10 partnerships between Swedish municipalities and international partners have been approved over eight million SEK. Many of the projects focus on participation of youth. The funds will both enable new collaborations and enhance existing ties between municipalities in Sweden and partners in South Africa, Zambia, Botswana and Kenya.
Two partnerships between local governments in Sweden and Kenya have been approved 2.5 million SEK over three years to create new methods for youth and children to participate in the local democracy. The partnerships between Öckerö muncipality and Mfangano island and the partnership between Upplands Bro municipality and Muranga County will both contribute to upholding the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child at the local level. The convention, which became Swedish law on January 1st 2020, is trending as an important topic for many partnerships.
– We are witnessing great interest from municipalities to apply for projects about inclusion of youth and children based on the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. Inclusion of youth and children on issues that affect them, and in society at large, is a very important part of the democratic mission of municipalities and regions, but also for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, says Carin Jämtin, Director-General at Sida, who funds the ICLD.
Five new partnerships have received funding for inceptions within the new network Municipal Partnerships for Human Rights. The network will tie together municipalities from Sweden with partners in Botswana, Zambia and South Africa on projects related to human rights. Within these projects, inclusion and participation of youth has also been a popular theme.
Other municipalities that will receive funding from the ICLD is Västerås alongside Gaborone City in Botswana, Habo municipality alongside Brod in Bosnia and Älmhult municipality alongside JB Marks Local Municipality in South Africa.
– These partnerships will provide fresh opportunities for exchanges of knowledge, experience and new methods at the local level, which can make a great difference. These efforts will contribute to progress for democracy both at the local and global level, says Johan Lilja, Secretary General at the ICLD.