regard, the representatives of the Ministry of Economy of the Republic of Belarus and the Economy Committee of the Mogilev Region Executive Committee noted the importance of the interaction of the project with the state programs’ activities, in particular the creation of business incubators for the development of entrepreneurship and self-employment.
While discussing, Mr. Berend de Groot stressed the crucial role of the initiative in local development and the need for its support by local authorities, the observance of inclusion rules and the interaction of all participants from the population to enterprises in local development. He emphasized that it is essential to remember and take into account the consequences of the Chernobyl catastrophe.
The conference was attended by the representatives of the Belarus Support Programme and the EU initiative "Mayors for Economic Growth", who noted the high involvement of the Mogilev region into the project activity. Thus, activities for the regional sustainable development strategies elaboration will be held this year at the beginning of the February in the Bykhov and Klichev districts with the support of the Dortmund International Educational Center.
Before the conference closing Mr. Berend de Groot together with Natalia Efremenko, coordinator of the EU project "Mayors for Economic Growth" in Belarus, awarded the Klichev and Bykhov districts with diplomas of the European network "Mayor for Economic Growth".
The conference was also attended by the representatives of the international programs and projects, as well as the representatives of local authorities and the public of the Bykhov, Krasnopole, Klichev, Slavgorod and Cherikov districts of the Mogilev region, where the project is planned to be implemented. The event was also attended by the representatives of the Khotimsk and Krichev districts of the Mogilev region, where it is possible to spread the experience of the project.
Within the framework of the Conference, a thematic photo exhibition "Local Initiatives - a Key Factor in Improving Local Sustainable Development" was organized, where the project’s participating regions presented successful practices of the local initiatives implemented previously.
Project "Networking for Improvement of Job Opportunities in the Rural Areas of the Mogilev Oblast" (NEAR-TS/2017/391-411). The project is funded by the European Union, registered in the database of programs and projects of the international technical assistance on December 7, 2018, № 2/18/000948.
For more information you can contact Alexander Drozdov, project coordinator, tel: +375 29 331-90-25 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org or PR-specialists: Martinovich Irina in Slavgorod tel: +375 (44) 780-79-45, or email: email@example.com or Kononchuk Anastasiya in Minsk tel: +375 (29) 197-64-20, or email: firstname.lastname@example.org.