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Zugdidi, Dadiani Palace, PeopleIrakli Chelidze

Zugdidi has become the EU4Culture winner city and will implement the Cultural Development Strategy

Zugdidi won the EU4Culture competition and has been awarded up to €300,000 from the European Union to implement the Cultural Development Strategy.

The official award ceremony took place on the 19th of September at Dadiani Palace's History and Architectural Museum, in Zugdidi. The Delegation of the European Union to Georgia, Director of the Goethe-Institut Georgian, the city's mayor and EU4Culture project representatives attended the ceremony.

Previously, Zugdidi, Kutaisi and Poti received a €30,000 EU grant to promote cultural development and prepare Cultural Development Strategies for their cities.International and local experts evaluated the Cultural Development Strategies, and the project consortium made the final decision and identified the winning city according to pre-set criteria. Zugdidi, received additional funding up to €300,000 to implement Its Cultural Development Strategy. The project will offer all three cities capacity-building and training programs tailored to their needs.

"We are pleased that with the EU support, for the first time, the regional city of Georgia - Zugdidi will implement the comprehensive Cultural Development Strategy. This is a major opportunity for the city to animate its cultural ecosystem, boost its economic development through cultural activities and increase its regional and international visibility,” - stated Catalin Gherman, Deputy Head of Cooperation at the EU Delegation to Georgia
Zugdidi's 5-year cultural development strategy outlines the city's overarching and transversal cultural themes and priorities, drawing upon objectives, possibilities, and perspectives for 2022 to 2026. The city has outlined several strategic themes and ambitions that position Zugdidi as a City of Cultural Heritage Innovation, a Creative City of Arts and Crafts and a Creative City of Gastronomy.

“Caring for our cultural heritage and systematic development of contemporary art are among this city's top priorities and are crucial for the well-being of our community,” stated Mamuka Tsotseria, Mayor of Zugdidi Municipality.He highlighted the importance of the elaboration process of this Cultural Development Strategy, in which local target and professional groups, public and private cultural institutions, independent artists, NGOs, individual entrepreneurs and other interested stakeholders were involved. "Thanks to their active involvement, an open and transparent public discussion was held regarding the city's cultural needs and challenges, priority objectives, and short- and long-term goals for cultural development."
EU4Culture is a project financed by the European Union, which aims to support culture's role as an engine for growth and social development across the region. The project is implemented by Goethe Institut (lead), Czech Centres, Danish Cultural Institute and Institut Français de Géorgie.