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									ECOMISSION 21st CENTURY ORGANIZATION DESCRIPTION Structure Association "Ecomission 21st Century" works in the territory of the Lovech Region where its central office is located. Its managing board is composed of three members, with a subset of 16 members including teachers, specialists, and socially active persons. The organization is composed of the following elements:  Ecological Education Centre  Youth Center out of which operate:  Resource Volunteer Centre  Youth Information and Consultation Centre - MIKC Lovech  Big Brother Big Sister Program  Eco – Library  Video Library  Computer Club Goals of the organization - To protect the human right to live in an ecologically friendly and pleasant environment - To undertake restoration activities directed toward improving the quality of the surrounding environment - To raise cultural awareness and education about ecological issues and methods of protecting and conserving natural resources - To circulate information about the condition of the surrounding environment as well as completed ecological activities that promote environmental protection - To promote public participation and to strengthen the relationships between local organizations, schools, businesses and municipal authorities - To promote youth participation in activities for social and personal development, providing activities for the social adaptation of marginalized youth - To actively work for sustainable, democratic, social development and to affirm the principles of civil society Ecomission team There are three board members of "Ecomission 21st Century", additional staff members and youth volunteers, as well as a volunteer from Peace Corps-Bulgaria. Membership in other organizations and networks - Bluelink Informational Network - the network of Bulgarian nature protecting NGOs - Regional eurodesk point of State Agency of the Youth and Sport since 2003 - A member of the network of the National Alliance for Volunteer Actions - Plovdiv - A member of National Children Network - A member of Community Forum for Development of the municipality Lovech Financing organizations: Swiss government, Peace Corps - Bulgaria, "Open Society" Institute, Regional - Ecological Centre for Central and Eastern Europe - Budapest, Regional Ecological Centre for Central and Eastern Europe - Bulgaria, NOVIB, "Workshop for Civil Initiatives" Foundation, "Support for Charity in Bulgaria" Foundation, "Tulip" Holland Foundation, EWMI JSI, USAID, National Agency of Youth and Sport, Parents Association, and others

Contact data: Bulgaria 5500 Lovech, Residential District Varosha, 1 Georgy Benkovsky Str. Youth Centre phone/fax +++ 359 68 603 834 Contact person: Nelly Miteva, Executive Director Projects „Big Brother Big Sister" was funded by the „Big Brother Big Sister" foundation in Plovdiv. The aim of the program is to pair local community volunteers with children from the local orphanage who will act as mentors for them. These mentors, or big brothers and big sisters spend time with the children, act as good role models, and ultimately work toward preventing violent behaviours among the orphans. (November 2007 - May 2009) "Summer Youth Internships, Lovech 2008" was funded by USAID. The main project goal was to engage youth in the town of Lovech in useful activities through their free time and support their personal and professional development. To reach this goal, an internship program was created in which 33 high-school youth interned in one of 10 local public institutions for a period of 2 weeks during their summer vacation. (2008) "Window to Europe" was a European Voluntary Service (EVS) project of the „Youth in Action" program, funded by the „European Youth Programmes and Initiatives Centre." The project popularized volunteer values and the opportunities of the "Youth in Action" Program in the region of Lovech. (March 2008 - September 2008) "Though We're all Different, We're All Equal" was funded by the National Centre "European Youth Programmes and Initiatives" under the "Youth in Action" Program. This project celebrates the different cultures found in the Lovech Region through presenting their unique foods, customs, and traditions. (2007-2008) „Creation of the Youth Information and Consultation Centre/YICC - Lovech" was funded by the State Agency of Youth and Sport in Bulgaria. The main project goal was to support the personal and social development of the youth in the Lovech Region and ro create a stable mechanism for providing quality and accessible youth services. (November 2007 - November 2008) "Bulgarian Youth Ride Bikes for the Environment". This project promoted alternate forms of transportation through training teenagers about the benefits of bike riding and then allowing the teenagers to teach children in the preschools on the same topic. A bike procession was also held from a local park to the center of town where there was an award ceremony for the winners of a poster competition on the theme „Biking and the Environment". (2007-2008) „Public Participation in the Stable Regional Development in Bulgaria and Romania" received financial support from the association "Earth Forever" in Svistov. The project trained citizens of six villages to use the Green Agenda Method to develop eco-tourism in their areas. (October 2007-February 2008) „Development and Strengthening of the Network of Volunteer Centres in Bulgaria and

creation of National Training Centre in Volunteer Management" was funded by the National Alliance for Volunteer Activities-Plovdiv. The project goals were to extend the network of volunteer centres in Bulgaria, to increase their capacity to work with youth, to encourage volunteers' participation in different fields of the society's development, and to provide quality services specifically directed to various social groups in Bulgaria. (January 2007 - December 2008) "Youth Information Window" Funded by the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Bulgaria, this project aimed to assist youth in Lovech by providing them with information about topics such as education, youth exchanges, local organizations providing activities for free time, and more. The project included a training for youth volunteers from 4 Centers for work with Volunteers, the creation of a guide to organizations within the town working with youth, and a fair with presentations from these organizations presenting to youth the opportunities available to them for their free time. (July - December 2007) "Green Osam" This project aimed to take actions toward flood prevention, create partnerships between stakeholders in flood-prevention along the river, and assist with the monitoring and publishing information for the population along the river about the dangers of flooding. A training was provided to stakeholders and discussions were held about the issue of flooding along the river. Trees were also planted on a small section of the bank of the Osam River in order to help prevent flooding. (2007) „You and Computers" was funded by the Foundation "Workshop for Civil Initiatives" in the framework of the "Social Responsibility" Fond of the First Investment Bank. The project focused on building computer skills among local orphans as preparation for life after highschool graduation. (2007) "A Spark of the Bulgarian" This project was a part of the national "Living Legacy" campaign. The cultural centers of three local villages each organized a reenactment of a traditional Bulgarian gathering called a sediyanka with the participation of the villages' citizens. The participants then went to Sophia to perform the reenactments at the "Living Legacy" festival to celebrate their cultural heritage. (July-October 2007) "Support the Bulgarian Nurses in Libya" This is a project designed an implemented by the youth volunteers at Ecomission. They collected over 1,000 signatures from the Lovech community supporting the nurses in Libya and inspired a neighboring town to do the same. All the signatures were sent to the Bulgarian embassy in Libya who informed the nurses about the support. (February 2007) "Young People in the Court System" This was a 6 month project to teach high school students in Lovech about the court system. The project culminated in a rolel-play game produced by youth participants to reenact the proceedings of a court session. (January-July 2007) "With Care for Our Children" Children from the two local orphanages in Lovech were trained in 5 ecological topics and taken on field trips to places where they could learn about the professions related to the topics. (October-December 2006) "Young People in the Local Self-Government" This project was financed by the "Open Society" Foundation. The aim was to increase the participation of young people in the civil society, specifically concerning Bulgaria 's accession into European Union. Through meetings

and discussions, the representatives from the local youth, youth NGOs, the Lovech Municipality and the Lovech Municipal Council were brought together to apply for a European Charter for youth participation in local areas and municipalities. (March-September 2006) "The Right to Know and Participate in Water Management" This project aimed to increase public access to water-related information in the communities of the Lovech/Troyan region, to create mechanisms for providing better access to this information, and to improve civil control regarding water pollution. Objectives included to strengthen the interaction between ecological NGOs and local authorities in order to provide public access to information, to increase their participation in decision-making process and ability to find justice regarding water-related issues, to identify and analyze the practical barriers to the access of water related information in the Danube River sub-basin through the implementation of the legal provisions, to implement concrete steps in removing the barriers to this information and improve the current situation in cooperation with the municipalities. The project was funded by the consortium of Regional Environmental Center for Central and Eastern Europe (REC), New York University School of Law (NYU) and Resources for the Future (RFF). (November 2005-October 2006) "Care and Responsibility for Our River" The goal of this project was to educate the citizens of the cities and towns located by on the Osam River who depend on its waters in their everyday activities. The project was done in partnership with the Regional Environmental Center for Central and Eastern Europe and was funded by the UNDP Danube Regional Project. The project involved informational meetings highlighting the importance of the river, meetings with various experts on the status of the river, and multiple river clean-up activities. (December 2004-October 2005) "Green Month" This project utilized local environmental experts to teach students from the town's sixteen schools in five areas: earth, wind, water, fire, and wood. Each expert held a two-hour long sessions on one of the subjects and then led hands-on activities on the theme. For example, students participated in river cleanup event for the theme of water, and planted trees for the theme of Earth). The activities allowed the participants to gain a broader understanding about the importance of these topics. (April-May 2005) "European Measurement" Students from eight schools participated in this project by competing against each other in various games surrounding the theme of Bulgaria's accession into the European Union. The participants had the chance to interact with council officials of the Lovech Municipality, the Inspector of Education, and local school officials. The students came away from the meeting with a greater understanding of the European Union, what it means to Bulgaria, and what their roles are as future leaders of the country. (SeptemberDecember 2004) "Market of Free Time" Students from the town's sixteen schools were invited to a "Youth Market" where they received information from over fifteen local organizations about the activities available for them in the city. This provided them with options for beneficial ways to spend their free time, allowing them to become more involved in the community. (September 2004) "Secret Treasure - Paper to Paper" This project aimed at promoting the concept of recycling and the importance of conservation in Bulgaria. Recycling, in any form, is new to the country

of Bulgaria and this project began this process through a grass-root recycling campaign, complete with educational meetings, brochures and stickers which raised public awareness. The organization, through a grant from the United States Peace Corps Partnership Fund, purchased ninety waste containers which were placed throughout the city of Lovech. These containers are used for the collection of waste paper from the area's citizens, which the organization collects and takes to a local recycling firm. The funds that are created from the recycled paper are then placed into a bank account which is utilized for beneficial activities in the area. (August 2004-June 2005) "International Bike Path" This was a six-country international youth exchange that took place in Mysalkowice, Poland, and included participants from Poland, Germany, Bulgaria, Slovakia, Latvia and Greece. There participants, ranging from 15-20 years old, assisted in the development of a bike path, the creation of informational billboards, and cultural integration activities. (August 2004) "Stratesh Cleanup" This project was a continuation of the previous projects "Heart for Stratesh 1&2." The organization hosted a park cleanup involving 189 students from the area. An ecological themed party was also held for all participants in the park cleanup. This aimed at informing the public about the importance of June 5,th World Environment Day. The project was funded through a Lovech community project fund. (June 2004) Ljuljache Orphanage "Youth Group" In this project, the organization´s youth volunteers visited the orphanage "Ljuljache" in the village Leshnitsa. The volunteers spent quality time with the children and assisted in writing a grant proposal that was approved by the United States Peace Corps Orphanage Fund, which purchased physical fitness equipment and toys for the children of the orphanage. (March 2004) "Spring Vacation-Lovech" An ongoing environmental project in which local elementary students utilize their spring vacation by attending the organizations ecological classes and environmentally themed excursions. The participants are allowed the opportunity to learn more about the regions nature, including plant and animal life, while spending their free time in an effective, educational way. (2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008) "Youth Development and Environmental Center" This project was funded by the Special Programs Assistance fund of the United States Peace Corps, the Swedish Agency for Development and of the local Community Forum. The funds provided for the remodelling of an existing house and purchased supplies to create a Youth Center where the organization currently works on environmental and youth development issues. (August 2003-September 2004) "Heart for Stratesh 2" This project had two parts. This second part was an Earth Day activity that involved students from local schools who assisted in fixing benches, painting benches and playground equipment, and cleaning the park. (April 2003) "Heart for Stratesh 1" This first part of the project was a charity concert with participation from local high schools to raise money for the reconstruction and remodeling the local park, Stratesh. (September-November 2002) "Let's Make a Bet" in partnership with the primary schools "Hristo Nikiforov" and "Dimitar Dimov" in Lovech was financed by the Dutch Foundation "Novib." The aim was to direct student's attention to the problem of the lack of recycling programs and how to utilize waste

paper. The motto of the project was "I bet I can collect more paper to recycle than you." (May-July 2002) "Friends from Bulgaria and Macedonia" was financed by the "Open Society" Foundation. The aim was to create a model of regional collaboration and partnership between young people from the Lovech and Bitolia regions in order to implement programs and actions for environmental protection. (July 2001-2002) "A Future Without Garbage" was a national campaign lead by the organization "Borrowed Nature" in Sofia. The aim was to educate the public about issues surrounding garbage, recycling possibilities, and other options with the disposal of waste. (March-June 2001) "Green Paradise" in partnership with the Secondary School "Kliment Ohridski" in Lovech was financed by the Dutch Foundation "Novib." The objectives were to provide substantial ecological training and environmental education to the students. (May 2000) "The Osam River and Us" in partnership with the Primary School "Dimitar Dimov" in Lovech was financed by the Dutch Foundation "Novib." The aim was to educate students and change their understanding of the environment. (May 2000) "Nothing More" in partnership with the Krushuna Municipality was financed by the Dutch Foundation "Novib." The project detailed the ecological assessment of the village Krushuna. (April 2000)

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