Drohobych City, Ukraine, 6 June 2020. After only ten days since the launch event, that was followed online by more than 1100 people, 329 participants, representing Drohobych citizens and local officials, enrolled in the online Academy of Civil Participation that was designed as part of the CoE COVID-19 response within the project “Promoting civil participation in democratic decision-making in Ukraine.” It is a unique online learning and practical course aimed at expanding the knowledge of European standards, local regulatory and institutional frameworks for civil participation mechanisms, increasing the awareness of civil participation instruments that are guaranteed by the city Statute and developing the skills of citizens and local in participatory decision-making. The online course has been integrated on the website of the Drohobych City Council and can be accessed anytime.
16 CoE experts and trainers will walk the participants through various aspects of civil participation, including civil participation and CoE Standards, the Statute of Drohobych Community and regulations for civil participation tools, such as citizens’ meetings, citizens’ initiatives, public hearings, e-petitions, public consultations, participatory budgeting, citizens’ engagement in urban public spaces’ development, open data and gender mainstreaming in civil participation and policymaking.
The Academy promotion and awareness-raising campaign “IParticipate” has been launched in Drohobych to increase the awareness of civil participation tools and opportunities and encourage thousands Drohobych citizens to undertake the course, including young people and children, through the incorporation of the online Academy into the school curriculum.
The Academy toolbox also features offline or online multi-day Academy workshops that bring together public officials and civil society representatives to debate around the selected policies or project and jointly develop sustainable policy solutions and decisions. The successful pilot experience in Ukrainian cities of Kyiv, Zhytomyr, Lviv and Drohobych shows that the implementation of the Academy at the local level can help remove barriers between stakeholders and ensure inclusive and constructive participation, where citizens’ and NGOs’ opinions are considered by policymakers – the Academy can be adapted and implemented in other CoE member States.
Please watch the video of Claudia Luciani, Director of the Human Dignity, Equality and Governance Directorate of the Council of Europe, who addressed the participants on the occasion of the launch of the Academy.