For the first time, 30 initiative groups from 30 rural communities, after participating in the Youth Leadership Academy and a set of trainings on identifying problems, solutions, and creating partnerships, developed a community vision with opportunities for youth. The vision of young people focused on the development of 4 basic pillars: valuing community resources, mobilizing local leaders, promoting volunteering and encouraging young entrepreneurs.
Together with LPA representatives and community stakeholders, the 30 initiative groups from 30 partner communities developed a community action plan for the next 4 years (2021-2025) and came up with concrete solutions to the problems young people face in rural areas. The solutions were presented as small grant projects by the 30 initiative groups. In this process, young people from the partner communities managed to involve local authorities, stakeholders and the community. So far, the initiative groups managed to collect funds for their projects in the amount of 609,245 MDL lei ($35,800), of which 528,000 MDL lei ($31,020) – LPA contribution, 81,245 MDL lei ($4,780) – community and Diaspora contribution. The fundraising campaign will last until August 2021.
“During the activities of the project “Youth Empowerment Program” I learned to express my point of view and identify solutions to solve problems in my community. I became an involved young woman.” – Maria Pana, member of the initiative group from Valeni, district of Cahul.
“The process of developing a community vision and an action plan was a more than welcome exercise to help young people plan and frame the activities they want to initiate in their communities.” – Veronica Garbuz, representative of NGO Mostenitorii, Balti town.
The youth initiatives will solve more issues young people identified in their community, such as lack of outdoor educational and recreational spaces, conditions for sports activities, green recreation areas and youth parks, Youth Centers, outdoor gazebos. The implementation of the proposed projects will create conditions and opportunities for young people to develop healthy skills, will promote volunteering and will develop leadership among youth in the community. Thus, young people will feel part of the community, part of the decision-making process, becoming agents of change in their community.
“Thanks to YEP program, I met wonderful young people who want and get involved in the development of their community. Together, we developed a vision and an action plan of a youth friendly community and identified solutions to the problems they want to solve. I observed that young people need inspiration, motivation and support from the adults. I very much hope that knowledge they gathered until now will bring results in the future.” – Mariana Bruma, representative of NGO Univers, Drochia town.
The activity is part of “Youth Empowerment Program (YEP)”, implemented by the Institute for Rural Initiatives (iRi), in partnership with Great Lakes Community Action Partnership (GLCAP), Ohio, USA with the financial support of U.S. Department of State.