Community Based Approach to Local Development
Wednesday, 30 June 2010

COMMUNITY EMPOWERMENT AND ENHANCED CITIZENS-AUTHORITIES RELATIONS ARE THE MOST VALUABLE OUTCOMES OF CBA ACTIVITIES IN CHERKASKA OBLAST

On 29 June 2010, the 4th meeting of CBA Oblast Coordination Council was held in Cherkasy. The meeting was chaired by the head of Oblast State Administration Mr Tulub and attended by the head of Oblast Council My Volodymyr Hres, deputy head of OSA Mr Mykhailo Puzyak, International Project Manager Mr Jaysingh Sah and heads of rayon state administrations and rayon councils of Horodyschensky, Zvenyhorodsky, Kamyansky, Kanivsky, Talnivsky, Umansky, Chyhyrynsky, Shpolyansky rayons.

Characterizing the Project implementation, head of Oblast Council Mr Hres noted that despite the delay in the Project launching in Cherkasy region, now the region demonstrated one of the best results in Ukraine. Thus, as of the end of 2009 in framework of CBA Project, 42 community organizations were registered. With the assistance of local executive bodies, these COs have prepared their project proposals, got them approved and have already received first grants to realize social projects on improving medical services, energy saving and water supply. Besides, 30 local communities have already completed works on their projects. Total cost of the projects is about UAH 6 million, with UAH 3 million of donors’ contribution.

Mr Hres emphasized that local communities have taken the responsibility of undertaking the repair works and collected 5% of the project cost. Cherkasy Oblast Council also helped local communities to finance their projects. Thus, in September 2009, a targeted oblast programme was adopted and 10% or UAH 270,000 of the micro-projects’ cost was allocated from oblast budget for local communities’ initiatives. The Project manager confirmed that Cherkasy communities demonstrated high efficiency and a decision was taken to allocate 9 more additional grants each of US $ 10,000 for region’s most successful communities.

Head of Oblast Council Mr Hres informed that during his recent visit to Chyhyrynsky rayon he observed the results of successful implementation of CBA Project. ‘I see the greatest achievement of the CBA Project in people’s mobilization, as well as mobilization of resources and active involvement in activities aimed at improving living conditions in local community’ said Mr Hres. He also expressed his hope that communities would successfully implements projects allocated through additional quota; and that after completion of micro-projects citizens of Cherkasy region would be ready to disseminate their experience to non-pilot areas.

Head of Oblast State Administration Mr Tulub defined the steps necessary to successfully complete the first stage of the CBA Project in the region. First of all, it presupposes activation of activities to complete construction of the sites, give necessary administrative and technical assistance to community organizations to correctly prepare and realize basic and additional micro-projects; provide effective activities of newly created rayon community resource centers; allocate funds from rayon budgets to co-finance community projects; timely enroll reconstructed/ repaired/ newly constructed objects on respective registers in line with current legislation.

During the meeting, the Governor also talked about new approaches to be realized in the region. These are aimed at spreading investment activities and attracting internal and external investments. International Project Manager Jaysingh Sah highly estimated participation of local communities and the results they achieved in partnership with local authorities.

The Project coordinator from Cherkasy oblast state administration Mrs Mayina Kulyk presented general results of Project activities in the region, analysis of achievements and basic targets for the next period.

Among rayon level authorities participating the in the conference were: head of Kanivska rayon council Volodymyr Pylypenko, heads of Umanska, Kamyanska, Talnivska and Horodyshcenska rayon state administrations Anatoliy Petrenko, Mykola Soloshenko, Serhiy Osypenko and Igor Shvets, village head of Krasnopilska village council of Umansky rayon Petro Semenyuk informed the participants about realization of community micro-projects in rayons.

After the meeting Sergiy Tulub and Jeysingh Sah had a briefing for representatives of local media. The governor expressed his gratitude to international donors for favouring development of local communities and admitted that information that he had received from the Project participants convinced him of the importance of such initiatives for rural areas. Assisted by local authorities and international donors local communities are able to solve the most pressing problems. Sergiy Tulub also expressed willingness to participate in the second phase of CBA Project.