CICPA EVENT 2018 8th-9th September 2018, Karklė, Lithuania

“Menkine” is not only a name of fish. It has been a catchword of the first Lithuanian-Polish CICPA Event, fantastic cultural  meeting in Karklė (Lithuania), organized by participants of CICPA project.
Menkine = cod = dorsz. Fish from Baltic Sea, which could be a kind of a living symbol of our project. What can we get from nature, what can we bring to nature? How can we improve living and working in conserved and protected areas?
The EVENT was a product of cooperation of Lithuanian and Polish stakeholders involved in CICPA, presenting various ways of sustainable exploiting of natural protected areas in the way which is attractive for end users – local communities – as an example of common international initiative.
On 7th of September, a group of over 40 people from Polish organisations and groups came to Karklė, to co-organize, together with Lithuanian partners, the event dedicated  attractive life in natural valuable areas and addressed to the local inhabitants and guests. 
On Saturday, 8th of September representatives of following groups and organisations started common event activities:

  • Community Centre of Culture in Stepnica, Poland
  • Ethnographic Collective „ALKA”, Lithuania
  • Kretingalė Culture House, Lithuania
  • Theater „W krzywym zwierciadle” Poland
  • Non-formal ladies initiative group „Równe Babki”, Poland
  • Non-formal fireshow group „Stepnickie ognie”, 
  • Kretingale Eldership, Lithuania
  • Karkle Community Association, Lithuania 
  • Fisheries Sport Association, Lithuania
  • Primary School in Stepnica, Poland
  • Administration of Seaside Regional Park, Lithuania
  • EUCC Baltic Office, Lithuania
  • Society For The Coast, Poland
  • Woliński National Park, Poland

A lot of colours, flavours and scents comming from nature and related to our culture and traditions made this event really interesting and attractive. Lithuanian and Polish target groups presented the best from local culture: there were theatre performances and shows inspired by nature and comming from its exploition, presentations and exhibitions of fishermen lives, duties, equipment and history. CICPA SPICE workshops based on mixing herbs which can be planted in both project areas and handicraft workshops based on using recycled paper and materials to desing art – both workshops invented during polish-lithuanian roundtables in May 2018 in Miedzyzdroje.
Hundreds of people could taste traditional Polish goods, brought to the event straight from Stepnica.

Thanks to cross-border teamwork during realisation of these activities, local actors got new organization skills, required in cross-border cooperation. They learnt how to coordinate and support international actions in practice. 

„This really encouraged a lot of participants to take part in cross-border dialogue and cooperation. There was a lot to do by fishermen, by representatives of culture centres, by parks… all contributing to present sustainable exploitation of our valuable areas in friendly and even sometimes funny way. Let’s not forget about the challenge: for some of the groups it was first proffesional activity abroad, great opportunity and great success” – said Martyna Rabska-Osipowicz from Society For The Coast, Poland.

It was also very good occasion to present natural values of Polish partnership region, to Lithuanian visitors.

The special seminar „Community Life on Two Borders” devoted to planning various investments in protected areas and possible consensus was important. The meeting was organised at the Seaside Regional Park visitor’s centre in Karkle, for Polish and Lithuanian stakeholders and CICPA project animators. 

The results pointed to similar problems in both regions, but also showed the possibility of constructive solutions while maintaining the existing natural values and sustainable development.

This good lesson of common experiences  deepened the value of our  CICPA meeting and event in Karkle.

Sunday, 9th of September 2018, was a good time to be more equinted by Polish participants with values and perspectives of  Seaside Regional Park, Karkle community and Kretingale Eldership. Afterwards, Polish participants were invited to field trip to Kretingalė Culture House. Lovely warm welcoming surprised guests from Poland. Representatives of Kretingalė Culture House and Kretingalė Eldership presented their aims and realisations. Coffee break with traditional pastries, coffee and tea prepared by hosts gave a moment for joint discussions and knowing better each other.

And what is important: we are already feeling more and more friends, not only partners, thanks to the CICPA project.

Next CICPA event? Save the date: 12-14 of July 2019, Stepnica, Poland.