The results of the mini-projects implemented by civil society organizations were summarized at the ordinary meeting of Vani working group. They also discussed the recommendations that were developed for local government with the aim of implementation at the local level of public administration - this mainly concerns the improvement of the skills of citizens and representatives of the City Hall in terms of using e-services.

The meeting highlighted the activities that the group should carry out before the completion of the project, and the responsibility for their implementation was distributed among the members of the group.

The tenth meeting of Vani Working Group was dedicated to the reports of the representatives of the partner organizations "Support 2020" and "Citizens' Activism for Effective Governance and Justice". They concerned the dynamics of their small projects - what activities do they carry out, what changes do they see in comparison with previous project and what challenges exist in connection with the reform. It was noted that the need to inform the citizens is still on the agenda. It is also important to improve their skills regarding e-services, which can be addressed through the involvement of the representatives of the Mayor - work in this direction is already underway.

It was also said that the changes agreed during the previous meeting were already reflected in the group action plan and were approved at the City Council meeting.

The needs research of citizens was carried out in Vani municipality - quantitative data were collected, individual interviews and focus groups with vulnerable groups were held.

Then there will be held the advocacy of the problems identified as a result of the research in the relevant structures, as well as the integration of priority issues for citizens into the action plan of the municipality.

Local civil society organizations “Support 2020” and “Citizens' Engagement for Good Governance and Justice” worked on the research.

The work is carried out in the framework of the project “A common forum for CSOs from Guria, Imereti and Racha-Lechkhumi for PAR Roadmap monitoring”.

Changes in the working plan was discussed during the meeting of Vani working group. It was noted that the plan should reflect the issues, the solution of which is under their competence: the problems identified during the first local needs research and the recommendations of the third monitoring of public administration reform. There was also a conversation regarding the website of the municipality, which is being updated at this stage. It was decided that the members of the group will be involved in posting information on the page.

Vani working group contributes to the implementation of public administration reform with its activities.

The Fund "Sukhumi" has 10 Women Support Centers in Terjola, Vani, Tkibuli, Bagdati, Chokhatauri, Samtredia, Kobuleti, Zugdidi, Senaki, Tsalenjikha municipalities. A two-day workshop was held for the updated staff of mobilizers. All discussed topics were necessary and relevant: selecting target groups, working with the audience, identifying problems, filling in a victim questionnaire and responding to it, conducting advocacy campaign, legal mechanisms for victim support, working with local governments, municipal programs and state services for violence prevention and victim assistance, informing, self-presentation, facilitation and moderation.

“The work of the mobilizer seemed difficult to me, but now I already know how to go step by step. The workshop showed me the sequence of the process”, mentioned one of the mobilizers at the end of the workshop.

Vani working group has a lot of work, and this was obvious during City Council meetings. IT specialist presented information about updating the official web page - the functions of requesting public information and online petitions, a mechanism for citizens' participation "Plan the budget" will be added. Online broadcasting of City Council meetings and other technical changes are planned. The meeting also reviewed the code of ethics developed for City Council members and the results of the third monitoring conducted by representatives of partner civil society organizations.

Part of the recommendations identified in the framework of two monitoring have already been implemented. Recommendations of the third monitoring will be also reflected in the action plan of the working group. Their implementation will add more transparency and efficiency to the work of local self-government.

“Strengthening the Women’s Rights in Western Georgia” - Fund “Sukhumi” has started a new stage of this project… with changes, new directions.

The project area - four regions of Western Georgia: Imereti, Samegrelo, Guria and Ajara. The work will be carried out in the following 10 municipalities: Vani, Bagdati, Samtredia, Tkibuli, Terjola, Senaki, Tsalenjikha, Zugdidi, Chokhatauri, Kobuleti.

One of the innovations is that, for the first time, within the framework of the project, Women Support Centers are being created in Vani, Bagdati, Samtredia, Tkibuli and Chokhatauri.

The Fund "Sukhumi" has its own representatives who will work locally to strengthen women and protect their rights, they will try to advocate and solve problems through a gender-responsive system. The aim of the project is prevention of domestic violence in cooperation and coordination with local governments.

The beginning, as it often happens, was difficult.

The public administration reform was considered less important in the municipality... but the more they got familiarized with the information, the better it was shown what should be done.

The most important thing, that was done in Vani municipality:

The Code of Ethics for self-government public officials was developed and approved!

Vani Municipality is the first, among the municipalities of Western Georgia in this direction.

The document was prepared by the working group, established within the framework of the Fund “Sukhumi” project “A common forum for CSOs from Guria, Imereti and Racha-Lechkhumi for PAR Roadmap monitoring”.

The code of ethics has been approved - this is an excellent result of project work! In this regard Vani municipality is the first among the municipalities of Western Georgia.

The working group of Vani municipality actively worked on the code of ethics for the officials. The developed document was reviewed by the services of the City Hall and City Council and was also posted on the website of the municipality for everyone to read and make comments. On February 10, at an ordinary meeting of the City Council, which was held under the leadership of Chairperson - Alexandre Liluashvili, the code of ethics was approved.

Plan of active work from the new year - this was the main topic at the online meeting, in which  civil society organizations of Vani took part. These organizations are: "Support 2020" and "Citizens' activity for effective governance and justice". During the meeting, a presenter was selected, who will present the results of the organizations' work at the end of the month.

The conversation also touched upon the third monitoring of the grant competition, in which organizations will take an active part.

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