DSCN0334Dates of  the project:  November/December 2013 

Financed and Supported by:  IPA – Macedonia-Bulgaria cross-border programme

Short description: Center for Intercultural Dialogue of Kumanovo within the project “NETworking for Efficient and Sustainable Civil Society across the Border” implemented in partnership with the European Institute Foundation – Blagoevgrad branch has conducted a survey in Easter regions of Macedonia related to the state of play of the civil society The project is supported by the IPA cross-border cooperation programme between Macedonia and Bulgaria. The results of the survey are presented on 4 meetings with representatives of civil society from the border region (in Kumanovo, Stip, Kyustendil and Blagoevgrad), and will also be available online soon.

The working meetings presented the findings of the research of the situation in the civil sector in the border regions of Macedonia and Bulgaria which included an overview of the current state of civil society (organizations profiles, scope of activities, challenges and perspectives for development).  

As a thematic finding was that most of the CSOs work in the areas of culture, arts, recreation, sport and amusement. Second most popular are social services are also important areas of work, more specifically (social protection, health, child protection, education) followed by environment and economic development. NGOs working on housing, philanthropy and volunteerism are not that common and no CSOs works on religious issues or with media as a priority.

The research showed there is a balanced distribution between the Geographic scope of the work of CSOs. Most of the CSOs work in the region and one quarter works on national level. Every fifth organization works only on local level and every fifth organization works on international level.

CSOs in general have positive attitudes towards the sector in which they work. Majority believe that organizations build alliances with and learn from other NGOs and they believe that they create and sustain stable relationship with donors. Organizations believe that CSOs create alliances across sector to solve development problems. CSOs are skeptical about the receptiveness of the Government and vast majority of organizations disagree that national government agencies respect and are influenced by NGOs work. The trust in local governments is slightly bigger, however majority of CSOs distrust local government as well.

The research and comparative study will be soon promoted and available within the project.