Study visit on the project of the Association of South-Western Municipalities in Szekesfehervar, Hungary

The Association of  South-Western Municipalities is a partner of the AgriGo4Cities project - " Urban agriculture for changing cities: governance models for better institutional capacities and social inclusion", funded under the first call of the Interreg Danube Transnational Programme 2014-2020. In addition to many other initiatives, the project includes the exchange of experience and good practices between different parts of the Danube region through a series of study visits, including the Blagoevgrad region last October.

On March 20, 2019, the project partners took part in the last study visit - in the region of Szekesfehervar, Hungary, hosted by the Hungarian partner Central Trans-Danube Agency for Regional Development. The participants first visited the Sarasret garden, which was set up in 2014 as part of the social rehabilitation of the Szekesfehervar municipality project of the same name. The garden is run by the Association “Friends of the Gardens”, which holds monthly meetings in the neighboring public center. The terrain is located in the courtyard of the municipal elementary school, where there is another public infrastructure - a stage, a barbecue fireplace, benches and arbors, etc.

The second visited garden was Palota-kert in the Palotavaros neighborhood - the first public garden in Szekesfehervar, established in 2013. The initiative is supported by the municipality and the local councilor who is an active participant in the project development. The local gardeners themselves have been involved in the creation of the garden and continue to manage it until today. Over time were built a pavilion with tables, a tool shed, a furnace, a fountain,etc.

Finally, the participants also visited the model garden created within the AgriGo4Cities project itself in the courtyard of the Arani Janos Specialized Secondary School for Children with Special Needs. The initiative was implemented in 2018 with the participation of pupils and teachers as well as other local partners. The materials are donated by local companies. The project partners were pleasantly surprised by the students who were expecting them to plant the rucola in the new garden together.

The study visit ended with a general discussion on the best practices shown and an assessment of the opportunities for sharing and multiplying successes.