Power should be in the hands of the people – and everybody should have the same chance to participate in it. Heinrich Böll Stiftung (HBS) is committed to securing equal access for all members of society to participate in shaping politics in their country. That can be achieved only through a democratic system. Democratization is a chief tenet of green politics and a central issue in political education which aims to promote a better understanding of democratization – defined as the way democratic norms, institutions and practices evolve and are disseminated both within and across national and cultural boundaries. Still it is often far from clear how to translate the general notion of democratization into concrete projects, campaigns, or educational programmes. "Civil society" is one such concept which, while widely embraced, is very contentious when it comes to questions of implementation.
Democratization is the transition to a more participatory political system. Heinrich Böll Stiftung is trying to support this process by strengthening citizenship agency and civil society. It provides training and consultations for the leaders of societal change and political actors at different levels.
Since 2003, HBS has been working in Afghanistan with two long-term Afghan partner organizations as well as a number of other local NGOs. The main goal of our work in Afghanistan is the support of democratization through promotion of a gender sensitive legal framework. We have been promoting women’s rights through our cultural sensitively acting partner organization Women and Children Legal Research Foundation (WCLRF). Moreover we want to contribute towards domestic and regional stability and security and to a sustainable development process through people’s participation. HBS believes that through the inclusion of voices of traditional society representatives a more inclusive form of democratization in Afghanistan can be achieved. Since 2003, HBS is cooperating with The Liaison Office (TLO) in south eastern Afghanistan for that aim.