The Administrative Boundary Line Community in Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti Region: What are their specific needs?
On February 1, 2023, MESA 10, in cooperation with Strategic Analysis, Bridge of Friendship Kartlosi, and the Information Center on EU and NATO, organized a Conference in Zugdidi, Georgia, which was dedicated to ABL communities and their specific needs.
Challenges hindering the development of communities on the “administrative boundary line” (ABL) often differ from those in other parts of Georgia. These municipalities, through which passes the ABL, face a number of challenges, among many, those of socio-economic nature.
Yet, there is a long-standing lack of analysis and studies focused specifically on these communities, which hinders the effective decision-making of local and central governments and the effective design and implementation of projects in these regions.
The project “Development of Communities along the ABL around the Tskhinvali region with a focus on local administration and development” deals with local administrations in conflict-affected areas of Georgia adjacent to the break-away regions.
The aim of the Conference in Zugdidi was to facilitate the discussion of representatives from both Georgian ABL communities (those around the Tskhinvali region and Abkhazia) on the issues they have to face as communities in terms of economic, social, security, environmental, and cultural challenges. Discussion of recommendations and solutions was based on the results of field research and the presentation of its findings.
We have succeeded in setting up advisory boards of local governments made up of young people (youth council) and women (women council).
The councils will continue to function after the project ends- with the support of a Georgian partner who has been working in ABL communities for years.
The project is supported by SlovakAid.