The 3-year long project is implemented by European Civic Forum member Ökotárs and its sister foundations in Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania and Bulgaria, as well as the Hungarian Civil Liberties Union, Civil Society Development Foundation (Romania), Youth Initiative for Human Rights (Serbia) and the Norwegian Helsinki Committee, and it was launched with an international webinar on 22 September 2020.
The project aims at addressing the trends of democratic backsliding and shrinking civil space observed in Central and Southeastern Europe, by enhancing regional cooperation and networking among civil society organizations from the bottom up. ”Reclaim our Civil Space!” builds on broadening the grassroots basis and constituency of civil society through training and mobilizing activist groups and movements, facilitating cross-border cooperation and networking, and linking this to the European level by developing together with the outlines of a comprehensive European civil society policy.
Thus, activities will be carried out along these 3 objectives and levels:
- National: organizing trainings and workshops, mentoring support particularly to organizations/groups in rural regions (taking into account the specificities of individual countries)
- Regional: holding cross-border workshops and networking meetings (with at least 3 countries represented at each)
- European: international conferences (Budapest, Brussels, Prague), developing expert and policy papers.
The ‘Reclaim our civil space!’ benefits from a 1,8 million € grant from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway through the EEA and Norway Grants Fund for Regional Cooperation. More information on the Facebook page – follow us!