AdvocaCY: Participate, learn, challenge, decide
AKTI’s project titled ”AdvocaCY: Participate, learn, challenge, decide: stronger Cypriot Civil Society for sustainability, advocacy and change!” has been selected amongst 54 applications and awarded funding from the Active Citizens Fund Programme in Cyprus .
Having the UN Sustainable Development Goals at its core, this project aims to engage Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot civil society organizations and informal groups, with a focus on the younger generation and in ensuring gender balance, in understanding their human right to a sustainable and healthy environment.
With “Knowledge leads to awareness; Awareness leads to change” as its motto, the aim of this proposal is to create synergies and join forces among CSOs and informal groups and to build networks of active citizens across the divide. The project has a solution-oriented approach which leads to the achievement of two targets: (1) build skills and capacity, raise awareness and promote advocacy among citizens for their right to a sustainable environment as set by SDGs (2) to boost bi-communal cooperation on promoting sustainability, an issue that affects both communities and is a win-win field of cooperation. In so doing, transform this collaboration into a peace building tool.
The overall result of the project will be its demonstrable (through KPIs) contribution to a stronger and more sustainable civil society on the island, greater bicommunal cooperation and intercultural dialogue, and more active citizens.
The AdvocaCY project benefits from a grant under the Active Citizens Fund Cyprus programme, funded by Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, through the EEA and Norway Grants 2014-2021.
The full press release and announcement can be found here.
AdvocaCY – Awareness-raising campaigns
- civil rights, specifically as they relate to the environment; (throughout February 2023)
- the role of CSOs in society; (throughout June 2023)
- public consultations, their use and why it is important to contribute. (throughout September 2023)
This activity aims to develop and apply the tools that will help raise awareness about human rights, specifically the right to a healthy and sustainable environment, and about the role of CSOs to advocate for these rights.
Check out our Awareness-raising campaigns below:
3rd Awareness-raising campaign: Public consultations and why it’s important to contribute
In 2015, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) initiated an implementation guide to assist policy and decision makers to apply Rio Principle 10.
But, what is the Rio Declaration and why is its accelerated and effective implementation at all levels so important? Learn more here.
‘Putting Rio Principle 10 into Action’ Implementation Guide.
UNESCO IESALC’s project ‘Futures of Higher Education’ records the views of people of all ages in 100 countries on the future of higher education. Check out the public consultation’s results in this interactive website.
EU Youth Dialogue allows youth in Cyprus to speak their mind and express their concerns on the issues that directly influence them. Check out this video to learn more (video is in Greek).
‘Green, Sustainable Europe and the creation of an Inclusive Society’ Consultation by Cyprus Youth Council, within the framework of the 9th cycle of EU Youth Dialogue, 26th August 2022, Famagusta.
The Cyprus Youth Council is giving voice to young people across the island.
Participate and let your voice be heard. Visit Structured Dialogue to learn more.
Fit for Future (F4F) is a digital platform developed by the European Commission where citizens and stakeholders can share their opinions to ensure EU laws help, not hinder, people and business.
Share your suggestions to make EU laws more efficient and fit for the future, here.
How can we improve citizens’ participation in public consultation processes?
What are the main barriers to public participation consultation processes?
Public participation processes are vital for democratic societies, responsive to public needs. However, public participation can be constrained by many factors. Exploring the reasons hindering public participation is crucial for effective consultation processes and achieving better results.
Learn more here.
How can we improve community engagement?
5 easy steps for breaking down barriers and encouraging participation here.
Citizens in Northern Ireland are able to participate in consultations and surveys for governmental initiatives through the online consultation tool Citizen Space.
The online platform is developed and run by the Northern Irish government and features activities from several governmental departments, including the Department of Communities (DfC), Department for the Economy (DfE), Department of Education (DE), Housing Executive (NIHE), etc.
Once a consultation is completed, all responses are carefully analysed and the results are made widely available, with an account of the views expressed and the reasons for decisions finally taken, in line with Northern Ireland’s Open Data Strategy for 2020-2023.
Are you familiar with any similar online tools for public consultations?
The European Commission regularly seeks the views of citizens for developing policies and legislations.
Visit their website to find out more about active public consultations.
Care to learn more about Public Consultations?
Have a look at this brief introduction
What is a public consultation, when is it required, and what are its benefits?
Check out this brief step-by-step guide to learn more.
2nd Awareness-raising campaign: The role of CSOs in society
Climate Action Network (CAN) Europe is a podcast dedicated to climate action across Europe.
Tune in and listen to their inspirational guests from civil society organisations and their efforts to fight the climate crisis.
Climate Change is impacting human lives and health by threatening access to clean air, safe drinking water, nutritious food supply and safe shelter. World Health Organization (WHO)’s ‘Civil Society Working Group’ brings together WHO representatives with NGOs working on health and climate to increase the health sector’s engagement with climate action.
Learn more about their work here.
Check out the Climate Action Stories of Civil Society across the world.
Do you know any similar initiatives in Cyprus?
Did you know there are more than 260 Civil Society Organisations operating across the island?
Visit Civic Space’s CSO database to learn more.
Global Citizens is an organisation bringing together people across the globe to call on world leaders, to ACT NOW! Join the movement, change the world.
Learn more here.
“Faces of Civil Society” is a short film series sharing the stories of inspiring activists from Burma, Iraq, Pakistan, and Zimbabwe. Learn more and watch the series here.
Are you aware of any similar stories from Cyprus?
“10 Myths And Facts About Non-Governmental Organisations” is an awareness raising campaign by Civil Society Advocates debunking myths and misconceptions about the work of NGOs.
Myth 1, tackles CSOs and how their work differs from NGOs.
Learn more here.
The ‘Tuesday Chat Series’ is a monthly meeting bringing together CSOs and the United Nations’ Civil Society Unit to discuss ideas, initiatives, and best practices for promoting positive change within societies.
Learn more here.
CIVICUS Voices is a podcast that brings you voices of people, communities, and organisations defending civil liberties and human rights; with themes ranging from the fight for climate justice to reproductive rights.
Check it out here.
International Civil Society Week (ICSW) promotes a global conversation about the collective power of people acting together for social and political change. Check out the 7 virtual events of ICSW2020/2021, with themes ranging from ‘Artivism for Inclusion’ to ‘Positive Narratives for People Power’ here.
Civil society organisations offer a platform where people can talk, create, engage, and support each other. But they also do much more than that!
Who and what is ‘civil society‘?
Check out this article by World Economic Forum to learn more.
What are Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and what do they do?
1st Awareness-raising campaign: Environment as Civic Right
Did you know that access to a healthy and sustainable environment is a recognised human right? But what does that mean exactly? Here’s 6 key-things you need to know.
WWF’s Living Planet Report 2022 highlights the emergency of changing the ways we produce, consume and govern.
We hope it inspires you to be part of the change for building a nature-positive society.
Here’s 9 things YOU can do about climate change as an active citizen!
A clean and healthy environment is part of our rights and responsibilities as citizens.
Whether you love him or hate him, here’s some ideas by Bill Gates.
Civil rights and protecting the planet go hand-in-hand.
Learn why here.
What are civil rights?
We are kicking-off our first AdvocaCY awareness raising campaign by taking things frοm the top. What does advocacy mean? Learn more here.