The way forward to reforms in the housing sector: empowering grass-root homeowners associations in Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine
The Housing Initiative for Eastern Europe (IWO) e.V. implements with international partners the project "The way forward for reforms in the housing sector: empowering grass-root homeowners associations in Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine ". The three-year project aims, through the establishment of 10 Technical Advisory Centres (TACs) to improve housing management and to promote energy efficiency refurbishment of residential buildings in the partner countries. The opening event will take place in late June 2015 in the Georgian Parliament in Tbilisi.
In all countries involved, the housing sector is one of the primary concerns. Especially multi-storey apartment buildings, built as blocks, are in poor condition. The reasons for the large refurbishment backlog are manifold: inefficient housing administration, inadequate financial resources, lack of expertise and political support.
To overcome theseobstacles the project has the following objectives:
- to promote housing management and energy-efficient refurbishment and also barrier-free living in multi-storey apartment buildings
- to understand limitations and opportunities to implement energy efficient measures in the housing stock in AZ, BY, GE, MD & UA
- to support the national housing reforms and to strengthen the civil society organizations' (CSOs) role as watchdog
- to implement capacity-building measures by trainings, workshops, seminars and study tour
- to improve professionalism, organisational as well as institutional capacities of CSOs, in order to respond to calls for proposals
- to improve the interaction between CSOs and authorities at the national, regional and local level
- to encourage the CSOs to actively participate in policy-making processes promoting the ideas of multi-level participatory governance and enabling housing associations to become key stakeholders in development planning
- to strengthen the cooperation between German and international organizations
The project aims to support the residents often being the apartment owners, to organize an effective administration. Although in some partner countries, the residents have to organize the administration by law, in reality residential buildings are often managed by the state administration companies. But the work of these companies is a permanent point of criticism, as they often lack of transparency and qualified personnel.
This results in a great need for a strong system of information dissemination and technical assistance to help homeowners form and operate homeowners' associations (HOAs) and to improve hereby their situation. HOAs need structure and a system of support if they are to be sustainable. For this purpose, it is necessary to establish and to strengthen TACs, which will support relevant target groups in order to improve and increase their knowledge on housing issues.
Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in the field of housing sector (HOAs, social counseling centers, universities, etc.) can participate in a public tendering procedure and receive financial and technical assistance to establish or strengthen TACs.
Tasks and objectives of Technical Assistance Centres (TACs) are:
- to increase the knowledge and awareness of citizens about their rights in the property, principles and activities of homeowners' associations (HOAs)
- to organize and conduct seminars and trainings on topics, such as the establishment and running of HOAs
- to provide training for HOAs accountants
- to support the organization, implementation and participation (if necessary) of HOAs' meetings
- regular telephone consultation hours "Hotline"
- individual consulting and training of local residents
- bundling of proposals from NGOs, HOAs in the development of recommendations for changes in legislation
- dissemination of best practices by HOAs in the partner towns
- to promote the cooperation with international donors and organizations that will help the partner cities with the establishment of HOAs
Tel. +49 30 20605487
Tel. +49 30 20605487
Housing Initiative for Eastern Europe (IWO), Berlin
Lviv housing owners and residential real estate managers Association
Foundation for support of homeowners' associations", Charkiv
Property Market Participants - Public Union
Local Democracy Agency Georgia
Civil Society Institute Batumi Branch
Charity Humanitarian Centre "Abkhazeti" Tbilisi Branch Office
Institute for Urban Development
International NGO "Ecoproject"
International Association for Real Estate Management
National Association of Local Authorities of Georgia (NALAG)
Lviv Regional branch of all Ukrainian organization "Union of disabled people of Ukraine"
Improving enabling environment for CSOs and raising their effectiveness (II phaze)
For more than three years CSI actively works on program aiming at facilitating enabling environment for CSOs and raising their effectiveness. The second phase of the program was launched in July 2014. The development goal of the program is to empower citizens to control their life through civic participation and - with the assistance of influential, sustainable national and local CSOs - receive need based services so that they can overcome marginalization, inequality and poverty. The program shall be implemented during a period of 36 month and is structured into three main components, with respective sub components resulting the following outcomes:
Component I- Promoting the Enabling Environment and capacity building of Civil Society Organizations: Georgian CSOs gain in image, unity and capacity to be influential drivers of positive change on local, national and international level by delivering relevant, efficient, effective and sustainable services to the society and by being a relevant player in democratic reform and dialogue (outcome 1).
CI-1.1: Legal environment
CI-1.2: "Concept of State Support"
Indicator No.1: 80% of legal initiatives lobbied by CSI and its partners are at least presented in parliamentarian hearing.
Indicator No.2: The process of dialogue to develop the 'concept of state support for CSOs' is visible in online networks, national news and donor reports with at least 12 unique documents.
Component II- Consolidating Networking: Georgian CSOs promote a mutual vision for effective development and advance the web portal www.csogeorgia.org to a platform which delivers needs oriented information and provides space for communication and exchange to its members, subscribers and users. (outcome 2)
CII-2.1: CSO development effectiveness
CII-2.2: Web portal
No.3: 300 CSOs have adopted the mutual code of conduct by end of the project.
No.4: Positive annual trend of 5% among unique users and website visits in web portal and facebook page.
No. 5: The quality of the website is assessed by a rising number or users at the
end of the project. The assessment result is more positive compared to the
baseline at project start.
Component III - Advice and skills development: Key actors of civil
society and local/regional governmental administration are competent and
effective advocates for citizens' needs on local and national level. (outcome
CIII-3.1: Political skills e-learning
CIII-3.2: Outcome and impact oriented (OIO) planning and management
CIII-3.3: Civic local governance engagement
Indicator No. 6: 80% of political skills e-learning and PME training
participants are satisfied with the courses.; 70% apply gained knowledge and
implement it in their work.
Indicator No. 7: 20% of local self-governance consultation results in increased
citizen-friendly decision processes.