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EPIC meets in Strasbourg for a key Steering Committee leading the way towards the final objectives

Published on 11/05/2022

Around the framework of the Strasbourg summit, a multi-actor international encounter that anticipates the Conference on the Future of Europe (CoFoE), EPIC partners gathered in the French city for the 7th Steering Committee (SC) of the project on May 5th. 

As the project has entered the last year of implementation, exchanges among partners and a joint strategic planning are key to guaranteeing the realisation of the final outcomes of this European network of integrating cities.

After almost two and a half years of intense baseline analysis and capacity building, carried out in the shape of identification of priorities and job shadowing meetings, international training, research activities and webinars, among many other physical and online tasks, the year 2022 will see all that knowledge gained put into practice. 

Partners arrived prepared in Strasbourg and presented to the rest of the SC members their local strategies for the several activities that will be taking place in parallel around the EPIC partners’ territories.

  • Pilot projects: with a human-right based approach in mind, and thanks to the enriching exchanges among partners, each city is now ready to start testing on the ground what is meant to be the basis for new local integrating services. 8 pilot projects have been designed to tackle the main priority identified in each city. Conversations to make the pilot results sustainable after the end of the project are already underway. 
  • Local communication campaigns: As part of its mission, the project aims to tackle the issues of negative narratives on migration based on prejudices, misinformation, or racism. Different exercises to develop the capacities of the partners and empower them to design their own local campaigns have been taking place since the beginning of the project. Now all partners are ready and about to launch their 8 different local campaigns. From generating empathy towards the difficulties refugees have to face not only during the journey but also upon arrival, to animating the youngest and kids to find common grounds around the universal principles of respect and tolerance, the 8 EPIC local campaigns have as a common objective to deconstruct harmful or discriminatory discourses existing in each territory.
  • Local networking path events:  these bottom-up events aim to reflect within the communities on how to improve migrants’ life and their integration within the hosting community. It will be a key moment for the partners to grasp first-hand feedback from the local citizens about the pilot project and the communication campaign the partners are implementing in their territory and adjust them accordingly when needed. 

But although the local level receives particular attention in EPIC, the transnational exchange and cooperation are also essential to advocate for an EU migration policy cohesion. In that sense, following the 1st International Networking Path that took place last year in Croatia, the project is already planning the celebration of a 2nd  International Networking Path meeting next September 2020 in the Portuguese city of Amadora, as well as a final event, which will be the occasion to showcase all the final results. Stay tuned for all that has to come!

Lastly, on Friday 6th of May, EPIC partners ALDA and the Metropolitan Area of Gdansk, in cooperation with the Young European Federalists (JEF) hosted an event called “Solidarity with Ukraine: Testimonies of the war”, during which participants could hear the powerful and emotional testimonies of different panelists, such as Andriy Sadovi, the Mayor of Lviv, Antonella Valmorbida, ALDA Secretary-General, and Marta Siciarek, representing the Gdansk metropolitan region. 

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