Switzerland fosters exchanges between civil society organizations and citizens at a forum in Skopje

Local news, 27.09.2017

Under the slogan ‘Citizens for change - Day of Citizen’s organizations’, the Swiss Civica Mobilitas programme organized a forum at which over 200 civil society organizations in Macedonia participated

3rd National Forum of CSOs in Skopje © FDFA

The civic forum was attended by a few thousands of people, who talked with the civil organizations and attended the public debates, sharing their thoughts and ideas. The event turned out to be a success in getting the civil organizations closer to the citizens themselves.

Many youngsters and citizens from different ethnic communities working together on common interests participated in the event. “I am pleased that Civica Mobilitas spends a lot of attention on building a strong cohesion in the society and in the country. I hope that this event will inspire the local authorities to establish closer connections between the community and the civic organizations for the benefit of the whole society”, stated the Swiss Ambassador to Macedonia, Sybille  Suter.

The visitors had the opportunity to obtain information about civil society organizations, their results and achievements, and had a chance to get involved in their activities during the day. The program was rich and diverse, with around 30 parallel events organized by Civica Mobilitas grantees – workshops, presentations and debates, but also exhibitions and performances. 

The event was organized on 23rd September in the Skopje City Park, as part of the global campaign of CIVICUS – the World Alliance for Citizens Participation – ‘Together, We Speak’. The campaign aimed to amplify the voices of ordinary people speaking out and effect change. Thanks to evolving technology, citizens are more connected than ever before – with voices able to travel faster and further, through media that has never been more impactful.

The current phase of Switzerland’s programme Civica Mobilitas, implemented by NIRAS (Denmak), MCIC (Macedonia) and SIPU (Sweden) began in October 2014 and will last until the end of 2018. The total budget of the programme amounts to approximately 8 million Swiss Francs. Until now, 208 civil society organizations were awarded grants.