The municipality will try to access EU funding for sport projects with the help of EPSI

Sustainable growth also goes through European opportunities. This is what the Municipality of Rovasenda, a small district near Vercelli (Italy), is experiencing after its participation last year in the Sport Award 2022 powered by EPSI in the framework of “Piemonte Innovazione e Sviluppo Next Generation Award” of ANCI Piemonte.  The prize awarded the most innovative ideas in the field of sport submitted by public entities in the Piedmont region. The Municipality of Rovasenda, the winner, is now investing in territorial, cultural and touristic development thanks to its entry into EPSI’s European Network. 

Rovasenda is a small village of less than 1.000 inhabitants in the Baragge Reserve (Piedmont), with a special natural landscape element. Last year the Municipality, with the great participation of the entire community and the support of the Administration, of the Mayor Gian Paolo Baietti and the head of the financial services of the municipality Antonella Giavara began to think about greater development by focusing on the resources within the area. 

The lacking of infrastructure for sustainable tourism is currently one of the issues to face. In this regard, Municipality is focusing on improving slow tourism and sport by working with EPSI to participate in an Erasmus+ project called ACTIONS Active Tourism, Outdoor and Nature Sports, whose approval will be known in September. «Epsi has included the Municipality of Rovasenda in a European network of partners who, with their know-how and our expertise, have provided us with a growth opportunity for project participation», says Dr Marianna Pisanu, the project manager working for the Municipality. «EPSI is a relationship facilitator for collaborations with organisations all over Europe. EPSI has included Rovasenda in a European dynamic». 

Rovasenda’s role in the ACTION project, coordinated by EPSI, is to create contents for a digital platform for investing resources in training the local community to act in the Baragge area by following Municipality’s three main pillars: physical activity, nature and cultural heritage. Cycling tourism is what connects them all. 

Thus, local growth and development also turn around sports. Dr Pisanu points out: «Sports is a great opportunity both to generate new residential in the village and as a tourist attraction. Participating in EU funding calls that promote sports is important for us because we aim to increase visitors through sports as a means of raising the quality of outdoor life – cycling and walking – surrounded by nature. Sport brings regeneration as a space for reflection between physical activity, nature and cultural heritage». 

Rovasenda is also working together with other Baragge Reserve municipalities for territorial innovation. Ten different local entities have been indeed coordinating the type of projects to be proposed, with shared partnerships. From a future perspective instead, Rovasenda intends to proceed along the road of grant writing, even at the European level. «We hope to start working on the Erasmus+ ACTION project next autumn if it will be granted – Dr Marianna Pisanu concludes -. But certainly, we will continue to monitor EU opportunities, collaborating with EPSI for our local territorial improvement».