CPLR, CILC and UCU are proud to have made a positive contribution to strengthening the rule of law in Western Ukraine by designing tailor-made workshops, trainings and working group sessions. This targeted support helped several courts in achieving a higher standard of service delivery and in becoming more court user oriented. Evaluation forms show a high level of appreciation for the implemented activities. Participants most welcomed their practical setup, the usefulness to their daily tasks and the pragmatic approach of the project team and the involved Ukrainian and Dutch experts.
A tangible result of the work of the last months is the development of several video productions to raise awareness about the functioning of courts in Ukraine. A TV program on the right to a public hearing was produced and broadcast on the First Western TV Channel in September 2021. Also, three videos were produced about the principle of openness of court proceedings, the online access to court services, and rules about visiting courts. These videos were distributed to courts, the State Court Administration and several NGOs for publication on their websites and screening in court buildings. You can access these video’s by clicking this link. An overview of all activities undertaken in the framework of this project can be found here.
The main lesson learned from this project is that the forced shift to an online delivery mode does not have to negatively affect the project’s impact. The restructuring of several activities enabled the Ukrainian and Dutch colleagues to have more contact and more moments of experience-sharing, than they would have had, were these activities implemented as originally planned. This however does not go for all types of activities. The experts involved in the seminars on professional ethics agree that the online delivery of these activities was too open-ended for an in-depth discussion on the predicaments and ethical dilemmas that legal professionals face. The project team continues to explore new ways to deliver this relevant training course in the future.
Lastly, the project team learned that a small-scale project in a specific region of Ukraine can feed into a larger initiative on the national scale. In the framework of the new Dutch-Ukrainian Matra project Judiciary and Society in Ukraine elements of this project in Western Ukraine will be complemented.