Lead Partner: Administration of Seaside Regional Park (Lithuania)
Administration of Seaside Regional Park was established in 1997 as governmental budget institution, the department of LR Ministry of Environment. Administration of Seaside Regional Park is funded by the LR budget; also, it has its own earned (from visitors’ tickets, different services) resources. The main activities are to preserve natural and cultural heritage in the Seaside RP and encourage traditional architecture, also to control economic and urban development, to perform scientific research and monitoring, to organize environmental education, to develop sustainable recreation, to popularize natural and cultural values of the Seaside RP. There work 6 people in the fields of culture, nature, recreation; also, they have assigned financier.
Seaside Regional Park is located in the coast of Baltic Sea in Western Lithuania and it covers 5865 ha of which 47 % is in land and the other 53 % is in Baltic Sea.
The Administration and Visitor Center is located in Karkle Village, with around 750 population of locals. The building of visitor centrer was opened in 2012. There are 600 liter capacity sea aquarium, educational games, a hall with bean-bags and multimedia, where people may watch movies about park and its biodiversity. In summer season the site is visited by a lot of tourists. They come to see the Dutchman’s cap cliff – a unique natural treasure of Lithuania – the cliff which changes over time. The other visited places: II World War fortifications, The old ship rescue station of Nemirseta, old cemetery of Karkle Village, birdwatching hut, boulders, cognitive ecological path “Litorina” and cognitive botanical path of Nemirseta. Through Karkle Village goes bicycle trail Eurovelo 10.
Spring and winter is perfect time for watching bird migration, because the migration path goes through coast of Baltic Sea. And in winter there is opportunity to observe wintering birds. 118 bird species of which 52 is nesting is detected in our park. There also lives 19 mammal, 7 amphibian and 4 reptile species.
EUCC Baltic Office (Lithuania)
The Baltic Office of EUCC is a public body, NGO. Since May 1994 over 50 regional cooperation and community development projects have been implemented by EUCC Baltic Office in the field of coastal conservation and management, many of them focused on protected area management policy improvement and coastal nature based tourism development. EUCC Baltic Office has facilitated the adjustment of coastal protected areas and municipalities of Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia to EC directives and other EU policy instruments requirements. It developed the Law of the Coastal Zone of Lithuania, was involved in the Curonian Spit designation as a crossborder UNESCO World Heritage Site and is now providing advice to the Lithianian Ministry of Environment on sustainable coastal nature conservation and recreational fisheries management.
The Office operations are financed by international funds, financial support and commercial funds. In implementing international projects EUCC Baltic Office never faced any financial problems. The director has reach experience in international cooperation and the cross-border projects. Other staff members also have gained excellent experience in international communication and project management.
Society For The Coast (Poland)
Society For The Coast, which is one of the initiators of the CICPA project, is a NGO established in 1996. Among the numerous goals of action specified in the Statute and practice particular attention should be paid to the following:
- raising awareness of the Baltic Sea coast importance and problems related to this zone rational management and protection,
- implementation of active nature protection tasks in the broadly understood coastal zone of the Baltic Sea,
- conducting educational activities and popularizing actions aimed at raising awareness of conservation problems and rational use of the Baltic Sea coast,
- active participation in the international pro-natural movement.
On the 1.000 ha of valuable coastal meadows and pastures which belong to the Society, Odra Delta Nature Park has been established in 2005.
This is a key part of the area included in the European Ecological Network NATURA 2000, and we implement model actions for conservation of natural resources as well as the principles of sustainable development.
It is the area that has been found as the best place in Poland for the biggest herd of free and wild living Konik Horses, and for the unique large group of Scottish Highland cows, which have many features of extinct aurochs.
Large-scale activities are currently being conducted together with specialists from leading nature conservation organizations in Europe, as Natuurmonumenten (The Netherlands) and RSPB – The Royal Society of The Protection of Birds (UK). The Society is an active member of the European EUROSITE network.
The success of nature protection is possible thanks to active cooperation with local communities, in the case of our Society, especially with the Municipality and Community of Stepnica. In practice, this means initiating and implementing joint projects indicating the possibility of using natural assets without losing its value.
The most important examples of such projects successfully implemented by our Society are as follow:
- Green Islands for Natura 2000: actions for local youth to approximate the assumptions of the Natura 2000 network (before 2004, i.e. Poland’s accession to the EU),
- Coastal Practice Network: this project was aimed to establishing a network of practitioners from all over Europe, where representatives of Stepnica local community could familiarize themselves with and how to solve development problems in the coastal zone,
- Park for People – People for Park: an initiative addressed to the local community, when for the first time indicating the benefits of coexistence in nature was presented in practice
- National Park for us – we for the National Park: project implemented jointly with the Słowiński National Park, showing the benefits for local development in connection to the protected areas,
- WE – Young People See Natur: annual photography and nature workshops dedicated to Polish and Dutch youth, which has been realized since 2006 with the main aims as outdoor lessons of nature and photography, as well as integration of the young generation from both countries
- social actions enriching the infrastructure of the Stepnica commune (supporting Volunteer Fire Brigades, equipping the commune with bicycles, preparing a local tourist service network, preparing and implementing study trips for the commune residents, etc.)
Community Centre of Culture in Stepnica (Poland)
Community Centre of Culture in Stepnica is a local autonomy government cultural institution. It consists of the main Culture House in Stepnica at ul. Portowa 7 and local village culture clubs in Racimierz, Miłowo, Widzieńsko, Gąsierzyno, Kopice and Czarnocin.
Community Centre of Culture in Stepnica creates a number of opportunities to participate in artistic activities, workshops, training, concerts, festivals, outdoor events, competitions, trips addressed to all residents of Stepnica community, as well as to visitors.
The task of Community Centre of Culture in Stepnica is to create a culture offer in a flexible way and adapted to the current needs of the local inhabitants of the community, ensuring openness to new initiatives and cultural trends. All is based on previous experiences, recognizing and diagnosis of cultural needs.
These tasks also include popularizing of literature, theater, film and all kind of arts. An important place in the program is creating an offer connecting generations, restoring the activity of the local community by undertaking joint initiatives using various forms of expression, based on the life experiences of cultural events participants. It is also extremely important to create and to realize such an offer in smaller culture clubs in rural areas, which contribute to the activation of residents and is a part of the rural social resources promotion.
All this contributes to external promotion of the Community Centre of Culture image and thus contributes to building the image of the Municipality of Stepnica itself in the whole West Pomerania Region, as an open and active community.
A specific mission is to co-create and develop the culture of the local community, to shape and meet the needs, passions and skills, to create an attitude of active participation in cross-border culture and to cultivate tradition with a special attention to the cultural heritage of the Stepnica region. On this basis our vision is to create Centre of Culture, as a local organization which coordinates promotional and informational activities related to all cultural resources of the Stepnica Municipality.
Another important aspect of our duties is leading activities directly related to the education through art, including spreading the idea of theater pedagogy. By working with local inhabitants, we want to shape the right patterns of active participation in culture and thus promote and create conditions of the artistic movement development as in the local community of Stepnica as in West Pomerania Region.
We care about conducting activities integrating the disabled and elderly, not forgetting to promote the idea of volunteering.
By undertaking various social, cultural and educational activities, we would like to establish a strong network of partnerships between organizations and institutions located in our municipality. The main goal of the network will be to create and implement innovative and non-standard activities addressed to various groups, especially considering disadvantaged social environments.