Belarus - 2012 CSO Sustainability Index

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CSO SUSTAINABILITY: 5.8

Government repression of Belarusian CSOs eased in 2012. Civil society activists were subjected to less harassment, including searches and administrative detentions. CSOs managed to organize a number of major public events during the year, although public authorities denied space for some congresses, conferences, assemblies, and festivals.

During 2012, CSO advocacy, lobbying, and involvement in public policy resulted in greater public awareness of key issues at the national level, and in some cases led to the adoption of favorable legislation. CSOs are more focused on gaining public recognition and are therefore increasingly in contact with their target groups, creating their own press services, and promoting themselves on the Internet and through social networks. An innovative market-oriented mechanism that facilitates interaction between organizational development consultants and CSOs was launched. In order to sustain their services, more CSOs strive to secure local resources, including by charging fees.

As of December 31, 2012, there were 2,477 CSOs registered in the country, including 229 international, 688 national, and 1,560 local organizations; thirty-one unions (associations) of CSOs; and 139 foundations. During 2012, 111 new CSOs registered, including two international, ten national, and ninety-nine local groups. Approximately half (51 percent) of the newly registered organizations are sports organizations; no women’s or human rights organizations were registered in 2012.

Last updated: July 11, 2013