The Project “Public budgets from A to Z: greater civil society awareness, access and participation” is tasked to involve the general public, the media, and civil society organizations (CSOs) in public finances monitoring and drawing up the state and local budgets. The Project is being implemented (2016-2018) by East Europe Foundation and the Polish-Ukrainian Cooperation Foundation PAUCI funded by the European Union.
The Project aims to fulfill the following objectives:
- increase the capacity of Ukrainian civil society organizations in transparency monitoring and the proper use of public finances and allocation of the state and local budgets;
- improve awareness and civil society engagement in the budgeting process of the country;
- support the policy of national dialogue in the field of budget decentralization.
The Project will conduct analytical studies and develop recommendations for local authorities and the Government of Ukraine on how to improve budget transparency and involve the general population, host activities to increase the expertise of NGOs in the field of public finance and prepare innovate IT solutions for ensuring citizens’ awareness and engagement. The Project will also work with journalists and the media to promote joint planning and hosting of information campaigns to communicate to the audience comprehensive economic information in a simple and understandable manner.
Key Project components:
- Establishing the School of Budget Literacy for NGOs. This component aims to provide CSOs with necessary knowledge and tools to analyze the proper use of public finances and in future ensure conducting of advocacy campaigns by these organizations to improve comprehensive control over the allocation and implementation of the state and local budgets.
- Improving the methodology for determining the Transparency Index of local budgets to establish indicators that will serve as a roadmap of increased budget transparency; facilitating access of CSOs and active citizens to budgeting process; enhancing the capacity of communities to access technical, expert, and consulting assistance by implementing the relevant practices in line with the Index criteria.
- Supporting 10 target cities, chosen on a competitive basis in implementing a „Participatory budgeting” initiative. This assistance will include hosting of seminars and trainings, providing consultations and supporting the process of public budget implementation, organizing and conducting study tours as well as providing financial support in launching of information campaigns and arrangement of the public budgeting phases in the target cities
- Developing an innovative IT platform for launching and promoting „Participatory budgeting” processes.
- Providing grant support to CSOs in order to implement innovative projects related to public representation campaigns in the field of budget transparency, public engagement, developing best practices for ensuring accountability of public finance, etc. Grant support also aims to enhance the capacity and involvement of CSOs as regards monitoring of public finance with broad involvement of active citizens.
- Arranging exchange of experience among CSOs with regard to best practices implementation.
- Conducting a broad awareness campaign at the local and national levels in modern online and traditional media to communicate the public importance and benefits of the budgetary processes in a simple and understandable manner as well as popularize the instrument of „Participatory budgeting” among citizens. The campaign aims to raise awareness and literacy of citizens on the issues of transparency and accountability of local authorities, particularly in the budget process. This component also provides for grant support to CSOs to launch these campaigns
- Creating an online database / library of audio and visual materials on budgetary issues, which could be used in future for conducting of advocacy and information campaigns and improving the knowledge of the general public about participation in the budgeting processes.
- Developing proposals for improving the budgetary policies at the local and national levels.