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Frontpage News 2014 Launching the first NGO programme in Greece

Greece. Photo: Yannis Kontos/SeaChange

Launching the first NGO programme in Greece

“We are all citizens” launched in Athens today is the first NGO programme funded by the Grants in Greece and comes at a time of critical need.

Greece is experiencing a serious economic crisis and dramatic cuts in public spending. The crisis has hit vulnerable groups such as children and youth, migrants and asylum seekers and the elderly in particular. According to a 2013 Eurostat report, the overall share of the Greek population living at risk of poverty or social exclusion was estimated to be 33 % of the population in 2011.

Support is also needed to strengthen civil society’s role in tackling rising intolerance, human rights abuse, support good governance and provide key services, in particular to the most deprived.

More than 300 Greek NGO representatives from all over the country are present at the launch event that started this morning.

Increased funding for NGOs
“The economic crisis in Greece has hit many families very hard. I am pleased that we have agreed with the Greek authorities to set aside a portion of our Grant scheme for emergency measures to help the poor and the homeless. This includes an increase in funding of €1 million for NGOs that help these groups.NGOs are also critical change agents in promoting human rights and social progress, and we hope that our support will strengthen civil society in Greece,” said Ingvild Stub, State Secretary responsible for EU and EEA affairs in Norway.

The focus of the NGO programme in Greece is in particular on reducing social inequalities, poverty and social exclusion, promoting human rights including minority rights, supporting democracy, transparency and good governance as well as protecting the environment. No other programme in Greece is addressing the same issues.

The NGO programme is now amounting to € 7.34 million.
Read more about the programme on our website or on the website of the fund operator. The Bodossaki Foundation is the fund operator of the Greek NGO Programme named “We are all Citizens”.

Call for proposals launched
During the event taking place in the Acropolis Museum in Athens on 22 January, two calls for proposals are launched.

1)      Provision of welfare and basic services to socially vulnerable groups, including homeless, unemployed, people affected by HIV/AIDS, Injecting Drug Users, inhabitants of rural and remote areas and children.  The available funding for this call is €2,785,000.

Read more about the call.

2)      Strengthen the role of NGOs as advocates of citizens’ rights and increase their watchdog capacity towards the Greek authorities, in local, regional and national level. Through this call, NGOs will be supported to influence public policy, to reinforce citizens’ role as change makers and influencers within society, to propose legislation and policy solutions, to increase citizen’s involvement in decision-making process, to act as guardians of citizens’ rights, to monitor and evaluate activities of local, regional and national authorities, to open up space for public argumentation and deliberation, and to promote the culture of volunteerism and community mobilization.  The available funding for this call is € 775.350.

Read more about the call.

Partnerships and cooperation
One of the goals of the EEA Grants is strengthening the relations between the donor states and Greece to promote a stable, peaceful and prosperous Europe. Hence, the programme aims to promote project partnerships in all programme areas with the goal of developing a long-term bilateral cooperation between non-governmental organizations registered in Greece and the donor states. A matchmaking session with NGOs from both donor states and Greece were also held.

Look for a partner in the donor states in the partnersearch database.

A call is also open supporting establishing partnerships between Greek, Icelandic, Liechtenstein and Norwegian NGOs.

Applicants for the other calls may submit the proposal individually or together with one or two project partner organisation(s).