“The level of public awareness in Armenia is very low. Citizens do not know what public organizations do. Problems with NGOs in Armenia and the Czech Republic are very similar,” Representatives of the Czech “Agora Central Europe” Organization and Ms Ivana Bursikova, said at the 5-day training for mentors and regional incubators’ coordinators “Cooperation of Non-Profit Non-Governmental Organizations and the Government in the Czech Republic and the Republic of Poland” which has started today in Aghveran.
The training is organized within the framework of the EU-funded “Commitment to Constructive Dialogue” Project.
Monika Chrzczonowicz, representative of the Polish Capital Centre for NGO Support, highlighted the role of incubators during the presentation of NGO capacity building tools.
“The Capital Center for the Support of NGOs is located in Warsaw. The objective is to create a platform for the cooperation of NGOs. The Assistance Center provides legal advice and space for the organization. Such organizations are created to provide assistance to other organizations on various issues,” Ms Monika Chrzczonowicz said.
She also pointed the importance of NGOs’ participation in public hearings during the discussion of various draft laws.
Miss Susanne Soghomonyan, CSO-Government Dialogue Coordinator, also highlighted the discussion of the models of the incubators’ institute. “It was especially important for me to hear about the mechanisms aimed at the creation of CSOs’ incubators and the practical steps toward their effective functioning. It is also necessary to highlight the international experience presented by the experts in the scope of the training and especially those regarding the problems encountered in that area and examples of their solution,” Syuzanna Soghomonyan said.
Mr. Karen Zadoyan, President of the Armenian Lawyers’ Association, “Commitment to Constructive Dialogue” Project Manager, in his speech underlined the stressed the importance of exchanging international experience in such programs.
“Incubators which will be created in Yerevan and in four marzes in the scope of this project will strengthen the capacity of the civil society. The main directions are in four areas: development and implementation of public policies; public oversight, including monitoring of state budget allocations and policy implementation; CSOs’ Coalitions building and developing; Creating a stable and constructive dialogue between Government and CSOs,” Mr. Zadoyan said.
During the 5 days, the participants hold discussions on the status and needs of the NGOs, the situation and the problems that exist in the field. The possible ways of cooperation between public administration and non-governmental organizations and a number of other issues have been discussed as well.
The “Commitment to Constructive Dialogue” project is implemented with the financial support of the European Union by a Consortium of 6 civil society organizations, which are the Armenian Lawyers’ Association (lead organization), Agora Central Europe (NGO based in the Czech Republic), the Armenian Centre for Democratic Education-CIVITAS, the International Centre for Human Development, the SME Cooperation Association and the Union of Communities of Armenia.