Active Citizens Days 2021 – Polish representation

They are going to take part in a series of online workshops over several months, culminating in a trip to Oslo (we’re keeping our fingers crossed to make it possible!), where they will meet human rights activists from the other 14 countries participating in the Active Citizens Fund Programme and Donor-States. The main organiser of the project is Fund Operator of the Active Citizens Fund in Romania and Norwegian Helsinki Committee. Recruitment for the project in Poland was conducted by Active Citizens Fund – National  and Active Citizens Fund – Regional.

Jan Marković, co-founder of the Subcarpathian Association for Active Families, an NGO which does a lot of good in the fields of civil rights, culture, and education. Psychologist, trainer, board game designer and children book author. Likes to learn about new things and to be surprised. Does not like cynicism. Is happy when kids ask him “Why?”.

Aleksandra Sidoruk, third-year student of international relations at the University of Lodz, specializing in the foreign policy of the United States and Latin America. Boardmember of the Gals4Gals Lodz, volunteer at the Regional Center for International Debate in Lodz, project coordinator at the Green REV Institute and member of the Green Party.

Filip Malejewski, father of three daughters, geographer. Human rights activist since 2015, currently treasurer in Refugees Szczecin Association and member of the board in westpomeranian branch of the Committee for the Defense of Democracy.

Barbara Biskup, doctor of education, anti-discrimination educator and WenDo trainer (self-defense and assertiveness for women). Shee works at the Regional Volunteer Center in Kielce, where she organizes discussion meetings and human rights actions (documentary film festival WATCH DOCS, happening One Billion Rising, Amnesty International Marathon of Writing Letters, Living Library, intercultural workshops) and coordinates European volunteering projects (European Solidarity Corps).

Call for sectoral projects concerning advocacy and monitoring activities

Grants are available for activities concerning monitoring of formulation of the law and the practice of enforcing the law and public policies affecting the operations of social organisations and civic movements, and advocacy for rights and interests to improve the conditions in which social organisations and civic movements operate. Projects can last between twelve and thirty months, and there is no required contribution.

Projects can be implemented by the Applicant acting alone or in cooperation with Partners based in Poland or elsewhere. Each organisation applying for a grant for a project will also be able to receive an additional grant for capacity building, namely for team-building, improving skills, raising funds for its activities, and improving management.

Applications must be submitted using the Online Application System.

The full text of the “Call for applications”, and “Applicant and Project Promoter Guide”, other documents concerning the call for projects, and information about scheduled online training sessions can be found HERE.

The decision on the grants awarded will be made by 31 May 2021.

 

Results of the call for sectoral projects

Our sincere congratulations to those organisations that were awarded grants! All Applicants can now, even today, review the assessment sheets for their application by logging on to the Online Application System.

Organisations that did not receive funding can apply for grants in another call for sectoral projects, for monitoring or advocacy activities. The call will be announced by the end of this January. They can also take part in the second call, which is now being held for thematic projects. Project outlines for this call must be submitted by midday on 11 January. Also, our sister fund, the  Active Citizens Fund – Regional Programme, will be launching calls for projects implemented in areas other than Warsaw.

Who was awarded grants in the call for sectoral projects – you are welcome to review the ranking.

LIST OF DETAILED PROJECTS FOLLOWING CONTENT-RELATED ASSESSMENT IN THE CALL FOR SECTORAL PROJECTS (XLS format)

Grants for sectoral projects were awarded to all organisations whose applications were given a score of more than 18. Out of the applications awarded 18 points, funding was awarded for four, and one was placed on the reserve list.

The minutes of meetings of the Selection Committee and Programme Committee are provided below:

Selection Committee meeting minutes

Programme Committee meeting minutes

 

Recordings – a series of webinars on the second call for thematic projects

Webinars on particular areas for which funding is available can be viewed HERE.

You are also welcome to watch the general webinar on the second call for thematic projects.

It is worth taking a look at the presentation from the webinar “You won’t get anywhere without diagnosis. How to properly prepare reasons for the need for activities under the Active Citizens Fund – National Programme”.

Are you looking for a foreign partner for a project? Watch the webinar on bilateral and regional cooperation.

The Active Citizens Fund – Regional programme

The Active Citizens Fund – Regional programme is financed using EEA Financial Mechanism funds (EEA funds), from Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway.

The programme will be implemented from 2020-2024 by a consortium made up of the Foundation in Support of Local Democracy/Fundacja Rozwoju Demokracji Lokalnej (consortium leader), the Information Society Development Foundation/Fundacja Rozwoju Społeczeństwa Informacyjnego, the Education for Democracy Foundation/Fundacja Edukacja dla Demokracji.

The aim of the programme is to enable long-term enhancement of social welfare organisations in Poland (in particular those that operate in small towns) and develop the civil society, for which social diversity, equality, and dialogue are of particular value.

Under the programme, CSOs will be able to apply for co-financing of projects in the following areas:

  1. Defending human rights (including gender equality issues).
  2. Measures to further social diversity and empowerment of vulnerable groups.
  3. Building a culture of democratic values and civil involvement at a local level (including environmental protection issues).
  4. Providing support for the social welfare sector.

In addition to the calls for projects, awareness-raising measures will also be conducted to improve the skills of persons connected with the social welfare sector.

The programme is officially scheduled to start in January 2021.

Programme Facebook page

The website for the Programme will be created at: https://aktywniobywatele-regionalny.org.pl/.

Results of the first call for thematic projects

Increased citizen participation in civic activities

53 small grants for a total of  EUR 1 334 826

47 large grants for a total of EUR 3 131 431

 Increased support for human rights and antidiscrimination practices

25 small grants for a total of EUR 655 631

33 large grants for a total of EUR 2 316 742

 Increased empowerment of vulnerable groups

34 small grants for a total of EUR 870 710

31 large grants for a total of EUR 2 068 706

All Applicants have access to the assessment sheets of their applications after connecting the Application System to the Internet.

HERE are the details of the results presented according to supported areas (in small and large grants).

Results of administrative assessment of the call for sectoral projects

Out of 395 applications submitted, 388 were accepted for the next stage, which is content-related assessment, of which one was accepted following an appeal. Six applications were found not to meet the administrative requirements, of which two were re-examined, and one was withdrawn. We recommend reviewing the LISTS/LISTY. The results of the expert assessments will be released by 25 August.

Results of stage I of the call for thematic projects

If more projects were awarded the minimum score required to go through to stage II, all of the projects were accepted for the detailed project stage, even if this meant exceeding 150% of the funds allocated for grants in the first call.
Congratulations to those organizations whose applications were accepted for stage II! Detailed projects can be submitted starting from noon today, 15 June, and can be submitted up until noon on 10 August.
Also from noon today onwards, all Applicants will be able to access their application assessment sheets, by logging on to the Online Application System.
Organizations whose projects were not accepted for the next stage are heartily encouraged to apply in the second call for thematic projects. The deadline for submitting project outlines is in November!

Call for sectoral projects

A consortium of the Stefan Batory Foundation, the “Shipyard” Centre for Social Innovation and Research Foundation, and the Academy of Civic Organizations Foundation is calling for sectoral project proposals in the Active Citizens Fund – National Programme, financed from the EEA Financial Mechanism 2014-2021.

Grants can be applied for in the call according to the following conditions:

  • minimum grant: EUR 25 000,•maximum grant EUR 125 000,
  • implementation period: between 12 and 36 months,
  • co-financing – 10% of the overall project and capacity building expenses, a minimum of half of which must be in financial form.

Application timeline:

  • project outlines: between noon on 6 May 2020 and noon on 30 June 2020,
  • detailed projects: between noon on 27 August 2020 until noon on 26 October 2020.

Types of activities supported:

  • Provision of services and organizing other activities that support capacity building of CSOs and civic movements,
  • Monitoring of the law,
  • Advocating for rights and interests
  • Increasing public awareness of the role and importance of the civic sector and the need to become involved in supporting it,
  • Research, analyses, opinions, and expert analyses.

Applications can be submitted via the Online Application System

Fundacja Akademia Organizacji Obywatelskich (the Academy of Civic Organizations Foundation) is responsible for the call.

Here you can find the Call for sectoral projects .

All the information and documents (in Polish) can be found HERE.

 

First call for thematic projects

A consortium of the Stefan Batory Foundation, the “Shipyard” Centre for Social Innovation and Research Foundation and the Academia of Civic Organisations Foundation issues the first call for thematic projects in the Active Citizens Fund – National, financed from the EEA Financial Mechanism 2014-2021 (EEA Grants).

The amount designated for grants for the first call is EUR 10 455 000.

The amounts allocated to particular support areas are:

  • Area 1: civic participation in public affairs and social activities: EUR 4 500 000
  • Area 2: protection of human rights and equal treatment: EUR 2 985 000
  • Area 3: empowerment of vulnerable groups: EUR 2 970 000.

The envisaged results of the Programme and particular areas for which support is provided are listed on the Programme website: https://aktywniobywatele.org.pl/en/about-the-fund/results/

There are two types of grants available in the call for proposals:

Small grants:

  • Minimum grant: EUR 5 000
  • Maximum grant: EUR 25 000
  • Project implementation period: between 8 and 24 months
  • Co-financing – 10% of project’s budget, may be entirely in the form of in-kind contribution (voluntary work).

Large grants:

  • Minimum grant: EUR 25 000
  • Maximum grant: 62 500 euro
  • Project implementation period: od 8 do 24 months
  • Co-financing – 10% of project’s budget, of which a minimum of 50% must be a financial contribution.

Applications can be submitted via the Online Application System available at wnioski.aktywniobywatele.org.pl

Deadlines for applications:

  • Project outlines can be submitted between 10 February 2020 (from 15.00 pm CET) and 15 April 2020 (up until 12.00 pm midday CEST)
  • Detailed projects can be submitted between 15 June 2020 (from 12.00 pm midday CEST) and 10 August 2020 (until 12.00 pm midday CEST)

All the information can be found here: Call for thematic projects

A webinar on the subject of the Active Citizens’ Fund – National Programme

Webinar agenda:

  1. Information on organisational matters concerning the Active Citizens’ Fund – National Programme (dates, amounts, procedures)
  2. Information on thematic areas for which funding is available
  3. Information about additional amounts of grants for capacity building and/or cooperation with Donor State organisations.

Chaired by:

Aleksandra Muzińska – Active Citizens’ Fund – National Programme financial  director, Stefan Batory Foundation

Maria Jagaciak – Area 1 coordinator in the Active Citizens’ Fund – National Programme, “Shipyard” Centre for Social Innovation and Research Foundation

Moderator

Piotr Henzler, Academy of Civic Organizations Foundation

Webinar devoted to bilateral cooperation

In the webinar there were experts with practical experience of bilateral projects:

– Prof. Marta Bivand Erdal – Director of Peace Research Institute Oslo (PRIO)
– Leiv Igor Devold – Polish-Norwegian film director, graduate of the Polish National Film School in Łódź
– Donata Honkowicz-Bukowska – Polish language teacher, educational and multicultural advisor in primary schools in Kópavogur, Iceland
– Alina Kula – co-founder and member of the Board of the Positive Change Foundation. In the previous edition of the Active Citizens Programme she implemented a project with an Icelandic organisation.

Working language of the webinarium was Polish.

 

We will be touring Poland!

At the briefings, the organisers will talk about the main precepts of the Programme and the first call for projects, and the challenges related to areas for which funding is provided. They will present inspirational examples of activities and answer questions. The briefing will also include a workshop for attendees can work on preliminary ideas for projects. This is something to consider beforehand.

Opole – 5.02 – registration closed
Koszalin – 13.02 – registration closed
Białystok – 18.02 – registration closed
Zielona Góra – 20.02 –  registration closed
Rzeszów – 24.02 – registration closed
Ełk – 27.02 – registration closed
Olsztyn – 2.03 – REGISTRATION until 24.02
Kielce – 4.03 – REGISTRATION until 26.02

Important! Due to popularity, the venues selected for the meetings may change (locations in particular cities). Registered attendees will be notified.

We are looking for experts to evaluate applications

Experts must fulfil the following requirements:

  • they must have knowledge of a minimum of one of the thematic areas and be familiar with the activities of CSOs active in this area,
  • they must have the ability to apply their knowledge and experience when analysing and evaluating projects,
  • they must have an ability to formulate evaluations and opinions concerning applications clearly and communicatively in writing,
  • they must guarantee that projects are evaluated impartially,
  • they must be available at the times specified on the application form.

The experts’ task will be to evaluate project outlines and detailed projects, and attend three meetings during each of the calls, including two training sessions on the subject of application evaluation and one meeting of experts subsequent to evaluation of detailed projects.

Online  recruitment system

We will announce the results of the recruitment process by 2 March 2020. Prior to applying, please read in particular the information on the areas for financing for which applications can be submitted. The Operator reserves the right to hold meetings/interviews with applicants using new technology such as Skype. Successful applicants will be asked to sign an agreement for a specified task (umowa o dzieło) specifying the terms of employment and remuneration according to the rates given below:

Small grants (up to EUR 25 000): project outline – PLN 55 gross, detailed project – PLN 210 gross. Large grants (up to EUR 62 500): project outline – PLN 70 gross, detailed project – PLN 280 gross. These rates cover all costs related to evaluation, including attendance at meetings.

The experts we select will be required to sign a conflict of interest declaration/deklaracja bezstronności eksperta/ki, which is an appendix to the agreement.

If you have any questions regarding recruitment please contact:

regarding areas 2 and 3 – the Batory Foundation

tel. (22) 536 02 00

[email protected]

regarding area 1– the “Shipyard” Foundation
tel. (22) 100 55 94
[email protected]

Please be informed that for the sake of transparency and openness of evaluation of applications submitted in the Programme, when the calls for projects are completed, personal data of experts who evaluate applications in the Programme, being the first name, surname, and brief description of their occupation, will be posted on the Programme website on the grounds of legitimate interest of the Programme Operator (art. 6(1)(f) of the GDPR).

Official launch of Active Citizens Fund – National programme

The programme, for which the budget is EUR 30 million in aid from EEA countries (Norway, Iceland, and Liechtenstein), will provide support for social organisations such as associations, foundations, social cooperatives, and rural housewives’ circles working towards greater civic participation in public life, protection of human rights and equality, environmental protection, preventing climate change, and empowering vulnerable groups. The programme is run by a consortium of three organisations, the Stefan Batory Foundation (leader), the “Shipyard” Centre for Social Innovation and Research Foundation, and the Academy of Civic Organizations Foundation.

– I would like to congratulate you for showing such determination and strength. It is due to that determination and strength, and the action taken to overcome a range of different obstacles, that the Fund is able to operate in a spirit of independence, with due regard for the values set out in the Polish Constitution, international treaties to which Poland is party, and European values – Adam Bodnar, Polish Commissioner for Human Rights, said at the official launch of the programme in Warsaw.

The Active Citizens Fund – National programme will provide support for projects put forward by organisations throughout Poland, but in particular activities of less experienced organisations based outside large conurbations and in areas where access to aid programmes is limited. Our aim is to offer the opportunity for funding to those most in need: groups that face discrimination on the grounds of race or ethnic origin, belief, gender, age, or sexual orientation, and vulnerable groups: people with disabilities, people facing homelessness, the elderly, and victims of violence … –Sylwia Sobiepan, programme director, said. – Young people are an important group in all areas in which support is given, Zofia Komorowska from the “Shipyard” Foundation added.

The programme will provide grants for awareness-raising activities, including grants to improve awareness of civic, equality and discrimination issues, for activation activities and activities related to voluntary work, and action and campaigns to improve awareness of climate change issues, combating prejudice, hate speech, and violence, projects to increase civic participation in decision-making, watchdog activities, intervention in matters concerning respect for human rights and the rule of law, measures to empower vulnerable groups and help them to become independent, measures towards integration in local communities, advocacy for better public policies and law and better policies for enforcing the law, and measures to improve the standards of public institutions and the services they provide.

– Providing support for development of social organisations will be an important element of the programme. Each organisation that applies for grants for a project will be entitled to a further grant to build the organisation, by investing in team-building, improving skills, raising funds for its activities, and improving management and communication etc.  – Lidka Kuczmierowska of the Academy of Civic Organizations Foundation said.

A separate call will be held for grants for projects to support the civic sector, such as infrastructure funding (training, awareness-raising, consultancy), measures to increase public awareness about what organisations do, or for instance monitoring laws that affect their activities.

On the second day of the official launch, more than eighty representatives of organisations from Poland, Iceland, and Norway met in Warsaw to discuss ideas for collective projects.

Applications can be submitted in the first call from 3 February. Another call – for sectoral projects, will be held in April 2020. The programme team will be organising a series of meetings in the coming months in a number of regions in Poland, to provide information about the programme.

Broadcast of the general session of the conference

Presentation on the Programme 

Programme leaflet

Conference agenda

 

Conference to launch Active Citizens Fund – National programme

Day I (Wednesday, 8 January) will feature a presentation on the programme, areas in which support is provided, and rules for applying for grants.

On day II (Thursday, 9 January) we will organise networking workshops for Polish, Norwegian, and Icelandic organisations active in similar areas, seeking to perform partnership projects. The workshops will be held in English, and will help to forge new relationships, devise the basic principles for partnership projects, and discuss the rules for applying for funding.

application form

conference agenda

Applications must be sent by 31 December 2019. We will send confirmation of a place at the conference by 3 January 2020.

Due to the limited number of places available, please only submit an application for one person from each organisation. We recommend registering as soon as possible!
We appreciate that travel costs are truly an obstacle and might prevent attendance at the event. We do have certain (limited unfortunately) funds designated for covering travel and accommodation costs for attendees who do not live in Warsaw. If you are able to cover these costs by yourself please do so, to enable us to help people in need of such funding to come to the conference.

The Active Citizens Fund – National programme is one of eleven programmes run in Poland using funds from the European Economic Area Financial Mechanism and the Norwegian Financial Mechanism (known as the Norwegian and EEA funds) 2014-2021 and one of two programmes designated to provide support for activities of social organisations. The aim of the Fund is to strengthen the civic society and active citizenship, and empower vulnerable groups. In its activities, the Fund subscribes to the universal values specified in the TEU: respect for human dignity, freedom, democracy, equality, and the rule of law, and respect for human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to minorities.

The National Fund is operated by a consortium of three organisations, the Stefan Batory Foundation (leader), the “Shipyard” Centre for Social Innovation and Research Foundation, and the Academy of Civic Organizations Foundation.

Active Citizens Fund – National programme consultations completed

The initial conclusions reached in the consultations were represented at the main consultation session – on 17 January in Warsaw. The session was attended by approximately 70 people from various social organisations, as well as CSOs and public authorities. Following the main event, thematic meetings were also held on a smaller scale for organisations active in the areas for which the Fund provides funding. Currently, together with the FMO in Brussels, which manages EEA programmes for civic societies in 20 countries, we are making preparations to launch the Fund in Poland.

Active Citizens Fund – National programme consultations begin

We would be very glad to hear your views, comments, and suggestions on the following:
• how the Fund can address challenges and needs of the civic society in Poland,
• the kind of measures it should support to achieve the envisaged results,
• what instruments can be added to the current funding instruments.
The viewpoints collected will help us to determine the final form of the Fund.

It is possible to take part in the consultations by:
• filling in an online questionnaire, which is available until 8 January, by clicking here www.konsultacje.aktywniobywatele.org.pl
• by applying to take part in the main consultation session, to be held on 17 January 2019 in Warsaw (the participants will be selected from among those who fill in section 1 of the online questionnaire)
• by applying to attend a thematic meeting concerning particular aspects of the fund or as part of a group of organisations that conduct similar activities – we will be accepting applications from organisations interested in consultations in this form until 10 January 2019.

We are interested in the views of as diverse a range of groups and communities as possible. We would like to hear from representatives of social organisations (active in various parts of Poland and in various thematic areas, and with various worldviews) but also from a broader group of people connected to them – activists operating in informal groups, representatives of CSOs, representatives of public authorities, and representatives of the academic world and media who work with the organisations.

Detailed information about the Fund’s main objectives and the document around which discussions will be centred can be found here: www.konsultacje.aktywniobywatele.org.pl.

Operators of the Active Citizens Fund – National programme now known

The consortium’s proposal was awarded the highest score in an open call announced on behalf of the Donor States, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway, by the Financial Mechanism Office (FMO) in Brussels, which manages EEA civic society programmes.

The Active Citizens Fund is one of eleven programmes run in Poland using funds from the European Economic Area Financial Mechanism and the Norwegian Financial Mechanism from 2019 until 2024, and one of two programmes intended solely for social organisations. It has a budget of EUR 30 million.

The Active Citizens Fund is intended to provide funding and content-related support for activities conducted by social organisations in areas established at EU level and in international treaties by the Donor States, which are Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway. These areas are:
•    democracy, active citizenship, good governance and transparency;
•    human rights and equality through combating and prevention of discrimination on the grounds of racial or ethnic origin, religion or belief, gender, disability, age, sexual orientation or gender identity;
•    social justice and inclusion of marginalised groups;
•    gender equality and countering gender-based violence;
•    the environment and climate change.

One major area of focus of the Fund will be providing institutional support for social organisations and creating potential for the civic society to develop.
Particular attention will be paid to reaching less experienced organisations based outside large conurbations and in areas where access to grant programmes, training opportunities, and infrastructure support is limited. Young people are a major target group for the Fund.