EED ensuring rapid turnaround on emergency grant requests from Ukraine
March 29, 2022

EED ensuring rapid turnaround on emergency grant requests from Ukraine

The European Endowment for Democracy (EED) issued its first emergency grants in Ukraine just two days after the Russian invasion, the EED told the European Parliament’s Committee on Foreign Affairs as it presented its 2021 Annual Report before the committee.

“We are ensuring a rapid turnaround on grant requests, and grants to Ukraine are issued within 12 hours or less,” said a press release from the EED.

While the report was concerned with events last year, Ukraine dominated the discussions with MEPs on 21 March. The EED has partners throughout the country, including in areas of active fighting, such as Donbas, Kharkiv, Sumy, Chernihiv, Kyiv, Kherson, Odesa, Berdyansk and across central and western regions.

The 2021 report includes a special section on EED partners’ work in Ukraine. “We were proud of their dedication to pro-reform initiatives and their work as initiators of change. Today, we are prouder than ever as our partners have come together in solidarity to help the victims of war and to defend their country’s democratic future.

In 2021, EED supported a wide range of activists and initiatives, in areas such as human rights, anti-corruption, women, LGBTQI+, youth and cultural arenas. Over 44 per cent of grants provided in 2021 were to independent media.

The EED approved €25 million in democracy support, and funded 293 new initiatives in 2021, with 34% of all applications coming from countries in the Eastern Partnership.

Commenting on the report, MEPs noted their support for EED’s work and the importance of EED’s work supporting democracy within the European Neighbourhood and beyond. Members also remarked on the importance of continuing to reach out to Russian and Russian language audiences.

In response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the EED immediately approved an emergency assistance programme for its Ukrainian partners, including emergency funding and a top-up fund for grantees to cover additional needs such as re-location and security. 

The European Endowment for Democracy is an independent, grant-making organisation, established in 2013 by the European Union (EU) and EU member states as an autonomous International Trust Fund to foster democracy in the European Neighbourhood (Eastern Partnership – EaP – and Middle East and North Africa – MENA), the Western Balkans, Turkey and beyond. EED supports civil society organisations, pro-democracy movements, civic and political activists, and independent media platforms and journalists working towards a pluralistic, democratic political system. 

The EED 2021 Annual Report can be downloaded as a pdf or read as an interactive version.

Find out more

Press release

Picture: Anastasia Shybiko, one of the founders of Vilne Radio – or ‘Free Radio’ – a small independent radio station that operates in Bakhmut, in eastern Ukraine, broadcasting to both the Ukraine-controlled and Russia-occupied areas of Donbas region, with support from EED. Her story is featured in the 2021 report.


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