Monitoring Enabling Environment for Civil Society Development Project

Balkan Civil Society Development Network Regional Workshop on State Funding, November 13-14

Balkan Civil Society Development Network (BCSDN) in cooperation with the European Center for Non-for-profit Law (ECNL) organized a regional workshop on state funding for CSOs on 13-14 November in Novi Sad, Serbia as part the “Balkan Civil Society Acquis” project. In total, 38 representatives of CSOs and relevant state institutions from 13 countries attended the workshop to map state financing framework and practices in the Balkan countries and to share best practices and tendencies from the EU countries. In this workshop, participants have also identified key bottlenecks in Enlargement countries and steps to overcome, as part of the advocacy plans for 2014 for increasing state funding and improving regulatory practices in the represented countries.
Several conclusions and recommendations were driven from the two day workshop. The majority of participants have identified the lack of civil society strategy as the common and most pressing issue for the enabling environment for CSO development, generally and state financing for CSO in particular in Western Balkans and Turkey. Other common issues presented by the participants as follows: the lack of strategy for support and cooperation with CSOs, lack of developed mechanisms for support for social dialogue and inclusive practices, lack of funds and mechanisms for co-financing, lack of non-financial support, and insufficient transparency in state funding.