Local and urban communions are the main cell in the immediate concretization, creating of the needs of citizens and their achievement. However, the constitutional framework and the law on local self-government have no mandatory provision for the establishment of local and urban communions and thus they are marginalized in the decentralization process. As the imperative is pushed there is an increased need to create new forms and tools through networking at the local, regional, and national level. Because the legal forms and the change of the law on local self-government is a lengthy process, which provides constitutional changes as a precondition for changing the law on local self-government, which would strengthen their legal status, it is quite legitimate to network in the form of civic associations in the NGO sector.
On one hand this will increase the confidence of citizens in their roles, strengthen civil society and help in the development of democracy at the local level. Our goal is to promote the decentralization process through networking of local and urban communions, to raise the quality of life of citizens and the functionality of the local communions. The implementation of the project and its activities will contribute to enhancing functionality and collaboration through networking of local and urban communions designed according to the network of associations of citizens. The process will increase the level of communication and cooperation between local and urban communions in the municipal, inter-municipal, regional, and national level. They will become legitimate participants in legal traffic as it would gain a seal and bank account, and will function exercising the citizens' interests. Thus they gain legitimacy as legal entities to apply for domestic and foreign donors for the implementation of projects for improving the quality of life.
We are currently at the stage of registration for local and urban communions as Civil Society Organizations. So far we have already registered eight CSO’s. As the process of registering local and urban communions as CSOs continues, and as we finish this phase, we will follow their networking in the regional level, and later establish a union of local and urban communions nationwide. Once we have completed networking with representatives of local and urban communions, a training will be held about where and how to apply to foreign and domestic donors, to implement actions to address problems and improve the quality of life. A two-day workshop with representatives of the Union of local and urban communions nationwide will be held with legal experts, which will draft amendments to the Law on Local Self-Government and this document, after it is released to the media, will be submitted to the competent institutions.
This project that the Center for Education and Development-CED is implementing is in partnership with Forum – the Center for Strategic Research and Documentation, with financial assistance from the Program for support of civil societies "Civica Mobilitas, 2014-2018." This program is funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) and for its implementation in Macedonia is engaged with NIRAS Denmark, the Macedonian Center for International Cooperation (MCIC), and the Swedish Institute for Public Administration (SIPU) of Sweden.
Photos from project promotion in Skopje and Tetovo