The right to form civil organizations and the freedom to operate is a cornerstone of the democratic transition process in societies, and based on this conviction, Maat Foundation for Peace, Development and Human Rights began implementing the activities of the project “Exchange of experiences to promote the values of intercultural dialogue - the right to freedom to organize civil work”, in cooperation With the Anna Linda Foundation for the Dialogue of Cultures and in partnership with a number of NGOs from Egypt, Tunisia, Lebanon, and Palestine.
The project seeks to improve the legislative frameworks governing civil work in the Arab region, by organizing a number of local and regional workshops to discuss the reality of the freedom to organize civil work in Egypt and to come up with recommendations to improve the legislative and procedural frameworks governing, and build the capacities of the actors in the areas of advocacy, gaining support and building networks and alliances And laying the foundations for forming national and regional networks to enhance civil work.
The first local workshops within the framework of the project were launched by holding a workshop in Assiut Governorate on Thursday, October 24, 2013, with the participation of representatives of a number of NGOs members of the Egyptian National Network of the Anna Lindh Foundation, as well as organizations not members of the network.
The workshop began with a presentation of Anna Linda's activities and an explanation of the project, its objectives, activities and expected results, then a review of the historical and legal reality of civil work in Egypt, then began discussions and interventions from the participants, which focused on the challenges facing civil work and how to overcome them through the introduction of legislative and procedural changes to the work environment Al-Ahly in Egypt.
The participants focused in their interventions on the need to provide a constitutional framework that guarantees the liberalization of civil work and enables civil organizations to actively participate in the process of economic, social, cultural and political development.
The participants also focused on the need to support active civil work organizations, especially at the local level, and indicated the need for legislative changes in laws to distinguish between organizations that possess the institutional capabilities that enable them to work at the national level, and those that allow their capabilities to work at the level of specific local communities. Provided that legislative support is available for both types of organizations, with specific standards set for each type.
It is worth noting that Maat will present the recommendations resulting from the local workshops in a regional workshop that will be held in mid-November. It will also endeavor to deliver these recommendations to the committee concerned with amending the constitution and the Ministry of Social Solidarity for taking into account during the development of articles on civil work in the constitution, as well as during the process Amending the Associations and Civil Institutions Law.
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