By the end of April 2014, EPI as a lead partner (in cooperation with the Helsinki Committee Macedonia and the Center for Change Management) was granted its first Civil Society Facility IPA grant. The project also includes a re-granting scheme for capacity building of local civil society organizations. This will be the first re-granting scheme to be implemented by EPI.
The main objectives of the project are: creating structured coordination between CSOs regarding the implementation of the areas covered by Chapter 23 of the Acquis – Judiciary and Fundamental rights; increasing the capacity of CSO to act as watch-dog organization in the process of monitoring and evolution of Chapter 23 on national and local level through a concrete transfer of know-how, enabling mechanism for CSOs to influence the policy making process through coordinated input on the network; and finally by raising awareness on the implications of Chapter 23 on the overall progress of the accession process. Consequently, the specific aim is to foster commitment and capacity of civil society organization networks/partnerships to give citizens a voice and influence the key sector reforms in the country through analysis, monitoring and advocacy as a key factor for ensuring sustainability of democratic reforms in the area of rule of law.