“Kazan for the first time in the history of Russia has asserted itself at a high international level”

Russia has headed the World Conference of Mayors at the UN for the first time, it will be represented by the capital of the Republic of Tatarstan

“Kazan for the first time in the history of Russia has asserted itself at a high international level” Photo: kzn.ru

Russia has been entrusted to lead the World Conference of Mayors at the UN for the first time, and our country is going to be represented by the mayor of Kazan. A serious mission awaits Tatarstan’s capital, the mayor's office stressed. At the Congress of United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), Ilsur Metshin was elected Chairman of the United Nations Advisory Committee of Local Authorities (UNACLA). For what merits the capital has been awarded such an honour, what will be included in its duties, and what tasks lie ahead in the next three years — read more in the material of Realnoe Vremya.

Kazan bests Lisbon and Barcelona

A representative of our country has taken a high international post for the first time. Mayor of Kazan Ilsur Metshin has been elected President of the United Nations Advisory Committee of Local Authorities (UNACLA) at the 6th Congress of United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) and World Summit of Local and Regional Leaders, held from 11 to 15 November in Durban, South Africa. The congress was attended by more than 3,000 representatives of small and large cities of the world. More than 70 people from 39 cities of Russia, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Moldova, Abkhazia and Kazakhstan participated from the Eurasian office, which has been headed by Mayor of Kazan Ilsur Metshin since 2006. Other contenders were Mayor of Lisbon Fernando Medina, Mayor of Barcelona Ada Colau, and Mohamed Boudra, the president of the Association of Mayors of Morocco (AMPCC). They told about the honorary mission of the city on 18 November at Business Monday in the city hall:

“Kazan for the first time in the history of Russia has headed the United Nations Advisory Committee of Local Authorities. It includes 323,000 cities and municipalities. We didn't even know about that number. It is certainly a great honour and a great responsibility. Our colleagues have come from all five continents to discuss the problems that concern megacities, cities, large and small ones. This is the only platform for us to exchange views in the context of globalization. The questions of urban economy are the same everywhere. The city always experiences a shortage of some resources. This is a new stage in the development of our capabilities. It speaks of the authority of our country and our city. Kazan has asserted itself at a high level — it is the fruit of the works of our residents and the unprecedented support and love for Kazan of our leaders, the first and current presidents of the republic. We need to do even more — to show the world that it is not for nothing that we are entrusted with such a responsible work,” said Ilsur Metshin at Business Monday.

Mayor of Kazan Ilsur Metshin has been elected President of the United Nations Advisory Committee of Local Authorities at the 6th Congress of United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) and World Summit of Local and Regional Leaders, held from 11 to 15 November in Durban, South Africa. Photo: kzn.ru

The president of the United Nations Advisory Committee of Local Authorities is elected for 3 years. Previously, the interests of local authorities in the UN were represented by Mayor of the City of Johannesburg Mpho Franklyn Parks Tau, Mayor of Istanbul Kadir Topbash, and Mayor of Paris Bertrand Delanoe. the United Nations Advisory Committee of Local Authorities is the most powerful and influential body that advocates the interests of local self-government in the UN, promotes the exchange of experience between local authorities and national governments.

The need to create a permanent structure at the UN which would coordinate the actions of local authorities, as well as speak on their behalf at the UN, was first stated at the 1st World Assembly of Cities and Local Authorities in 1996 in Istanbul. Three years later, the Advisory Committee of Local Authorities (UNACLA) and the United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), which unites more than 240,000 cities and territories from 140 countries, were established. UCLG consists of seven regional offices: European (headquartered in Brussels), North American (Ottawa), Latin American (Montevideo), African (Rabat), Middle Eastern (Istanbul), Asia-Pacific (Jakarta) and Eurasian (Kazan). The UCLG World Secretariat is headquartered in Barcelona.

European experts will come to Good Kazan

The second part of the meeting was devoted to the nearest events dedicated to charity. The first deputy head of the Executive Committee of Kazan, Rustem Gafarov, said in the city hall that Kazan hosts the 4th Good Kazan forum from 2 to 3 December. It is going to be international this year.

The event will be devoted to national projects, it will discuss how to attract the public to their implementation. Good Kazan is held on the eve of the forum on national projects, which takes place in the capital of Tatarstan in 2020 chaired by Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev.

First Deputy Head of the Executive Committee of Kazan Rustem Gafarov said in the city hall that Kazan from 2 to 3 December hosts the 4th Good Kazan forum. Photo: kzn.ru

Kazan has a lot to discuss and share with experts from other cities and states. Created two years ago, the non-profit center Good Kazan supports charitable initiatives, covering more than 70 city organizations and volunteer associations, attracting extra-budgetary funding. For two years, Good Kazan received 162 applications for the contest, 21 of them have been implemented for charity. This year, they organized a free rental of tricycles for children with musculoskeletal problems at six sites of the city. Good Kazan holds blood and bone marrow donation events. This year, there have been by 791 more donors, 357 litres of blood have been donated. The benefactors held the Russian swimming tournament for children with Down syndrome Let's Win Together, it was attended by more than 100 children from 20 regions of Russia. Besides, 120,000 rubles have been collected for the construction of the second city hospice. In the capital of Tatarstan, there are branches of the warehouse Good Hands, clothes to 10,000 people in need have been given away this year. At the fairs of good, which are held twice a year, 7,7 million rubles have been donated to 130 little Kazan residents. A total of eight city charity fairs raised more than 27 million rubles for the needy. Volunteers have distributed more than 20,000 portions of hot food on the streets of the city for two years.

This year, 596 Tatarstan organizations have taken part in the competition of charitable projects. Eighty-five winners received the presidential grant totaling 155 million rubles. Sixty projects worth 96 million rubles are implemented by non-profit organizations in Kazan.

“Good Wave Forum and Good Wave Festival are the culmination of our work on the project Good Kazan. Here we summarize what has been done. It is at the forum that we discuss with experts the problems that prevent a greater number of those wishing to provide charitable assistance. We see the usefulness of the format of such communication. This year we are waiting for experts from Europe. The time has come to involve our republican organizations in this work. It is important that charities participate in national projects. Most of them have a social orientation. They are designed to improve the lives of our residents,” the mayor of the capital of Tatarstan announced the event.

The social rehabilitation centre for children with deviant behaviour Duslyk has operated in Kazan for 21 years. Its employees identify neglected children and help teenagers adapt to difficult life situations. According to Chairman of the Committee on Children and Youth Affairs Ayrat Faizov, children can be in the centre around the clock, until complete settlement. Teachers and psychologists work with them.

According to Ayrat Faizov, children can be in the centre around the clock, until complete settlement. Photo: kzn.ru

“A quarter of children return to their parents, issue guardianship over almost half of the children who found themselves in the centre, and only four people out of 100 go to the orphanage, and there is hope that from there they will get into foster families. The social rehabilitation centre Duslyk plays an important role in a difficult period for the child, helps to understand the situation, provides psychological support, if possible, its employees try to replace the parents for a while. But the main thing — to bring the child out of stress and set them up for later life. We will continue to pay great attention to this. God grant that as little as possible such cases happen,” the head of the city emphasized.

By Ekaterina Ablaeva
Tatarstan