UNDEF supports projects that strengthen the voice of civil society, promote human rights, and encourage the participation of all groups in democratic processes. It is the only UN entity that has the word “democracy” in its name; the only UN body with the primary purpose of supporting democracy through empowering civil society; and one of the youngest entities in the UN system. UNDEF projects exist in developing countries, in societies in transition and in challenging environments, and are in six main areas: Community development; rule of law and human rights; tools for democratization; youth; empowering women; and media.
UNDEF grants range from US$50,000 to US$400,000. So far, UNDEF has funded more than 400 projects in over 100 countries, bringing total disbursement to almost 140 million dollars. The large majority of funds go to local civil society groups. In this way, UNDEF plays a new and unique role, complementing the UN’s traditional work with Governments to strengthen democratic governance around the world. It targets the demand side of democracy, rather than the supply side.
Via Francisco George, ARMAK de ODELOT