The thesis focuses on the relationship between Hungarian environmental NGOs and the EEA and Norway Grants. The study describes and analyses how foreign civil society assistance has enabled green civil society organizations to pursue their agendas in order to understand how foreign assistance can potentially contribute to democratic processes. Since Hungary's transition to liberal democracy and market economy in the 1980s, external assistance (especially through American foundations and EU funds) has played an important role in the development of the Hungarian non-profit sector. Recent developments, however, endangered the consolidation of Hungarian civil society. Amidst the apathy among civil society actors, the EEA and Norway – the second biggest supporter of civil society today – has meant a ray of hope and offered opportunities to them to improve the quality of democracy in Hungary. How have environmental NGOs made use of foreign assistance and what have they achieved? The study offers an analysis by applying Keane's and Habermas's civil society theories in two case studies and also touches upon the foreign policy relevance of the grants.