Thursday, 26 February 2015

Slovenian Development Days: Diversity from Grassroots to European Policy

Between 22 and 26 January 2015, the Slovenian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the development NGO Platform SLOGA organised the 6th edition of the Slovenian Development Days which were attended also by Mr. Neven Mimica, European Commissioner, responsible for International Cooperation and Development.

The event opened with a premiere of a documentary film about development projects carried out by Slovenian NGOs. The documentary called “We are also part of the same world”, prepared by SLOGA platform, was screened at the Slovenian Ethnographic Museum Café.

The main event on 23 January was held at City Museum of Ljubljana. In his opening speech, Minister of Foreign Affairs Karl Erjavec stressed that “in ten years Slovenia has cooperated with over 80 countries and supported more than 140 development and humanitarian projects carried out by Slovenian NGOs.” The guests were also addressed by the European Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development, Neven Mimica, and the President of the SLOGA Board, Eyachew Tefera. Commissioner Mimica pointed out that the new development agenda has to build on the Millennium Development Goals but has to be even more ambitious. Tefera highlighted the importance of NGOs participation in strategic documents preparations – on national and global level.

The event continued with a round table entitled “Ten years of Development Cooperation – The Way Forward”, where participants mostly discussed the strategic guidelines and priorities of Slovenia and the European Union in the sphere of international development cooperation after 2015. Participating in the discussion were Commissioner Neven Mimica, Bogdan Benko, State Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Prof. Dr Maja Bučar, President of the Expert Council for International Development Cooperation and representative of the academic sphere, Damjan Bergant, Director of ITF Enhancing Human Security, Ivo Vajgl, Member of the European Parliament, and Imre Jerebic, representative of the civil society and Secretary General of Caritas Slovenia.
During the event, Slovenian NGOs presented their activities in the field of

international development cooperation through printed material and a film about development projects.

The programme continued with a presentation of NGOs at Ljubljana’s main square – Prešeren square. Even rain did not stop participants in joining NGOs representatives and learning about Slovenia’s contribution in developing countries. The day finished with a puppet show “Lifeboat” on migration and climate change organized in main shopping centre (BTC) by Humanitas.

On 26 January, SLOGA Platform organized an informal networking meeting for NGOs from the region working in the field of humanitarian aid. Slovenian Development Days concluded with the Regional Workshop on EU Aid Volunteers Initiative organised by Slovenian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The workshop was led by a DG ECHO representative and was attended by representatives of NGOs and Foreign Ministries from Austria, Croatia, Hungary, Italy and Latvia as the EU presiding country.

The Slovenian Development Days with a varied programme attracted a high number of participants and represented an introduction to awareness-raising activities in the European Year for Development 2015.

Photo: NGO stand at Ljubljana's main square, SLOGA

Information provided by Adriana Aralica, SLOGA

No comments: