On Saturday, 14 April 2018, the first field visit was held within the 4th cycle of the Special Programme "Regional Development through EU Funds", which is organized by the European Affairs Fund of AP Vojvodina in cooperation with the Educons University in Sremska Kamenica.
The participants had the opportunity to get acquainted with the examples of good practice of EU funds use by visiting four projects that were successfully implemented in AP Vojvodina and co-financed by the European Union.
The first visit was to the Educational Centre in Novi Sad, where Đurađ Milanović, Director, welcomed the participants. Mr. Milanović informed the participants about the work of the Educational Centre, which was established by the Provincial Government, as well as about the idea of reconstructing and adapting the facility that had not been in use, offering unemployed persons in AP Vojvodina free training, which was all achieved by developing an EU funded project. The participants were informed about all the courses and activities held in the Educational Centre, as well as about the fact that a greater number of unemployed persons who complete a course at the Educational Centre found employment in a short period of time of 2 to 3 months.
The following example of good practice the participants were able to get acquainted with was at the Council of the City of Novi Sad. Milenko Malešev and Sonja Teofanović, Office for Local Economic Development of Novi Sad, together with project partners of the "Jovan Živanović" Association of Beekeepers in Novi Sad, Miodrag Čupić and Đorđe Mrkić, presented the project "Lime Trees & Honey Bees for Sustainable Development of the Danube Microregion”. Among other, the project won the award for best idea in the field of entrepreneurship promotion – European Enterprise Promotion Awards (EEPA) in Bratislava.
The Fruška Gora lime tree honey is a unique product not only in our country, but also in the world, and as proof of this are a lot of research, studies and proofs of the uniqueness of this honey. The Fruška Gora lime tree honey is the only one in our country that has completed the certification until the end and got a mark guaranteeing the content of the jar and the buyer is completely protected. Throughout the project, the Association has obtained, among others, the necessary equipment to be able to conduct the tests. The Fruška Gora lime tree honey with geographical origin label exceeds by far all kinds of lime tree honey in Europe in terms of the amount of pollen seeds in nectar. This project has achieved what is most difficult to achieve and that is to prove competitiveness.
The third location the participants visited was the Radulovački Ecological Centre in Sremski Karlovci, and the founder of the Centre is the Vojvodina Environmental Movement. The Centre is engaged in educating citizens of all ages in different fields with special emphasis on environmental issues.
It is comprised of two facilities, an old building dating from the 18th century which was reconstructed in 2008, and the new sustainable building of the Radulovački Ecological Centre built in 2012. Nikola Blagojević, Manager of the Centre and member of the Vojvodina Environmental Movement, informed the participants about the results of the Danube Stream for Green Dream project. The facility has a total capacity of 47 beds. It has two large conference rooms with kitchens, a terrace, a spacious yard, an outdoor stage and a possibility to rent bicycles, canoes and catamarans. The facility is energy-efficient, as it has solar panels and a geothermal system and follows the principles of sustainable development and eco-tourism.
The last example of good practice was the Stražilovo Mountaineers' Hut. Its activities are related to education, sport, recreation and tourism. In the last decade, the facility hosted a large number of pupils, students, scientists, sportspersons, amateur sportspersons and employees at a number of seminars, training sessions, teaching in nature, motivational and team-building weekends. Outside the facility there is a court to play footsal, badminton and volleyball, an artificial rock, botanical garden (arboretum, trees and bushes of Fruška Gora), open amphitheatre (forest cinema). Within the Hut, there is a wastewater cleaner, the first one in the Fruška Gora National Park. Solar panels are used for heating water, and the reconstructed facility, which was destroyed by fire in 2011, is in compliance with all sustainable construction standards.
Upon arrival to the facility, the participants were able to rest and relax, as well as to enjoy the nature where the facility was situated.
All the lecturers of the first field trip had the same tips for participants planning to write projects and submit them under the EU programmes, which is that, in addition to excellent ideas, it is important to read the rules and instructions of the programmes under which they want to apply for duly, to collect and complete all necessary documentation on time, and to have excellent cooperation with partners who will carry out their project activities responsibly. Moreover, their project must be sustainable.
The next field trip is planned for May.
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