Streszczenie raportu rocznego za 2021 r. złożonego przez Operatora Programu do Biura Mechanizmów Finansowych w Brukseli:
Due to the pandemic, the implementation of activities in many projects was delayed, therefore we can evaluate the up to date results of the Programme on the basis of only 151 interim project reports (out of 477 projects funded) in four programme Outcomes.
Outcome 1: Out of 195 projects funded in this outcome 40% engage children and young people in the activities. Most of the projects include educational activities on civic engagement. Approximately one in three projects focus on environmental protection and one in three refers to civic participation in policy-making processes with the authorities. PPs managed to engage a large number of entities and institutions in projects’ implementations: in 2021 more than 300 partners (approximately 160% of the target value). In 2021, as a part of the predefined project (Participation Practitioners’ Yard – PaPaYa) implemented by the Shipyard Foundation within output 1.1, 5 events attended by 234 participants were organized with an aim to increase civic participation in public governance.
Outcome 2: Out of 118 projects carried out in this outcome 31 target women, 26 are designed for young people, 24 for professionals in different fields. In the current political situation many PPs choose to engage in the observance of the respect for human rights and rule of law. 55 CSOs (original target: 20) carry out 11 monitoring initiatives (original target: 10) in cooperation with 81 entities (institutions and other CSOs). Prioritizing – in the second call for thematic projects – the activities targeting women and LGBT+ people who experience violence resulted in 14 projects concerning LGBT+ persons and 8 projects addressing women.
Outcome 3: Out of 127 projects funded in this outcome 16 target people with disabilities, 9 people with illness and 9 people with migration experience. Prioritizing self-advocacy as a tool for empowering vulnerable groups to influence public policies in the calls for thematic projects resulted in the high number of projects (46) with self-advocacy component. Up to date the number of people from vulnerable groups who have been trained or engaged in self-advocacy activities reached 270 (as compared to target value 100). The vulnerable groups involved in self-advocacy include LGBT+ persons, women who experience violence, migrants, people in homelessness crisis or carers for dependent people.
Outcome 4: More than 500 CSOs (target value: 400) have taken advantage of different forms of capacity building activities offered by 14 projects carried out by PPs. 5 out of 7 projects aimed at monitoring the environment affecting CSOs are at the preliminary stage of implementation. 12 projects (targeted value – 3) focus on advocacy activities. In a predefined project Mobile Academy for NGOs – Mango implemented by FAOO within this outcome, 11 all-day stationary workshops have been organized outside large cities and in peripheral regions. The trainings were attended by 132 people from 120 organizations.
Bilateral outcome: the FO continued to facilitate bilateral project partnerships assisting 53 Applicants. In 2021, the target of 50 applications containing bilateral partnership in the entire Programme was fulfilled. Up to date 348 individuals (target: 200) have participated in bilateral activities (from Norway – 36, from Iceland –17, Liechtenstein – 3). In regional cooperation events the number of participants have reached 519 exceeding the target value indicator set at 500. The Polish-Lithuanian seminar on intercultural dialogue „Hear the Other” held in Krasnogruda turned into success. The event was attended by 16 representatives of Polish CSOs and 10 from Lithuania. The follow-up initiatives are currently being prepared by the participants.
Up to date 4 calls for proposals were completed: 2 for thematic projects and 1 for sectoral projects planned originally plus an additional supplementary call for sectoral projects focusing on monitoring and advocacy activities. By the end of the year we signed grant agreements with 477 PPs (Outcome 1: 195, Outcome 2: 118, Outcome 3: 127, Outcome 4: 37).
In 2021, as a part of content assistance for Applicants and PPs financed from additional management fee, all originally planned activities aimed to help Applicants in project design and implementation were conducted. On top of that, 4 online workshops and 13 online webinars were organized which went beyond original assistance plan. Moreover, help desks on ACF-N were organized in 4 locations: Podlaskie, Łódzkie, Śląskie and Dolnośląskie voivodeships which offered individual consultancy for less experienced organisations.
About a third of the planned activities aimed to support PPs have already been conducted, all of them were focusing on the assistance to inexperienced CSOs and organisation from underserved areas. There were 5 networking meetings (out of 14 planned) and 3 webinars (out of 5-8 planned). Additionally, there were 9 training sessions on the rules of projects’ implementation and reporting in ACF-N. Capacity building and regional workshops for PPs are scheduled for the coming years. Its form will be determined by the COVID pandemic situation.
The most difficult aspect of the Programme continues to be financial requirements for PPs. They have problems with accounting for indirect costs based on the flat rate counted for direct eligible personnel costs. Also, the requirement of pre-financing projects’ expenditure from other sources before the final grant payment after project’s completion proves to be a serious difficulty for many small and inexperienced CSOs.
The visibility of the Programme and Donors have been assured both on the Programme and Projects’ level. The ACF logotype, with a statement on the source of funding, was used on all information and promotion materials by the FO and PPs. The monitoring on the presence of the programme in the traditional and social media reported 5,969 news branded ACF-N. The example of the Programme’s visibility on the project level: https://www.tuwodzislaw.pl/wiadomosci,stowarzyszenie-przy-dziupli-pomaga-dzieciom-z-autyzmem-i-zespolem-aspergera,wia5-3266-25083.html
We assess the overall risk of the Programme a bit higher than in the previous year: 2.45 as compared to 2. New risks are connected with the changes of the tax system introduced by government so called New Deal package which increase the costs of salaries as well as high inflation rate which increases costs of materials, services and products. Another risk is connected with the increased threat of cyberattacks on PPs websites and systems which may cause data leakage or loss, or financial and reputation losses.