Civil society is the corner stone for any democratic and pluralistic future of Syria. Through its support, Baytna Organization not only promotes civil society per se, but also fosters the environment in which future leaders can emerge. Civil society actors can range from a group of a few people supporting a certain initiative locally to an organized non-governmental institution with thousands as its constituency and projects in the millions of dollars.
Civil society interests are equally wide: from basic freedoms of assembly, association and expression, passing by arts and culture and media to individual public policy areas such as education, health, local government, transportation, environment, etc.
Work modes among civil society are equally diverse, often progressing from charitable beginnings to more complex developmental approaches and developing further to rights-based activities, advocacy and policy dialogue.
Syrian civil society faces complex relations with politics and politicians due to the nature of the conflict. Political actors have tried to control certain civil society organizations and initiatives for personal political gains and interests. It is therefore Baytna’s policy not to include political parties or actors, or civil society organization linked to political parties in its direct support, whether through capacity building or grant making.