The General Assembly which took place on 9th November in Ivrea unanimously elected Aldo Patruno 6th EAVF Vice-president, with a specific interest the development of the Vie Francigene in the South.
The appointment of the Director of the Department of Tourism, Economy of Culture and Valorisation of the territory of the Puglia Region, was proposed by the EAVF President, Massimo Tedeschi: "Not only for reasons of personal quality, but also for geographical reasons, the vice-presidents represent the whole European route from north to south".
The entry of Patruno completes the team of the vice-presidents of the EAVF in office until 2019. The vice-presidents give their important support for the development of the Via Francigena in the various geographical areas of the European path. In addition to the Deputy Vice-President Francesco Ferrari, there are Velia Ann Coffey (English section), Martine Gautheron (French section), Gaëtan Tornay (Swiss section) and Lucia Baracchini (Tuscan section). The appointment of Patruno is important for the 5 southern regions (Lazio, Campania, Molise, Basilicata and Puglia) involved in the project to extend the certification of the Via Francigena in the South to “Cultural Route of the Council of Europe”.
"I thank the EAVF for this test of confidence on a personal level, as well as on behalf of the Southern Regions. This choice is not impromptu, I believe it is the recognition of a structured path that the southern regions have undertaken in recent months with important steps - commented Patruno during the assembly - All action is aimed at making sure that the regions operate effectively and through the Francigena we are succeeding".
During the assembly, new entries in the network of the European Association of Via Francigena Ways were also announced; today composed of 146 members and 44 Friend associations to the VF. Among the members are: The Department de la Haute-Saône (Bourgogne-Franche-Comté), the Communauté d'agglomération du Grand Besançon (CAGB), the municipality of Verrès (Valle d'Aosta), the municipality of Settimo Vittone (Piedmont) and the Ente Parco Nazionale del Gargano. The Friend associations of the VF include: The Association of Friends of the Franciscan Way of Sicily, the association of Pontieri del Dialogo (Lazio), the ASD MFR Brindisi and the social promotion association "Oltre l'acquisto" of Mortara (Lombardy).
The European dimension of the Via Francigena is expanding and solidifying. The Assembly of Ivrea was symbolically important. The participation of Velia Coffey (Canterbury), Carmela Lalli (Councillor for Rights Policies at the Cultural Growth School, Tourism and Sports of the 9th Municipality of Rome) and Aldo Patruno (Director of the Region of Puglia), confirmed the geographical and political unity of the great European path.
The next General Assembly of the European Association of Via Francigena Ways will take place in spring 2019.