The Romanian NGDO Platform – FOND organized on the 22nd of July 2020, via Zoom platform, the online conference “The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on the Civil Society Sector in the Black Sea Region“.
The event created the framework for presenting the main findings of the Policy Paper “The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on the Civil Society Sector in the Black Sea Region”, elaborated by FOND Romania and the space for multi-stakeholder dialogue, with a focus on the role played by different actors in supporting the regional CSOs.
The online event gathered actors from civil society organisations from the Black Sea Region, European institutions, intergovernmental organisations and donor organisations active in the Region.
The conference started off with a Welcoming Speech from Ms. Ingrid Marinescu, FOND Executive Director, who also moderated the first session, entitled “The Pandemic going beyond the EU borders: How has Covid-19 affected the CSOs in the Black Sea region?”.
Ms. Angela Grămadă, FOND Project Manager presented the main findings of the Policy Paper, highlighting the trends and patterns emerging within the civil society sector in the Region, as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The presentation was followed by Ms. Gayane Mkrtchyan, Program Director, Eurasia Partnership Foundation, Armenia and BSNGOF Advisory Group member, and Ms. Sorina Macrinici, Program Director, Legal Resources Centre from Moldova, and BSNGOF Focal Points Network member, who raised awareness, through their interventions, on the national contexts and the challenges faced by civil society organisations during the COVID-19 pandemic. The discussions were followed by a short Q&A session.
The second session, with the title “Different approaches of solidarity towards civil society resilience in the Black Sea Region”, moderated by Mr. Ștefan Cibian, FOND President, reunited representatives from European institutions, intergovernmental organisations and donor organisations active in the Region: Mr. Jeroen Willems, Deputy Head of Unit NEAR C2 – Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus & Eastern Partnership, H.E. Amb. Michael B. Christides, Secretary General, Organization of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation, Ms. Patrizia Busolini, Policy Officer, Directorate-General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, Sea-basin Strategies, Maritime Regional Cooperation and Maritime Security, Ms. Diana Tase, Black Sea Synergy Coordinator, Division for Eastern Partnership, regional cooperation and OSCE and Ms. Maria Florea, Program Officer, Black Sea Trust for Regional Cooperation.
The discussions underlined the importance of societal resilience, regional dialogue and multilateral partnerships in times of crisis, as well as the approaches adopted by main stakeholders that support the civil society organisations from the Region in addressing these new challenges.
The Policy Paper on “The Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic on the Civil Society Sector in the Black Sea Region” can be consulted online here.
The Final Report of the Online Conference is available online here.