Baytna was established in 2013 as a networking, capacity building, and grant making project for Syrian civil society operating inside Syria. It describes itself as a leading institution fostering the Syrian civil society movement. It promotes an inclusive and democratic future for all Syrians, laying the foundation for long-term stability across the country.
Description of activities
- Acts as a hub for other CSOs: it is a platform for Syrian civil society inside and outside the country, offering an open space for Syrians to meet, mingle, attend lectures, and get involved. It tries to convene people and create networks among civil society as well as with donors. Through cultural events, it strives to create a fertile environment for young artists to grow and flourish.
- Provides knowledge resources for CSOs: it promotes civic engagement of individuals and associations, providing organisations with know-how and tools. It builds capacity among civil society for successful social engagement. Its skills development programmes include organiaational and managerial issues as well as public policy analysis.
Provides Grants: it finances projects, with grantmaking for new and upcoming initiatives in close cooperation with its network of people inside Syria. By the end of October 2015, it had awarded a total of 52 grants to projects in Syria for a total amount of 631,940 EUR (mandate and grant policy available here: http://baytnasyria.org/en/grants/)
Opened a "Syria library" at its base in Gaziantep in January 2015, which contains a number of books in various languages covering a variety of topics from politics to poetry, novels, and short stories.
Holds events such as music recitals, film screenings, poetry nights, lectures, and seminars.
Produced a Capacity Assessment Report to determine the needs of Syrian CSOs.
Sources of funding
- Funded by the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs since 2013 (http://um.dk/en/danida-en/about-danida/danida-transparency/danida-documents/danida-grant-committee/upcoming-grant-committee-meetings/int-251115/~/media/UM/English-site/Documents/Danida/About-Danida/Danida%20transparency/Documents/Grant%20committee/2015/Int%202015/09%20Baytna.pdf)
- Previous grants: 5,7 million DKK (2013-2014) 12,6 million DKK (2014-2015)
- Current Grant: 6,0 million DKK (Jan-Aug 2016)