Democratization, Human Rights and Civil Society Development Programme in Ukraine

What is the project about?

Democratization, Human Rights and Civil Society Development Programme in Ukraine (2013 - 2016) funded by the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and implemented by UNDP Ukraine is a nation-scale 4-year initiative that runs from 1 January 2013 until 31 December 2016.

It works to strengthen capacities of the civil society organizations to be resilient and effective promoters of democratic values, support human rights actors to promote and defend human rights in Ukraine, as well as foster participatory and result-driven Government-CSO dialogue.

Our Goal

Fostering emergence of an open and democratic society, which is based on the rule of law, and is governed by the values of human rights supremacy, openness and accountability at all levels of government.of government.

What have we accomplished so far

The Programme rests on the foundations built by previous interventions, mainly the Civil Society Development Programme from 2009 until 2012. These recent years have been marked with remarkable achievements, including such important events as launch of the CSO Coordination Council under the Presidential Administration and reforms brought by the new leadership of the Office of the Ombudsperson in 2012, as well as a number of crucial policy documents: Laws on Access to Public Information, on Corruption Prevention and on Public Associations, as well as Presidential Strategy for Assisting Civil Society Development, to name a few. In a lot of these developments UNDP either took active part or partnered with other stakeholders to deliver the desired results.

At present, working to capitalize on the gains, UNDP is fostering implementation of many of those instruments and supporting synergies.

Some of the accomplishments of the Programme in the first year of its existence include:

  • Launch of the monitoring network of CSOs to monitor the implementation of the Law on Public Associations;
  •  Adoption of 2 oblast-level programmes for fostering civil society development in Ivano-Frankivsk and Donetsk oblasts;
  • Incorporation of UNDP-supported methodology for conducting anti-corruption assessments to the practices of the Parliamentary Committee on Fighting Organized Crime and Corruption;
  •  Launch of the first Municipal E-nnovation Lab to generate innovative “web 2.0” projects between the cities and their civil society constituencies;
  • Systemic support to analytical and reporting capacities of the Office of the Ombudsperson through its CSO Consultative Council in serving as an effective national human rights institution.

Who Finances it?

The Programme is supported by the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs with some activities being funded through UNDP TRAC resources

How are We Carrying out Our Mission?

Activities of the Programme are organized around several main realms.

The first priority area lies in supporting implementation of CSO projects that concentrate on issues of democratization: such as citizen-government interaction, transparency and accountability and participation in decision-making processes. Extensive use of web 2.0, mobile technologies and social innovation models is characteristic of this work.

The second priority concentrates on varied aspects of human rights, including amongst others gender equality, antidiscrimination and torture prevention. The Programme nurtures grassroots CSOs as local watchdogs for monitoring international obligations of Ukraine at the local level and advocating lasting change through CSO Consultative Council of the Office of the Ombudsman. It also advocates for wider and more visible use of strategic litigation as a tool to further human rights in the country.

The third priority, common for both thematic areas of democratization and human rights, lies in supporting organizational development efforts within civil society of Ukraine. This theme is becoming more and more relevant in settings that see transition of civil society to more sustainable stages. Attention to organizational development considerations allows CSOs to capitalize more effectively on their expertise and induce lasting improvements in the settings they work in, while being more resilient and ready for change.

The last, fourth priority is linked to creating an enabling environment for the civil society to operate in. While the new Law on Public Associations greatly facilitates registration and operation of non-profits, legal instruments should be consistently put to practice in order to be effective. The Programme supports a network of organizations that will monitor the implementation of the Law at the grassroots and will assess the success of oblast Programmes for CSO development, which by now have appeared in the majority of Ukraine’s regions.

Delivery in previous fiscal years

n.a., as this is the first year of Project’s operations.

Project Overview
Project start date:
Estimated end date:
Geographic coverage:
Focus Area:
Democratic governance
Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
Project officer:
Vasyl Romanyuk
Widest possible range of civil society actors, Office of the Ombudsman of Ukraine, Ministry of Justice, Presidential Administration and its CSO Coordination Council, as well as the Secretariat of the Cabinet of Ministers.
Related documents
Project Document
Project Report