Activity 3 in Italy

Municipality of Gambassi Terme 7-8.02.2023

Workshop for citizens

The objective of this event is to develop methods for involving the citizens at local and European level by promoting traditions, using crafts and art. Another objective is to create a network connection between the crafters and the experts and citizens from the consortium partners local area at international level.

The event in Italy (WP3) will be attended by a total number of 51 participants from 5 countries.

This event will include workshops that will take place in Italy, where participants will gain new knowledge about local promotion, the importance of encouraging local traditions and cultural tourism.

The purpose of these workshops with citizens is to develop new ideas for promoting the local community and opportunities for active involvement in the community. These things will help to increase the self-esteem of the citizens and to increase the visibility of the promoted localities. On the other hand, the activity aims to bring together, in workshops, producers who respect the attribute of tradition and training, by raising awareness of the need to implement strategies that give them the opportunity to have more visibility at the local level and European level.

The originality of each nation is characterized by its potential to create, to give life to objects, finding its expression in material and spiritual culture. Preserving traditions becomes a challenge in the current context, being necessary to adapt the productions of art to the demands and tastes of today. However, it must be borne in mind that they are part of a country’s national identity and must be upheld so that they do not disappear.

The themes will be chosen from the following: local history, traditions, culinary art, thematic routes, music and traditional dance. The participants will discuss new methods for involving the citizens in the local community.

Summary of the activity

The 3rd meeting of the partners of the European project “Active EUcitizens: Think Global, Act Local” was held at the Municipality of Gambassi Terme in Italy on 07-08/02/2023. All the activities organized within the project took place in the Municipality of Gambassi Terme. Furthermore, 30 participants from 5 European countries attended the first day meeting and 51 participants, including citizens’ representatives, attended the second day meeting.

The main aim of the event in Italy was to start drafting the document “Proposal for enhancing cultural heritage at local level through EU level cooperation”, as well as to involve citizens in an active discussion that would generate a fruitful exchange of ideas. The document produced in Italy (to be finalized during the next workshop) is attached to this document.

During the first day, 7.02.2023, a welcome session was held at the Town Hall of Gambassi Terme. The Mayor of the Municipality of Gambassi Terme and the representatives of the host organization welcomed all the participants expressing their gratitude for having participated in this project and their availability for future collaborations. This was followed by the presentation of the territory with the projection of videos and the intervention of two important realities in terms of local promotion. This was followed by a visit to the Glass Museum and a greeting to the Local School, where the children welcomed the guests with material prepared by them specifically for the event.
For the children this was very important not only to reinforce the concept of hospitality but also to get to know new European countries.
Afterwards, the participants in the event had lunch at the local school.
In the afternoon, the workshop continued with the processing of the document “strategy proposal for enhancing cultural heritage at local level through EU level cooperation” in which each partner was able to report their own reality and proposals for improvement for themselves and for the other partner countries.
After that, the guests were able to relax in the Thermal Baths of Gambassi Terme and have dinner in company.

During the second day, 8.02.2023, of the project meeting, a workshop was held with the citizens in the Municipal Gym of the municipality of Gambassi Terme.
For the first part of the event, the partners discussed what each of them wrote in the document “strategy proposal for enhancing cultural heritage at local level through EU level cooperation”, exchanging ideas and suggestions.
Upon the citizens’ arrival, the workshop continued, becoming a constructive debate between the project participants and the citizens’ representatives, which highlighted not only local problems but also possible solutions and food for thought for all those present.
Subsequently, after a quick lunch, important places for the Gambassi Terme area were visited, such as the historical centre, the Pieve di Santa Maria a Chianni, the hostel for pilgrims and then continued in the Tuscan countryside.
The participants then took part in a convivial dinner where they were able to say goodbye while waiting for the next event.

It is worth remembering that through all the activities that took place during the second project meeting in Italy, the fact was highlighted that even a small town like Gambassi Terme, with the right promotion and self-awareness on the part of citizens, can have a lot to tell.