Civil Society Development

Civil Society Development

Civil society organisations play a critical role in supporting EU efforts to promote the principles of fundamental rights and rule of law to countries applying to become a member of the Union.

Under its present guidelines, the EU works with CSOs to create a more enabling legal and financial environment for active citizenship and to strengthen the capacity of organised citizens.

In its political support, the EU encourages Turkey to make legislation more conducive for civil society. It promotes the involvement of civil society in the pre-accession process, including in the formulation, implementation and monitoring of sector strategies for EU financial assistance under IPA II.

In its financial support, the EU uses several funding instruments to respond to a diverse range of CSOs in a flexible, transparent, and results-focused manner. Longer term contracts, for example, allow for capacity-building and advocacy work that requires time and resources. By moving away from project-based support to a more flexible approach, the EU promotes partnerships and coalition-building and reaches out to grassroots organisations, particularly from disadvantaged regions. Professional and business associations play an important role in promoting the right to association and are supported to improve their action. Sector programmes, such as culture, support CSOs through measures that enhance their role and capacity to participate actively in the formulation and implementation of sector strategies.