Citizen participation in Landerd
In this blog you will find the summary of the policy framework Citizen Participation in Landerd, made in the period 2017-2018 with an extension (theoretical framework) in the summer of 2018. The focus is on the strength in society and the villages, where there are a lot of good community initiatives. This includes a municipality that fully encourages and supports such activities, a municipality like a Good Neighbour.
Residents join in
The municipality of Landerd has a wonderful tradition of residents who are committed to their villages and living environment. Together with many volunteers, three care cooperatives and three initiative groups are working very hard to achieve the best for their members. The municipality acknowledges and appreciates this enormous commitment from society and helps wherever possible with support, financially or otherwise.
In 2018, the municipality adopts a positive and very service-oriented attitude towards community initiatives. In the years to come, we want to strengthen this role and attitude, so that the municipality will turn into a good neighbour of active and committed citizens and initiatives. The guiding principle is that the municipality as a Good Neighbour is available when necessary, without having to ask for it as an active citizen. You can rely on it and build on it.
Citizens in mind
Working towards the profile of Good Neighbour Municipality means first and foremost that we should think and act more from the citizens’ perspective. We will adapt the existing system of relationship management with citizens who are active in society, in order to know better what is going on and to be able to respond to it (greater involvement). When we talk about ‘giving citizens the opportunity’ for DIY activities, we don’t mean finding out for themselves. The Good Neighbouring Municipality of Landerd stands shoulder to shoulder with the many community initiatives and offers to work together where possible or desirable.
It is an illusion to believe that this role and attitude as a good neighbour is realised immediately. Exercise produces skills and we sure are going to make mistakes. To be able to really learn together we start the Civic Participation Learning Course, with active citizens and civil servants.
The current community initiatives will grow stronger in the years to come. Their focus is on a broader and stronger organisation (association, foundation or group), of value to the village (strong centres of active inhabitants and initiatives, participation to the best of one’s ability) and clear positioning in the networks and cooperation.
New initiatives get the benefit of the Community Agenda (Municipality Council Agreement). The needs and desires of Landerd’s society are included in a list of specific activities and are executed by active citizens themselves.
Would you like to maintain the greenery in the neighbourhood or the playground? It is possible in Landerd. To ensure that residents who are going to make use of the Right-to-Challenge (neighbourhood rights) can make proper use of it, we draw up a handbook. It becomes publicly available and helps active citizens and civil servants.
In the tendering policy we make separate provision for community initiatives. We will consider these local initiatives as ‘preferred societal contractors’ and aim to give them every opportunity to work in the villages and rural areas.
Toolbox for Participation
We use a range of participation instruments to engage residents and entrepreneurs in the policy and works of the municipality. For example, consultative groups, briefing evenings, social media, the socalled ”Tafel van Landerd”. To use these tools more effectively, they will be added to an online platform, the Landerdse Toolkit.
Policy paper on citizen participation
The policy paper on citizen participation in Landerd is now available to the Municipal Council. Over the next few months, the council working group will work on an acceptable proposal on how the municipal council will organise the interaction with the community initiatives. The policy paper can be downloaded with this link.