Albanian Civil Society for the European Environment (ACHIEVE)

Albanian Civil Society for the European Environment (ACHIEVE)

Source of funding

European Commission

Name of client/donor

EC Delegation Albania

Overall project value

EUR 725,592

Date

November 2014 – November 2017

Beneficiary countries

Albania

Number of staff

7

According to the 2013 USAID CSO Sustainability Index for Central and Eastern Europe and Eurasia, civil society in Albania remained underdeveloped in all aspects in 2013. Albanian civil society organisations (CSOs) were dependent on foreign donors and there was no framework for enhancing cooperation between the government and the civil society sector. Only 18 percent of environmental CSOs (ECSOs) cooperated with parliamentary commissions in 2013, while 55 percent occasionally collaborated with ministries or law enforcement agencies. Albanian ECSOs are rarely involved in new legislative initiatives, or the EU approximation process.

To strengthen the civil society sector in Albania, the project aimed to:

  • build the professional capacities of ECSOs to represent civil society in environmental issues;
  • enable small ECSOs to participate in the EU funding process; and
  • promote the involvement of ECSOs in public decision making.

By targeting some of the most important topics in the EU environmental acquis (air, nature, waste and horizontal legislation) via training activities and field activities implemented by ECSOs through a sub-granting scheme, the project supported Albania's status as an EU candidate country since June 2015 by enabling ECSOs to deal professionally with environmental issues and act as reliable partners to the state negotiators.

All project activities, including capacity building, sub-granting, collaboration with state actors and the promotion of EU values, were aimed at improving the rule of law and tackling environmental pollution and damage.

Specific activities included:

  • creating topic-based groups of ECSOs to tackle issues related to specific environmental sectors;
  • publishing awareness-raising and outreach materials;
  • compiling a report on lessons learned;
  • providing regional professional training for ECSOs on waste management, nature protection, air quality and horizontal legislation;
  • providing specific training for ECSOs on investigative journalism and how to identify and fight corruption;
  • organising a summer school for young people on public participation and the promotion of EU values;
  • implementing a sub-granting scheme for local actions by ECSOs;
  • organising four national forums on waste management, nature protection, air quality and horizontal legislation;
  • drafting four position papers and meeting with parliamentary commissions; and
  • promoting regional and EU initiatives through the celebration of international environment days.
  • Civil society support
  • Awareness raising
  • Capacity building
  • Report writing
  • Training
  • Granting