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16 – 18 October
Generously hosted by the South Eastern European Indigenous Grantmakers Network (SIGN) from the Balkans, we are delighted to invite you to the 18th annual Grantmakers East Forum (GEF) on 16 – 18 October in Belgrade, Serbia.
LEARNing, REFLECTing and CONNECTing is what the GEF is all about! This echoes the continued GEF mission of supporting, learning, networking and collaborating amongst grantmakers to promote development of civil society. By providing funders with a platform to discuss their grantmaking efforts the Forum helps participants to be inspired and encourages new donor activity.
Belgrade was selected to host this year’s GEF as the largest urban complex of the Balkans. Situated at the confluence of Danube and Sava river, Belgrade is one of the oldest cities in Europe. During 7,000 years of its long and turbulent history, Belgrade has been conquered 40 times and the same number of times it rose from the ashes. With over 1,7 million of citizens today, Belgrade represents not only the official capital of the Republic of Serbia, but also its cultural, educational, scientific, political, economic and social centre. Nearly 11,000 different cultural and social events are being held in Belgrade each year, such as the film festival FEST, the music festival BEMUS, the theatre festival BITEF, and the Belgrade summer festival BELEF.
GEF will be organised in the former Palace of the Federation, seat of the Federal Executive Council of the former SFRY – one of the most astonishing buildings of Serbia, built from 1948 - 1961. This building with nearly 1,000 offices, one major conference hall called Yugoslavia, 6 halls designed originally to represent former SFRY’s republics, and a monumental specially illuminated stairway, is now called Palace of Serbia and is the seat of the Deputy Prime Minister of the Serbian Government, five Ministries, and a meeting place of high level diplomatic visits. Plenary sessions will be held in the same saloon where Tito met people like Jimmy Carter, Valéry Giscard d’Estaing and Margaret Thatcher.
This year GEF will give you an unforgettable experience from the Balkans – the region where global lessons can be learned on the ground, where people had no other choice but to innovate. We will bring innovative NGOs, entrepreneurs, politicians and leaders to share how they address the issue of TRANSPARENCY while trying to tackle growing social and economic issues. With a packed programme, plenty of networking time and lots of opportunities to learn, reflect and connect with peers, we hope that you will take away not only new ideas about the issue of transparency and good memories, but also the beginnings of a new project or partnership to help support civil society even further.
We very much look forward to seeing you in Belgrade in October! Stay tuned for more information on the programme, registration and how to get involved.