Five Municipalities Selected for Civil Society Grant ProgrammeFeb 8, 2018
The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) on 8 February 2018 announced the selection of five municipalities – Gostivar, Kavadarci, Kumanovo, Resen and Strumica – to participate in a grant program aimed at supporting partnerships with civil society organizations that will address priority community needs and benefit vulnerable and marginalized groups. The EUR 845,000 program is funded by the European Union (EU). Mayors from the five municipalities signed MoUs at the UNDP office in Skopje today.
“The Sustainable Development Goals commit us to ‘leave no one behind,’” said UNDP Resident Representative Louisa Vinton. “This program will help us translate that principle into practice at the local level by helping municipalities work together with civil society organizations to build more inclusive communities.”
The initiative is part of a regional program that was pioneered in Bosnia and Herzegovina and has now been expanded to cover all the Western Balkan countries. It aims to strengthen cooperation between municipalities and civil society by establishing and institutionalizing transparent mechanisms for funding CSOs projects and training municipal staff to manage grant schemes.
Over two years, UNDP will work with each partner municipality to award EUR 120,000 in grants through a series of public calls for proposals. The first calls are expected to be issued in March 2018. Priority will be given to projects that provide services to disadvantaged groups, promote gender equality and human rights, and strengthen social cohesion and environmental protection.
The five municipalities were selected on the basis of a wide range of criteria, including geographic diversity. Among the conditions for participation were a commitment to provide municipal co-funding for the grants and to guarantee transparency and an open, competitive process for civil society funding.
Three municipalities in the South-East Region – Bosilovo, Novo Selo and Vasilevo – will participate as “associate” municipalities thanks to a commitment from Strumica to share experience in the program.