Bulgarian NGO programme approved
NGO programmes are being established up in all 15 beneficiary countries of the EEA Grants. Following approval of first-off-the-mark Estonia in June, the Bulgarian NGO programme was the second to be approved this summer.
One of the major successes of the previous funding round was the targeted support to civil society through dedicated programmes for non-governmental organisations (NGOs).
Building on this success, NGO programmes are being set up in all 15 countries. The €147 million in dedicated funding from the EEA Grants represents an increase of over 70% compared to the previous period. NGOs are also eligible for funding under many of the programmes funded in other sectors through the EEA and Norway Grants.
Worth €11.8 million, the Bulgarian NGO programme will promote issues such as social inclusion, anti-discrimination, active citizenship, good governance and transparency. The programme will also address the needs of vulnerable groups, including Roma.
Fund Operator, Open Society Institute-Sofia, will now prepare the first open call for project proposals from Bulgarian civil society groups. A launch event for the programme will take place in Sofia on 12 September 2012.
Information about the timing of the call will be published on the website of Open Society Institute-Sofia and www.eeagrants.org as soon as this is available. While applicants need to be registered as NGOs in Bulgaria, entities from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway may participate as project partners. Projects receiving support may be implemented until 2016.
Through the NGO programmes, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway aim to contribute in areas such as fostering active citizenship, increasing NGO-involvement in policy and decision-making processes, promoting human rights and empowering vulnerable groups.
Photo: Christophe Vander Eecken