Rīga 2014 Honorary Guests at the Citizens Festival
At the annual Citizens Festival the President aims to highlight the importance and value of volunteering and community work. The Rīga 2014 delegation was invited to participate due to its highly successful courtyard campaign, which has brought together numerous residents in local neighbourhoods around Rīga in voluntary community action, improving local courtyards, neighbourhoods, and relationships between residents.
President Gauck thanked several projects which engage in such work – including the courtyard campaign – in an address to the 4000 invited guests present on 5 September. The following day Rīga 2014 was present with a stand featuring information about the courtyard campaign and annual „Big Cleanup” events in Latvia, as well as other Rīga 2014 events, at a fair in Berlin’s Bellevue park, featuring numerous civil society, volunteering and community action organisations.
Following the trip to Berlin Aiva Rozenberga, Programme Director of Rīga 2014, said: “President Gauck’s Citizen Festival is a strong testament to civic initiatives and volunteer work not only in Germany, but in all of Europe, and as such, the participation of the Rīga 2014 courtyard campaign in Berlin is a great honour. The joint effort of residents, students, architecture and landscaping professionals to develop courtyards in Rīga is symbolic of our investment in the improvement of our city, our country, and our Europe. Inhabitants of Rīga can be proud of their achievements, which can serve to inspire residents of Berlin and other European cities to engage in community work.”