Project YOUTH FOR TRANSPARENCY
DURATION - 2006
PROJECT SUPPORTED BY
PROJECT COORDINATOR IN POLAND
Obywatelskiej (Centre for Citizenship Education), Poland
PROJECT COORDINATOR IN LITHUANIA
PROJECT PARTNERS IN LITHUANIA
Modern Didactics Center, Lithuania
Special Investigation Service of the Republic of Lithuania
Transparency International Lithuania office
awareness and lack of general access to public information
In theory, basic information about the work of local authorities is
open and accessible to the local community of many towns and villages.
This access, however, is usually difficult and those more persistent in
reaching it may have problems with getting even the least of it. They
are often handled impolitely and experience illegitimate resistance of
the officials. There are also other difficulties of different
character: the language and form of documents are hardly comprehensible
to an average citizen. Statistics on the number of visitors to the
Public Information Bulletin’s Web site show that this is
still not the most efficient way to get through to the people.
Therefore, the people must be given actual information, not just an
opportunity to reach for it. School is a place where students -
potential clients of offices and prospective public life
consumers—should be prepared to make a correct interpretation
of the obtained information and to make a right use of it.
The sense of helplessness in the face of corruption and similar
young Polish and Lithuanian people believe that corruption is
ubiquitous and doing anything about it makes little sense. Often it is
suspected that many actions (of local government and its offices) are
undertaken not for local public interest but for other, usually private
interests and goals. It is indispensable to convince the young people
that corruption is not a disease troubling the office and local
authorities as such but rather single individuals, and that the
authorities do really want their administration to respect the
principles of ethics. It is also necessary to increase the awareness of
the young people regarding access to public information, introducing
procedures and regulations eliminating bias and conflict of interest
within the local government, and also to promote ethical attitudes in
Polish public life. In this way, the young people will be prepared for
an efficient and true participation in the public life of their
communities. The more aware individuals will make better allies in
eliminating any symptoms of corruption. They will also be more critical
about slander and attempts to discredit public officials.
Lack of mutual
trust and co-operation between the office and its potential client
Effective communication between local authorities, its organs, and the
local community is a very difficult task. It requires finding adequate
communication channels, providing enough time, using the right
language, building confidence on the line authorities-people. A point
often made against undertaking such efforts is that the residents are
rarely motivated by public goals but rather follow their individual
interests. Even if this is so, the fact does not release the local
government from its duty to permanently consult its activities with
interest groups existing within the local community.
The Programme is an innovative pilot-stage project in
local public policy. The project-proposed model for monitoring the work
of public offices and institutions in co-operation with local
government, and the way of promotion mechanisms of social control
through education as well as methods for preparing young people to use
such solutions will be suitable for promotion in other counties and
municipalities in Poland and Lithuania. The Programme promotes school
as a partner of local authorities in communicating with the rest of
local society. This model of partnership helps to work out such methods
and tools which in future can effects to the authorities-local society
relations. It also helps to break the mutual trustless within. In
Program schools and local governments responsible for them are equal
partners in education and disseminating good practices.
Centre for Citizenship Education and the Modern
Didactics Centre have ample experience in running anti-corruption
programmes. Both organisations have during the recent years developed
education materials intended directly for school students and teachers
to address corruption and its control. With its regular contacts and
study tours, this project will be important for the exchange of
experience and the developed tools.
The main aim of the project is to develop attitudes and meet
expectations of young citizens in building the transparency and
accountability of the public life on the local level, through education
and through encouraging community cooperation on local and
- To engage local authorities and schools in common
building and realizing the local policy of public administration
- To present the social control mechanisms in the
subject of transparency and ways of corruption prevention for the
- To cooperate with local authorities and schools in
developing the local system of getting and disseminating information on
the public institution functioning.
- To build the international experience exchange and
means of dissemination social control mechanism through education
TARGET GROUPS AND BENEFICIARIES
- Youth: the project’s
direct addressees are young people aged 13-18 years (students of
gymnasium schools) in Poland and Lithuania living in places covered by
the Programme, those who will one day become full citizens taking part
in their local community life, also as the potential clients of offices
in their localities (3900 students).
- Local authorities chosen for the project:
direct beneficiaries are local governments invited to co-operation (10
in Poland and 3 in Lithuania) their representatives who, assisted by
the planned activities, are expected to build a positive image of the
office and to work to improve confidence in public institutions (13
local governments, 65 representatives).
- Teachers from the schools that will take
part in the project: the Programme’s intermediate
beneficiaries are also school teachers involved in its implementation
and all the residents of counties and municipalities covered by the
Programme, who will become addressees of activities carried out by
school students and local government staff members (260 teachers).
community: all inhabitants in those regions where the
project will be conducted (3000 adult inhabitants).
PROJECT ACTIVITIES IN LITHUANIA
3 municipalities were involved into this project: Elektrenai Municipality,
Mazeikiai District Municipality and Anyksciai District.
In total there were 12 schools, 57 students, 22 teachers, 2 social pedagogues,
11 servants of municipalities
directly participated in the project.
1. Information meetings
2. Workshops for local
Information meetings in municipalities were a starting point to
implement further activities. Actually, during the meetings it was
formed a background for local groups.
During the information meetings the aim and foreseen activities of the
project were introduced to participants.
Participants were acquainted with theory of practice of strategic
planning. During workshops local
groups started to plan activities and discuss the ideas of youth
projects. The workshops for local
groups were very important, because participants were empowered to
develop their projects later.
Workshops for teachers
There were organized 6 workshops (2 in each municipality) on
anti-corruption education and project method.
Workshops themes were chosen by participants. They acquired skills and
knowledge how to integrate anti-corruption education into their subject
teaching and how to apply project method in classroom activities.
There were delivered 14 lessons in 8 participating schools. These
lessons demonstrated the possibilities of civic education themes
integration to other teacher subjects. Students were interested in these
Students were acquainted with theory and practise of transparency and
the ways in which it is possible to implement social control mechanisms
in public institutions.
Visits to public institutions
This activity was especially interesting for students – they have been
acquainting with work of public institutions servants directly, have a
possibility to discuss with them, during these visits students collected
information and materials necessary for their projects.
This activity strengthened
communication between schools and local authorities and engaged in
common building and realizing the local policy of public administration
There were 12 visits organized.
Development of projects were highly interesting and useful activity for
students. During this activity they were involve into analysing of
transparency and accessibility of public institution activities and
solving important issues of public life. It was a great input into
rising of students’ public awareness. Students implemented 14 projects
choosing themes of transparency and publicity of public institutions, transparent relations between people and institutions, public
purchase, evaluation system at school, under-ages employment,
cooperation of school and public institutions.
Research of public opinion
9 researches were performed.
Students gained a lot from this activity learning to organize public
opinion research – to prepare research tools, collect and analyse data.
This activity met one of project tasks: to
engage local authorities and schools in common building and realizing
the local policy of public administration monitoring.
8. International study
During local study visits, organised in Poland and Lithuania, both
Polish and Lithuanian teams have a possibility to introduce their
regions, schools, and project activities. Study visits strengthened
communication between project teams, gave an opportunity to show
achieved results and to share experience.
International conference was organized on 8 October 2006 in Warsaw
and on 7 December 2006 in Vilnius. Participants finalized and
presented project results to each other discussed actual issues of pubic
life. International conference gave an opportunity to
build the international experience exchange and means of dissemination
social control mechanism through education forum.
10. Educational materials
Educational publications Youth for Transparency or 7 Steps
towards Effective Communication
and Youth for Transparency: Lithuanian experience were based on
the project implementation
experience and using project materials and examples. It will serve as
guidelines for local communities, youth organizations initiating
projects in cooperation with local authorities, state institutions, NGO
and other institutions fro their community.
information about the project in EN >>
information about the project in PL >>
Presentation of Anyksciai team
Workshop in Mazeikiai
Students from Elektrenai team
Project team in Poland 10/10/2006
Reception in US Embassy in Poland. At the centre -
Ambassador Victor Ashe
Round table discussion at the conference in Vilnius 7/12/2006
Project coordinators: S.Samulevicius and P.Wrobel
Guests of the conference: prof. R.A.Doig and director of
Transparency International -Lithuania R.Juozapavicius
- Improving the awareness of how public institutions
are functioning and developing the skill of using public controls
mechanisms will prepare the young people for their full citizenship.
- The Programme will also allow the young people to
experience, gain new skills such as, the skill of co-operation,
organization, managing and monitoring projects.
- Getting the young people involved in work for public
transparency will help overcome the overwhelming helplessness and
indifferent attitudes which indirectly result from a profound moral
crisis in Poland and Lithuania. The young people will be aware that
they can improve this situation by direct commitment to public
activity. Helping them to realise that the office is accountable to its
clients (school students, their parents, teachers, and the whole local
community) will also strengthen their sense of being the authors and
- The cooperation between local government authorities,
teachers from various counties and municipalities which was initiated
by the project will be carried on for the benefit of the young people.
Representatives of local authorities, teachers, students trained in the
first year of the project life to carry out certain activities will
then be held responsible for the continuation of all the project
activities and tasks. Local government structures will be interested in
introducing into their own practice all the methods developed under the
project to other schools and institutions (not taking part in the first
year of the project).
- A direct effect of the project will be an improved
awareness of the local community, they will be quicker in identifying
problems, and they will more readily come up with local proposals to
solve them. The Programme proposed model for monitoring the work of
public offices and institutions in co-operation with local government,
as well as methods for preparing young people to use such solutions
will be suitable for using in other counties and municipalities in
Poland and Lithuania.
PROJECT PUBLICATIONS IN LITHUANIA
for Transparency or 7 Steps towards Effective Communication. -
This publication serves as methodical guidelines for school or local
community, youth organisations that are going to initiate common
projects with local authorities, state institutions, NGOs or other
local institutions. Publication is based on
for Transparency material.
for Transparency. - Warsaw: Orthdruk sp. Z o.o., 2007.
This publication describes project Youth for Transparency
municipalities, team building, cooperation of schools and local
authorities, students visits to public institutions, youth projects,
presentation of project results to local community.