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Peter Newman

program officer

Pact has been working to develop civil society in Belarus since 2005. In the past, with funding from U.S. Agency for International Development and the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Pact supported civil society, independent trade unions and media outlets in order to foster stronger civic institutions and effectively inform citizens to advocate for positive social change.
More recently, with funding from the U.S. Agency for International Development, Pact worked to build civic engagement, positive social change and the availability and influence of objective information in Belarus.
We support at-home civil society organizations – from grassroots activists to policy groups and think tanks. Pact is strengthening the impact of independent research by helping to ensure that such work is visible, understandable and accessible. To positively affect change, we rely on a sectoral development approach, evidence-based research, communication, outreach and local solutions.

Signature Initiatives

Community Development Fund
Through the Community Development Fund (CMDF), Pact provides assistance to grassroots, community-based initiatives. CMDF supports CSOs, citizen initiatives and individual activists to mobilize members of local communities for collective and positive civic action to improve the quality of life at the local level. Since inception in 2009, CMDF received over 500 project applications while supporting nearly 150 local initiatives.

Civil Society Leadership Program
Since 2005, Pact has been implementing the Civil Society Leadership Program – an annual learning course for members of civil society at the grassroots level. Since inception, the Leadership Program graduated more than 120 leaders from various sectors of civil society. Implemented in-country, the program provides training, individual mentorship and action-based learning opportunities for civil society leaders, as well as networking and capacity development for the program’s alumni.

Civic Literacy Survey
Pact designed the first ever Civic Literacy Test in Belarus, as a study of Belarusians’ civil literacy, as well as global and digital citizenship competencies. The goal of the Civic Literacy Test is to offer data to Belarusian CSOs and international organizations in order to check their education- and awareness-raising initiatives against the state of competencies and needs of the population, adjust approaches to civic education programming, and design new evidence-based interventions.

Kastrycnicki Economic Forum
Inspired, designed and kicked off by Pact in 2013, Kastrycnicki Economic Forum (KEF) is the largest and most visible annual civil society-organized dialogue platform of key stakeholders debating what is possible in the realm of structural economic reforms in Belarus. KEF gives civil society a louder voice to affect reform agenda, and offers non-government actors and international community access to data and decision-makers. KEF seeks to put Belarusian economy into the global context in order to find local solutions in the framework of global challenges, developments and perspectives.

Stories and Highlights

Belarusian Civil Society in the Situation of COVID-19 Pandemic

April 3, 2020
Between March 27-April 1, 2020 Pact Belarus carried out an online survey of Belarusian civil society organizations and informal groups to better understand the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on NGOs’...

Customer Survey of Pact Programs in Belarus: Key Findings

December 22, 2015
In March 2014 Pact conducted an internal evaluation of its program in Belarus. The purpose of the evaluation was to assess the effectiveness of Pact assistance to Belarusian organizations and receive...