Strong Civil Society for Democratic Change

The Civil Society Foundation bolsters those independent and diverse voices and initiatives that serve Georgia’s European aspirations, protection of human rights and freedom of media, integration of minorities and establishment of social justice in the country.

About Us

For almost 30 years, the team of the Civil Society Foundation (former Open Society Georgia Foundation) has been committed to promoting and developing civil society in Georgia.

The Civil Society Foundation is a platform bringing together people, organizations and coalitions for democratic change and public good. Through grant funding of the civil sector, initiative groups and people who support the values of a democratic society, and engagement in important advocacy campaigns, the Civil Society Foundation bolsters those independent and diverse voices and initiatives that serve Georgia’s European aspirations, protection of human rights and freedom of media, integration of minorities and establishment of social justice in the country. The Foundation strives to be a driving force behind the European vector of our country remaining vigilant with civil society in its efforts to fight corruption, oppression and authoritarianism.

For almost three decades, the Foundation’s investment in the development of an open and democratic society in Georgia have amounted to more than USD 100 mln. This support was endowed to strengthen youth, women, children, refugees, students, professional groups, socially vulnerable groups, persons with health problems or disabilities.

The Foundation is an active member of thematic coalitions, such as: the Coalition for Equality, Media Advocacy Coalition, the Coalition for an Independent and Transparent Judiciary, the Coalition for Euro-Atlantic Georgia, the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum, Mental Health Coalition of Georgia and others.

Team of the Civil Society Foundation managed to achieve significant changes by supporting newly established organizations, initiative groups and active citizens, motivating advocacy campaigns, educational initiatives, publications and the discussion platforms.


The Civil Society Foundation (CSF) is the successor of the mission and history of the Open Society Georgia Foundation. Since 1994, the Open Society Georgia Foundation has been part of the global network of Open Society Foundations. In parallel with structural, managerial and geographical changes taking place in the global network, the Civil Society Foundation was transformed into a local organization and keeps on with the priority areas under a renewed status and under the new name “Civil Society Foundation”. The Foundation remains loyal to its mission and values and remains to be a global network partner in the region.

The sustanability of the Civil Society Foundation is thoroughly backed up by the global network of the Open Society Foundations. At the same time, we are implementing many projects, supported by various international organizations, and are also open to cooperation with other donors.

The Foundation played an important role in reaching democratic changes; it has empowered society in times of war, social upheaval, or the COVID-19 pandemic. Besides, has made significant contribution to advancing key reforms in public health, expanding space for participatory democracy and civic engagement, protecting human rights and the rule of law, and empowering free and independent media.

Bolstered up by the Foundation, an EU Candidacy Check document was prepared assessing Georgia’s fulfillment of the 12 priorities for obtaining the status of an EU candidate country, the first children’s palliative care hospice was established in Georgia, a number of churches and monasteries, paintings and frescoes were preserved; a free legal aid service was established. The leading online and regional media organizations began to operate. Thousands of young people and professional groups have been awarded scholarships to study abroad and extend their qualification.


Pivotal achievements in the history of the Civil Society Foundation:

  • Children’s hospice – since 1999, the Foundation has been introducing palliative care in the country for people with chronic and untreated deseases, and in 2017 the first children’s hospice in Georgia was opened.
  • More than 1,200 young people with modern education – thousands of young people have received degrees from Western universities thanks to the Foundation’s scholarships.
  • More than 700 doctors with extended qualification – to this day, representatives of the medical profession participate in the Salzburg Seminars.
  • USD 8 mln. for media development – online and regional media organizations, which are currently leading, began their operation with the support of the Foundation.
  • EU Candidacy Checkassessment of Georgia’s fulfillment of the 12 priorities for obtaining the status of an EU candidate country – together with partner NGOs, the Foundation was regularly preparing an EU Candidacy Check documents assessing Georgia’s fulfillment of the priorities for obtaining EU candidate status and will continue to monitor this process in 2024.
  • Monitoring of the Association Agreement – the Foundation took an active part in the development of the annual Action Plan for the implementation of the Association Agreement and continues to monitor the implementation of reforms envisaged by the EU-Georgia Association Agreement.
  • Protection of cultural heritage – the Foundation has allotted more than USD 5 mln. to preserve paintings and frescoes in Georgian churches and monasteries, strengthen church buildings and create e-archives.
  • Election Media Center – on the initiative of the Foundation, the media center, operating on election days, is the only means for the media and public at large to continuously get unbiased information about the results of election observation by local NGOs.
  • Free legal aid – eventually to the cooperation between the Foundation and the Ministry of Justice, a Free Legal Aid Service was opened in Georgia, which annually serves more than 30,000 people free of charge.
  • Hepatitis C Elimination Program – in 2011, the Foundation launched an advocacy campaign to promote access to Hepatitis C diagnostics and treatment. Local and international cooperation made it possible to implement this program, first in penitentiary institutions, and then throughout the country.
  • Community-based (home) mental health service – after large psychiatric institutions had been dissolved, community-based services reduced the need for hospitalization of patients in psychiatric institutions by 90%.
  • Homelessness and adequate housing – eventually to the research and subsequent advocacy campaign supported by the Foundation, the Government of Georgia took responsibility to elaborate a National Housing Policy within the framework of Open Government Action Plan.
  • A study of the context of torture of prisoners in penitentiary institutions and its systematicity – a research document prepared by the Foundation is the only document of its kind that assesses the situation in Georgian prisons in 2003-2013.


Our Team

The Executive Board is the supreme governing body of the Civil Society Foundation, defining the strategic priorities and policy of CSF. The Board members are persons with high competence in various fields.

The leadership and team members of CSF unite active citizens who care about creating a decent, fair and equal environment for all people. Some have a very extensive history in civic activism, underpinned by tenacious civil society values that often come about independently of the Foundation.

The approach of the CSF leadership towards its team members is the same as the Foundation strives to implement in the country. This is listening and respecting different opinions, involving employees in considering various issues and making decisions.