In summer 2016, the EU-Russia Civil Society Forum introduced a new tool for enhancing networking, share of experiences and outreach opportunities of the Working and Expert Groups. The call for study tours and workshops by Forum members evoked a great interest among them.

The biggest Working Group (WG) – "Human Rights and Rule of Law" – received support for two proposals. The first one shares best practices and will look for the ways of what the civil society can do and how to react to implementation of verdicts by the European Court of Human Rights. The second project strives to intensify establishment of the Forum’s new WG on migration.

Members of the WG "Environment" will be travelling to St. Petersburg, to a high-profile conference on sustainable energy and climate adaptation related to aquatic ecosystems. Apart from Russian colleagues, the event will be attended by experts from Bulgaria and Norway as well as representatives of Forum’s member organisations from the Czech Republic and Germany.

The WG "Social Issues and Civic Participation" will use the grant money for organising a roundtable "Joint Actions of International NGOs for Sustainable Development of Local Communities in a Period of Economic and Social Crises" at the Conference "Development and Democracy: Sustainable World with No One Left Behind" in Bratislava, Slovakia. The conference is expected to be a perfect place for networking and inspiring new European Union NGOs to join the Working Group.

Finally, the WG "Citizenship Education" will announce a call for Forum members’ participation in a workshop in Warsaw, where the best citizenship education practices are going to be presented and discussed.

Study tours and workshops form a part of the capacity building programme designed for our members and is consistent with the Forum’s Mid-Term Strategy (2015-2018) as well as the goals of respective Working and Expert Groups. All the events mentioned above will be implemented between September 2016 and December 2017 and led by the emerging Secretariat’s Operations and Programmes Department.

More information is available here.