KOPS was successfully completed
Civil Anti-corruption Self-defence Courses (KOPS) were implemented by Transparency International Czech Republic in the framework of the EU Structural Funds – Operational Programme Education for Competitiveness in the period of August 2012 – October 2013.
The impetus was long-term experience of our organization in the fight against corruption and effort to include general public into this process. Many people have met with corruption personally or vicariously. But they either did not know how to defend themselves or their efforts were in vain. Therefore we wanted to not only encourage the citizens of Czech regions to active resistance against corruption, but also equip them with relevant knowledge.
What were the project activities? At the first phase we selected 8 regions, regional centres – Brno, Broumov, Liberec, Opava, Plzen, Pribram, Usti nad Labem, Zlin. They were chosen not only to evenly cover the territory of the republic, but these are also cities that have, unfortunately, experience with big cases of corrupt character. At the same time there are various civil initiatives in these centres, whose members helped us very significantly in the preparation, promotion and implementation of individual events.
Within the project there was public debate organised in each city followed by the course. We always tried to target the public debate on the most sensitive and topical issue in the city or region. It might be the construction of the shopping centre, the privatization of municipal hospital, the use of European funds or municipal debt. Public debates, in which dozens of people took part, were hosted by Transparency International Czech Republic staff, individual issues were presented by experts in the field, representatives of civil society organisations and initiatives and in in some cities by representatives of municipal authority. Courses thematically related to public debates. From Transparency International Czech Republic lawyers the participants could obtain specific information on the use of various instruments of anti-corruption initiatives – from attending council meetings and media coverage to filing the criminal complaint. And what were the responses? Overall evaluation of these activities, both in terms of content, organization, and also in terms of their contribution was good or above average. In many cases, the motivational factor of such events was mentioned as a means to strengthen civil society – „Do not just wait till someone will do something for us!“
The training materials complemented these main project activities – guide for course participants Citizens against Corruption, where illustrative case reports are supplemented by legal explanation and In a Corruption Network gamebook that allows readers test how they might behave in a corruption situation. And if people want to know what it is to influence government contracts, fight for influence over politicians or blackmail competitors, they can become a godfather for a moment in our board game Among Godfathers.
More information about the project including downloadable materials supplemented with frequently asked questions on the issue of corruption and the answers to them can be found on the project website http://kops.transparency.cz
Civil Anti-corruption Self-defence Courses project, number CZ.1.07/3.1.00/37/0105, was funded by the European Social Fund and the state budget of the Czech Republic in the framework of the Operational Programme Education for Competitiveness