Eastern Neighbourhood Civil Society Facility
What is it?
The Neighbourhood Civil Society Facility is a programme developed under the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument (ENPI) to boost support to civil society in the region. It covers countries in both Neighbourhood East and South regions.
Born out of the review of the Neighbourhood Policy, and prefaced in the two Joint Communications of Spring 2011, on "A Partnership for Development and Shared Prosperity" and "A new approach to a changing Neighbourhood", the Facility aims to consolidate EU’s engagement with civil society in the Neighbourhood, so as to make civil society organisations stronger partners for the EU and authorities in partner countries in the formulation, implementation and monitoring of reforms and policies.
How does it work?
Through a combination of calls for proposals launched both at regional and at local level, and technical assistance directed mainly at capacity building, the Eastern Neighbourhood Civil Society Facility provides financial support to projects led by civil society, relevant in the context of the Neighbourhood Policy and the Eastern Partnership and closely accompanying national reforms targeted by EU assistance at bilateral level.
It also strengthens the capacities of civil society actors in region to enhance their role in promoting reform and increasing public accountability in their countries.
Last but not least, it seeks to increase civil society involvement in sector policy dialogues and implementation of EU cooperation in relevant fields.
Through its activities the Facility:
- Identifies and analyses civil society actors' needs and capacities in the region, as well as the way in which these actors can contribute to specific sector policy dialogues;
- Supports capacity-building activities (trainings, seminars, workshops, exchange of good practices, ad-hoc support, etc.) for civil society actors, so as to enhance their capacities and their role in promoting reform and increasing public accountability in ENP policy areas;
- Supports the organisation of multi-stakeholder consultations at national and regional level involving civil society actors, national authorities and EU Delegations so as to facilitate their participation in sector policy dialogues between the EU and partner countries and in implementation of relevant bilateral projects and programmes;
- Supports civil society actors-led monitoring and advocacy activities regarding fulfilment of ENP commitments, at regional, sub-regional or national level, as well as the activities of platforms and networks of civil society organisations.
The budget of the Eastern Neighbouhood Civil Society Facility over 2011-2013 amounts to over €37 million for all the countries in the Neighbourhood East (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Republic of Moldova, Ukraine), implemented through regional calls for proposals, local calls managed by in-country EU Delegations and technical assistance.