Brief description Training university graduates to develop, manage and implement projects funded by the EU Structural Funds in the border area between Greece and Bulgaria.
Region Internal EU borders
Countries Bulgaria (BG) – Greece (GR)
Location GR: Drama
BG: Gotse Delchev
Type of project partners Municipalities
Chambers, business associations
Local/regional development agencies
Size (total budget including EU grants) Under € 50,000
Main themes Competitiveness, business and SME development, trade and investment
Employment, labour mobility and social inclusion
Keywords (Types of Activities) Education and training
Keywords (Aspects of Good Practice) Genuine cross-border dimension
Genuine cross-border impact
Background and Objectives The main scope of the project was the training of 20 university graduates to develop, manage and implement projects funded by the EU Structural Funds and the EU Community Initiative Programmes in the border area between Greece and Bulgaria.
Main activities Training was organised only a few months before Bulgaria became a full member of the EU and the main impact of the project was to prepare the young trainees to be able to take advantage of the new opportunities made available to Bulgaria after accession.

Part of the activities included training in Gotze Delchev provided by Euroregion Nestos – Mesta / Drama Chamber executives. One other major action was the study visit of the trainees to Drama to gain on the spot knowledge and experience.

Three of the trainees were hosted by organisations in Drama and worked in the host organisations for one month in order to receive on the job training and experience in the development, management and implementation of EU funded projects.

Main results The new experience and knowledge gained through the training resulted in the strengthening of the ability of the young trainees to prepare proposals and applications in Municipalities, NGOs, or other organisations in Bulgaria.

Five of the young trainees have found employment in border organisations on the Bulgarian side and one trainee is employed part-time in a Greek organisation. These young trainees have moved on to become executives and they are instrumental in the organisation, management and implementation of all types of EU funded programmes. Three young trainees are hired in the private sector and are in charge of exploiting the possibilities to finance private developments through EU funded programmes. There are two CBC projects that have been initiated and successfully being implemented by the team of the Bulgarian trainees and the Greek trainers and their respective organisations.

Aspects of good practice A significant proportion of the trainees have become engaged in cross-border development activities after the completion of their training, making use of the knowledge and skills acquired and generating new projects and activities which promote further cross-border cooperation.

The project received the European cross-border achievements award “Sail of Papenburg” from the Association of European Border Regions.

Start and completion dates: March 2006 – December 2006
More information
Partner Drama Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Greece, Alkis Papadimitriou,
Partner Business Incubator Gotse Delchev, Bulgaria, Rossitsa Djambazova,
Partner Gotse Delchev Municipality, Bulgaria, Daniela Kranteva,