The FIIAPP is the institution designated by Spain before the European Commission for implementation of this type of cooperation project.
The Twinning Programme is a cooperation mechanism of the European Union that consists of transmitting the best practices of public administrations to the countries of Central and Eastern Europe to facilitate their accession to the Union. It was started for this purpose, but today it has also been extended to the countries covered by the European Neighbourhood Policy.
Since its founding in 1997, the FIIAPP, designated by Spain before the European Commission for the implementation of this type of cooperation project, has managed 300 twinnings with administrations in 31 countries in Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean. In 2014 alone, the FIIAPP managed 91 projects with a European budget of over 231 million euros.
Some examples of twinning projects managed by the FIIAPP are the support to the national transplant system in Moldova, the air safety project in Algeria, port management in Azerbaijan and space cooperation with Ukraine.
Tunisia, a success story
The FIIAPP has successfully closed a project for integration of disabled persons in Tunisia financed by the EU under the twinning formula. In the course of the project, 20 experts in the areas of education and employment were mobilised to contribute to improving the educational level of children with disabilities and establishing a model of inclusive education in ordinary schools, as well as to enhance this group’s access to employment.
These experts came from the ONCE Foundation, Spain’s Ministry of Health, Social Services and Equality, the Basque Employment Service, the disability area of the Regional Government of Andalusia and to the Regional Government of Madrid.
On-the-job training was given to 36 local professionals, including teachers, physical therapists, speech therapists and psychologists, to help them adapt their teaching system to the needs of children with disabilities.
With respect to occupational integration, 48 counsellors at employment offices and social workers were trained to enable them to guide this group in its search for work and to perform outreach to companies. Some of these professionals were trained in Spain and Germany, the country which managed the project jointly with the FIIAPP. The budget for the project was one million euros.