Viorica Mămăligă: From our Romanian colleagues we learned how to access funds and prioritize our development ideas

The Local Action Group “Plaiul Codrilor” is trying to access more funds, said the director Viorica Mămăligă, during a debate on the LEADER approach. “Initially, when the process of creating the LAGs began, our development partners offered us sub-grants, to carry out this exercise of teamwork and implementation of micro-projects at the micro-region level. At the beginning we only had one fund”, said Viorica Mămăligă.

The lack of funds led the members of the GAL in the heart of Codriri to look for solutions. “Seeing that there is no stable operation of the LAGs, because the sub-grants came for a period of time from 10 to 11 months, that there is not enough money to achieve the indicators established in the development strategy of the region, we were trying to we access more funds, but at the beginning we didn't really know how to do this”, says Viorica Mămăligă.

“Then the LEADER National Rural Development Network came to the rescue. It created a partnership fund and we applied to this fund, because nothing is offered for free, everything is competitive, and this helps us develop our capacities and grow. We accessed this partnership fund and started looking for a LAG to learn from. This is GAL Napoca Porolissum from Romania. In 2022 we went to Romania, we saw how a LAG that already has over 13 years of experience works, we saw projects implemented by them and we saw what the emphasis is on. We met with the administrative team, went to the headquarters and saw how the administrative bodies work and how they proceed in the case of accessing funds”, she stated.

The collaboration between LAG "Plaiul Codrilor" and LAG Napoca Porolissum was a beneficial one. “Since then they are our good friends, they are and will be in terms of encouraging the partnership, in terms of accessing funds", stated Viorica Mămăligă. “Now the stability comes from the LEADER National Program, because in this case it is a much larger amount of money, which provides stability to the administrative team, contributing, at the same time, to the sustainable economic development of the region. Currently, the LAG Plaiul Codrilor has access to four funds. We are trying to develop a digital platform, related to the promotion of tourist products and destinations in our region. Whereas before 2022 we tried to implement several projects in different fields, then we set out to identify what is ours and invest in something specific, that something is tourism. We have many tourist destinations and local products that need financial support, but also promotion, to increase income and attract tourists to our area. We are also implementing projects with Solidarity Fund PL in Moldova, to develop the capacities of the administrative team. We created a new position, that of local animator, a position inspired by our colleagues from Romania, from the Napoca Porolissum LAG”, said Viorica Mămăligă.

“From our Romanian colleagues, members of the Napoca Porolissum LAG, we learned how to access funds, prioritize our development ideas, involve young people in our activities. At the Napoca Porolissum LAG we had the opportunity to learn about the existence of a rural youth parliament. We wanted to organize something similar”, said Viorica Mămăligă.

The debate is the fifth edition of the “Double integration through cooperation and information. Continuity” Series, financed by the Department for Relations with the Republic of Moldova. The content of this debate does not represent the official position of the Department for Relations with the Republic of Moldova.

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