SDG LENS. Monitoring Sustainable Development in Eastern Europe & South Caucasus is a capacity-building program for civic actors, representatives of NGOs and grassroots initiatives, researchers and experts from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, Russia and Ukraine. It empowers civic actors to monitor, report and advocate the 2030 Agenda and to stand up for peace, climate and justice. SDG LENS builds on our experience of the last three years in which we have been running educational and supporting programs for social entrepreneurs, innovators and civil society actors working on the Sustainable Development Goals, now focusing on building partnerships for monitoring, reporting and advocacy for sustainable development.
Why SDG LENS?
In 2015, the Member States of the United Nations unanimously adopted the 2030 Agenda with its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to make global development ecologically, economically and socially sustainable. The engagement of civil society is crucial for achieving the SDGs. NGOs, grassroot initiatives, research institutes, civic actors and experts speak out for marginalised groups, raise awareness and take action for SDGs. They also act as watchdogs, monitoring sustainable development and holding governments accountable to their commitments.

SDG LENS. Monitoring Sustainable Development in Eastern Europe & South Caucasus will provide civil society from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova, Russia and Ukraine with the knowledge and tools to act for the SDGs at the local, national and global levels. These countries face particular challenges: shrinking civic spaces and violation of human rights, lack of interest on the part of governments in implementing the SDGs and cooperating with civil society, active warfare as well as frozen conflicts and their consequences for people and the environment. However, the biggest challenge in Eastern Europe is the Russian aggression against Ukraine, which has resulted in civilian casualties, forced migration and displacement, the demolition of infrastructure and entire cities, the destruction of agricultural land and environmental pollution. The effects of the war are felt throughout the region, but also globally. Both the war and other particular challenges not only contradict the peaceful and just objectives of the 2030 Agenda, but also prevent civil society from fulfilling its role in achieving the SDGs.

SDG LENS will enable civic actors to document the impacts of war across Eastern Europe and the South Caucasus, advocate for peace and compliance with international law, and develop strategies and recommendations for a just and sustainable future after the war.
What is the focus of SDG LENS?
SDG LENS will strengthen civil society with workshops, consultations, international meetings as well as expert support. The program focuses on:
Providing a platform for civil society to connect at local, national and global levels and supporting local actions and awareness raising campaigns
Networking & Awareness Raising
Enabling civic actors to monitor governments’ activities to implement the 2030 Agenda and supporting independent reporting on selected SDGs as well as full shadow reports. See previously published reports here
Monitoring & Reporting
Increasing civil society’s capacity to advocate the 2030 Agenda, both nationally and globally, by using independent reports and becoming active in UN mechanisms
National & Global Advocacy
What will the program include?
  • Workshops, consultations and trainings on monitoring, reporting and advocacy for SDGs
  • Support and publication of Shadow Reports and independent SDG analyses
  • Seminars and autumn schools in Georgia and Moldova
  • Study visit to Berlin and Bonn (Germany)
Who can become part of SDG LENS?
SDG LENS. Monitoring Sustainable Development in Eastern Europe & South Caucasus is aimed at civil society actors who are committed to strengthen their work on sustainable development, build strong alliances and develop powerful tools to advocate for the 2030 Agenda on local, national and global level. Join SDG LENS and get involved in different ways:
  • as our partners, building local networks for the SDGs
  • as experts, researchers and advocates of the 2030 Agenda
  • as participants of capacity-building measures and exchanges
  • as organisers of your own local actions and campaigns for the Goals.

We are looking for new partnerships with NGOs and grassroot initiatives, educational and research institutions, experts and young professionals. Please contact us directly: info@sdg-lens.org
In these challenging times civil society should become a bridge between divided societies. Please refer to our position on Russia’s aggression against Ukraine before applying with your idea. We rely on the solidarity and openness of civil society, activists and social entrepreneurs no matter from which country they are from and believe that SDGs unite us all for a just, peaceful and green world! We hope if you are applying for this grant you also share our values!
Timeline
August 15
Open webinar on 2030 Agenda and Global Week to Act4SDGs
August 21
Deadline for applying for local actions and online campaigns. Apply here
September 16 - 25
Global Week to Act4SDGs. Supporting actions and campaigns for the SDGs
October
International conference for Monitoring, Reporting and Advocacy in Tbilisi, Georgia
until December
Support of national monitoring and reporting activities in Eastern Partnership countries and Russia
Partnership and joint events
SDG LENS. Monitoring Sustainable Development in Eastern Europe & South Caucasus is initiated by Dekabristen e.V., a Berlin based NGO, and takes place in cooperation with EcoVisio Moldova, Coalition for the Sustainable Development of Russia and No Waste Ukraine. SDG LENS is supported by the German Federal Foreign Office within the program “Expanding Cooperation with Civil Society in the Eastern Partnership Countries and Russia”.
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