The 5th meeting of the project “Europe In Question - EIQ” was held with great success on 19th & 20th of May 2018 in Valletta, Malta. The project EIQ is being implemented under the Europe for Citizens 2014-2020 Programme and the partnership consists of the following organizations:
The above network aspires to become a best practice for the empowerment of civic participation of those citizens who have not been involved so far, or who reject the Union outright of put in question its achievements. That is done through events that take place in each partners location, were partners discuss some of the issues the EU is currently facing, such as the refugee crisis, the rise of terrorism, the monetary union, further enlargement, Brexit, Euroscepticism and Europhobia, recession and employment. In Malta, the topic mainly discussed was Cultural Diversity and Social Inclusion.
Ms. Maria Ragia, Project Officer in FOPSIM, welcomed the partners in the morning of the 19th of April. First was the technical meeting of the partners where was discussed the project’s current phase and future steps. Following that, Ms. Maria Ragia talked about FOPSIM’s activities and partners discussed about the Maltese society, so that there is a basic knowledge regarding the topics of the conference that followed. The partners technical meeting also set foundations for future cooperation in other projects
Following the technical meeting, a half-day conference took place. Four (4) speakers with different backgrounds joined the conference, as well as interested in the topic audience. The speakers panel consisted of Mr. Alexander Tortel, Head of the Integration Unit, Human Rights and Integration Directorate, from the Ministry for European Affairs and Equality, who talked about Malta’s Migrant Integration Strategy & Action Plan (Vision 2020). Mr. Tortel’s presentation was followed by Mr. Andreas Kotelis, researcher at the People for Change Foundation, who spoke about Inclusion and discrimination in Malta and presented what kind of actions the foundation takes to tackle those. Next, Prof. Paul A. Bartolo from the Department of Phycology at the University of Malta talked about the challenge of welcoming migrants into the Maltese schools. Last spoke Mr. Andre Callus, representing the National Commission for the Promotion of Equality (NCPE) who talked about the Commission’s role and activities towards Equality in Malta.
The same night, the EiQ partners had the chance to try traditional Maltese cuisine. During the second day of the meeting, the partners had a tour in Valletta, guided by tourist guide who explained briefly the city’s history from the Knight’s of St. John period until the present. Following the city tour, the partners visited the Parliament in Malta were they our host in the parliament explained the maltese political system and all partners along with our guide discussed about the differences and similarities we have in our respective countries.
The overall budget of the project “Europe In Question - EIQ” is 150.000€ and is funded by 100% from EACEA (Education, Audiovisual & Culture Executive Agency) of the European Commission under the Europe for Citizens Programme (Strand2: Democratic engagement and civic participation - Action 2.2: Network of Towns). The project duration is 24 months from 01/01/2017 to 31/12/2018.