Unione della Romagna Faentina
Romagna Faentina was established in 2012 by the Municipalities of Brisighella, Casola Valsenio, CastelBolognese, Faenza, Riolo Terme and Solarolo to deliver more efficient services to citizens living in an area with a quite heterogeneous territory (high hills and plane, urban and rural areas) through a unique qualified organizational structure. Since January 2018 in fact, Member Municipalities have transferred all staff and competences to the Union, consisting of the mayors of the six Member Municipalities. The legal representative is the President of the Union, who is elected within the Mayors’ Board. The Union’s Council consists of the representatives of the single Municipalities Councils.
Romagna Faentina has a wide cultural and landscape heritage: Faenza, ancient city of art worldwide famous for its potteries, Brisighella and its magnificent Medieval fortresses, Casola Valsenio, over the highest hills to protecting a patrimony of medicinal herbs, Riolo Terme, place of thermal spring from gypsum veins, Castel Bolognese and its evocative Open Museum of bronze pieces and Solarolo, and its traditions to tell.
In the past few decades, in the Union area something not often found outside major urban centres has happened: an ecosystem of innovative, competitive companies capable of competing on the global market has grown and is now developing. Its members interact with each other and develop contacts and relationships globally through their respective networks. Torricelli Science Park is the hub. The leading players in the field of research, university education, technology transfer and innovation are located therein. The Park acts as a go-between and facilitator for entrepreneurs and researchers. It hosts research activities concerning application of innovative materials for industry and fosters process innovation, prototyping and company incubators, extending from advanced mechanics to aerospace, from biomed to telecommunications, and from the chemical to construction industries. The innovation system includes a Contamination Lab, an incubator of multidisciplinary creativity, and ISIA Faenza the Institute of Advanced Training in the field of Design and Communication.
A further challenge is to transform the local welfare system from a means of assistance to a tool for ensuring community cohesion and a driving force for development. The Social Services of the Unione della Romagna Faentina are being transformed into “Services for the Community”. The Member Municipalities of the Union agree that on the idea that it it possible to s encourages sharing and participation between citizens by two connected actions: pushing towards autonomy and fighting poverty and marginalisation. These actions are reinforced throughout the network which connects housing, education, labour and economic policy through personalised social health plans
Romagna Faentina Member Municipalities have endorsed the EU Action Plan for equal opportunities for men and women in social, economic cultural and political life.
The community of Romagna Faentina has a rich and sound volunteering and civic participation tradition, which is the natural basis where a resilient community grows and develops; in case of troubles its members get down to work on and directly involve themselves for the benefit of the community. The recent socio-political debate on security arose also in the area of the Union. However, the discussion is grounded more on insecurity perception than on statistical data: vulnerability events are often overgeneralized also due to press coverage. Citizens response was not long in coming: they (directly) boosted civic participation on urban security by neighborhood watch. The security of a territory depends firstly on the people living in there, who take care of neighborhood relations, stay on the watch on the neighborhood and report anomalies to the police. This is the reason why the government of the city is directly involved in supporting citizens proactive participation on its territory and in creating and spreading out the culture of prevention. For this purpose Romagna Faentina is one of the founding members of the Partnership on Security in Public spaces created in the framework of the Urban Agenda of the European Union.
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