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Raising Public Awareness

Change does not come through legal reform alone.  Change in the attitudes and understanding of individuals is fundamental to expanding civic space also.  Many people in the world do not yet know about the power of civil society or their right to be part of it. The CSI is raising public awareness of the value of civil society through film, online platforms, and other innovative tools.

Key accomplishments

  • The CSI organized TEDxLiberdade: The Power of Together, an independently organized TED event held in Sao Paulo, Brazil in April 2014. Through TEDxLiberdade, we demonstrated the power of people working together for the common good and the importance of protecting our right to collective action.
  • The CSI launched BE THE CHANGE, a global public awareness campaign and online platform to share stories of citizen action.
  • The CSI organized the first Global Day of Citizen Action, which inspired 46 events in 25 different countries celebrating the right to citizen action.
  • The CSI produced three short videos and one longer film that sought to raise awareness of the value of civic space and importance of civil society to the general public. Each of the videos – including Girl Child (Zimbabwe), I Was Not Alone (Pakistan), Fatima (Iraq) – and the film - Walking a Fine Line (Myanmar) – focused on an individual civic activist in order to demonstrate the power of individuals working through civic organizations. 
  • The CSI worked with musicians from Kenya and Pakistan through the Set Them Free Campaign. The musicians produced song and music videos to inform the general public of civil society activists who have been unjustly detained and mobilize people to call for their immediate release.   


This webpage is prepared by the International Center for Not-for-Profit Law through the Civic Space Initiative, implemented in partnership with ARTICLE 19, CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation, and the World Movement for Democracy.