Exchange Program

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Find out how Civil Society Exchange works!

Civil Society Exchange Program (CSE)

The Civil Society Exchange Program (CSE) is a 6 – 8 months international mobility program for civil society organisations and initiatives in Turkey and Europe. The aim of the program is to support civil society organisations to foster and form international partnerships and to work with their partners to strengthen their organizational capacity.

The program structure is based on the capacity through mobility model that Center for Civil Society Studies and MitOst developed over the years. Civil Society Exchange Program enables participants to develop a strategy with their international partners to tackle a mutual organizational issue, to implement a solution for a specific problem and to improve their internal capacity through cross-border collaboration.


The Civil Society Exchange Program aims to support organizational capacity building process of civil society organizations in Turkey and Europe through cross-border mobility in a non-formal, mutual learning environment. The long-term goal of the program is to increase organizational sustainability of the CSOs based in Turkey and Europe.

The program enables partnerships to work on a common organizational issue and to develop a model for themselves, which they implement in their organizations.


Civil Society Exchange is about mobility and capacity building. The program invites participants to exchange and offers online and offline mobility opportunities. Participants will design this process according to their needs with their partners. This concerns the activities partners are planning, the online meetings that they will be organising as well as the places where they would like to meet to work together on the issue/model which they have chosen.

The main objective is that participants are profiting from this process of mobility that is provided them to work together. Partners either visit each other or they plan a little residence program in one of the organizations, have meetingsstudy visitsjob shadowing or other activities which would support both organisations in the partnership to develop their model.


For the application, partners need only first ideas about the internal organizational issue they want to work on. The opening meeting will then serve to define their problem and support them in coming together in working groups to explore it further.

For example, if two organizations want to improve their capacity in terms of collaboration with volunteers, they can apply and form a partnership to develop a process for working with volunteers.

If two organizations are fed up with writing proposals and would like to reach out to individual donors for financial sustainability, in this program they can receive mutual support from each other in doing so.

Or if they want to tune their already existing face to face mentoring programmes into an online one, they can organise a series of study visits to learn from other orgenisation.

In short, they can learn from each other, they can mutually learn from others or one of them can learn from the other organisation in the partnership through cross-border mobility.


Participant organizations can be a social company, foundation, civil initiative, cooperative, or association. The only criteria is that the applicant partnership should be composed of a non-profit entity from Turkey and another from a European Union country .

Which fields should participant organizations be active in?
The program seeks organizations working in ecology, gender, human rights, children’s rights, women’s rights, formal and/or non-formal education, urban development, discrimination, youth, or in other similar topics. Entities from different fields are encouraged to apply.

Applicants need to identify an internal organizational issue that they would like to focus on. To facilitate capacity building, two representatives from each organization are expected to participate in the program.

The program seeks for long term, committed persons who are paid staff, members, or work on a voluntary level with the organization.

Please consider that after the program, participants are expected to implement the model they have developed with their partners

The working language of the program is English. Thus, proficiency in English is mandatory.

* We highly encourage people from under-represented groups to apply.

Civil Society Exchange supports either new or existing partnerships between civil society organisations from Europe (EU countries) and Turkey.

If you already have a partner organization in Turkey or vice versa, then we encourage you to get in touch with your partner and speak about the program.

What does Civil Society Exchange offer you?

  • Meet new partners from both Turkey and Europe
  • Discover good practices and fruitful exchanges with other civil society actors
  • Establish or foster a relationship with one or several civic initiatives
  • Strengthening the internal capacity of your organization
  • Become part of a Europe and Turkey wide network
  • Funding of your partnership (3,500 EUR)
  • Support from the program team throughout your collaboration
  • Reimbursement of travel and living expenses during the opening and final meetings where you will be meeting other Exchangers.


Thank you for your interest. The applications for all the Civil Society Exchange Programs are currently closed. Please follow the News section or our Facebook page for the future call for applications.


For a glimpse of each partnership that was formed in the first two years of the Civil Society Exchange Program you can download the ALMANAC that summarises their work.
Additionally, you can also find reports from previous Exchange Programs: