21 Dec Consultative meeting on the possibilities of introducing Quality Assurance Systems in civil sector in Novi Sad

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Niš, 16th December 2016. – Consultative meeting on the possibilities of introducing Quality Assurance Systems in the civil sector (QAS) was held today.

The Quality Assurance Systems in the civil sector is designed as a self-regulatory mechanism for CSO work and as a means of promoting development, accountability and transparency of CSO. The aim of this meeting was to gather suggestions that would be QAS model elements as a common response to the challenges the sector faces.

img_20161216_122138Bojana Selaković, ad Executive Director of Civic Initiatives, presented the concept of Quality Assurance System (QAS) in the civil sector, its elements and its benefits to CSO. She pointed out that the key objectives of QAS, viewed as a global concept of raising the organizational capacities of CSO, is the reduction of the impact of various external factors on the success and development of CSO and to meet the needs of different interested parties. Application of QAS in the CSO sector should contribute to its better credibility and public image, increasing the confidence of various stakeholders (beneficiaries, donors and decision-makers) and the motivation of donors, but also to facilitate coping with the facing weaknesses and challenges. Although initially designed for the business sector, various models of QAS are also applied in the public and non-profit sector. The intention of TACSO RC Civic Initiatives and organizations that have recognized and endorsed the initiative is that, through a broad consultative process and participation of a large number of CSO from all over Serbia, to create QAS model that realistically reflect the needs and aspirations of civil society.

img_20161216_122210The process of accreditation of organizations dealing with youth work and model standards while respecting and evaluated, was presented by Jelena Stojanović, executive director of the National Asociation of Practitioners of Youth Work (NAPYW).

NAPYW, as network that gathers 65 CSOs from all over Serbia, decided to define the minimum standards, fulfilling of which would guarantee the quality of services for young people. After the consultative process a model that includes 8 standards and 44 substandard grouped into 4 areas was created. After that the system was designed, as a CSO accreditation system to ensure the implementation of this model. One key characteristic of this system is very strong educational component, which has contributed, through the accreditation process, strengthening of OCD and their internal capacity. The goal that NAPYW now weighs refers recognition NAPYW’s programs accredited by the state, ie. as a public license.

The process of introducing QAS to the civil society sector in Serbia would rely on the practice of neighboring countries that have had similar experiences in development of the sector,  that have been introduced to QAS and of countries in which this process is in progress (Slovenia, Montenegro, Croatia), as well as existing tools in the sector (Code of Ethics CSO) and other similar processes in Serbia. Given the fact that at present there is no system that could determine whether these organizations operate in accordance with the principles set out in the Code of Ethics, there is a need for further promotion of the Code of Ethics and QAS, as a system of standards that can ensure implementation of the agreed principles OCD in their daily work.

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