Open Call for the Fall 2016 Professional Fellowship Program

1Spring Congress 3 046We are inviting people interested to apply for the Fall 2016 Professional Fellowship Exchange Program by 10th February 2016. 

We invite professionals from any region of Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania, and Slovakia to apply for participation in a 42-day fellowship in the U.S.A. We encourage submissions by professionals who are actively involved in programs related to citizen participation and advocacy (NGO/civil society development), civic education organizations, citizen advocacy groups, community activists and/or community organizers who work with minority groups. The overall goal of the program is to provide a professional development opportunity for mid-level emerging leaders; create a forum for American and foreign participants to collaborate and share ideas and strategies; and build a global network of professionals able to work effectively in an interconnected environment.


Read the announcement Announcement for 2016

Download the application Application Form 2016 

Download the pre-departure action plan Pre-Departure Action Plan Form 2016

Please note that you should send all required documents in order to be eligible for the program.

Testimonies from Fall 2015 Professional Fellows Delegation

glcRead the testimonies from the Fall 2015 Professional Fellows Delegation
from Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania and Slovakia
visiting the United States in September 29 – November 13, 2015

Thank you to the Leaders and Mentors from 11 host organizations in 6 different states across the United States for their internship’s supervision and help to our delegation.

Download the newsletter here

Deadline Extended – Announcement for participation as U.S. Mentor & Host Organization

US MentorsWe are extending the deadline for application from U.S. Hosting Organizations who are interested to participate in the 2016 Professional Fellows Exchanges, to share Community Organizing methods from U.S. with Central & Eastern Europe. Please contact Elizabeth Balint by January 20, 2016 if you are interested at: 419-973-8007 or glc_teachdemocracy4@hotmail.com

Organizations and individuals, who are actively involved in the legislative process and/or in policy-making through their work in government, civic education organizations, citizen advocacy groups, community activists, or community organizers working with minority populations, are invited to apply for participation as a U.S. host organization and/or as a U.S. mentor. We encourage professionals and their organization to submit their application to take part in an exchange program with matching participants from four Central and Eastern European countries.

This program is a two-way exchange opportunity involving professionals and leaders from the U.S. and selected European countries. U.S. mentors will share their professional expertise with the EU fellows of this program and travel for a two-week reciprocal visit to counterpart organizations for consulting. Mentors will conduct joint workshops in order to share experience and to promote mutual understanding and partnership between key professional groups in the United States and groups in the selected European countries. The program is funded by the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Office of Citizen Exchanges. The Professional Fellows Program is organized by WSOS Community Action Commission, Inc. – Great Lakes Consortium for International Training and Development (GLC) from Northwest Ohio  in collaboration with Creating Effective Grassroots Alternatives Foundation (C.E.G.A) in Bulgaria, Civil College Foundation (CCF) in Hungary, The Resource Center for Public Participation (CeRe) in Romania, and Center for Community Organizing (CKO) in Slovakia and other local partners in the United States of America and in the selected countries in Europe.

DEADLINE FOR APPLICATION: January 10, 2016

Application Form C – if you are a new US mentor and new host organization who did not work with WSOS/GLC before.

If you were  US mentor earlier and/or your organization previously hosted European Professional Fellows, please contact Elizabeth Balint by phone 419-973-8007 or e-mail: glc_teachdemocracy4@hotmail.com and we will e-mail you a different – shorter – application form to fill out and return back by December 15, 2015.

Read the Announcement

Download Form C

Announcement and Application for Fellowship Exchange Program 2016

20151006_091839We invite professionals from any region of Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania, and Slovakia to apply for participation in a 42-day fellowship in the U.S.A. We encourage submissions by professionals who are actively involved in programs related to citizen participation and advocacy (NGO/civil society development), civic education organizations, citizen advocacy groups, community activists and/or community organizers who work with minority groups. The overall goal of the program is to provide a professional development opportunity for mid-level emerging leaders; create a forum for American and foreign participants to collaborate and share ideas and strategies; and build a global network of professionals able to work effectively in an interconnected environment.

“DUE TO TECHNICAL DIFFICULTIES TO ACCESS INFORMATION ABOUT THE 2016 PROFESSIONAL FELLOWS PROGRAM,
WE WILL EXTEND THE DEADLINE UNTIL NOVEMBER 15, 2015. THERE IS A WORKSHOP AND INTERVIEW SCHEDULED in ROMANIA AND BULGARIA BEFORE THIS DEADLINE SO PLEASE CONTACT YOUR COUNTRY DIRECTOR TO GET MORE INFORMATION ON THE UPCOMING WORKSHOP IN YOUR COUNTRY SO YOU DO NOT MISS THIS OPPORTUNITY”

Read the announcementAnnouncement for 2016

Download the applicationApplication Form 2016 

Download the pre-departure action plan Pre-Departure Action Plan Form 2016

Professional Fellows from Europe in United States

12068645_852199188211823_8671911631801316222_oThe second delegation with a total of 18 fellows from Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania and Slovakia will visit the U.S. from September 29–November 13, 2015 to participate in joint trainings, round-table discussions, site visits, and will have interactions with U.S. leaders. A tailored internship with mentoring, multicultural events, and participation in volunteer activities as well as in the Professional Fellows Congress in Washington, D.C. also included in the 6-week professional fellows program. Participants will prepare a 6-9 month individual and group Action Plan for follow on activities. They have various opportunities to experience the American family life and the diversity in the U.S. through staying with American host families during their internship in Chicago, Illinois; Minneapolis, Minnesota; Detroit, Michigan; and the rural areas of New Hampshire and Vermont, and Charleston, West Virginia.

Read the newsletter here

Alexandrina Dinga – fellow from Romania

Foto Alexandrina DingaAlexandrina Dinga is, at the present, project manager of “For the Better” Association, a non-governmental organization founded in 2009 to go a long way towards sustainable development of the local community, whose projects, through a holistic approach – environment, economy and social – encourage the consumption of seasonal and local products, develop practices of reduce and reuse, support disadvantaged groups, promoting a social and environmental responsible behavior.

The project which she coordinates in the ”For the Better” Association is ”Water without plastic” (with the support of  EEA Grants). The purpose of this project is to inform and sensitize the people on the importance of reducing the consumption of bottled water in PETs. Furthermore, between Sept 2013 – Sept 2014, in the ”Educational and participatory tools for sustainable development” project, started in June 2013 with financial support of the Swiss grant, Ms. Alexandrina coordinated the action ”Neighborhoods  for people”, where she organized consultative and informative meetings with citizens of 5 neighborhoods of Iași. The problems identified in these meetings with citizens, their lack of community involvement, a bad city management issues and an abusive decision of the Mayor to cut all the trees in the center of the city (without a public consultation), encouraged Alexandrina and other friends of her to start a new organization willing to act in the area of ​​active citizenship and good governance.

Currently, Alexandrina is the president of a newborn association – CIVICA Association – where she is doing voluntary work with her colleagues to build the association, to attract resources for developing a program of community organizing. She wants to dedicate her next years to develop CIVICA Association, enjoying an active community and a better managed city.

Chicago

Chicago

Alexandrina is also one of the co-founders of the Iaşi Community Foundation, founded in 2012, where she currently has an advisory role (after two years of being involved in its board) and as an activist she coordinates a group of civic initiative “Iaşi loves linden trees” to determine the mayor to replant the trees that were cut in the center of Iaşi.

Ms. Dinga had also worked in the private sector for almost 3 years, but NGOs drew her more, because she feels like there is more freedom and she can actually develop the projects that she believes in.

Alexandrina is licensed in Ecology and Environmental Protection, she has a Masters in Biodiversity and Ecosystem productivity and one in Communication, Creativity and Social Skills in Organizations. She is an accredited trainer and project manager with approximately 6 years experience in the non-governmental environment (3 years as a volunteer and 3 as an employee), project management, communication, strategy application, implementation of informational and awareness campaigns.

Palatul_Culturii_Iasi_-_AerialAlexandrina is a native Romanian speaker and B1 level English (speaking, understanding, writing and reading).

This is going to be her first visit to the US. With the help of this fellowship, she aims to identify best methods for mobilizing and involving citizens in solving community problems, by identifying the needed resources for them, to learn more about the community organizing, but also methods of public participation, advocacy campaigns, fundraising.

A short term target is to use this knowledge to assist the citizens from two marginal neighborhoods of Iaşi (Dacia and Frumoasa) to organize and solve local problems and a medium term target is to develop a program of community organizing in Iasi, at the CIVICA Association.

She is interested in learning more about community organizing, the development of advocacy, fundraising and community mobilization tactics.

Alexandrina’s pre-departure field work activity will take place in Dacia and Frumoasa neighborhoods and the target group consists of their citizens in general. She had already held one consultative meeting with the citizens from the two neighborhoods (15) and several informative meetings. She wants support/assist the formation of two civic initiative groups in these districts, their citizens being able to be involved in solving the problems they face.

Her hobbies are reading, traveling, sometimes hiking on the mountain and tea stories with her friends. Alexandrina will have her internship at Go Bronzville (Chicago)