The Heinrich Böll Foundation has been active in Russia since 1990. Memorial Society was our first and remains our most important partner. Up until the end of the 1990s, our efforts were limited almost exclusively to supporting NGOs in their project activities. In many cases those activities represented the first of their, usually quite enthusiastic but then still unsteady, steps.
The Heinrich Böll Foundation opened its Russian office in Moscow in October of 1999. Currently, in addition to supporting the projects of other NGOs, we organize our own events and projects and publish our own materials. But whether in our own activities or in supporting other programs, we always seek to collaborate with Russian NGOs.
The focus of our work has changed very little over the years. Our aim is to support the democratic development of Russian political culture, gender democracy, environmentally conscious and sustainable behaviour, and an international policy that emphasizes peaceful conflict solutions. In addition to collaboration with our Russian partners, relations between Russia and Germany, and the European Union, and with our common neighbours, such as Ukraine, Belarus and the countries of South Caucasus, remain central to work in that regard.