Lithuanian and Ukrainian municipalities meet to launch their partnership

9 November 2021
European municipalities are coming together to cooperate through the Bridges of Trust project. Local leaders from Lazdijai (Lithuania) and Novohuivynske (Ukraine) met on 27 October to discuss possible areas of cooperation to benefit their citizens.

Lazdijai, a small town near the Polish and Ukrainian borders, has an experienced municipal team that has implemented many local projects, such as developing the sports center, gymnasium and hospital. The local authorities pay particular attention to the needs of the elderly and the children of the community.

Most recently, participatory budgeting has also been introduced in Lazdijai. This gives people an opportunity to get more involved in the planning of local development projects.

Novohuivynske is a new municipality that was created in 2020 through the amalgamation of 24 settlements as part of wider reform of local government in Ukraine. Since then, local authorities have mobilised their financial and technical resources to develop the community, address social issues and improve residents’ welfare.

Both municipalities have an interest in developing eco-tourism and promoting local historical monuments.

Sharing experiences for community development

During the meeting, Lazdijai shared its experiences of attracting investments and reducing bureaucratic barriers. Conversely, Novohuivynske’s experience running a sport horse centre is of interest to Lazdijai, as the Lithuanian municipality is considering developing a similar structure in their municipality.

The partners will develop specific areas of cooperation in upcoming meetings. According to Deputy Mayor Svitlana Sadovska, Novohuivynske as a young municipality is very interested in learning what best practices can be learned from Lazdijai and implemented in the new community.

The study visit of Novohuivynske to Lazdijai will take place in spring 2022.
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