European Cooperation Day, which has been celebrated across Europe since 2011, improves visibility and raises public awareness of the results of cross-border, transnational and interregional cooperation programmes that help reduce barriers and disparities, and improve people’s lives in areas along borders.
This year’s jubilee anniversary, of the European Cooperation Day, was marked and celebrated by the Programme in two ways:
– with a local event held on 1 October 2021 in Bar, Montenegro, and
– with an online campaign – poster competition “European Union for the Future”.
The all-day event in Bar, Montenegro was organized by the National Authority in Montenegro in cooperation with the Managing Authority and it encompassed various activities for over a hundred participants.
On this occasion, Montenegro’s Chief EU Negotiator Ms Zorka Kordić, President of the Municipality of Bar Mr Dušan Raičević, and representatives of Managing Authority, Joint Secretariat and National Authorities visited elementary school Mrkojevići, which received a valuable donation of IT and musical equipment from our Programme. Furthermore, the students were invited to participate in an art workshop at the old olive grove, after which they joined other participants in visiting the locations in Stari Bar fortress, reconstructed and equipped with digital technology within the project FORTITUDE, co-financed by the Programme with over 1.3 million euros.
The visit to the FORTITUDE project once again confirmed that borders do not have to be obstacles but can be an opportunity for growth and successful cooperation across borders.
Our celebration of Europe as a mixture of cultures and economies, which can reach their maximum potential through mutual cooperation, was concluded with the ceremony held in King Nikola’s Palace in Bar, which included screening of promotional movie about EU cross-border projects implemented in the Municipality of Bar, as well as the exhibition of students’ paintings created for the poster competition “European Union for the Future”.
Like in 2020, this year’s edition of European Day celebration is adapted to the unique circumstances of the COVID-19 global pandemic, so we decided to give the design freedom to our most creative citizens – the children – and challenge them to design collage posters on the topic “European Union for the Future”. The poster competition was organised as an online campaign where schoolchildren from Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Montenegro were invited to share their vision of European Union of the future. All received posters were published on Programme Facebook page and were available for voting from 24 September 2021 till 30 September 2021. The winning design, according to likes of our Facebook followers, was the one made by the students of elementary school Lipovac in Croatia, who will be rewarded by valuable prizes.