We had, some 20 years ago, a very clear, unmistakable assessment of what we should definitely do: to unite, organize, gather, activate around one idea, the one of a free and open society adorned with solidarity, justice, equality, well-being, knowledge. Aware of the sad end of every ideology that has been erased by plastic substitutes, virtual heroes, transparent values, we do not give up the right to our own belief. Not neglecting the importance of ideas, we rely on organized action, on constant and persistent work, without big fireworks, balloons and sprinklers. This does not mean that our activism is devoid of joy. On the contrary. We are united and open to further association. We weave webs of like-minded people. We also get into the car that others are driving, better, with more knowledge, and we learn some new steps, occasionally show them some old ones, ours… as the legendary politician wrote: two steps forward, one back… And we move. We do not forget that we have taken the oath before the rule of knowledge, culture and a developed society. Advanced. The Fund for Social and Democratic Initiative is an organization of strong and authentic
individual values. Hence this quote, to remind us all:
“I am only one,
But still I am one.
I cannot do everything,
But still I can do something;
And because I cannot do everything
I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.“
Who we are:
Welcome to the website of the Fund for Social and Democratic Initiative (FOSDI) from Belgrade, Serbia. FoSDI is a non-profit civil society organization, founded in August 2000. The founders were prominent civil society activists, as well as prominent members of the academic community (Prof. Dr. Ratko Bozovic, Prof. Dr. Cedomir Cupic, Prof. Dr. Zorica Tomic, Dragana Petrovic, Prof. Dr. Bora Kuzmanovic, Natasa Milojevic) and media workers (Srdjan Stojanović, Miloš Vasić, Igor Stević). FoSDI is known as a training center and for many activists is, popularly speaking, another home. FoSDI is a resource center for many initiatives: the implementation of projects whose main goal is the promotion of democracy, social development and institutional capacity building. Its main focus is on issues of discrimination, especially against discrimination against women, vulnerable groups and national minorities. FoSDI conducts research, advises and contributes to policy making, implements projects and public campaigns. The current president of FoSDI is Natasa Milojevic, a political scientist and sociologist of culture, a communication expert, a former member of the Serbian Parliament and the founder of several organizations related to the activities of the civil sector. As an MP, she was the focal point of the World Bank Institute, active in the development of the PRS project and the founder of the Poverty Reduction Committee, in May 2003. Ms. Milojevic is also known as a film producer, project manager and socially relevant and political campaign expert. FOSDI and Ms. Milojevic got the ANDJELKA MILIC AWARD 2021 for the devoted activism and work on human, social and gender rights, advocating women’s empowerment and security.
What we have done, what are we doing?
FoSDI has collaborated with many international, regional and local organizations, institutions and government bodies in over 30 projects. Some of them are: 2000 – project realized with the support of the Norwegian Embassy in Belgrade, and in cooperation with local NGOs and political activists: the goal of the project was to support the local community of Prokuplje.
2000-2005 – realizes seminars and summer schools in cooperation with the Jean-Jaures Foundation on the topic of modern political organization, networking, campaigns and PR activities, negotiation skills, election procedures and democracy, local self-government, the position of women and the labor market.
2001 – Panels and campaigns in cooperation with the Norwegian Embassy in Belgrade and Transparency International, ”How to fight corruption”, with the participation of TU Nezavisnost and Otpor.
2002 – International Panel: Challenges and Opportunities for a Social and Democratic Society with the support of the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung in cooperation with the Independence Trade Union; published as a supplement in the daily Danas.
2001-2005 – Forum Democraticum – Camp for Political Education, summer schools, in cooperation with the Open Society Fund (Soros Fund) with the support of the OSCE Mission to Serbia, NDI, the Norwegian Embassy in Belgrade and SCG Ministry of Human and Minority Rights.
2002-2004 – Three political and public awareness campaigns, in collaboration with the Westminster Foundation.
2004-2006 – a series of trainings for women, in collaboration with the Friedrich Ebert Foundation, on participation in political life and decision-making, election campaigns, public appearances and networking.
2005-2007 – in cooperation with the Gender Equality Council of the Government of Serbia, FoSDI members prepared and implemented 3 public awareness campaigns and participated in several smaller projects and the regular work of the Council.
2007-2009 – four panels and 2 documentaries On the position of women in the labor market: a brochure was published in the daily Danas, and the project was implemented in cooperation with trade unions, chambers of commerce and local governments, as well as with the support of UNDP and the Mission OSCE in Serbia.
2010 – Regional Panel on the position of women from ex-Yugoslavia – 30 years later in cooperation with the Museum May 25, and the participation of eminent women from Serbia, Montenegro, Croatia, Macedonia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and with the support of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation and Norwegian Embassy in Belgrade.
2011 – A project called A Different Face of Serbia, which was realized in cooperation with the Serbian LSE Alumni Association and which presented alternative culture, art and science from Serbia in London, at the London School of Economics, from October 5-14. The project was supported by Erste Bank and Dunav osiguranje.
2012 – Women’s Entrepreneurship: programs implemented by FOSDI in cooperation with Gender Task Force (Croatia) and other partner organizations. Within the program, a project was realized, which for the first time is supported by a Serbian company, DUNAV osiguranje, dedicated to strengthening women’s entrepreneurship in Serbia. The program also included participation in the formation of the Council for Women’s Entrepreneurship in Serbia and included the cooperation of numerous organizations, companies, entrepreneurs, institutions
2013 – WOMEN IN UNIFORM – the beginning of a multi-year program dedicated to the implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1325 and the strengthening of the position of women in the defense and security forces. The program continues today with the support of NATO PDD, RS Ministry of Defense and in cooperation with the Network for Gender Equality of Southeast Europe.
2013 – 2016 – WOMEN, ENVIRONMENT AND DEVELOPMENT, the program was supported by the Regional Environmental Center, FOSDI developed a project cycle curriculum on this topic and held numerous trainings for CSOs and local self-government.
2014 – Programs dedicated to the development of the Serbian diaspora and the promotion of the culture of the Serbian national minority in the region: ARISTOPHAN IN THE DNOPOL, TO BE ME IN THE WHITE WORLD. In the same year, a large international conference WOMEN IN UNIFORM was held and awards were given for their contribution to the development and implementation of the NAP for R1325.
2015 – the fifteenth anniversary of work celebrated! Working and parade.
2016 -2020 – Programs dedicated to the application of NAP for R1325 2016 – ARISTOPHAN IN DNOPOL, documentary film at film festivals in the region and in Europe
2017 – SCHOOL FOR GIRLS JELENA ANŽUJSKA – the role of women in medieval Serbia, lectures, exhibitions and presentations in Paris, Rome, Belgrade 2018 – creative march continues: concerts, screenings, photo exhibitions, exhibitions of ethno creativity of women from Lika
2019 – BLUES CARAVAN – with the support of the US Embassy in Belgrade, concert, panel, promotion of equality in the music industry
2019 – CIRCULATION – circular economy and ecological entrepreneurship in the local community, program supported by funds from the competition of the Ministry of
Environmental Protection of RS
2020 – Programs on the occasion of 20 years of UN Security Council R1325 and 20 years of