Governance and Civic Engagement


USAID improves governance and increases citizen oversight and participation in decision making in the West Bank and Gaza by improving service delivery by increasing the financial and administrative sustainability of government institutions; fostering greater checks and balances and accountability of key government institutions, including activities that strengthen the rule of law and civil society; and, through the Conflict Management and Mitigation program, providing grants to bring together Israelis and Palestinians to work on issues of common concern to promote peaceful coexistence. Governance and civic engagement projects have assisted the majority of West Bank municipalities, ministries, and justice institutions to improve governance; engaged over 100 communities in people-to-people activities; and partnered with dozens of community-based organizations to increase civic participation.


Communities Thrive: Communities Thrive works with 55 municipal governments to increase revenue streams, improve fiscal management, increase accountability and transparency, improve the regulatory and policy framework, and enhance service delivery. USAID will evaluate the impact of the interventions using a randomized control trial, the first to be implemented in the Middle East for USAID governance programs. 

Enhanced Palestinian Justice Program (EPJP): Through technical assistance, training, and improvements to court facilities, EPJP develops more effective and competent justice sector institutions that are accountable to the public and responsive to the needs of citizens. Processing times for some justice services have decreased from 45 to 15 minutes, while citizens have reported an increase in satisfaction with family gender-based violence court services.

Women’s Courts: This project aims to reduce gender-based violence in Palestinian communities by supporting women to defend their rights, advocating for legislative reform and key policy changes, and empowering local civil society organizations. 2,100 people are expected to directly benefit from this range of activities, and another 40,000 are expected to be reached through advocacy campaigns and media outreach. 

Protective Environment for Children: This project raises awareness about child sexual abuse and supports the protection of children exposed to sexual abuse through community-based interventions led by local civil society organizations. The project established community-based protection points, where children and their families can receive sound advice and essential services.

Partnership for Social Accountability: This project empowers civil society to monitor and oversee public services in ten West Bank localities to improve the quality of services provided to citizens. The project increases citizen engagement with local government, builds the capacity of relevant community-based organizations, and enhances opportunities for citizen feedback on solutions to service problems on the national level.

Conflict Management and Mitigation Program (CMM): CMM activities provide opportunities for Israelis and Palestinians to address issues, reconcile differences, and promote greater understanding and mutual trust by working on common goals in areas such as economic development, environment, health, education, sports, music, and information technology. Since the program’s start in 2004, USAID and U.S. Embassy Tel Aviv have invested in 113 CMM grants. (Please refer to separate CMM fact sheet for a list of all active projects.)