About Foundation

The Regional Public Charitable Foundation “Law and Democracy” (hereinafter “the Foundation”) was created in 1994 with the establishment of the first public pro bono legal consultation clinic in the Lviv region. On 12 December 1996, the Foundation was officially registered with the Lviv Regional Administration of Justice as a private non-profit organization. On 1999 the organization was reregistered according to the new amendments to law. The Foundation now has over eighteen years of experience in legal-protection work – in particular, monitoring activity – and takes an active role in the cooperation process between NGOs, on the one hand, and national and local government authorities, on the other. The main areas of the Foundation’s activity are: pro bono legal assistance; monitoring of violations of human rights in the region and throughout the territory of Ukraine; reform of the Ukrainian court system and enhancement of people’s access to the courts; legal education; development of local self-government; prevention of torture and ill treatment in jails and police stations; and the development of a Western-Ukrainian network of NGOs dealing with the protection of human rights.
The main achievements of the Foundation:

  • Organization of the first pro bono law clinic in Lviv region in 1994, which works even nowadays;
  • Participation in creating of legislation about NGOs;
  • Working on the Ukrainian legislation about NGO activity (draft of law “On Funds”,1997);
  • Teaching of the electoral legislation for potential candidates on deputies of different levels and observers during the elections in 1998, 2002, 2004;
  • Winning the case in European Court of Human Rights Samardak v. Ukraine;
  • Creation of Western Ukrainian network of human rights organizations.

The aim of our activity: growth of democratic society in the region and development of local self-government. Directions of our activity:

  1. Court system and court reform in Ukraine;
  2. Pro bono law clinic;
  3. Protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms;
  4. Development of human rights organizations network;
  5. Reforming of housing sphere;
  6. Local press monitoring on human rights violations in the region;
  7. Administrative reform;
  8. Penitentiary system;
  9. Local self-government reform.
  10. Protection of intellectual property rights

The Foundation has engaged in the following projects:
During 2016-2017 years the Foundation realized the projects “Developing And Implementing a Training Program for Court Staff on Improving the Level of Communication Skills and Skills of Working with People with Disabilities”.The main objectives of the proposed project is to improve the professional level of court employees, promoting the involvement of civil society participation in the process of improving the functioning of the courts and access of people with disabilities to court facilities and court services.The project was implemented with the support of USAID “Fair Justice”.
On 2015 – Participation in the development of the curriculum for the School of courts administration, which took place in Kyiv on 23 March 2015 – April 3, 2015., where Andriy Buryy take part as the training expert from our organization with lectures and practical exercises on the subject of accessibility of persons with disabilities to justice. This school took place with the support of USAID “Fair Justice”, Michigan State University, the State Courts Administration, the National School of Judges of Ukraine.
On 2015 the Foundation is the regional partner of the project “Assessment of quality survey on citizens’ satisfaction of quality of court of Lviv region”, which is implementing by charitable organization “Your Right”. The project organization conducted a survey with the help of CRC methodology in 12 courts of Lviv region.
During 2014-15 years the Foundation realized the projects “Evaluation of the program survey methodology CRC and analysis to ensure equal access of persons with disabilities to justice” and “Monitoring the equal access of persons with special physical needs for justice, aimed at monitoring the equal access of persons with special physical needs for justice and development at the national level recommendations for improvement of the accessibility of the courts for people with disabilities”. The project was implemented with the support of USAID “Fair Justice”.
In 2013 the Foundation implemented the project “Evaluation of the Program Survey on CRC Methodology and Analysis to Ensure Equal Access for Persons with Disabilities to Justice”. The project was supported by USAID project “Fair Justice”.
During 2012 and 2013 the Foundation accomplished the project “Improving the Level of Access to Justice for Persons with Disabilities”. The main objective of the project was to improve the functioning of the judicial system of Ukraine and ensuring equal accessibility to justice. The project extended its work to the seven regions of Western Ukraine. As part of the activities included trainings for local NGOs, human rights activists and the media on issues of improving access to judicial institutions, persons with disabilities, monitored access to a number of courts and created a video that highlights the problems of the project, provided the recommendations for improving the accessibility of persons with disabilities to the State Courts Administration of Ukraine. The project was supported by MATRA program of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Ukraine.
Also in 2012 was implemented the project “Researching the Satisfaction of the Quality of Courts’ Services with Methodology of CRC”. The main goal of the project was to assess the level of satisfaction of citizens’ quality of functioning of the court based on the methodology citizen report cards and develop recommendations to improve the functioning of the Lviv Regional Administrative Court, Zakarpatsky Regional Administrative Court, and Khmelnitsky Regional Administrative Court by improving the quality and availability of legal services. The project was supported by USAID project “Fair Justice”.
In 2012 the Foundation realized the project “Raising Legal Awareness of Access to Justice among Representatives of the Lviv Region Vulnerable Social Strata”. This project was performed with the financial support provided by USAID Access to Justice and Legal Empowerment Project. The main goal of the project was pro bono legal support of the people who live in country side area and do not have financial possibility to protect their rights. During the project we were provided the legal trainings and distributed printing materials related the possibility for these people to protect property and labor rights.
In 2012 the Foundation applied the project “Improving the Level of Access to Courts for Blind and Persons with Significant Visual Impairments”. The main goal was to identify and eliminate negative factors impacting on the availability of people with disabilities (blind, with significant visual impairments) to district courts, disclosure of this information in order to establish a dialogue between the court and the public. The project was supported by Democracy Commission Small Grants Program of the US Embassy in Ukraine.
In 2012 the Foundation implemented the project “Human Rights Network in Western Ukraine” with supported by Public Affairs Section of the US Embassy in Ukraine. As the result of the project the Western Ukrainian human rights network was created. The network of non-governmental organization is growing and now include the organizations from eights regions of Ukraine and the network becoming to be not only for Western Ukraine but for any non-governmental organizations from any part of Ukraine.
In 2011 and 2012, the Foundation realized the project “Spreading of Successful Experience of the Human Rights Protection in the European Court of Human Rights among NGOs” with assistance of the United Nations Development Programme “Civil Society Development”. In 2011 and 2012, the Foundation implemented the project “Comparative Civil Monitoring of the Tenders of Lviv and Kharkiv City Councils”. The aim of project – conducting of comparative civil monitoring of the tender purchases of Lviv and Kharkiv for detecting the influence of new legislation about public purchases and governmental policy about social-economic development of the cities, providing of rights of the purchases participants and development of local businesses, transparency and efficiency of purchases procedure. The project was supported by International Renaissance Foundation.
From 2011 the Foundation has been an active participant of Property right protection coalition of the project “Accessibility to court and law awareness in Ukraine” USAID Access to Justice and Legal Empowerment Project. In 2010 and 2011, the Foundation realizes the project “Civil Monitoring of Accessibility of the Appeal Court of Lviv Region for Citizens” with assistance of the United Nations Development Programme “Civil Society Development”.
In 2009 and 2010, the Foundation implemented the project “Monitoring the Accessibility of the Courts and Effectiveness of their Activity for Citizens”, with financial support from the USAID project, “Ukraine Rule of Law.” In this project, monitoring and research were conducted in four district courts of the Lviv Region and six courts of city of Lviv. The project “Monitoring the Accessibility of the Courts in the City of Lviv” was accomplished, with the cooperation of the USAID project “Ukraine Rule of Law”, in 2008 and 2009. From 2008 to 2009 saw the realization of the project “Monitoring International Experience of the Magistrate Judge, Jury Trial, and People’s Assessors and Development of a Proposal Regarding the Possibility of Application of the Practice of above Legal Institutions in Ukraine”, with financial support of the International Renaissance Foundation.
The project “Monitoring of Courts’ Accessibility” was carried out by the Foundation in 2007, with the support of the USAID project “Ukraine Rule of Law”.
In 2006 and 2007, the Foundation performed the project “Center for Legal Assistance to Citizens on Issues Relating to Housing Services”, with the support of the Stephan Batory Foundation under the program “Public initiatives in Eastern Europe”. The priority of the Center was to raise awareness of the advantages of creating unions of joint owners of apartment buildings and provide legal assistance to establish groups of residents.
During 2004 and 2005, with support from the European Commission, the “Civil Consultative Center for Legal Aid to Citizens in Conflict with State Authorities” project was completed. Within the framework of this project, educational and legal materials were distributed and free legal aid was provided to citizens.
From 2003 to 2005, with support from the Danish Institute for Human Rights, the Foundation implemented the project “Strengthening Civil Society Human Rights Advocacy in Ukraine”.
In 2004, supported by the “Democracy Grants Program” of the Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy,  the Foundation implemented the project “First Choice”: the main activity of which was an information and education campaign to mobilize the electorate and strengthen and consolidate civil society in Ukraine.
In 2004, under the Democratic Grants, the Foundation accomplished the “Creation, Support and Administration of a Website for “The Monitoring of Human Rights and Freedom of Speech Violations”. With the support of USAID, in 2003, the Foundation effected the project “Electronic management in the town of Lviv”. Through this project, a regional office for electronic information and an electronic database of the decisions of Lviv City Council were created.
During 2002 and 2003, within the framework of the anticorruption program Foundation was engaged in the project “Network of Partnerships” – which provided consultation on questions of corruption and representation of citizens’ interests in court – was implemented.
Additionally, in 2003, the projects “Human Rights and Judicial Reform in Ukraine” and “Human Rights and Administrative Reform in Ukraine” were carried out, with the support of the Danish Institute of Human Rights.
In 2002, the Foundation executed the project “Reorganization of the system for the provision of administrative services”. This project introduced modern practices for the organization of the system of administrative service provision in Lviv.
The Foundation, together with the NGO “Fund for Regional Initiatives”, carried out “Civil monitoring for violations of the franchise of citizens of Ukraine during the preparations and elections to the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine and local government in 2002” during 2002.  Under the project, the organizations provided consultations to citizens on issues regarding electoral legislation and monitored the media in order to prevent violations of the electoral law.
In 2000, the Foundation implemented two monitoring projects: the “Availability of courts for citizens in Ukraine” and the “Conditions of detention of prisoners and workers in places of imprisonment in Ukraine”, with the assistance of the International Renaissance Foundation, Helsinki Foundation of Human Rights (Warsaw), and Open Society Institute (Budapest).
In 2000, the lawyers of the Foundation won a major case against Lvivoblenergo, the regional electricity service provider. Based upon the court decision, the plaintiff received compensation for the damage caused to his health. This set a precedent: the first case of its kind in Lviv, not to mention in Ukraine, and had a significant impact on the subsequent provision of services by this company.
Since 1994, the Foundation had maintained a public pro bono legal clinic for people who cannot afford legal services from commercial firms. Activists of Foundation participate in activity of the NGO council on human rights abidance of Lviv regional administration of the Ministry of internal affairs of Ukraine, mobile group of the monitoring of providing the human rights and freedoms in internal affairs bodies activity in Lviv region. Details, in Ukrainian, of all the aforementioned projects can be found on the projects page.

Director of the Law and Democracy Foundation – Vitaliy Razik
Contact us: Law and Democracy Foundation 79005, Lviv
Ukraine. Passage Kryva Lypa, 6 (3rd floor)
Tel\Fax: +38(032)2550419
Website: www.fond.lviv.ua
E-mail: lawdemo@fond.lviv.ua