ROUND TABLE FOR SHARING EXPERIENCE IN THE ROMA INTEGRATION
Ms. Malina Kroumova, Deputy Prime Minister for EU Funds and Social Policy and Mr. Ilko Semerdjiev took part in a Round Table to discuss successful practices and models implemented in Bulgaria towards the Roma integration. Ms. Kroumova stressed on the need "successful parctices in the field of Roma integration to be used in the future because the integration is one of the necessary steps for the development of the European Union as a successful union with common goals". "The importance of the topic is visible also in the Memoranda of Understanding for the implementation of the EEA and Norway Grants 2014 - 2021, signed on the 9th of December 2016", added Ms. Kroumova. According to the Memoranda, Bulgaria will receive financial support for projects in areas such as social and territorial development amounting to 210,1 million Euro, provided by Iceland, Lieachtenstein and Norway.
"The measurement for the intelligence and effectiveness of a nation is the socializing of the vulnerable groups. Solidarity should be a horizontal policy," noted Mr. Semerdjiev. In this regard he shared that 194 municipality plans for Roma integration are already developped. "There are a number of successful policies in the field of healthcare and education that need to grow into national policies."
The conference was attended also by the Dutch Ambassador - H.E. Mr. Tom van Oorschot, Ms. Lora Lalova, EEA and Norway Grants Manager at the Norwegian Embassy for Bulgaria, Mr. Roland Python, Head of the Swiss Contribution Office in Bulgaria. The European Commission was represented by Ms. Cendrine de Buggenoms - Head of Unit at DG "Employment".
The Round table had the aim to coordinate various financial instruments available in Bulgaria. The experience and knowledge of the already implemented projects were presented by NGOs and national institutions working with vulnerable groups.