Anders – a true champion of local democracy

“I want to be involved in helping people create their own, better conditions and I want to be helpful. It is impossible to see injustice, and not to act! ”says Anders Fridén, involved in municipal partnerships that Vänersborg municipality has together with municipalities in Namibia and Botswana.

Anders is one of our “Champions of local democracy.”

Anders Fridén currently works at Vänersborg municipality as a “development strategist”. He has a lot of experience in international projects. Since the year 2000, Anders has been active in development and sustainability projects in e.g. a Namibia and Botswana. Over time, the work has grown, and through ICLD he is involved and works through partnership projects in both the sub-Saharan African countries.

Characteristic of a municipal partnership

Det som utmärker samarbetsformen “Kommunala partnerskap” från andra internationella projekt, enligt Anders är den lokala According to Anders, what distinguishes the form of cooperation “Municipal partnerships” from other international projects is the local connection, that you can work so closely to the local population and actually see results. Results in equality and transparency will also be more “hands on” and can affect public activities in a clearer way through a partnership collaboration. In addition, there is a curiosity between the parties that creates a drive for good results. This means that the results of projects can be achieved and distinguished.

Mutual collaborations

Anders thinks that the view of municipal partnerships has developed to the point where there is a great deal of reciprocity today. Sweden can learn a lot from other countries, for example developing new working methods in its own municipality. This becomes clear when opportunities for joint work are created. At the same time, as in place in the partner country, methods and working methods are also being developed that strengthen local democracy.

An example highlighted by Anders is a cooperative for women in Namibia. It created an opportunity for women with different ethnicities to meet for the first time. Such processes create understanding and cooperation between the local population who would otherwise have been in conflict. These processes are of great importance to local democracy.

When we ask Anders where his great commitment comes from, he answers us:

– As a person, I have always been the one who wants to create new projects, develop, and learn new things. It has definitely been a driving factor. In addition to that, as a parent of a child who is living with disibilities. I see what conditions mean for someone. I want to be involved in creating conditions and helping people to create their own, better conditions and be helpful. It is not possible to see injustice, and not to act.

Only a true Champions of democracy answers like that.

See all our Champions of Local Democracy