Svensk partner: Växjö Kommun

Växjö and JB Marks, South Africa

Project: Development of an Energy Plan in Line with Agenda 2030

“Development of an Energy Plan in Line with Agenda 2030” is a two-year project (2019-2020) based on the municipal partnership between Växjö Energi, Växjö municipality (Sweden) and JB Marks Local Municipality (South Africa). The project is based on the Sustainable Development Goal no 7: Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all. The project consists of ten activities.

The objective of the project is to develop an Energy Strategy for JB Marks at the same time as Växjö Energi is developing a Strategical Plan.

Through bench-marking and exchange of experience along the parallel processes including a joint external assessment on global energy issues the level of knowledge and competence will rise in both organisations which will benefit the development and the quality of the steering documents as well as the implementation of them.

When the project is completed the two partnering institutions would have strengthened their long-term, professional and strategic work with energy issues. Aiming at reduction of the use of fossil fuels and the increased use of energy efficiency methods, alternative, clean and renewable energy. All with the aim on sustainable development goal number 7 in Agenda 2030. This will be beneficial for both municipalities including the community.

Växjö and An Giang, Vietnam

Project: Sustainable water management (Blue Vietnam)

An Giang province in Vietnam and the Municipality of Växjö in Sweden, have implemented several partnership projects since 2010.

This time, the partners have identified water management as the most relevant area for further cooperation and have in a thorough stakeholder and problem analysis prepared an implementation project that is beneficial for both parties.

Surface water is in abundance in both cities, but is partially of lacking quality. In Long Xuyen city – a new waste water system is now under construction. In Växjö, there is a constant need of renovation and improvements of the existing water systems. The function of the water infrastructure and how this affect surrounding surface water, will influence everyone in the city – directly or indirectly.

Sustainable water management is a challenge, not only in our cities but all around the globe.

This three-year long (2019-2021) project aims to build capacity and focus on preparing an integrated water management plan for Long Xuyen-city and in different ways raise awareness among key-stakeholders about the importance of working towards better water quality as well as finding ways to motivate them to do so.

Find out more about the parnerships impact in this video

Växjö and JB Marks, South Africa

Project: Public skills training to create new job opportunities and fight poverty

This project is based on the municipal partnership between City of Växjö and JB Marks Local Municipality (South Africa). The three-year proposal (2019-2021) consists of 15 activities and involves also regional partners, labour-office, university, civil society and private business sector.

The project objective is to strengthen public capacity at the social welfare field by establishing a new public model for skills-training and empowerment of vulnerable social groups without jobs, resources and security.

The project objective intends to capacitate powerful, efficient and synchronized public provision of labour-market support for the vulnerable target-group. The process includes the establishment, testing, evaluation and final adoption of a new model that combines practical skills-training with theoretical education. The project will make use of practical pilot-tests in the two municipalities, which includes a multi-disciplinary approach.

When the project closes in 2021, the results and achievements will relate to three different levels:

  • Municipal/regional level: new capacity when to provide efficient labour-market support.
  • Individual level: vulnerable individuals/groups taking steps from poverty towards sustainable employment.
  • Society level: strengthening of democracy and social inclusion while signs of poverty, insecurity and segregation are reduced.

The project is based on a win-win perspective and will be carried out with great respect to fundamental values such as sustainability, gender equality, environment and human rights.

Växjö and Vushtrri, Kosovo

Project: Sustainability education in preschool/primary school

The purpose of the three-year project (2019-2021) is to strengthen the organizational capacity of the municipalities to educate preschool/primary school students in Vushtrri and Växjö about the environment and sustainability.

For Växjö, it entails developing working methods and cross-border cooperation, both locally and globally. For Vushtrri’s part, it is about introducing a new subject in preschools/ primary schools.

The project aims at improving the municipalities’ capacity and learning through collegial exchanges as well as mapping of environmental and sustainability-related methods that will be integrated into each municipality. The project builds on the previously executed MIS-project which focused on environmental education in school for students age 10-15. The proposed project aims to build on the lessons learned from that project, but by further deepening the cooperation, and involving school management and politicians to give the project a long-term perspective.

The project will involve a total of 12 participants from both municipalities. The project will highlight methodology, materials and working methods linked to the focus area, and involve external experts. The methodology will be tested among teachers and 500 preschool students. Finally, the project is linked to the goals in Agenda 2030, goal 4, which stipulates a good education for all.

Kontaktcenter; utveckling av service och tillgänglighet

The two-year project is based on a problem analysis where the cooperation of the municipalities respectively Contact Centers are faced with a need for development regarding their work. It is about the overall development of availability, service, treatment, new technology and work environment that will affect citizens’ contact with local democracy. The results may also promote accountability and transparency when the municipality becomes more accessible. Cooperation Municipalities have different challenges, strengths, weaknesses, experiences and expertise in this problem area. This allows the exchange of expertise will give results and effects of both parties.

The goal is to achieve an increased competence of all service people, but to some extent also a politician, concerning the strategies, methods and good experiences around the Contact Center’s work refers to four areas:

  • high availability
  • service and treatment
  • new technology and design of facilities that benefit paragraphs 1 and 2 above
  • work environment, satisfaction and development of employees in the Contact Center

The new skills will have helped to plan and pilot testing for implementation of selected strategies, methods and good experiences that will develop the municipality’s Contact Centre.

New Coordination Structure to support vulnerable families

This new project is based on the partnership between the City of Växjö and North West 405 Municipality (former Tlokwe City Council) and suggests three years of cooperation (2017-2019) with active participation from regional authorities, labour office, the police, NGOs/CBOs etc.

The project objective is to strengthen public capacity to provide support for family units with social problems by establishing a so-called Coordination Structure in Växjö and Potchefstroom/Ventersdorp.

The project objective indicates a status where the main public organizations and key-functions responsible for social welfare meet on a continuous basis to decide on and channel well-coordinated and efficient support to the target group in focus. The project objective also indicates that the socially most vulnerable families now take steps from poverty towards security, economic independence and social inclusion.

The new project and is based upon a mutual win-win partnership and includes eight international activities. Through the pilot-testing of the locally organized Coordination Structures, altogether 20+20 Swedish and South African socially poor families will be supported. The new model will be practically tested and evaluated and, finally, adopted as permanent tool for public support on the social field. The project will be implemented with great consideration of values connected to sustainability, gender equality and fundamental human rights.

Public Relations, Best Practices 3

This is a one year project resulting from the previously established cooperation between the municipality of Växjö and Tlokwe city council. The project has been operational for two years and this is the third year of implementation.

The aim of the project is to improve on the standards of local democracy and administration in Tlokwe city council. The project constitutes cooperation between the Information Departments at the City of Växjö, Sweden, and the Tlokwe City Council, South Africa.

The overall objective is to put focus on “new media and technology” as an important channel for democratic communication between the municipality and its citizens.

The theme is seen as innovative and future oriented, and relates to prerequisites, current work and future visions pronounced by the two partners.

The overall theme of the project will be practically connected to three sub-areas:

  • the web
  • TV and radio
  • the cell phone.

The practical implementation will focus on concrete work and best practices related to the three sub-areas, such as conscious initiatives around website surveys, democratic e-communities, production of election-TV, civic produced TV/radio, SMS polls etc. The used methods will highlight internal workshops, study-visits and practical testing of innovations, but also integrate qualitative internships in order to facilitate deeper knowledge around how work is carried out in Växjö and Tlokwe. The results of the project will be presented within frames of a produced project film, which will be broadcasted on local TV in the end of the year. The project will involve Växjö University and the TV station “the Open Channel Växjö” as partners.

SEKOS; Socialt Entreprenörskap Kosovo

This project proposal means a two-year implementation between the City of Växjö and Komuna Vushtrri, in which also Coompanion Kronoberg, social enterprises, networks and the Linnaeus University will participate. The project takes its starting-point from the development of social entrepreneurship in Sweden, which has not yet reached Kosovo. The municipal function to support businesses in Vushtrri has limited resources and no qualified knowledge to inform or support social entrepreneurship.

The objective of the new project is to strengthen understanding of the social entrepreneurship as concept – within the municipal organizations in Växjö and Vushtrri but also among citizens in society.

The project aims to build up a stronger business function in Vushtrri, which in the long run could result in new social enterprises being established. New social enterprises have the ability to employ new groups and reduce the alarming unemployment-rate of 50 %, which finally will promote individual safety, economic sustainment and social inclusion.

The project implementation will use several different methods: presentations, workshops, SWOT analysis, production of film about social entrepreneurship, visit to school-classes and education for youths, pupils, civil society, young entrepreneurs etc. The project means a win-win perspective and will be implemented with respect to women’s and men’s needs/prerequisites, environment and fundamental human rights.

Tshwaraganang Library Project

This is a one year project resulting from the cooperation between Växjö municipality and Tlokwe city council in the area of culture and leisure. The project itself is called “Tshwaraganang – library project; and the goal of the project is to raise the level of competence and awareness regarding library services including: marketing the library, outside stakeholders, how to address analphabetism, development of language(s), IT and information seeking, oral presentation and story-telling.

In general, the aim is to improve on the reading culture in Tlokwe council and increase the range of leisure activities and the specific areas targeted include: 

  • To deliver a comprehensive library service
  • To provide the latest published information and literature
  • Improve maintain and update the bibliographic database of libraries
  • Market the library to the community members.
  • Improve o the electronic presentation of the libraries.
  • Provide a comprehensive and up to date reference collection and handbooks that are related to school subjects and curricula.

The expected outcome to the project are that there will be increased literacy levels in Tlokwe city council and that most of the residents will have a better access to reading materials and leisure activities from the libraries.

Environmental education in schools

The project proposes two-year cooperation between the City of Växjö and Komuna Vushtrri. The project is established upon a problem analysis that describes the absence of environment education in school (Vushtrri) and difficulties to link existing environmental expertise to school education (Växjö).

The project objective defines a stage where the two municipalities have strengthened capacity to meet young pupils (age 10-15) and to educate them about environment and sustainability. The project will – through 12 activities – develop, test and evaluate a new method for environment pedagogy/education in active cooperation with the Linnaeus University in Växjö. The new method will be tested among teachers and approximately 100 pupils and will include a mix of new school material, seminars, problem solving, experiments and external study-visits.

The project is built upon a mutual relation where both partners have much to win from cooperating with each other. If the pilot-tests turn out successful, the project method will be made permanent and be implemented among other school-classes in the two municipalities. In that way the results will be sustained. The target-group of 13 participants founds the core of the project, while the pupils take part in the local work at home and report back during the four international visits. The project implementation will carefully consider environment, gender equality and fundamental values of human rights.