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COVID-19 Rapid Response Grants


deadlineАPPLICATION DEADLINE: 21.12.2020.
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The Swiss Government project “For an Active Civil Society Together – ACT” announces a Call for COVID-19 Rapid Response Grants for Monitoring the Work of Government Institutions, Advocacy, and Informing Citizens About the COVID-19 Pandemic.

The proclamation of the pandemic and the measures applied by the Government of Serbia in the fight against the coronavirus affected the respect for the basic human rights of all citizens of Serbia. In the period since the declaration of the pandemic, especially during the state of emergency declared by the Government of Serbia, the rights of Serbian citizens to freedom of movement and assembly have been restricted. Restrictions on these rights, although it remained questionable whether they were appropriate to the current situation, were prescribed by the relevant institutions. On the other hand, the monitoring of civil society organisations pointed to a very noticeable threat to the right to expression and information, the right to health and social protection of citizens, as well as labour rights.

During the state of emergency, civil society organisations have made a significant contribution to informing citizens, increasing the transparency of institutions, and overcoming the consequences of this crisis. According to the results of the monitoring conducted by the Civic Initiatives, the organisations dealt with 1) humanitarian aid and social protection services, 2) monitoring the work of institutions and advocating for respect for citizens’ rights, and 3) providing greater access to information of public importance and informing citizens.

The call for rapid response will be intended for the support in the latter two mentioned areas of work of civil society organisations. Also, the Call will be complementary to other grants from the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, which in the previous period allocated significant funds for the allocation of humanitarian aid and social protection services during the Covid-19 pandemic in Serbia.

Objective of the call: Civil society organisations, the media, and informal groups involve citizens in activities related to the Covid-19 pandemic, through advocacy activities, access to information, and informing citizens, as well as monitoring the work of institutions.

Selected projects of organisations, media, and informal groups of citizens will contribute to a greater respect for the rights and information of citizens, as well as greater transparency of institutions regarding better response and mitigation of the consequences caused by the coronavirus pandemic. The selected projects will be based on a strong connection with the citizens, will represent the voice of the community in which they operate, and will present the problems of the citizens to the decision-makers.

In addition to financial support, selected organisations, media, and informal groups will be provided with mentoring support in the areas of citizen involvement, networking and advocacy activities to better meet the needs of citizens and make their voices heard.

Basic information for emergency support:

  • Area of support: Monitoring, advocacy, and informing citizens during the Covid-19 pandemic
  • Value of the grant scheme: RSD 22,000,000.00
  • Who can submit project proposals: Civil Society Organisations (CSOs), media, and informal groups that have had activities related to mitigating the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic in the past
  • Indicative, estimated number of supported projects: 15
  • Grant duration: between 6 and 12 months
  • Minimum and maximum amount of grants: RSD 500,000.00 – RSD 1,800,000.00

Projects that have an advocacy component will have an advantage over other projects.

PLEASE NOTE that the pages in English are for information only, as grants are provided only for entities registered in Serbia, so full documentation can only be found on the Serbian pages of this website.

Applicants can be civil society organisations, the media, and informal groups of citizens, in partnership or independently, who in the previous period have shown a commitment to mitigating the negative consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Applicants have to base their work on respect for human rights, transparency, inclusion, gender equality, non-violence, openness, and accessibility.

Also, applicants are entities whose development principles include a connection with their constituency, strategic work, commitment, development, focus on results, and sustainability.

Applicants who have had or currently have the support of the Swiss Government, through the Swiss Embassy or the SDC, can apply for this Call, with priority given to those CSOs that do not currently have such support. Applicants, who do have support, must show in the project proposal that they have sufficient organisational capacity to implement the planned activities, as well as that by obtaining a new grant, they do not become dependent on funding from the Government of Switzerland.

Detailed criteria for participation, as well as other information related to the application, can be found in the Guidelines for Submitting Project Proposals for COVID-19 Rapid Response, which are included in the Call package.

PLEASE NOTE that the pages in English are for information only, as grants are provided only for entities registered in Serbia, so full documentation can only be found on the Serbian pages of this website.

In the interest of practicality and simplicity, project proposals are to be submitted online only at act.civicatalyst.org.

You can find the answers to frequently asked questions concerning the submission of project proposals in the Instructions included in the application package and on the above website.

Project proposals must be submitted by 17.00h on 21 December 2020.

PLEASE NOTE that the pages in English are for information only, as grants are provided only for entities registered in Serbia, so full documentation can only be found on the Serbian pages of this website.

Given the current situation, the Info Session on the Call for Proposals for COVID-19 Rapid Response Grants will be held online on 14 December 2020 at 14.00h, with the aim of introducing the participants to the ACT project and this call.

During the Info Session, the participants will have an opportunity to get answers to their questions concerning the Call from the ACT team.

Registration for the Info Session is mandatory, so please register here

The video, presentation, and answers to the questions will be posted on our website.

Should you need any further clarifications regarding the Call for Proposals for COVID-19 Rapid Response Grants and the application procedure, please write to info@act.org.rs no later than 4 pm on Thursday, 17 December 2020. Please make sure that your Subject line reads: Call for Project Proposals for COVID-19 Rapid Response Grants. ACT team will answer all your queries by 4:00 pm on 18 December 2020 in Frequently Asked Questions, which will be updated every Friday on ACT website.

For the questions concerning the technical aspects of online applications, please write to support@civicatalyst.org

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