Strenghtening Civil Societies

The Norwegian Helsinki Committee is contributing to a stronger civil society being a contact point for EEA Grants.

The NHC acts as a contact point for Norwegian organisations seeking cooperation under the EEA Grants’ Active Citizens Fund. 15 countries have been recipients of EEA grants, with EUR 200 million earmarked for the development of independent civil societies.

“These grants are a recognition of the civil sector’s role as a necessary building block of democratic governance, human rights and social cohesion in Europe,” says Senior Adviser Csilla Czimbalmos.

New perspectives

The grants are currently in a new program period for 2014-2021. They have resulted in over 200 projects in cooperation with Norwegian partners. One such is Changemaker, which successfully carried out a project with a Polish partner.

“We still have a fresh memory of the government-initiated attacks that the previous Active Citizens Fund operator in Hungary was subjected to in 2014. It was followed by smear campaigns and the delegitimization of all human rights organisations, which is still ongoing,” Czimbalmos says.

In 2018, we witnessed the introduction of a law criminalising organisations and members of organisations that provide support for asylum seekers, refugees and migrants in Hungary.

“Human rights defenders and defenders of liberal democratic values run an increasingly high risk for the work that they carry out. That is why support for civil society organisations is more important than ever before,” says Czimbalmos.

FACT: The NHC has been commissioned by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs to be a contact point for the Active Citizens Fund.

“We still have a fresh memory of the government-initiated attacks that the previous Active Citizens Fund operator in Hungary was subjected to in 2014. It was followed by smear campaigns and the delegitimization of all human rights organisations, which is still ongoing,” Czimbalmos says.

In 2018, we witnessed the introduction of a law criminalising organisations and members of organisations that provide support for asylum seekers, refugees and migrants in Hungary.

“Human rights defenders and defenders of liberal democratic values run an increasingly high risk for the work that they carry out. That is why support for civil society organisations is more important than ever before,” says Czimbalmos.

FACT: The NHC has been commissioned by the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs to be a contact point for the Active Citizens Fund.

Contact

Employee

Csilla Czimbalmos

Senior Adviser, Eastern- and Central EuropeEmail: [email protected]Phone: +47 93 28 43 04
Read article "Csilla Czimbalmos"

Employee

Hilde Sandvær

Communication AdviserEmail: [email protected]Phone: +47 95 72 21 08Twitter: @HSandvr
Read article "Hilde Sandvær"