Today, FLIARA, delivered a compelling presentation at the European LEADER Congress 2023 in the heart of Brussels. This significant event, organised by ELARD, a partner of the FLIARA Project, aimed to provide a platform for stakeholders to convene, fostering dialogue and amplifying their voices within the European capital.
The Congress, held on December 18 and 19, witnessed a vibrant exchange of ideas from 13:00 CET on December 18 to 17:00 CET on December 19. More than 800 participants, including over 600 Local Action Group (LAG) members from diverse corners of Europe, officials from the European Commission, Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) actively engaged in LEADER and rural development, and representatives of national and regional rural networks, gathered to deliberate on the future of LEADER in European policies.
As discussions unfolded within the iconic hemicycle of the European Parliament, the Congress assumed particular importance against the backdrop of the post-2027 review of European policies. The role of rural development found itself under the spotlight, prompting ELARD to assemble representatives of the LEADER programme and CLLD (Community-Led Local Development) from across Europe.
ELARD’s strategic decision to host this gathering underscored its commitment to taking stock of rural development in Europe. ELARD sought to offer a tangible platform and voice to rural areas by providing a stage within the European Parliament’s hemicycle. This initiative aimed to spotlight the challenges faced by rural communities, especially as Europe approaches a pre-election year, injecting urgency into the conversations about the future of rural development.
FLIARA’s successful intervention further emphasised the project’s dedication to shaping the narrative and direction of rural development initiatives in Europe. As the Congress unfolded, it became a melting pot of ideas, experiences, and aspirations, ultimately contributing to the ongoing discourse surrounding the pivotal role of LEADER programmes in shaping the future landscape of rural Europe.