The ongoing war in Ukraine has changed everything not only for the Eastern Partnership region, but for Europe. With fighting taking place in many parts of the country, the situation is extremely volatile and hard to predict. What is already clear is that a humanitarian crisis is unfolding both within the country and abroad, with hundreds of thousands of refugees crossing into other European countries.
While the citizens of Ukraine are fighting a terrible war, many citizens of other Eastern Partnership countries are engaged in anti-war protests and pooling resources in their attempt to support Ukrainian refugees.
Civil society organisations and activists in Ukraine are reacting fast and making incredible efforts to address the many needs emerging fast as the war intensifies.
In order to respond in full solidarity with the citizens and civil society of Ukraine, the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Facility will re-structure its activities for 2022 around the theme of #StandWithUkraine.
- Capacity-building activities as such are not possible in a crisis. However, the project will be able facilitate peer-to-peer support, mentoring or cover for specific services at the request of civil society representatives.
- Civic tech: Many initiatives have emerged in the past days both in Ukraine and neighbouring countries which are making use of technology to help address emerging needs. The speed with which these solutions are being developed is remarkable. In order to react as swiftly as possible, the project will support civil society representatives from Ukraine or other countries in the region aiming to develop technical solutions that would fall under the #StandWithUkraine annual theme (such as support to collecting donations and crowdfunding, support to individuals collecting evidence about human rights violations, working with Ukrainian IDPs and refugees, creating awareness in the region, countering disinformation and fake news etc.)
- Civil society Fellowships: The overall goal of the civil society fellowships is to support civically-minded women and men who demonstrate a deep commitment to leading positive social change in their communities. The project launched the call for applications for the 2021 fellowship programme in December 2021. Applicants will be informed in the coming weeks about the outcome of their applications and those selected will be invited to change their proposals to reflect the new context created by the terrible war in Ukraine. The project will continue awarding civil society fellowships, but the selection procedure will be adapted to allow for a swift selection process in a volatile context. The 2022 fellowships will also address the theme of #StandWithUkraine.
- Ad-hoc support: Ad-hoc support to civil society will be ramped up in order to enable the work of organisations and individuals trying to address the effects of the war in Ukraine.
- Communication: the project will collect and help spread information about CSOs’ response efforts and their support to citizens, as well as IDPs and refugees.
The project team understands that speed and flexibility will be absolutely crucial in the coming months and will try to react as soon as possible to different requests. More information will be available soon on the activities above.
In the meantime, stay safe and let us all #StandWithUkraine!