Funds for Non-Governmental Organisations

Key facts

Programme Operator:
National Foundation for Civil Society Development
Programme ID:
In implementation
Date of approval:
Total amount:
EEA Grants fund:
Norway Grants fund:
€ 353,200

Currently available funding

Programme Summary

Why is the programme needed? The accession of Croatia to the EU in 2013 has taken place against a background of stagnating economy with high levels of unemployment, particularly amongst young people and minorities.  When compared to the rest of the EU, Croatia is characterised by relatively high risks of poverty, with 32.7% of the Croatian population facing poverty and/or social exclusion in 2011 (European Commission report on the Employment and social situation in Croatia in 2013). Serious economic challenges, considerable level of corruption and increasing cases of discrimination, racism and xenophobia remain major issues in the country (Human Rights Watch : World Report, 2013). The ongoing global economic crisis has also affected all dimensions of NGO sustainability, characterised by low financial and human capacity (USAID NGO Sustainability Report, 2012). Support is therefore needed to strengthen civil society’s role in tackling ethnic intolerance, human rights abuse, and encourage its innovative potential to tackle unmet needs,  in particular of vulnerable groups.What will the programme achieve and who are the beneficiaries? Taking into consideration the current overall structure of Croatian civil society in human, organisational and economic terms, the programme places strong emphasis on building the capacity of Croatian NGOs while complementing  existing resources available for NGOs in the country (especially public and EU Structural Funds) by focusing on areas that are less covered by other donors. The programme will focus in particular on four priority areas, to promote human rights including minority rights (especially Roma and ethnic Serbs), to support democracy, transparency and good governance, to reduce social inequalities, poverty and social exclusion, and to strengthen the capacity and sustainability of NGOs and national foundations, specifically those working in the area of human rights. In order to be able to defend the most vulnerable groups in society and to contribute to a sustainable and democratic development, the programme also addresses the needs of children and youth. The Programme will make a positive contribution towards addressing hate speech, extremism, racism, homophobia, anti-Semitism, tolerance/multicultural societies and violence against women.How will it be achieved? Within the above priority areas, the NGO Programme shall, through open calls, support projects aimed at:
  1. Strengthening NGO advocacy, watchdog and awareness raising roles for human rights, democracy, gender equality, vulnerable groups;
  2. Supporting local initiatives on social inclusion and solidarity
  3. Supporting initiatives on children and youth 
Moreover, the Programme shall support two predefined projects on:
  1. Roma inclusion
  2. Supporting the regranting capacity of the foundations in Croatia
The Fund Operator is the National Foundation for Civil Society Development. How will bilateral relations be strengthened? A total amount of €19,500 is set aside as a fund to facilitate bilateral relations. Funding for bilateral activities shall increase cooperation between NGOs in Croatia and entities in the donor countries, improve knowledge and mutual understanding and the sharing of results. Who can apply for funding under this programme? Eligible applicants are NGOs that are established in Croatia and fall within the following definition: “Non-profit voluntary organisations established as legal entities, having a non-commercial purpose, independent of local, regional and central government, public entities, political parties and commercial organisations.” Religious institutions and political parties are not considered NGOs.What are the partnership opportunities? The programme intends to support partnerships at the project level as well as broader activities focused on exchange of experience and networking through conferences, workshops or study tours between Croatian NGOs and partners from the Donor Countries. All calls for grants and expression of interest will be also aimed at supporting cross-border cooperation (countries outside of the European Economic Area with common border with Croatia) and EEA beneficiary countries.