ENHANCING THE CAPACITIES OF LOCAL PUBLIC AUTHORITIES OUTBOUND PROJECT
October, 20 2013
September, 20 – October, 7, 2013
Project Coordinator: Mariana Buruiană
As part of the 2013 Legislative Fellows Program I had the opportunity to be an intern in the Oregon Senate. My motivation to write the project was based on my experience of working in the State Senator's Office Floyd Prozanski. In that way I had the opportunity to observe the working process in a legislative office, to attend the meetings and see how issues are approached and how means and ways for problem solving are born. As well, I enjoyed American philosophy of changing things by reaching all stakeholders and partners. In that context, I thought that the elements of participation in the process of reform will represent a good practice for Moldova state representatives.
Kevin Moore and I by proposing the outbound project, were aiming to bring US good practices to the Republic of Moldova, to enhance capacities of developing legislative projects to professionals from local public administration and Parliament and to share the best practices and provide professionals from Moldova with new ideas to develop socio-economic projects.
The Outbound Project was entitled
Goal 2. Provide the representatives of Republic of Moldova with essential information about role of local governments in U.S. legislative model
Goal3. Promote best practice in the US and set up future common projects between US and Moldova
Objective 2 Compare the capacities of Moldovan professionals to those of their counterparts in U.S. model
Objective 3 Share Moldova- USA experiences on the impact of community participation in decision-making process strategies of communication b/w parliament and citizens, including transparency, public outreach, and public relations
Objective 4 Discuss role of private sector, NGOs in U.S. legislative model
Objective 5 Accustom US visitors with the system of state representation in Moldova by visiting Parliament, Ministries, State agencies, districts city councils
The ACTIVITIES organized for fulfilling the objectives were diverse: different level meetings, trainings, round tables, conference, visits in different institutions.
Basically, the professional part was organized at the Municipal Department of Health.
Insertion in the activity of Municipal Health Department.
Kevin had a discussion with Mr. Mihai Moldovanu, Head of the Department and then was introduced to all the middle management chiefs of the Department. Mr. M. Moldovanu spoke about the structure of the Department, new reforms in the sector, the steps done for European Integration and other issues.
Meeting with Joseph Troisi, Director of the United Nations Institute for Ageing in Malta. Health Department
It was a discussion about international collaboration for improving demographic discrepancies and population ageing in the region. All the participants express their views, opinions about the increase of demographic challenges and need for strengthening health systems in the world.
The presentation was impressive and the participants had a lot of questions about Health Coverage, the Oregon Health Plan, coordinated care model, best practices to manage and coordinate care. In was an open session for questions and answers.
The meeting was attended by 50 persons, including heads of hospitals, heads of Medical Association, Family Heath Care Centers, representatives of private health sector, doctors.
In the second part of the day was organized two trainings.
Training: Campaign Insights. Barack Obama and State Politics
The trainings was about:
It was a great presentation on electoral practices and civil society legislative engagement to a group of parliamentarians and young political professionals. These presentations yielded an assortment of questions and post-presentation conversations. In fact, the group was so engaged that we remained in the conference room well into the evening.
I was truly honored that Mihai Ghimpu, former president of Moldova and current parliamentarian as well as the president of the Liberal Party, attended and engaged with the audience and me.
At the training participated legislators from the Parliament of the Republic of Moldova, local counsellors, advisors to the legislators, representatives from civil society, members of political party.
I was interested to learn that the American government provided funding for development of the Moldovan judicial system.
Visit to the Chișinău City Hall
We did a tour in City Hall building explaining to Kevin the structure and infrastructure. At the Mayoralty, Kevin was hosted by Mr.Iurie Cuculescu. Mr. Cuculescu served as an advisor to the mayor of Chișinău, Mr. Cuculescu informed Kevin of his role in city government and guided hom through the council chambers.
A week prior to traveling to Moldova, I had met with Portland's mayor at city hall. The contrast between Portland, where we have five city councilors including the mayor, and Chișinău, where there are over 40 councilors, was particularly profound.
Visit to the Liberal Party from Moldova and Meeting with Mihai Ghimpu, President of Liberal Party
During the second week, Kevin had a more lengthy interaction with President Ghimpu. Mr. Ghimpu hosted Kevin in his office for nearly 45 minutes, telling him of his life experience which served as a metaphor for Moldova's modern history, and explaining his political ideology and approach.
This was the highlight of my trip.
Participation at the Conference of Nurses Association from Chisinau
At the conference Kevin was introduced to the representatives of top management from municipal health system.
As well, Kevin met and discussed with Dorin Chirtoaca, the Mayor of Chisinau.
On October,4, Kevin visited American Councils Moldova's Office. There he met Mr. David Jeese, Country Director and Ms Daniela Munca-Aftenev, Open World / Professional Fellows Program Officer.
Visit to Orheiul Vechi and Curchi Monastery Complex
On September 21, Kevin joined by me and some friends visited
Orheiul Vechi, also known as Old Orhei, arguably Moldova's most fantastic sight, is an cultural, historical and archaeological complex located about 60 km (35 miles) northeast of Chisinau, Moldova's capital and 10 km (6 miles) to the southeast of Orhei city. This valley, shaped by Raut River, is one of the top attractions in Moldova, with a pristine natural landscape featuring huge limestone outcroppings. There are several ancient monuments and buildings set in the valley, from various historical periods dating from the 10th century BC to the occupation of the Golden Horde in the 14th century AD. These ancient fortresses and early Christian monasteries are among the most unusual sights in all of Eastern Europe, and a museum at the site provides further information and exhibits.
My three weekends in Moldova were no less didactic. Twenty-four hours after arriving, I was excitedly gazing at panoramic vistas of Orhei Vechi on a picture-perfect day with Mariana, her husband and two friends. As if planned, the bells of the church chimed just as we approached; we were the only tourists in sight.
Tour to rural area. Visit to Mereseni village, Hincesti
The following day, we visited Mereseni village, Hincesti. I wanted to show Kevin how a real rural looks like in Moldova, because Moldova is considered to be a rural country.
I was in the village home of the parents of Mariana's husband, Mihai. Mr. and Mrs. Buruiana greeted me warmly; they showed me their farm and cellar. After a wonderful homemade meal and perusing Mrs. Buriana's keepsakes from her time as a legislator during the Soviet era, I was treated to a taste of the family wine, straight from the barrel. My time with Mihai's parents felt very genuine; that's the day I started to fall in love with Moldova.
Tour to Milestii Mici-the biggest wine cellar in the world and visit of Milestii Mici village, Ialoveni.
The second weekend we did an amazing tour in the Milestii Mici underground cellars.
During my second weekend, Mariana, Mihai, my host parents, a friend and I toured the amazing cellars of Milestii Mici. I couldn't help but be surprised when our guide informed us that the cellars, which we drove through, extended for 250 kilometers! After wine tasting, Mariana and Mihai hosted me at their home where I enjoyed another delicious homemade meal and a more modern perspective on village life.
The following day, Kevin, host parents and their friends ventured - seemingly with the rest of Chișinău - to Bostaniada, a pumpkin festival outside the city.
While not strictly traditional, this did present an opportunity for me to taste customary fare and more homemade wine and to pick up a few craft gifts.
National Wine Festival
Being in Moldova in October, Kevin had the unique opportunity to attend the National Wine Festival.
The Moldovan Wine Festival officially called the "National Wine Day" takes place in Chisinau on the first weekend in October, at the end of the grape-harvesting season. This year, at its12th edition, the festival will take place on October 5 to 6 and will be held again in the Great National Assembly Square.
My trip climaxed at the third weekend during the two-day national wine festival. Reconnecting with those who had become dear to me in Moldova and enjoying a healthy dose of local wine under sunny skies, I truly felt at home as Chișinău celebrated the country's chief industry.
Kevin visited as well local universities, museum, theaters, parks and other beautiful places from Chisinau.