The EU funded project “Civil society engagement in improving the rural development processes and promotion of efficient models for sustainable local development” aims to support civil society to engage in political dialogue, but also to solve concrete problems for the transformation of rural communities.

Thus, these objectives are achieved, primarily, due to the activities of the Rural Community Development Network (RCDN) – a platform created within the project, which is dedicated to efficient and constructive communication between the main actors involved in the development of the agro-rural sector. This network engages civil society in the process of developing national documents and strategies, which contribute to the improvement of public policies aimed at raising the living standard in villages. The documents and recommendations developed by RCDN are promoted at local and national level through advocacy actions.

Another important activity within the project is the creation of models for sustainable local development through a territorial approach. Which, in practice, means supporting Local Action Groups (LAG). Thus, the project selected on a competition basis 12 LAGs that benefited from a complex program of capacity development and financial support. Resultantly, the beneficiary LAGs received grants amounting to 155,000 EUR, which subsequently went to the implementation of 68 local mini-projects including four sectors: agriculture, public services and infrastructure, business and trade and rural tourism.

September-October has been the final period for this component of the project and respectively the last monitoring visits to the beneficiaries of the mini-projects took place totaling the gained results. As numbers, these results are as expected and impressive: 25 modernized agricultural businesses, of which 11 zootechnical farms and 14 businesses in the phytotechnical sector. Supporting the non-agricultural sector has also good results: seven entrepreneurial ideas received financing for development and at the same time, four other new businesses were launched, and 12 projects contributed to the development of infrastructure and rural tourism services.

Due to the collaboration between the public sector and civil society, numerous public places and playgrounds for children have been arranged and repaired, 21 new jobs have been created and another 20 have been modernised.

The 68 projects are from different areas of the country, and some of them can serve as a source of inspiration and motivation, worthy of being multiplied and promoted, both locally and regionally. Thus, among the 68 beneficiaries, we present you two ideas that from dreams turned into deeds.