Understanding our Operations

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Who we are

The Civil Society Forum is a network of non-governmental organisations working across Wider Europe. Our vision is to build a civil society beyond borders across the entire continent.

Established in 2011 as a bottom-up, non-partisan civic initiative, the Forum serves as a platform for joint activities, common positions, support, solidarity and civic influence on policy- and decision-making at the (inter)governmental level. The Civil Society Forum aims to build bridges between civil societies, based on shared values of pluralistic democracy, rule of law, human rights, social and climate justice.

Our members historically include a wide thematic range of organisations from 20+ countries.

The Civil Society Forum stands against violence of any kind, and works to promote peaceful societies.

How we operate

The Civil Society Forum e.V. is comprised of member organisations across Wider Europe working together towards our set goals. The General Assembly is the highest decision-making body of the Forum, and takes decisions on crucial organisational matters. It meets once a year.

In between these Assemblies, the elected Board has the responsibility for making decisions. The Board comprises up to 14 individuals, who do not have to be the legal representatives of member organisations. The period of office is two years, with re-election possible to a maximum duration of six years.

The running of the organisation belongs to the Secretariat, based in Berlin, which employees working across the topics of solidarity, advocacy, programmes, communications, finance and general operations.

What is Wider Europe?

Wider Europe encompasses all states in Europe and the EU's southern and easterly neighbours.

Accountability framework

The Civil Society Forum e.V. regularly assesses and evaluates the impact of its programmes and activities. This helps to ensure that the organisation is operating effectively and is meeting the goals of the Articles of Association. External audits by independent auditors provide an additional layer of accountability and assurance to both donors and members.

The Civil Society Forum e.V. is fully GDPR compliant.