Georgia: Good Governance

Georgia: Good Governance

The lack of interest in participation in political and social affairs, influenced by historical experience from the Communist era, is a typical feature of Georgian society, particularly in small towns and rural areas. 

Therefore, we support youth initiatives as well as local non-governmental organizations, entrepreneurs, and associations and encourage them to engage in decision-making activities and to seek solutions to current problems together with local politicians.

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Ongoing aidORPast aid programmes

EU COVID-19 Solidarity Programme for the Eastern Partnership

EU COVID-19 Solidarity Programme for the Eastern Partnership

The aim of this project is to mitigate the adverse effects of COVID-19 and to contribute to longer-term socio-economic resilience of vulnerable groups in Eastern Europe.  Under the implementation of People in Need (PIN), and in partnership with the Netherlands Helsinki Committee (NHC) and AFEW International (AFEW), the project aims to propose a set of interventions in several countries, including Armenia, Georgia, Moldova, and Ukraine.
PIN recognises the critical role local civil society organisations (CSOs) and independent media play in service delivery, community mobilisation, awareness raising, policy engagement, and advocacy for the protection of human rights and civic freedoms during and after the pandemic. We will support the CSOs and other civic actors to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on vulnerable populations by empowering them with services and access to accurate information.
PIN will capitalise on its in-depth field-level knowledge to support CSOs that focus on community-level initiatives, watchdog programmes, and local independent journalism. Our partners NHC and AFEW are specialised in activities to improve human rights protection for responsible persons in closed institutions and key populations at risk for public health concerns like HIV, TB, and viral hepatitis. We will provide grant support to NGOs working with these beneficiaries and assist them in developing strengthened monitoring, reporting, advisory, agenda-setting, and advocacy work.
 
Civil Society Actors as Drivers of Change in South Caucasus and Moldova

Civil Society Actors as Drivers of Change in South Caucasus and Moldova

This is a regional project, involving several countries from South Caucasus and the Republic of Moldova, united by the common aim of supporting newly established civil society organisations, grassroots organisations and civic initiatives, or social and cultural movements in order to strengthen their role as trusted actors advancing the democratisation process.
The project team will work closely with selected civic initiatives to develop a strategy for each of them regarding their path and position in the society. They will take part in trainings, coaching, mentoring, consultations, study visits, fellowships; will establish or improve connections with their supporters and volunteers; and will network with peers and partners in Armenia, Georgia or the Republic of Moldova and abroad.
The selected civic initiatives will have the opportunity to get support for research and building thematic expertise, as well as get involved in policy dialogue at local, national or international level. During their participation in the project, the newly established civil society organisations will find out if, why and how to engage with the private sector for potential cooperation, and will find effective, transparent and accountable ways to self-organize and manage resources. The project will ensure access to funding opportunities for the internal development of selected civic initiatives or for carrying out campaigns designed by them.
 
Advancing Regions for Sustainable Development

Advancing Regions for Sustainable Development

Advancing Regions for Sustainable Development (ARSD) is a 2 year project, funded by the European Commission. The project involves local authorities, representatives of ministries, regional universities, think-tanks, civil society groups and regional organizations. The aim of the project is to improve the capacities of these actors in terms of strategic planning in the field of regional development and create a model of partnership between regional, municipal and rural development stakeholders for a sustainable and inclusive development of regions.
Civil Society Organizations Supporting Free Trade with European Union

Civil Society Organizations Supporting Free Trade with European Union

Overall, the project is a contribution to the acceleration of Georgia’s European integration. The project aims at strengthening region-based civil society organizations (CSOs) along the implementation of Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Area (DCFTA) - part of the Association Agreement of Georgia with the European Union, and along the implementation of the national policy on small and medium enterprise (SME).

Still, a very small number of Georgian companies (according to some surveys only 6%) trade with the EU under the DCFTA.  Region-based SME and particularly rural entrepreneurs with limited access to expertize, finance and difficulties entering new markets have to eventually comply with DCFTA regulations. In this regard, regional CSOs can serve as effective vectors of democratic and socio economic development in the rural regions.  

Thus, the project strives to the following outcomes:
1/ Increased capacity of Local Action Groups (LAGs) and other CSOs to act as resource channels on relevant aspects of the DCFTA for micro- and small enterprises and agri-producers in their target areas.
2/ Increased capacity of LAGs and other CSOs to facilitate engagement of rural population in their areas in policy dialogue. The project’s target regions include Imereti, Mtskheta-Mtianeti, Kakheti, Samtskhe-Javakheti, Samegrelo-Zemo Svaneti, Adjara and Kvemo-Kartli.
Strengthening rural development in Kazbegi district

Strengthening rural development in Kazbegi district

The project introduces the LEADER approach to Kazbegi district. LEADER ("Liaison Entre Actions de Développement de l'Économie Rurale", meaning 'Links between the rural economy and development actions') is a local development method which allows local actors to develop an area by using its existing local development potential. 

The LEADER approach has been an important component of EU Rural Development Policy for over 20 years. It is piloted for the first time ever in Georgia. PIN supports participatory mechanisms in local decision making processes and the district's sustainable growth.
    
    
It is the basic principle of the LEADER approach that the action targets all types of local public, private and civic actors and individual inhabitants to create local partnerships and direct local resources towards more effective development. The active and committed representatives of Local Government, entrepreneurs, farmers, CSOs, citizens and other important local players, such as the Kazbegi National Park Administration, participate in local strategy planning as members of Local Action Group (LAG).

Together with a substantial input from other community members they formulate the Rural Development Strategy. Once the Strategy is developed, they solicit calls for proposals from residents and distribute small grants for projects in areas prioritised by the Strategy. The whole process is transparent and open to any Kazbegi resident.

The Action includes strong capacity building component for all target groups to enable a new methodology to be efficiently implemented, and to ensure sustainability of project outcomes. Based on experience from EU countries, which have long history of LEADER implementation, this approach ensures that active individuals are able to mobilise their social networks, the level of community participation increases overall and it helps economic development renewal.
Development of civil society

Development of civil society

As part of a programme focused on the development of civil society, People in Need has mostly paid attention to the promotion of youth initiatives and emerging non-governmental organizations in two regions of western Georgia and in the capital of Tbilisi since 2008. Over the seven years, People in Need has financially supported over 80 civic initiatives and NGOs, which have undertaken more than 140 projects to promote human rights, protect the environment and integrate people with disabilities into society.

Over a period of seven years, People in Need has trained more than 960 young people and representatives of non-governmental organizations in problem identification, project management, preparation of project applications and collaboration with local assemblies.
    
    
Within the framework of the project, the organization also actively cooperates with local assemblies, providing them with training in how to involve civil society in community decision-making processes. Since 2012, People in Need has assisted selected municipalities in setting up regional action plans to support active youths and civil society.

In 2012-2013, People in Need also supported initiatives in remote regions of Georgia (and also Azerbaijan and Armenia) in organizing small scale documentary film festivals in their communities, screening documentaries on crucial issues (conflict transformation, human rights). All screenings were followed up by a debate that enabled the local communities to open dialogue on these crucial issues, some of which having been taboo before. Since 2014, four of these festivals in Georgia continue screening films without People in Need’s support. Moreover, extensive library of documentary films in Georgian is available for everybody who wishes to organize a single screening and used mostly by university teachers or activists.
In frame of the current phase of support to civil society development in Georgia, People in Need strives to strengthen local government representatives' sense of responsibility towards the public through support of civil society representatives and wide public in their efforts to increase transparency of decision making-processes on local level.

In January 2016 People in Need launched the project that aims to strengthen the link between public and civic actors and harmonize their activities in the area of social inclusion by establishing a joint advisory body, the Advisory Council on Social Inclusion (AC), and piloting Social Integration Programme (SIP) approach with four CSOs in four municipalities. Joint action of the Advisory Council produces strategic directions for local social inclusion activities. The targeted CSOs are supported by intensive capacity building, mentoring and networking to become stronger partners to public institutions and participate in setting priorities and increasing the efficiency of social inclusion programmes at local and national levels.

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