- Awareness raising seminars
Euracademy is in the process of introducing a new type of activity in the form of short residential seminars to raise awareness among European citizens of rural areas on a variety of themes and issues that reflect on cooperation, development, participation in the civil society, responding to policies that affect rural Europe etc. these short seminars will be probably held over weekends. Priority will be given for the first year of their implementation to the new member states.
The seminar-type activity has been chosen because such a ‘model’ has proved (through Summer Academies) very effective in mobilising rural stakeholders, both individual and NGOs or public. Summer Academies, though, with a duration of 9-10 days, are often too long for professionals and entrepreneurs or NGO staff to attend, and therefore a shorter form of 3-days’ duration will be tried out, to give the opportunity to a wider range of citizens to be involved. These will have mostly a national focus and will be carried out in several member states. The courses will nevertheless offer the European framework, best practice and include lectures by experts from other member states. The planning process is still in its early stages.
- European cooperative Masters programme on Rural Animation
Euracademy Association is also planning the development of a Masters programme aiming to establish the profession of rural Animator, which is pivotal for rural development and the effective involvement of individuals and organisations of rural areas in the sustainable development process. A number of the Association’s corporate members which are tertiary educational institutions have expressed interest and the issue will be investigated further. The course will have a strong European dimension.
- Networking the rural-targeting networks
Euracademy Association is considering at present the uptake of an initiative to bring together several European and national networks that have an interest in sustainable rural development, the development of the civil society in rural areas and the capacity building of citizens in rural communities. The ‘networking of networks’ is expected to bring added value to the work of the Association and the other networks and create a forum with wide-ranging mobilisation potential for the benefit of citizens in rural areas.