The COVID-19 pandemic has increased the activity of civil society and public institutions in crisis conditions. Public network structures have proven themselves to be quick and effective actors in mobilizing to solve social problems that were exacerbated during the pandemic (volunteer help for the disabled, the elderly, and low-mobile groups of citizens; restructuring the system of long-term care for the elderly in quarantine conditions; public monitoring of human rights in places of detention and neuropsychiatric institutions; volunteer assistance to medical workers and institutions; psychological assistance projects; cultural and educational projects; and the creation of a new culture of tolerance and respect for the rights of people with disabilities). Despite the fact that any pandemic ends sooner or later, the past year has compelled us to talk about a new normal in the way we live in society. The pandemic has irrevocably changed the lives of hundreds of millions of people around the world and will continue to do so. The Russian experience has shown how much potential civil society has as a dampening force for the negative social effects of the pandemic. The global trend towards increasing the role of organized and networked civil society structures in the new normal is likely to continue. What regional and national models of interaction between civil society institutions and the state under the new conditions are possible and most preferable?