Exploring civic education and voter information topics in Ukraine and Republic of Moldova
10 September 2015
From 10 to 13 August 2015, twelve representatives of te Central Electoral Commission from Ukraine (CEC Ukraine), four representatives of Central Electoral Commission of the Republic of Moldova (CEC R. Moldova) and two representatives of the Centre for Continuous Electoral Training from the Republic of Moldova (CCET), have participated in a regional workshop, financed by IFES Ukraine on civic/voter education.
Besides exploring the topics of civic education and voter information, the workshop intended to be a showcase of the BRIDGE methodology for Ukrainian delegation in the context of IFES Ukraine’s efforts to use BRIDGE for further professional development of election officers from this country. IFES Ukraine has been supporting the Training Unit of the Ukrainian CEC with institutional development and capacity building of its staff since 2013, when it was established as a separate unit.
The workshop was held in Chisinau, Moldova in Russian language and sought to bring together the staff of the above mentioned institutions – in total 18 persons (10 Male and 8 Female) – to build links across these organizations and to create the perfect background for debating the workshop subjects.
The training has been organized in the context of the preparation of CEC Ukraine for the next general local elections that will take place on October 25, 2015 and had the following objectives: strengthen the capacity of the Training Unit to independently plan, implement and monitor future operational trainings and civic/voter education campaigns; present and promote the BRIDGE methodology to the CEC Ukraine; facilitate experience exchange between the representatives of the CEC Ukraine and the CEC and CCET from the Republic of Moldova.
The workshop was co-facilitated by two Moldovan BRIDGE Accrediting Facilitators – Dr. Doina Bordeianu and Mr. Corneliu Pasat. As BRIDGE office recommends, a semi-accredited BRIDGE facilitator – Mrs. Aliona Placinta (Moldova), an experienced CCET trainer, was involved in the training. Mrs. Placinta has used this opportunity to practice her knowledge and skills obtained during the TtF held in Chisinau, Moldova in December 2013.
The workshop content was developed based on “Civic Education” and “Voter Information” Modules. The facilitators made further changes/updates and tailored them to the needs of the participants. The agenda was prepared in order to explain the participants the procedures and peculiarities of the organization of civic education and voter information campaigns, international standards and best practices applied in this field, identify main challenges and solutions, reveal the main stakeholders and their role in the organization of this activities, prepare a working plan for the consolidation of the CEC capacities in preparing and holding civic and electoral programs etc. A quest speaker presented the civic education campaign developed by one of the most important NGO in the Republic of Moldova and revealed the advantages of establishing a collaboration between NGOs and electoral administration in this field.
Participants had a strong electoral background – the majority were from the two EMBs. All participants felt able to share their views and contribute in full BRIDGE spirit. The participants were actively involved in the activities and had such tasks as: developing a communication strategy, developing civic education materials, designing a lesson for school students, analyze study cases etc.
According to the evaluation made by the participants and the facilitators, the training represented a success. Participants have highly appreciated BRIDGE methodology and the presented topics. The training received many positive feedbacks:
“It was very interesting, dynamic, and funny but working atmosphere. This is the merit of the facilitators first of all and of course of the participants!”
“Before the seminar I couldn’t thought that there is so much to discuss about civic education and voter information.”
“I learned a lot and had a great communication and useful exchange of experience with my colleagues.”