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Legal Framework







Center for the  Development of Civil Society (CDCS) is a successor of non-government, non -profit organization “Ghevond Alishan cultural-educational association”, which was established  during Perestroika  in 1988 by a group of well-known scholars from Yerevan State University and Institute of Linguistics of the National Academy of Sciences of Republic of Armenia. It was registered as a non-governmental organization (NGO) when Armenia became independent of the Soviet Union, in 1991.  Members of CDCS are prominent scholars, professors, teachers, artists and students, which voluntarily contribute to the different activities of organization.

CDCS is composed of:  The Women Scholars’ Council, The Youth Council, and The Elderly Women’s League
Our mission is to promote ideas about democracy and civil society, women's and minority rights, pluralism/diversity (cultural, linguistic, religious and political).
Our long–term goal is to foster a civil society through civic education.

LEGAL FRAMEWORK: The Center for Development of Civil Society is registered as non-governmental, non-profit organization under the Ministry of Justice of Republic of Armenia in 1991, reregistered in 1998, 2000 and 2005. The main document outlining CDCS's activities and functions is the Charter of the Center.



The Center for Development of Civil Society is registered as non-governmental, non-profit organization under the Ministry of Justice of Republic of Armenia in 1991, reregistered in 1998, 2000 and 2005. The main document outlining CDCS's activities and functions is the Charter of the Center.



CDCS governing bodies are: CDCS governing bodies are: Plenum, Board, President and Heads of Committees.

CDCS Organizational Structure



  • To foster the concept of democracy and civil society;
  • To realize educational work in the field of protection of human rights and women's rights;
  • To assist in the development of women's movements and gender equality;
  • To increase public awareness of the importance of NGOs in an open civil society;
  • To develop NGO leaders' management, fundraising, and public relations skills;
  • To provide advocacy and educational services for refugees and national minorities;
  • To promote the involvement of refugees in developing the Armenian social infrastructure and civil society;
  • To share and celebrate the Armenian language and culture.


Since its establishment around 15,000 people have benefited from our activities. Among them are local and refugee men, women, youth and children, from both urban and rural communities, as well as youth, men and women from Armenian Diaspora in different countries.


During its activity the Center has realized various educational and training programs in cooperation and assistance with local and international organizations. In recent years, the CDCS has implemented more than 100 different international, national, regional and local projects in the framework of its strategic plan. The projects were implemented in partnership with local and international organizations, involving large groups of stakeholders. All our activities were very successful. CDCS has over 30 publications.

The CDCS has developed a strong network of relationships with other NGOs and educational institutions in the West and the CIS alike as well as an extensive training experience, a material base; an equipped computer class, and a library with literature on democracy and gender issues. The members of CDCS have a large experience of working in the sphere of education, advocacy and women issues since 1988. They passed training in Armenia, USA, OSI Budapest and Austria and took part and had made speeches in many international symposiums and conferences.



Design and implementation of development programs and projects; provision of consultancy and advocacy work, organization and implementation of research, expertise, informational- dissemination works; implementation of training, retraining and other courses; publishing works

Our activities were generously supported by different donors, including USAID/Save the Children, UNDP, UNEP, UNHCR, UNESCO, UNICEF, UMCOR, WFP, UN/NRC, OSI, Catholic Relief Service, European Women’s Synod/NL, WRTW, Committee of Religious Women Against Trafficking in Women/NL, US Embassy in Armenia, World Learning, CiviCap International, OSCEE, COE, CIVICUS, OXFAM/Novib, Royal Netherlands Embassy, Eurasia Foundation, Mama Cash-NL, Canada Fund, NEWW, EU/EIDHR and variety of local sponsors.


  • NEWW - Network of East-West Women
  • CIVICUS - World Alliance for Citizen Participation
  • WANGO - World Association of Non-Governmental Organizations
  • INWES - International Network of Women Engineers & Scientists
  • AWID - Association for Women in Development
  • EUROSTEP - Network of autonomous European non-governmental development organizations working towards peace, justice and equality in a world free of poverty.
  • SOCIAL WATCH - International NGO Watchdog Network Poverty Eradication and gender Justice
  • OXFAM - Civil Society Partners Network
  • Armenian National Platform of the Eastern Partnership

The CDCS is accredited to the Steering group of UNHCR Regional Conference to Address the Problems of Refugees, Displaced Persons, other forms of Involuntary Displacement and Returnees in the Countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States and Relevant Neighboring States.

LOCAL NETWORK: Armenian Women's Network (Network of 19 Women's NGOs) Association for Sustainable Human Development, Women Republican Council, Mental Health Foundation, "Ahazang" Refugee's Association, "Sociometer" Independent Sociological Research Center, Social Policy & Development Center.

INTERNATIONAL NETWORK: National Peace Foundation/USA, Friendship Force Atlanta/USA, Armenian Cultural Circle, Montreal /Canada, Armenian Women's Association Montreal/Canada, Society des Etudes Armeniennes Paris/France, WRTW, Committee of Religious Women Against Trafficking in Women/NL, NEWW, Network of East-West Women

TRAINING EXPERIENCE (most recent first):

  • 2013 Women, Peace and Security, The Hague, NL.
  • 2008 Women Leaders for the World, Global Women's Leadership Network Leavey School of Business, Santa Clara University, California, USA
  • 2007 Breaking the Glass Ceiling: Women in Politics and Business Salzburg - Seminar, Salzburg, Austria
  • 2004 Bridging Human Rights, Conflict Resolution and Development, AU, Washington, DC,
  • 2004 Gender, Peace building in Development Context, AU, Washington,
  • 2004 Training of Trainers in Peacebulding & Development, AU, Washington, DC
  • 1999 Training Program on Trafficking in Women, Utrecht, Netherlands.
  • 1999 Session on Gender Studies, Curriculum Resource Center, OSI, Budapest, Hungary
  • 1998 Transitional Training Seminar on Trafficking in Women, Budapest, Hungary.
  • 1997 Non-governmental Organization: Leadership and Civil Society Salzburg- Seminar, Salzburg, Austria
  • 1994 Women's NGO Management & Violence against Women, The Friendship Force, Atlanta, GA, USA
  • 1994 Management + Leadership training courses, AAA/NGO Center, Yerevan


  • In 1994 the CDCS was accredited to the Steering group of UNHCR Regional Conference to Address the Problems of Refugees, Displaced Persons, other Forms of Involuntary Displacement and Returnees in the Countries of the CIS and Relevant Neighboring States.
  • In 2004 the CDCS members served as Official International Observers during 2004 Presidential elections in Ukraine on behalf of the US-based National Democratic Institute (NDI) and European Network of Election Monitoring Organizations (ENEMO)
  • Starting from 2004 the CDCS members served as Official Local Observers during the Parliamentary and Presidential elections in Armenia (jointly with Association of Former Parliamentarians).
  • In 2005, after a careful review process  the CDCS was selected by CIVICUS to coordinate the Civil Society Index (CSI) in Armenia, an assessment of Armenian Civil Society was conducted and the book Civil Society in Armenia: From a Theoretical Framework to a Reality, was published  in 2006.
  • In 2007   the CDCS  was selected as a focal point for EU-CIS Gender Watch project to conduct a research and issue a report titled:  A Gender Analysis of the European Union Developmental Aid for Armenia, which was published in 2008
  • In 2008 the organization was awarded by 2008 Stockholm Challenge Award program for the project Young Women Leadership Institute.
  • Since 2008 the CDCS served as Focal Point for Social Watch and conducted and published country reports in 2010, 2011, 2012.
  • In 2009 the CDCS  was selected from about 5000 Armenian NGO to participate in first Civil Society Forum in Brussels  and now it is fоunding member of  the Eastern Partnership Armenian National Platform  and  continues to be active in working  groups.


  • 5th World Forum on Human Rights: Sustainable Development - Human Rights: a common struggle?  Nantes, France, 2013
  • Advancing the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Agenda, Bonn, Germany,2013
  • The fifty-seven session of the Commission on the Status of Women, New York, USA,  2013
  • W.I.N, Global Leadership Conference 2012, Rome, Italy, 2012
  • IISES, International Interdisciplinary Conference in Palermo, Italy, 2012
  • International Congress of Humanities and Social Sciences Research, Paris, France, 2012
  •  The fifty-sixth session of the Commission on the Status of Women, New York, USA,  2012
  • European Gender Summit, Brussels, Belgium, 2011
  • Best Practices in Mobilizing Civil Society for Dialogue, Vienna, Austria 2011
  • The 6th ECPR General Conference, Reykjavik , Ireland 2011
  • Social Watch Pan Asian Capacity Building Workshop, Phnom Penh, Cambodia 2011
  • The fifty-fifth session of the Commission on the Status of Women, New York, USA,  2011
  • W.I.N. Global Conference 2010: Realizing Visions, Paris, France, 2010
  • Civil Society Forum Working Group 3, Brussels, Belgium, 2010
  • Crossroads 2010 International Conference, Hong Kong, China, 2010
  • Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum, Brussels, Belgium, 2009
  • World Out games 2009, 2nd International Conference on LGBT Human Rights, Copenhagen, Denmark, 2009
  • W.I.N. Global Conference 2009: Wisdom in Action, Prague, Czech Republic, 2009
  • The 3rd World Engineers Convention, Brasilia, Brazil, 2008
  • The 14 International Conference of Women Engineers and Scientists, Lillie, France, 2008
  • Stockholm Challenge 2008 Award Ceremony, Stockholm, Sveden, 2008
  • Global Conference on Sustainability and Transparency, Amsterdam, NL, 2008
  • Euclid Network Conference, Budapest, Hungary, 2008
  • Women in Engineering and Technology Research, Prometea, Paris, France, 2007
  • Salzburg Seminar, Salzburg, Austria, 2007
  • EU Development Policies and their monitoring in the regions of CEE/CIS, Gdansk, Poland, 2007
  • 7th  CIVICUS World Assembly, Glasgow, UK, 2007
  • Networking in Science and Technology: The Gender Perspective,  Syros, Greece,  2007
  • International Colloquium on Women in Engineering and Technology, Tinis, 2007
  • International  Symposium of Technologies for Social  Action, Seville, Spain, 2007
  • Fulbright Association 29th annual conference, Marrakech, Morrocco, 2006
  • Social Watch, Sofia, Bulgaria, 2006
  • Kick-Off-Meeting for European and International Research Cooperation in Women’s and Gender Studies in Science, Technology and Medicine, Berlin, Germany, 2006
  • “Equal is not enough” European conference on equal opportunities, Antwerp, Belgium, 2006
  • EU Development Policies and their monitoring in the regions of CEE/CIS, Gdansk, Poland, 2006
  • Affirming Diversity: Women Making A Difference, Women Global Connection II International Conference, San-Diego, USA, 2006
  • 6th  CIVICUS World Assembly, Glasgow, UK, 2006
  • European Biopolitics Conference, Berlin, 2006
  • Women as a Global Leaders: Communities in Transition, Abu Dhabi, UAE, 2006
  • 10th AWID International  Forum, Bangkok, Thailand, 2005
  • 10th International Women &Health Meeting, New Delhi, India, 2005
  • NEWR Final Conference, University of Birmingham, Birmingham,UK, 2005
  • “Women’s World 2005” 9th International Interdisciplinary Congress of Women, Seoul, Korea, 2005 
  • Émancipation ou Liberté, Colloque Résonances, Université de Paris VIII, Paris, France, 2005
  • "Creativity, Dissidence and Women" , Cairo, Egypt, 2005 
  • Gendering Transformations, Crete, Greece, 2005
  • Women as a Global Leaders: Educating the Next Generation, Dubai, UAE, 2005
  • 5th  CIVICUS World Assembly, Goborone, Botswana, 2004
  • Second European Women’s Synod, Barcelona, Spain, 2003
  • OSCE 11th  Ministerial Council, Maastricht, NL, 2003
  • Girls Leadership and Trafficking Prevention - Salve Regina University (Pell Center), and Harvard University (Kennedy School of Government, Women and Public Policy Program), Cambridge,USA, 2003
  • Women and Civil Society - Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study (Graduate Consortium in Women’s Studies),Cambridge,USA, 2003
  • “Sustainable Feminisms: Enacting Theories, Envisioning Action”, St. Paul, Minnesota, USA, 2003
  •  Gender, Faith and Social Activism: Women in a Uniting Divided Europe “Combating Poverty, Violence, Racism and Globalization”, Prague, Czech Republic, 2002
  • 54 th Annual DPI/ NGO Conference, “NGOs Today: Diversity of the Volunteer Experience”,  New York, USA,  2001
  • 5th European Women’s Academy “ Women and Future of Democracy in Europe”, Boldern, Switzerland, 2001  
  • September, 2000-Regional Dynamics of the Black and Caspian Sea Basins, Odessa, Ukraine
  • IRENE, International Seminar on "Organizing women in the informal sector", Düsseldorf, Germany, 2000
  • "Women in Politics: Feminism(s) with an Eastern Touch "Dubrovnik, Croatia, 2000
  • NGO Working Session (prior to the ECE Regional Preparatory Meeting), Geneva, Switzerland, 2000
  • "Workshop on Psychosocial Rehabilitation of Displaced persons", Moscow, Russia, 1999
  • The 1999 Seoul International Conference of NGOs, Seoul, Korea, 1999
  • Women and Earth, International conference, Helsinki, Finland, 1998
  • Cultural Competence and Mental Health, Sacramento, California, USA, 1997
  • October 1997 - Women Who Are Changing Education, AAUW, Eau Claire, Wisconsin, USA, 1997
  • Welcome to Washington International Club, annual conference, Washington, D.C., USA, 1997
  • Women Against Trafficking on Women, Amersfoort, Netherlands, 1997
  • UNHCR Regional Conference, Geneva ,  Switzerland, 1997
  • Second European Ecumenical Assembly, Graz, Austria, 1997
  • February 1997 - Second Annual Colloquy of European Center for Modern Languages, Graz, Austria
  • First European Women’s Synod, Gmunden, Austria, 1996
  • Fourth World Conference on Women, Beijing, China, 1995


Postal address: 49 Nalbandian St., # 7, 0025 Yerevan, Armenia
Office address:15 Aghayan, # 17, 0001 Yerevan, Armenia
Tel: (37410) 560 544
Fax: (37410) 585 677
Contact person: Anahit Abrahamyan, Executive Director