Back Council of Europe to organise first Citizens Assemblies in Georgia in Ozurgeti and Rustavi Municipalities

Council of Europe to organise first Citizens Assemblies in Georgia in Ozurgeti and Rustavi Municipalities

Council of Europe together with the City Hall of Rustavi and City Hall of Ozurgeti are piloting first Citizens’ Assemblies in Georgia in the frame of the “Strengthening Participatory Democracy and Human Rights at Local Level in Georgia” Project.

With this aim, Council of Europe in a cooperation with the Center for Blue Democracy organised an “Introductory Course to Citizens’ Assemblies” in Tbilisi, Georgia on 12-13 November 2022.

A Citizens’ Assembly is a new form of democratic decision-making, which brings together a group of people to learn and to deliberate on a given issue and provide a set of recommendations, options, or a collective decision to the convening body. The Citizens’ Assembly is run by an independent team of coordinators, which is an impartial body in the process, excluding politicians or direct stakeholders.

The “Introductory Course to Citizens Assemblies” aimed at providing comprehensive learning experience for future coordinators of Citizens’ Assemblies in Georgia. The training course brought together 18 representatives of the civil society organisations and citizens to learn about deliberative form of decision-making. During the course, the participants had a chance to get to know a step-by-step process of organising a Citizens’ Assembly. Beyond the most practical aspects of the assembly process, as well as the values and principles of the methodology, the course included a training component focused on personal growth and soft skills.

„Thanks to this training we already have some brilliant ideas, dedication and good knowledge on the steps and procedures to successfully implement Citizens Assembly. But besides this, the competencies that we have gained during this training will be very useful in our daily activities and projects that we run” – Nika Zibzibadze, Dean Consulting.

“Implementing Citizens Assembly is a big responsibility. Due to the readiness of the society, at first, I had fears for running this process. The focus on triangle of competencies during the training helped me to strengthen my attitude of “Yes, we can do”, knowledge on the methodology and practical skills, that are necessary to work well with the citizens. Therefore, now I feel much more confident to run the process of the Citizens Assembly” - Koka Kighuradze, Managment System's Development Centre

“I know different tools of civil participation, but Citizens ‘Assembly is a unique methodology as it is oriented on the high-level inclusiveness, is representative of the society and is impartial” – Liana Charkviani, Rustavi Center for Civic Engagement.

This event took place in the framework of the project “Strengthening Participatory Democracy and Human Rights at Local Level in Georgia”, implemented by the Directorate General of Democracy and Human Dignity, Division of Elections and Participatory Democracy, and the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities, within the Council of Europe Action Plan for Georgia 2020-2023 with the financial contribution of the Austrian Development Cooperation.

12-13 November 2022
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