Improving co-operation for rural Europe
06 February 2012

Three key rural networks agree to co-operate and link their work in support of the rural communities of Europe.

Three of the main networks linking the rural communities of Europe – ERCA, ERA and PREPARE – met together in The Hague on November 11, 2011 to discuss the benefits of improved co-operation. Whilst each network has it’s own distinct remit, their collective work forms a significant contribution to linking rural communities and to raising the rural voice across Europe.

- ERCA (European Rural Community Association) is the network for the national and regional rural movements of Europe
- ERA (European Rural Alliance) is the platform for linking rural interests and providing a voice for the rural communities at a European level
- PREPARE (Partnerships for Rural Europe) works primarily with the new and future accession countries of Europe to develop rural partnerships and civil society movements.

The 3 networks have many common members and have worked closely together since 2005. The current initiative will aim to cement their collaboration and develop some clear priorities for joint working. For instance improving the profile and lobbying in Brussels, on behalf of the rural social agenda and pooling skills and resources on joint projects.

The November meeting was very positive and a Working Group has been formed to take forward this initiative. The Working Group will meet for the first time in Brussels on February 6.

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