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6 libraries in Romania, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine have started the project “Public libraries as hubs for active citizenship”, implemented by the Progress Foundation, with the support of the Black Sea Trust of Regional Cooperation.

This project aims to create a support network, consisting of public libraries and NGOs, which will support the establishment of public spaces in libraries for learning and practicing active citizenship.

The civic involvement of citizens in the community can lead to significant changes in the way society works. And finally, they can improve people’s quality of life.

In order to become truly active citizens, the inhabitants of Romania, the Republic of Moldova and Ukraine need spaces in which to meet, where to discuss issues of general interest and a context in which to learn, exchange ideas, communicate and collaborate. And public libraries are the perfect host!

The six libraries that will be involved in the project “Public libraries as hubs for active citizenship” are: District Public Library “IPS A. PlămădealăHîncești  and District Library “D. Cantemir” Ungheni, from the Republic of Moldova; County Library “G. T. Kirileanu” Neamț and the County Library “Antim Ivireanul ”Valcea, from Romania and the Central Library “Lesya Ukrainka” from Lviv and the Lugansk Regional Universal Scientific Library, from Ukraine.

The first webinars were noted in the trainers’ schedules and they will help to create an international support network for the libraries and organizations involved, to increase the skills to encourage and develop active citizenship, including in times of crisis. The digital training sessions will discuss best practices, useful in promoting civic involvement and democratic culture.

For successful results, the involvement of local authorities is essential. Investment in new technologies and effective training are the main factors that can make public libraries important civic actors at the community level. Thus, modern public library services will also be able to ensure informed democratic participation.

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