Kornatska 1c, 10000 Zagreb, Hrvatska
A two-day workshop “Crisis Communication”, as part of the project “Capacity Building for the European Green Deal, according to the Measures of the Local Community” was held at Hotel Astoria in Zagreb on April 11 and 12, 2022. The lead partner of the fifteen-month project, which started on February 16, 2022, is the Food Waste Prevention Centre – CEPOH, and the partners are Consumer – Society for the Protection of Consumers in Croatia, Centre for Consumer Education and Information, and Croatia Red Cross – City Red Cross Society Osijek. Associate project partners are experts from the Croatian Agency for Agriculture and Food (HAPIH).
The workshop gathered five representatives of the above-mentioned organizations that defined the following objectives of the workshop:
1. To improve the participants’ comprehension of the forms of risk communication compared to the types and levels of risks, as well as the different groups affected by risk.
2. To present different canals and tools for various target groups and types of risks.
3. To define the content and create the concept of a manual for crisis communication, which will be created within the project.
4. To build capacities between the lead partner and other partners in the field of project management and reporting to donors.
After the introductory words of the project manager Branka Ilakovac, Ph.D., the director of the Croatian Agency for Agriculture and Food – HAPIH, Darja Sokolić, Ph.D. greeted the participants and welcomed the project with all its planned activities. She also emphasized that the Agency will provide full cooperation to the project.
The introductory presentation “European Experiences in the Crisis Communication System” with emphasis on the field of food safety was held by the assistant director of the Croatian Agency for Agriculture and Food – HAPIH, Sara Mikrut Vunjak, who is actively involved in communication with the European Food Safety Authorities.
In the practical part, participants specified and analyzed examples of best practices in crisis communication and debated on their implementation in the Crisis Communication manual. Afterward, the contents proposal of the manual was defined, as well as an outline concept, timeline, and tasks, related to the manual production.
It was concluded that the participants recognize the Crisis Communication manual as a very important tool during communication with organizations of civil society that are involved in food donation, but also an important tool that could have a long-term impact on the general public.
The second day of the workshop was dedicated to capacity building of civil society organizations involved in the project, regarding knowledge and experience transfer. The representative of the Centre for Consumer Education and Information – CEIP, Tanja Popović Filipović, covered the topic of using EU funds as an answer to crisis situations, which also included the following subthemes: EU funds and their structure, project cycle, and project elements, sustainability, and risk factors in project management, horizontal principals of the EU and how to respond to crisis situations through EU project preparation. Ana Smoljak from Consumer – Society for the Protection of Consumers in Croatia presented the procedure for preparing the Application for Reimbursement concerning the project “Capacity Building for the European Green Deal, according to the Measures of the Local Community“, and the final project report. Branka Ilakovac, Ph.D. from Food Waste Prevention Centre – FWAPC (CEPOH), presented the topic “The Significance of Communication of Civil Society Organizations with the Media, with an Emphasis on Crisis Communication“, and also presented the “golden rules” of communication, the formats of communication and cooperation with the media during events of special interest – crisis situations. The workshop ended after a two-hour training in communication skills through practical exercises in media performance and statement preparations.