You are warmly invited to join the Civil Society Movement – an international movement for the building of civil society. Our aim is place civil society at the centre of public affairs in both developed and developing countries.

Civil society comprises the relationships and groups that constitute our lives at grass-roots levels of society, in families, communities and voluntary associations, independent of both government and the corporate world. These are the relationships and groups that shape our identity, our sense of belonging, and our capacity to live connected and meaningful lives.

Yet civil society is under threat around the world. Centralised states and concentrated markets are corroding civil society and contracting the space available for it. Voluntary and relational components of social life are being colonised by both corporations and governments. In developed countries, many not-for-profit organisations (NFPs) have been turned into service delivery instruments for the state. In developing countries, a large proportion of NFPs have become instruments for delivery of foreign aid. In both developed and developing countries, NFPs have become increasingly corporatised and detached from their founding purpose and culture.

The Civil Society Movement is a response to this global threat to civil society. It is also a response to the absence of an authentic public voice for the diversity and richness of civil society around the world. Amazingly, there has been no organisational expression or representation of civil society until now.

The Civil Society Movement is:

  • A movement – which individuals, small groups and large organisations can join.
  • A voice – so that civil society can speak for itself, about itself, to the world.
  • A catalyst for change – so individuals and groups may network and organise initiatives.
  • A global network – because the threats to civil society from states and markets are global in nature.

Individuals, groups and organisations are invited to join as Members. Members in each country can network with each other and take initiatives as they see fit.

We understand civil society to comprise eight segments:

  • Family, kinship and friendship networks;
  • Household and domestic economies;
  • Neighbourhoods and informal social supports;
  • Voluntary associations, self-help and support groups;
  • NGOs, charities and social enterprises;
  • Cooperatives and mutuals;
  • Self-employment, family-enterprises and small business; and
  • Religion, faith and spirituality**

**note: our interest here is in civil society that is generated by the practice of faith or spirituality, not in endorsement or promotion of any one particular faith or spiritual tradition.

The International Council of the Movement is made up of three representatives of each of these eight segments of civil society to ensure that the full diversity and richness of civil society is upheld. If you would like to express an interest in joining this Council, please indicate your interest on the Membership Form.

The Movement undertakes international Projects, linking people across the globe in collaborative initiatives.  You can read about these Projects and sign up to participate in them here.

You are warmly invited to join us and contribute as you wish.

You may donate to support the Civil Society Movement through PAYPAL.


Vern Hughes
+61 425 722 890