Water is life, it is everywhere at our disposal, and we take it for granted: but this precious resource is limited, and threatened by pollution, waste, mismanagement. That is why a cross border project between Latvia and Russia is today working not only to improve the quantity and quality of drinkable water, but also to make people understand how important a careful use of this priceless source of life is.
Pottery, wood carving, smithcraft, loom weaving, leathercraft… This is far not the full list of skills mastered by the craftsmen from the border regions of Latvia and Russia. They create amazing, unique hand-made products which, however, do not always reach potential buyers. How can an EU-funded project help artisans to turn their passion into a successful business? And can old crafts boost tourism potential of the cross-border area? The “Craftmanship without borders” project, co-funded by Latvia-Russia CBC programme, has got the answers.
“Culture is probably the best way to integrate migrants and people with disabilities in our cities. There is no need to speak. People usually dance and sing about the same things. Culture is the best way to reach someone’s heart and build trust”. Migrants and people with disabilities are two quite different types of groups. They have different needs and concerns. However, they often face the same challenges: the feeling of isolation, feeling unheard or not integrated in society. Culture Open is a project, financed under ENI CBC Karelia programme, that aims at engaging socially vulnerable groups in the cities of Petrozavodsk (RU) and Joensuu (FI) by making them feel the protagonists in the cultural life of the cities.
Vessels, buildings, statues, artefacts, sites, even human remains: this is all “underwater cultural heritage”, defined by UNESCO as human traces with cultural, historical or archaeological character, that have been under water for at least 100 years. Definitely, a heritage worth preserving and object of interest for the most curious minds. The ENI CBC TREASURE project has put the underwater remains of the Black Sea Basin at the centre of its efforts. The initiative – financed under the ENI CBC Black Sea Basin programme – focuses on fascinating sub-aquatic archaeological rests, and offers a unique experience as an alternative to traditional tourism.
More than 62 million of debris are estimated to be floating in the MediterraneanSea – one of the six areas most affected by marine litter in the world. Plastic accounts for a large part of all manmade debris. Marine litter not only endangers numerous aquatic organisms – it threatens to finish up on our plates through the food chain. An EU-funded project COMMON is taking actions in the five pilot areas of the Mediterranean – in Italy, Tunisia and Lebanon – to combat the common challenge.
In the Mediterranean, elderly people have been particularly hit by COVID-19. The media attention has been much riveted to them but mostly as a risk group on a medical level. Isolated and lonely more than ever due to social distancing and confinement, in this unprecedented period they eminently need adequate care, both social and psychological. Emotional support, social involvement, scientific research: tackling the pandemic, an EU-funded project TEC-MED develops solutions to find some relief for older people.
A safe-haven for women victims of violence: an emergency shelter where they (and their children) can immediately be hosted, even during the pandemic, to get away from homes where it is too dangerous for them to remain. It is happening in Tunisia, in the framework of the MedTOWN project financed by the EU within the ENI CBC MED programme. It is an example of a concrete response to the crisis unleashed across all borders by the COVID19 on the particularly fragile segment of abused women, and how a project was able to readjust its intervention to meet a new need arisen in the context of the pandemic.
A small team of five experts has found the recipe to support vulnerable families in coping with life challenges: learn something, develop a project, put it in practice within the family, share with the community. In a word, create your own way to heal your own wounds, from beginning to end. This is empowerment.
Do you produce fabrics for health use? Are you looking for masks, protective gloves, medical aprons? As the COVID-19 pandemic is still ravaging, there is a relentless worldwide demand of supplies: if you are a textile or a manufacturing company, here is a database that could help you out to find the right destination for your products. A “who-is-doing-what” catalogue has been created to put in touch those who offer the production of an item or a service, with those who are looking for it.
Organic waste from your kitchen coming back to your garden as compost? The idea is not new but very impactful for dozens of communities around the Mediterranean where selective sorting and collection of organic waste were introduced thanks to SCOW project financed by the ENPI CBC Mediterranean Sea Basin Programme. Watch in our video how a better local waste management has changed things in Galilee region (Israel).
A unique breed of sheep was brought by Sicilians to the North of Tunisia in the 18th century. Two centuries after, it united the researchers, local farmers and dairy producers from both shores of the Mediterranean in the Hilftrad project under the ENPI CBC Programme Italy-Tunisia. They have come together to optimize this type of sheep farming and to give added value to the milk and cheese produced as a result. Watch in our videos how export to Tunisia of the Sicilian experience in cheese certification, and promotion of traditional Sicilian cheeses among tourists and consumers, made important contributions to the local economies.
What about going “bat viewing” at night? Sitting quietly in Luznava manor, experiencing the speed, the flying skills, the whizzing of the wings enhanced by the silence, and the waves produced by these very special nightly creatures…
“There is a need to show European citizens how many benefits the European projects have to offer and that they truly change lives” (Natalia Popielska, a young Interreg volunteer from Poland). Hundreds of young people like Natalia are leaving on this mission around Europe thanks to Interreg Volunteer Youth (IVY) initiative. IVY initiative offers young people a unique opportunity to participate as volunteers in EU funded cross-border, transnational or interregional programmes and projects, and to promote their concrete achievements through personal experience.
From the Finnish port of HaminaKotka to St. Petersburg in Russia or vice versa for a weekend? And take your car with you too! The year-round ferry boat connection between the two ports will be developed thanks to two large infrastructure projects financed under the South-East Finland – Russia CBC Programme.
What to do with grape waste? Can wine-litter become a resource, and eventually be turned into cosmetics? An EU-funded project is working to make it happen, with the final goal to create work opportunities in countries stricken by economic crises. It is called BESTMEDGRAPE, and it’s a project implemented by Italy, Tunisia, France, Lebanon and Jordan, under the Mediterranean Sea Basin ENI CBC Programme.
They come from all over Europe: Poland, Germany, Cyprus and the Netherlands. They are 19, 22, 23, and 26 years old and grew up with Schengen. Olga writes, Sellina sticks her eye to the camera, Panos presents, Wijnand makes films. In September, these four “Euro trippers” found themselves around a great adventure. On board of a van, they travelled for a month through 17 EU countries and dozens of regions, meeting the locals and living like them. They went out to see what different regions have to offer: from dancing in an electric festival in Ireland to biking through Leipzig to getting lost in a rock labyrinth in Poland. In Romania, the four youngsters went to Maramures, near the Ukrainian border, to visit two ENPI CBC projects. We met the team during the EURegions Week in Brussels. What did they learn from this experience? How did they feel living together and jumping from one country to the other?
New life for the Imatra border crossing: waiting time has been cut from two hours to half an hour, traffic accidents have decreased, and the amount of people detected for illegal activities has practically doubled.
These are just some of the results obtained thanks to an EU funded cross-border cooperation programme between Finland and Russia, implemented at the Imatra Svetogorsk crossing point.
How can u improve your fishing techniques and protect your family’s income if you are a traditional fisherman? And how can you link your work to the growing opportunities offered by an upward sector like tourism? These were the challenges faced by the ENPI cross-border project “Club Bleu Artisanal” implemented by Sicily (Italy) and Tunisia.
Human trafficking is the third biggest international crime industry of the planet. It involves mostly girls from poor, vulnerable environments, young people without any perspective, kidnapped and shuffled on the market. The EU external border regions are particularly challenged by this phenomenon, and the ENPI CBC “Nor for sale” project – implemented across Romania and the Republic of Moldova – has been tackling the issue.
Who hasn’t made a mistake in their life? Growing up is a journey often marked with tough decisions on education, hobbies, friends, social environment etc. It is easy to make a few wrong choices and get into some disputes along the way. Left unresolved, these choices and disputes can get out of control and have much harder consequences for the young people involved. What can be done to limit this potential damage?
31 years after the Chernobyl disaster, the fall out of the accident is still being felt across eastern Europe. Find out how CBC has been able to make a difference in the lives of some of those affected.
The Chernivtsi Regional Organisation of Ukrainian Association of Blind People has 1000 members, of which about 100 people have higher and specialised secondary education, and 15 people are students. Suceava County, Romania, is home to around 2000 blind people and in Chisinau, Republic of Moldova, another 1100 blind people are living.
The overall objective of the project was to improve family education as well as the information and cultural environment, and contribute to cross border social and economic development. One of the elements of the project was the renovation of the premises of two libraries – one in Marijampole (Lithuania) and one in Chernyakhovsk (Kaliningrad region, Russia). In both libraries functional spaces were created, such as a media library, a games corner, technology and meeting areas, and a photography club.
In the course of implementing the project in the Museum of Archaeology and History in Elblag (Poland), the historic East Building on the castle grounds and the courtyard were renovated. The Russian museum „Friedland Gate” in Kaliningrad carried out the most urgent renovation works and commissioned an expert assessment of the adjacent stronghold, which will form the basis for further modernisation of the grounds and renovation of the historic buildings.
Proper equipment, trained personnel and fast response in case of emergency situations is the best way to ensure safety and security for the people in any region of Europe including on its external borders with Ukraine and Republic of Moldova.
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