TACIS Partnership for Democracy Project
Through the support of the European Commission SCAF conducted the project aimed at promotion of dialogue and partnership between NGOs, government and business sectors in four Belarus regions (Brest, Grodno, Minsk and Vitebsk). Representatives of over 60 local and regional NGOs have been trained by SCAF and in co-operation with the government and business counterparts elaborated action plans for civil society development in their regions (2002-2004).
Engagement of Youth in Civic Participation
In cooperation with the National Institute of Education, Department on Youth Matters of the Ministry of Education and youth NGOs SCAF developed the youth strategy and supported youth in rural communities in Belarus engagement in civic activities aimed at meeting their communities’ needs.
Civil Society Forum
SCAF dialogue project started in 1999 offered a forum for informal discussions among representatives from the official and the opposition side of Belarus as well as from NGOs, think tanks, international organizations and the diplomatic circles. According to the opinion of the OSCE expert «there are hardly any other regular fora with this high level composition from all the sectors. All participating sectors are offered the chance to explore new ideas and initiatives. Such initiatives can have a follow-up in direct talks. The informality of the talks, the regularity of the meetings, and the participation from government/parliament and opposition as well as the international community make the forum to one of the opinion building «institutions» in Belarus».
Through its activities SCAF has gained trust and respect among the Belarus and international political and civil society stakeholders and now continuous its role as a think tank and mediator for conflict resolution in Belarus. SCAF is an active participant of major civil society experts’ meetings on Belarus initiated by the international community.SCAF is part of the Global Peoples’ Assembly that unites civil society assemblies (national dialogue forums) through out the world.
Research, Publications, Training
SCAF developed reports for the UN NGO Millennium Forum in New York (May 2000), UN Social Summit in Geneva (June 2000) and its representatives participated in these civil society forums through support of the UNDP and Council of Europe.
At the request of the European Foundation Center (EFC) SCAF conducts research and contributes to the EFC publications — «European Foundation Fundamentals» (1999), «Democracy Corridors: a Strategy for Change in Belarus» (EFC Social Economy and Law Journal, 1999), “ From Elections to Elections: Strategies of Development of Belarus ” and “The State of Civil Society in Belarus: A Research Summary by the Support Centre for Associations and Foundations” (EFC Social Economy and Law Journal, 2001).
In July 2000 SCAF was selected by the World Alliance for Citizen Participation — CIVICUS as the leading civil society experts in this program. The research results in the development of Agenda for Civil Society Development in Belarus. The outcomes of the pilot program were published by CIVICUS (Belarus Civil Society: In Need of a Dialogue. Civicus Index on Civil society Occasional paper Series, Volume 1, issue 3) The Belarus Index on Civil Society Report is also available via SCAF web page at http://scaf.int.by and in publications «The State of Civil Society in Belarus: A Research Summary by the Support Centre for Associations and Foundations» (EFC Social Economy and Law Journal, Brussels, 2001), «Index on Civil Society in Belarus» (Belarus Association of Think Tanks Bulletin, 2001 and 2004).
SCAF’s recent research on the development of the NGO sector in Belarus also resulted in corresponding publications «Promotion of Dialogue in Belarus Society», «Peaceful Scenarios of the Political Developments in Belarus”, «Isolation or Cooperation?» , «Index on Civil Society in Belarus»,, «Support to Sustainable Development of NGOs in the Republic of Belarus», «Strategy for Change in the Republic of Belarus» in the Belarus Association of Think Tanks’ bulletins and books (1999-2004) and also in the following handbooks for NGOs developed and published by SCAF in cooperation with the NGO Futures (Switzerland), Westminster Foundation for Democracy (UK), and ICBL: «Organizational Management and Development of NGOs», «Fundraising and Grantmanship», «Internet Resources for NGOs», «Organization of NGO Conferences», «Partnership Building Between NGOs and Local Government», «Solutions of the Landmines Problems in Belarus:Civil Society Monitoring» (2000 — 2004) . All the handbooks have been tested through training of representatives of regional and local NGOs.
TACIS Partnership for Democracy Project