24 new international partnerships for Swedish municipalities

Växjö and Tlokwe in South Africa are working to improve ways in which measures targeting vulnerable families are coordinated. A partnership between three municipalities – Ale in Sweden, Budeeti in Moldova, and Ghanzi in Botswana – will involve working together to improve young people’s participation potential, not only in schools but across society as a whole. A total of 24 new projects in Swedish municipalities have been given the go-ahead to develop and strengthen local democracy as part of the development partnership.

The overall goal of all ICLD projects is to develop local democracy and reduce poverty. Local governance, social welfare, and environmental and climate issues are some of the more common areas for collaboration. Kenya, Georgia and China, followed by Tanzania, Uganda, South Africa and Moldova, are the countries in which the highest number of partnerships have been approved this time. The projects are conducted within the framework of the operations of ICLD, the International Centre for Local Democracy, financed by the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA). 

“Working with and developing local democracy is an incredibly important issue nowadays. It’s also important to develop methods that help strengthen individuals’ opportunities for civic influence,” says Lennart Båge, Acting Director General of SIDA.

ICLD works in four core areas for local democracy development. All projects must, in a variety of ways, help increase the potential for equality, inclusiveness, transparency, and accountability in their municipalities. The partnerships show that the local level is strengthened and that the potential for handling shared global challenges is increasing. 

“The municipal partnership programme supports municipalities in working, within the framework of their partnerships, with the global challenges described in Agenda 2030. We want to help create socially, economically, and environmentally sustainable societies,” says Karin Norlin-Bogren, Programme Director of ICLD’s Municipal Partnership programme.

There are also, in addition to the 24 new projects, just over 130 other partnerships already in progress. There are already around 55 Swedish municipalities, county councils and regions involved, and two completely new municipalities have joined their ranks this time, namely Haninge in Sweden and Kozarska Dubica in Bosnia Herzegovina, who will be working together to boost young people’s involvement in the democratic processes. 

The grants for the projects range between SEK 300,000 and SEK 500,000 per year and the projects run for between one and three years. 

The following municipalities have been granted funding for one or more projects: Ale, Borlänge, Haninge, Leksand, Lidingö, Lidköping, Mölndal, Norrköping, Robertsfors, Skövde, Strängnäs, Umeå, Vara, Vänersborg, Växjö and Älvsbyn. Find out more about the various projects at www.icld.se. 

For further information, please contact SIDA’s press office on tel. +46 8 698 55 55 or at press@sida.se. For questions about the partnerships, please contact ICLD on tel. +46 498 29 91 00 or at partnership@icld.se.