Streszczenie raportu rocznego za 2022 r. złożonego przez Operatora Programu do Biura Mechanizmów Finansowych w Brukseli:
The ACF-N operates in increasingly difficult conditions – the Polish population has found itself under greater economic pressure than when the programme started, and the political space for civic action has shrunk. In addition, as a result of the deepening economic crisis and the unprecedented number of refugees, the risk of various types of social tensions and conflicts has increased significantly.
Due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, a number of Project Promoters asked us to extend the project implementation period or to postpone the submission of the interim report, often stating the reason as delays in the implementation of planned activities due to the need to respond quickly to the forced migration humanitarian crisis. For a significant part of the year, the organisations committed most of their resources to supporting those fleeing Ukraine, which limited the ability to implement project activities as planned.
Outcome 1: Out of 195 projects funded in this outcome, 118 organisations were approximately halfway through their projects, so the level of progress with implementation is 53%. Educational activities are still the most popular methods of engaging citizens in the projects carried out by PPs, gathering around one quarter of target value (around 25 000 people – which is more than 10 000 planned in Output 1.1). 34 PPs reported using different forms/instruments/tools of civic participation in policy-making processes with the authorities. One in three project raises environmental protection issues on both a national level and a local one. In 2022, as a part of the predefined project (Participation Practitioners’ Yard – PaPaYa) the Shipyard Foundation organised six events attended by 606 participants, including 4 regional forums in Toruń, Nowa Sól, Białystok, Łódź, the 9th Participation Practitioners’ Forum in Dąbrowa Górnicza and the Youth Forum.
Outcome 2: out of 115 projects funded in this outcome, 56 projects were completed by the end of 2022. This means that the process of implementation of projects in this Outcome has reached approximately the halfway point. So far 35,596 people were involved in activities carried out by PPs in cooperation with 44 Partners. Forty organisations provided legal or psychological support to 4,986 people (out of a planned 5,000), including 3,525 women. Legal aid and psychological support was also provided to people on the Polish-Belarusian border and to foreigners fleeing Ukraine. Twenty-nine social campaigns were implemented (out of a planned thirty), reaching more than ten million people (over 3 times more than planned). 95 organisations in cooperation with 158 other entities (local government authorities, public institutions or businesses) engaged in 34 monitoring initiatives.
Outcome 3: out of 127 projects funded in this outcome, 61 projects were completed by the end of 2022. This means that the process of implementation of projects in this Outcome has reached approximately the halfway point. So far 13,788 people have been involved in the projects, while 8,653 people from groups at risk of exclusion have benefited from the support. Moreover, 4469 people have so far benefited from activities empowering vulnerable groups (more than double our target). The projects’ target groups: people with disabilities, people with illness and other vulnerable groups were supplemented in 2022 by war refugees from Ukraine.
Outcome 4: more than around 540 CSOs (target value: 425) have taken advantage of different forms of capacity building activities offered by 14 projects carried out by PPs. A total of 22 monitoring initiatives and 20 advocacy activities are implemented. Some of them are conducted at the national or sectoral level, and some at the local level. In 2022, thanks to additional funding from the Reserve Fund (EUR 3.2 million) from the Norwegian Financial Mechanism, two additional calls for proposals were launched: one for organisational grants to selected organisations (23 grants, including one from the reserve list) and one focusing on media (eight grants, including two from the reserve list). In a predefined project Mobile Academy for NGOs – Mango implemented by FAOO, 33 all-day stationary workshops have been organized in 13 locations outside large cities and in peripheral regions. The trainings were attended by 417 people from 147 organizations.
Bilateral outcome: In 2022, all the targeted indicators for bilateral cooperation and regional cooperation were achieved and even exceeded. Thanks to the lifting of Covid restrictions live events with a wider audience from all EEA Grants countries were organized. In the effect the indicator for the number of participants in bilateral events more than doubled the target value (507/200). Also, the number of CSOs participating in the regional initiatives was higher than planned (269/250). In 2022, within the framework of bilateral and regional cooperation, we organised or co-organised a total of 28 events/initiatives: 6 bilateral and 21 regional, including online meetings and initiatives of other Fund Operators. They were attended by over 600 people. Within the framework of bilateral cooperation, two study visits were carried out: to Iceland on countering gender-based violence (10 representatives of 9 PPs) and to Norway on work of social organisations in rural communities (8 representatives of 12 PPs).
The visibility of the Programme and the 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. 12,700 people follow the programme’s Facebook profile. The monitoring of the Programme in the traditional and social media reported 9,746 news branded ACF-N.
The overall risk of the Programme remains the same as in the previous year: at the level of 2. New risk is connected with the continued war in Ukraine which may result in new groups of refugees arriving to Poland and CSOs’ engagement in aid actions that might distract them from projects’ implementation.