On the 18th and 19th of January, SFERA Macedonia hosted the Kick Off meeting which represented a pre-project meeting for the “The Citizens Are United” project, funded by Europe for Citizen program by the European Commission. This will take place between January 2018 and June 2019 and will include participants with different backgrounds and all walks of life. Three conferences will take place in Malta, Greece and Ireland and will include the topics discussed in the Communication paper on European Agenda for integration of TCNs; Commission Staff working paper on EU initiatives supporting the integration of TCNs; European Agenda for Migration and Handbook on Integration for policy-makers and practitioners. Participant country organizations in the project include Macedonia (through SFERA), Greece, Malta (who is also the applicant of the project), Cyprus, Italy, Romania, Portugal, Bulgaria, Slovakia and Ireland.
The aim of this project is to engage EU citizens on the stigmatization of immigrants with a view to encourage civic participation, promote tolerance and understanding. Also, it aspires to address the gap within the EU’s integration policy; most specifically the rise in stigmatization of TCNs that has only increased along the years and the promotion of opportunities for inter-cultural engagement/volunteering at Union level. The project will include a volunteering activity, and publication of a guide book with recommendations to reducing stigma, that will be channeled to the policy makers, migrant lobby groups, MEPs, and national politicians from participating Member States.