Engage and Monitor for Change

Goals

EPF’s Engage and Monitor for Change program fosters the active and informed participation of Georgian community groups, CSOs and media outlets in the political and economic decision-making in their regions by building capacity among civic groups, encouraging monitoring and evaluation of policy reforms and facilitating public discussions, debates and network building. EPF also provides targeted small grants to unite less experienced organizations with more developed CSOs in project development and implementation and conducts grant competitions in civic monitoring of various sectors.

Impact

The concept of participatory civic monitoring emphasizes the process by which primary stakeholders at the local level actively engage in monitoring the government’s commitments to the reform process and public service delivery and become engaged in identifying or taking corrective actions. Through this process, EPF builds the capacity of local people to analyze information and catalyze commitment at the local level. Since the program’s inception in 2007, EPF has awarded over $480,000 to thirty four local civil organizations to engage in civic monitoring and capacity building through the targeted grant competitions. EPF will award more grants in 2013 to foster community engagement through the two more targeted grant competitions.

Source: Eurasia Partnership Foundation. Read more about this project here.

Corruption-Free Estonia

The aim of the project was to present the ways of restraining corruption in Estonian Radio (Vikerraadio). Eight broadcasts about corruption were leaded by Mr Tarmu Tammerk (director of by the Estonian Newspaper Association). The representatives of public institutions and nonprofit associations were invited quests of the broadcast to introduce their experiences of restraing corruption.

Coalition “Transparent Foreign Aid to Georgia” (in-house project)

The project intended to support the forming of a Coalition of 7 NGOs focused on rising and improving monitoring, transparency and accountability. The goal of the TFAG Coalition is to analyze, evaluate and monitor projects funded within the foreign aid package allotted to Georgia after the August 2008 armed conflict; to provide wide coverage of monitoring reports and to advocate for the elaborated recommendations.

Coalition for a Clean Parliament – European Parliament Election 2007

Concept: fighting large-scale corruption by preventing the lack of information about the candidates for Members of Parliament; agreeing on criteria that make a candidate unfit for a clean Parliament with the leaders of the political parties; developing black-lists of the parties’ candidates in order to cleanse the candidate lists; making these lists public (website, flyers, press).
In the autumn of 2006 10 organizations decided to form the Coalition for a Clean Parliament – European elections. At the beginning of the year the formation of the coalition and the criteria used in the monitoring of the candidates were announced. The Coalition contacted all major political parties and negotiated the access to the preliminary list of candidates before the official announcement. The Coalition organized the network of journalists that collected and assembled the data. The preliminary findings have been discussed with all parties. Given the changes of the electoral system and the evolutions of the political scene in recent years, the organizations forming the Coalition for Clean Parliament have decided to resume the monitoring of the political representatives using a new methodology. Therefore, the coalition deemed that it was not sufficient for a candidate to merely meet a set of integrity requirements, but that dignitaries should also seek to serve public interest and respect the rule of law. Before the parliamentary elections of 2008, the Coalition designed a set of instruments that were better suited to capture this perspective:
– a Pact for the Rule of Law – politicians were presented with a document with several key points they should commit to respect during office;
– monitoring political migration, defined as changing formal party allegiance (more than twice);
– monitoring of the manner in which those in office between 2004 and 2008 had voted on a series of issues and laws considered by the Coalition as particularly important for the rule of law.
The results of these monitoring activities were published on the “Clean Romania” website, which was thus transformed into a resource site for anticorruption advocacy.

Media Campaign: Accountability and Transparency in Bosnia&Herzegovina

Among the goals of the project:
– Promotion of good governance (promotion of transparency and accountability of governments and their role to serve the citizens);
– Increasement of public awareness of the problem of corruption (pointing out the proportion of the problem and its negative influence on society and living standards);
– Encouragement and promotion of intolerance for corruption (promotion of intolerance towards corruption and presentation of corruption as global a problem that society needs to solve if it wants to develop);
– Promotion of anti-corruption measures (encouragement of different initiatives, which could influence a decrease in corruption);
Introduction of anti-corruption mechanism to the citizens (introduce to the citizens the ways of reporting corruption);
– Encouragement of active civic participation in the fight against corruption (including NGOs, citizens and other organisations in activities of fighting the corruption);
– Raising citizens’ awareness about the existence and possibilities that Conflict of Interrest and Freedom of Information laws offer;
– Dissemination of information about corruption to the public and other institutions (NGOs, international organisations and government agencies).

Act on Free Access to Information

A law on free access to information that is a powerful tool for corruption control and watchdog activities has been absent in the Czech legal framework for quite a long time; this project contributed to the successful culmination of the efforts to bring it into life. The seminar was widely inclusive, convening the representatives of the civil society, deputies, journalists and civil servants. The printed outcome of the seminar was distributed to the members of Chamber of Deputies before the vote. The advocacy part and media campaign implemented by TIC targeted three main groups – deputies and senators, journalist and young people. The message was simple – allow for free access to information. Tools like free postcards with a motto “Get informed by your deputy or senator when they allow you to access the information” were used. TIC issued around 10.000 postcards and sent them to all legislators and important journalists; the postcards were also distributed freely by a chain of cinemas, cafes and restaurants. The main message of the campaign was modified and extended for each of the target groups (via press releases, letters or info brochures). The campaign managed to get the deputies and senators under pressure and made some of them to make a public commitment to support the law (43 out of the 200 deputies made the public commitment they would vote for the law). An individual approach to each and every deputy and senator proved efficient; it allowed for expression of their personal opinions and for media coverage. There was also an important role of journalist who were not only transmitting the message but took active part in the campaign. TIC supplied media actively with additional info on how the law works in different European countries or delivered the statements of the involved Czech deputies. The law was adopted in spring 1999 and went into effect as of January 2000.