On March 29, 2022, the Centre for Development of NGOs (CRNVO) with the facilitation of Resource Centres for CSOs in the Balkan, organized an online regional forum with the participation of over 130 representatives of civil society organizations, regional networks, international organizations, academia, private sector, media, relevant state institutions and other stakeholders from Serbia, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Northern Macedonia, and Kosovo.
The aim of the regional forum was to analyse, identify and discuss in-depth civil sector internal situation and the enabling environment during the crisis, challenges faced, most affected areas, its resiliency and adoptability response etc thus contributing to sharing of experience, promoting of successful practices or adaptability in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. 15 international and regional guest speakers were invited to share their knowledge and experience on 3 discussion sessions, on: Impact of COVID-19 on CSOs; Communication and cooperation of CSOs and the Government in response to COVID-19 crisis and adequate examples of proper CSOs contribution in response to COVID-19. During the discussion sessions the participants emphasized the needs on having more sustainable, flexible and accessible funding for CSOs; ensuring meaningful participation of civil society in the adoption, implementation and monitoring of National Recovery and Resilience Plans; adopting the EU Civil Society Strategy; monitoring and responding to attacks against civic actors and proceeding towards a structured framework for an open, regular and transparent EU civil dialogue (to implement Art. 11 TEU).
The forum is organised in the frame of the regional project “Fostering regional cooperation and policy responses in time of crisis” implemented by 5 regional organizations serving as Resource Centre for civil society in their respective countries as, Partners Albania for Change and Development, Centre for Development of Non-Governmental Organisations, Center for Civic Initiatives, Civic Initiatives, Macedonian Center for International Cooperation and Kosovar Civil Society Foundation. The project is funded by the Balkan Trust for Democracy, a project of the German Marshall Fund of the United States and the USAID.
In the next months, 4 other Regional Thematic Forums will be organised discussing topics such Voluntarism, solidarity and philanthropy in time of crisis; Access to services during the pandemic, with special focus on marginalised groups; Covid-19 impact on Youth sector and Human rights and access to information.
The next regional forum will be organised on 27 of April, 2022 on “Access to services during the pandemic, with special focus on marginalised groups”.