Kőszeg (link: www.koszeg.hu) The birth of the only free royal city of historical Vas County dates back to the third quarter of the 13th century. Kőszeg became the main scene for the events of the 1532 campaign in the third wave of the 16th century’s Turkish menace. The last contingent of the disengaging Turkish troops left the outskirts – as tradition has it – at 11 o’clock on 30th August, 1532. In memory of this event, the church bells have been tolled at 11 o’clock since 1777. Kőszeg lost its primary situation in Vas County in the first half of the 19th century. Fortunately, the development course of the emerging capital did not affect the treasures of Kőszeg’s especially beautiful and rich architectural heritage and natural environment. The town-structure remained intact. Kőszeg was granted the Hild-award in 1978 for preserving its architectural heritage. In the last decades Kőszeg has become famous not only for its historic buildings but also for international connections. One of the reasons for this – besides its beauty and the nice, reliable people who welcome guests with distinguished hospitality – might be the many minorities (German, Croatian) living in the town. Kőszeg has 5 bilateral twin towns, but as a member of the Douzelage (having 28 member cities), it has strong connection with several other towns, too.
Kőszeg Town Twinning Association (Kőszegi Testvérvárosi Egyesület) is responsible for the International connections of the town: helps to organize meetings, programs, and also takes part in European projects on behalf of the town, too. The members of the non-profit non-governmental civil association take an active part in the life of the town. One of our aims is to help the cooperation of Kőszeg and its several twin and partner cities. Many of the members – about 30 people – are high-school or college students and young employees, but there are about twice as many young students who also support our voluntary work. All members are extremely active, love our city, country and culture, but we also agree very much with our EU membership and would also like to convince people about its benefits. The members are experts in several field, many of them are teachers (language, science, PE, computer science), employees and head of the cultural center. We have experts in education, cultural, sport, environmental, youth and social field and a 15-year-experience in organizing international events. This is the reason that according to the decision of the Town Council our association represents the town in international projects.
Kőszeg Town Twinning Association, representing Town Kőszeg in international projects will be “primus inter pares”. This means we are both organizers and participants. As the applicant, we have a bit bigger responsibility in the project than all other partners. We suggested the theme, found the partners, collected and selected the ideas of all partners to make sure the project will be the most beneficial for the citizens of all partner towns and can contribute to the European values. We will coordinate the preparation, the implementation and a very wide dissemination (also through the two twinning networks our town belongs to) of the project, transfer the EU support to the partners etc. Besides these, our association will prepare, organize and advertise an event (with more participants than other partners) described in part F. We will work out the involvement of the local associations, schools and institutions in all phases, particularly in our unique topics: save and protect the water.