Europabook interviews Livia Stella, Head of Operation Section- EU Delegation to Israel on the European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR) and Neighborhood Civil Society Facility (European Neighborhood and Partnership Instrument)
www.europabook.eu is a new specialized portal to accompany international organizations trough the 3 steps of the Project Cycle Management: design, implementation and sustainability. The portal has been launched in December 2011 and its focus is ONLY on European Financial resources on a call for proposal basis.
EB provides solutions to solve two constraints to quality project design: 1) “smart” partner search (smart = by relevance) and 2) identification of projects already implemented by the EU. The scope is to develop ingenuity and creativity by avoiding overlapping. To date, there are already more than 8,000.00 registered partners and 10,000.00 projects.
1. What are the main objectives of this programme?
The objectives of the European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR): The objectives of the instrument are to contribute to the development and consolidation of democracy and the rule of law and respect for all human rights and fundamental freedoms within the framework of the European Union’s policy on development cooperation and economic, financial and technical cooperation with third countries, consistent with the European Union’s foreign policy as a whole.
This instrument is designed to help civil society to become an effective force for the defence of human rights. The EIDHR offers independence of action, which is a critical feature of cooperation with civil society organisations at national level, especially in the sensitive areas of democracy and human rights. Decisions regarding funding are made solely on technical quality of projects and on their conformity with administrative and financial provisions.
To implement this instrument the European Commission has adopted multi-annual strategy papers, which set out the priorities. This Call for Proposals falls under the 2011-2013 Strategy Paper of the EIDHR.
The Civil Society Facility is designed to strengthen non-state actors and contribute to promoting an enabling environment for their work, increase non-state actors involvement in programming, implementation and monitoring of EU assistance and policies in the region, and promote involvement of non-state actors in policy dialogue and increase interaction between non-state actors and authorities at the national level.
As described in its Annual Action Programme 20115, these objectives are translated notably into increased direct support to non-state actors through support to regional and country projects that promote an enabling environment for NSAs activities (such as issues of freedom of association and freedom of expression) and the contribution of NSAs to the political priorities of the Neighbourhood Policy [...] and ENPI sector reform cooperation.
The objectives of the Call for Proposals are therefore contributing to the priorities identified in the on-going European Neighbourhood Policy Action Plan jointly agreed by EU and the State Israel in 2005, which foresees:
- Respect and promotion of rights of people belonging to minorities;
- Respect for human rights and international humanitarian law;
- Fight against racism, xenophobia, and anti-Semitism;
- Promotion of gender equality and women's rights.
2. What are the priorities for 2011-2013?
The EIDHR 2011-2013 priorities can be found here http://www.eidhr.eu/library
The priorities of the Civil Society Facility can be found in the 2011 Annual Action Programme: http://ec.europa.eu/europeaid/documents/aap/2011/af_aap-spe_2011_enpi.pdf
3. Who is eligible for funding?
The eligibility criteria are detailed in point 2.1 of the guidelines to the call for proposals.
The guidelines could be found here: http://eeas.europa.eu/delegations/israel/funding_opportunities/grants/index_en.htm
4. Can you give some advice to the future project managers in order to increase the quality of project design?
The EU delegation organized 2 information days on February 27 & 28, in order to give potential applicants all the needed information. All questions and answers given during those 2 days will be published and available on the EuropeAid website https://webgate.ec.europa.eu/europeaid/online-services/index.cfm?do=publi.welcome&nbPubliList=15&orderby=upd&orderbyad=Desc&searchtype=RS&aofr=132526&userlanguage=en
In addition, the delegation organized a "Project Cycle Management" workshop in March 2012, for potential applicants and grant holders. The delegation is planning to organize two more "Project Cycle Management" workshops: one in the second half of 2012 and one in 2013.