“Against All Odds: Advocating for Public Interests in Belarus”, a new publication of the East European Democratic Centre supported by the Batory Foundation, documents exemplary advocacy initiatives aimed at solving social problems that citizens struggle with, launched by Belarusian civic organizations.
The authors are experts on Belarusian non-governmental organization: Agnieszka Komorowska from the East European Democratic Centre, Iryna Vidanava, the founder of the lifestyle portal 34mag.net, and Elena Volochay, an Ukrainian trainer specialized in human rights. The publication is divided into two parts, the latter consisting of two sections. Section one contains examples of advocacy actions on a state levels, including the campaign for alternative civil service and information actions aimed at initiating discussion about the death penalty in Belarus. Section two, dedicated to local problems, describes, among others, the traffic safety action organized by activists from Borysov, and the initiative against building a nuclear power plant in Horki, Mogilev Region.
Its plain language, numerous photos and concise summary of information about grassroots civic actions are strong points of the publication, which, however, describes only ten campaigns. Perhaps this number shows the level of Belarusian society’s involvement in protecting their interests – all the more reason to inform about those few positive examples.
“Against All Odds…” is available in Belarusian, English and Polish. You can download a free copy on ISSUU.COM.