Friday, 23 September 2011

Conference: See People Behind Politics. Why Effectiveness Matters. 10 October 2011 Warsaw

Zagranica Group, the Polish platform of development NGOs, invites you to the international conference: See People Behind Politics: Why effectiveness matters? Perspectives from the Global South, which takes place in Warsaw on 10th October 2011. Please find the agenda and additional information of the conference here. Some travel and accomodations costs can be covered. Deadline for registration is 30th September at

V4 Aid Transparency Conference 4 October 2011, Prag

Currently, the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) is the most comprehensive effort to improve transparency in development cooperation. Created in 2008 by key OECD donors IATI developed an open data standard for aid information open to bilateral, multilateral and private donors, including foundations and NGOs. OpenAid e.V. together with Visegrad non-governmental development organisations are organising the V4 Aid Transparency conference in Prague to explore the relevance of IATI and of open data generally for emerging donors such as the EU12 countries. Concrete examples of open data initiatives in other public sectors will stimulate the debate on the possible uses of aid data. Deadline for registration is 29th of September.

Find more information on the FoRS website.

Thursday, 15 September 2011

TRIALOG starts into a new project year of Phase 4

After the summer break in August the TRIALOG team is now back and complete in its offices in Vienna and Brussels. Our Policy Officer Rebecca Steel-Jasinska is back in the Brussels Office, and we welcome our new Capacity Building Officer Faika El-Nagahsi, the maternity leave replacement for Andra Tanase.

We are happy to present our TIS newsletter in a new format and hope that you will enjoy reading it. We have been busy preparing our next activities including the Partnership Fair (19-21 September 2011). At the Partnership Fair we will welcome more than 100 participants from all over Europe - we were pleased by the high interest that the event generated.

We would also like to announce the publication of our annual Bulletin - fresh off the press. This issue includes a review of the conference and field visits in Nicaragua in November and December of last year, highlights relevant policy processes like the Structured Dialogue, the Multiannual Financial Framework and CSO Effectiveness as well as providing new perspectives on the transition experience of new EU member state. There are articles focusing on the EU presidencies in Poland (2011) and Cyprus (2012) as well as on Croatia as a future member of the EU. We hope you enjoy it! Please find the pdf-version online; hard copies can be sent upon request to

The Black Sea NGO Forum 2011, 6th-8th of October, Bucharest

The 4th edition of the Black Sea NGO Forum will take place on 6th - 8th of October 2011 in Bucharest, Romania. The event is being organized by the Romanian NGDO Platform (FOND), with support of the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Representation of the European Commission in Romania and the Black Sea Trust for Regional Cooperation.

Recent developments in the EU neighborhood have revealed once more the essential role of civil society and its potential as a positive force for change. The 4th edition of the Black Sea NGO Forum will explore the role and needs of civil society in the region, its vision(s) and solutions to the current local and regional problems and will include dedicated panels on different topics – democratization, leadership, regional cooperation models, monitoring of social models, education and children rights, environment, lessons learnt from the transition period. Representatives of Government, both from Romania and other foreign countries, European Commission, NGOs from the Black Sea Region, donors will debate on the European Strategy for the Black Sea Region, the impact of NGOs on programming process.

The Representation of the European Commission in Romania will award this year, within the framework of Black Sea Forum, the Black Sea NGO Award for Excellency. The aim of this award is to enhance the profile of the Black Sea Synergy and its role in proposing a regional, cooperative approach in the region, as well as the multilateral dimension of EU external policies.

The Black Sea Forum was launched in 2008 by FOND with the support of the Romanian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Black Sea Trust for Regional Cooperation in the framework of the Black Sea Synergy. The Forum aims at increasing the level of dialogue and cooperation among NGOs in the wider Black Sea Region, strengthening the NGOs capacity to influence regional and national policies, and to increase the number and quality of regional partnerships and projects. The previous editions focused on good practices in various fields and countries and successful cooperation initiatives in the region, the main challenges and opportunities in the region and gathered more than 500 participants from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Byelorussia, Bulgaria, Georgia, Greece, Republic of Moldova, Turkey, Ukraine, Romania, Russia, and other EU member states active in the wider Black Sea region.

Find more information about the event on the website and

Information provided by Adriana Zaharia, FOND

Conference National Identity in the Context of Global Citizenship 17-18 October, Slovenia

SLOGA, the Slovenian NGDO platform kindly invites you to the regional conference “National Identity in the Context of Global Citizenship” co-organised by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Slovenia and the North-South Centre of the Council of Europe (NSC). The conference will take place on 17-18 October 2011 in Jable Castle, near Ljubljana in Slovenia. The objective of the conference is to discuss concepts of global education, global citizenship and national identity throughout the region of South-Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean EU countries, and to increase understanding of the subject. Another objective is to explore the similarities and differences in definitions of these concepts and to seek ways of working together to attain common goals and actions despite - or because of - such differences. The accommodation and travel cost are not covered. If you would like to attend the conference, please contact Ms. Dunja Segrt or Ms. Gordana Berjan and see the detailes on

Information provided by Dunja Segrt, SLOGA

HOC Action for the Children of Somalia

With 12.4 million people in need across the Horn of Africa, the region is facing the most severe drought and food crisis in decades. The worst affected country is Somalia, with an estimated 3.2 million people believed to be on the brink of starvation. That’s why the Humanitarian Response Center – HOC of Slovenian NGOs, who is functioning under the Platform SLOGA, decided to take an urgent action. 10 HOC member and support organizations accepted a decision to launch an action “Against hunger. For the children of Somalia!” The main aims of the action are to raise the awareness of the general public about the humanitarian situation and challenges that the Horn of Africa is facing, and raise funds to address humanitarian needs in Somalia. Collected funds will be used for the purchase and local transport of milk powder for 1500 households or at least 9000 people in three villages in Somalia - Baidoa, Hudur in Belet Weyne. This supply will be sufficient for one month in which each family will receive 2.5 kilograms of powder milk. For the purchase and local transport of milk powder we need to collect 24.000 euros. The action is the part of the ADRA Somalia project.

Information on the fundraising is available at the HRC website along with all other information on the action and relevant data from the field. For more information contact Janja Mikulan -

Information provided by Janja Mikulan, SLOGA

Latvian Perspectives on Nyeleni

The Latvian delegation arrived in Krems, Austria, with an enthusiastic attitude, ready to expand their horizons by participating at the Nyeleni European Forum on Food Sovereignty taking place from 16th to 21st of August 2011. Food sovereignty is an aspiration, a vision that all people should have the right to define and shape their own food systems. The food sovereignty movement has been working to achieve that goal by struggling against the powerful forces that control the dominant industrial food system, and by providing a space to develop positive alternatives. The purpose of this forum was to bring together representatives from all over Europe to formulate a regional plan for food sovereignty. The week-long forum was filled with activities, including intense policy-related discussions, educational fieldtrips and related recreational events.

The Latvian delegation consisted of a birch juice producer, and representatives from various NGOs, an alternative school, and the Latvian Rural Advisory and Training Centre. For the Latvian delegates, the forum was very educational, serving to improve understanding on a wide variety of topics, from GMO food to local food systems. Importantly it provided a space for the national delegates to network with each other, as well as with other delegations. In particular, learning about the common problems faced by Eastern European countries has helped form a basis for cooperation on food sovereignty issues in the region. For Latvia, and other Eastern European countries where small-scale producers are numerous but struggling, food sovereignty is an especially important concept to mobilize around.

Inspired by the energy and creativity of the Forum, and the diverse and insightful perspectives of its participants, the delegation has returned home and has already started working to foster the nascent food sovereignty movement in Latvia. The final Nyeleni declaration has been translated into Latvian (available at, and work is continuing in education and outreach.

See also the related article Torwads a European Forum for Food Sovereignty.

Information provided by Renāta Blumberga (, Agnese Radžele-Šulce, Zane Ruģēna-Bojāre

Gender Equality is not a Hot Topic for Media in Estonia

Merike Viilup, Estonain journalist and media expert, shows an advertisement of a tree cutting machine during the meeting with group of youth and youth workers from 14 countries, who participated in "Gender and Media" Training Course in Nelijarve, Estonia, on August 7-13. A half-naked woman with a sexy look who carries the cutting machine in the forest is presented in this advertisement. This ad is from a local newspaper and is a bright example of what Merike Viilup would like to change regarding the perception of gender equality. "Unfortunately, this ad is not an exception. It is a widely accepted point of view that a woman should be presented in a sexy way, with bright make-up and nice clothes", said Merike Viilup.

"There is only one woman minister in Estonia out of twelve. Women are paid 30% less than men. These facts clearly present the situation of gender inequality in Estonia. I have to mention that media is not interested in covering and discussing gender equality issue", said Ruta Pels, a journalist and the president of Eesti People to People NGO, organizer of "Gender and Media" training course funded by EU Youth in Action Programme and People to People European Fund. 22 participants from Estonia, Lithuania, Poland, Bulgaria, Italy, France, Sweden, Israel, Jordan, Ukraine, Moldova, Armenia, Georgia and Turkey gathered in Estonia to find the ways how to change the gender equality perception in media.

"This training course was designed for a week. I do hope that the lectures and meetings in Nelijarve and Tallinn during study trips to Tallinn University, ENUT, Estonian TV and Radio, women magazine 'Jana' and Etnoweb internet-portal will help the participants to get new knowledge and have the gender sensitive glasses to be able to analyse what media offer in reality and the way it should be done", said Ruta Pels. More information on Facebook, section "Gender and Media" and, contact Ruta Pels, Eesti People to People president:

Information provided by Arevik Badayan, Youth Club of Armenia

EU Donor Atlas 2011

The European Commission has put the EU Donor Atlas 2011 online. The donor atlas is an interactive online tool that provides an overview of what the EU and its Member States do to support development across the world. It covers official aid from most EU Member States for 2009 (in some cases not all information is available) as well as from the European Commission and also contains information on key development indicators of developing countries. You can search by specific donor country, areas of activity (e.g. global trends; accountability; Millennium Development Goals), regions, or developing countries. You find the Donor Atlas by following the link

Source: European Commission

E-learning Course on the Practical Guide,
FAQ for Global Calls

A new E-learning Course on the Practical Guide (PRAG) to Contract Procedures for EC External Actions is now available on DEVCO website to all actors of EU external actions: This course explains how the European Commission is managing the funds and identifies the procedures applying to all contracts (procurement and grants). It covers a wide range of issues emerging during the award and implementation of a contract and is presented in an interactive way.

EuropeAid has published on its website in the section funding a new document „Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for Global Calls for Proposals Under The Thematic Programmes” with explanations about the procedures of grant applicatinons. You find the document at or directly at For many Calls specific FAQ will also be published in future.

Information provided by bengo and CONCORD

Reinvent or Face Irrelevance: CIVICUS Report Warns CSOs

CIVICUS launched its Civil Society Index (CSI) Summary Report for 2008-2011 Bridging the Gaps: Citizens, organizations and dissociation, bringing together assessments on the state of civil society development in 30 countries around the world. From the Balkans, 8 countries participated in the research, among which 4 were lead by BCSDN member organizations or associates. BCSDN will follow-up this amazing dissection of the state of our sector with regional and thematic-specific reports. One of the main conclusions of the report is that civil society - the sphere of people's associations and organizations - is undergoing its most significant crisis and change for a generation. Many established CSOs are struggling under the weight of multiple economic and political challenges, but are also disconnected from citizens, particularly from new, informal modes of participation and activism. The report concludes that the rise of informal activity, such as the peoples movements of the Arab Spring, offers a new challenge and opportunity to CSOs: they must embrace such movements to connect better with the public and renew themselves in order to survive. Download the pdf.

Source: BCSDN No. 237

TACSO Regional CSO Database Online

The Technical Assistance for Civil Society Organisations (TACSO) project launched its web-based database for civil society organisations. The TACSO CSO Database should become a comprehensive online listing of different Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) in the IPA region. For each registered CSO, information can be found about the organisation’s mission statement, area of interest, and contact details. The Database will serve as a reference resource to existing and active CSOs as well as a basis for networking and partnership making, i.e. on EU applications and funding, among different organisations. In addition, information on the legislation and government institutions that are relevant to the work of CSOs within the region can be found on the database. By registering on the TACSO Database, the CSOs are increasing their visibility, and are reaching out to potential partners which will assist them in accomplishing their goals. The TACSO CSO Database is accessible via TACSO

Source: BCSDN No. 235

North-South Center Programme Volunteering and Active Citizenship

For the coming semester, the North-South Center (NSC) Global Education & Youth programme is flagging its activities under the theme of volunteering and active citizenship. While the annual University on Youth and Development (UYD) will gather in September over 300 youth leaders from all over the world to reflect, share good practices and expertise under the theme of Youth Volunteering for Global Development, the NSC will pursue its work for a participative global citizenship through its Global Education activities: indeed, and in the same logic as the UYD, the Global Education e-training course, starting the 3rd of October under the topic of Intercultural Learning (3-28 October; application until 26 September 2011), and the Global Education Week, from 12 to 20 November under the leading theme "Act for our Planet!" will aim at raising awareness and empower citizens for action for a global change.

In parallel, and building on the recently approved Recommendation of the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers to member states on education for global interdependence and solidarity, the second semester will be determinant for the NSC policy-making in the field of GE: the last regional seminar for the promotion of GE in new EU member States will take place in Slovenia in 17-18 October, involving SEE/Med countries stakeholders into the debate of global education and the sharing of strategies for the promotion of GE.

This collaborative approach with partners, and their respective feedback, will contribute to the improvement and updating of the NSC pedagogical and training tools in the field of GE and set the working-frame of the Pan European Congress foreseen in 2012. Meanwhile, the new space for Global Educators community created on NSC Facebook page, aims at facilitating and encouraging this proximity between the NSC and its partners and stakeholders for a fruitful and continuous work.

For more information, please contact Miguel Silva.

Source: DE Times September 2011, Information provided by Miguel Silva

2011 EESC Civil Society Prize

Theme of the 2011 prize rewarding excellence in civil society initiatives is Dialogue and participation fostering EU values: integration, diversity, solidarity and tolerance. The 2011 prize will reward civil society projects and initiatives serving the EU values which underpin the European integration process, and the overall objective of the prize, which have proved to be innovative in concept and application and made a valuable contribution to the well-being of their communities. Also, dialogue and participation must be the essential means through which those initiatives and projects have been achieved. The prize, of a total value of EUR 30 000 and which will be awarded on 7 December 2011, is open to civil society organisations, at European, national, regional and local levels, established in the European Union. The deadline for submitting applications is 7 October 2011. Detailed information on eligibility criteria and the procedure for entries, as well as an application form, is available in all EU languages under the "How to apply ?" at the website:

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

CONCORD Recruits Capacity Building Officer and Head of Policy

The European NGO confederation for Relief and Development CONCORD offers two full time positions in Brussels. Deadline for applications for the position as Capacity Building Officer is 19th September 2011. Closing date for the position as Head of Policy is 25th September 2011. Find detailed information at: Please send the cover letter and CV in English only by e-mail to .