Non-governmental sector awarded nearly EUR 1.9 million under the EEA Financial Mechanism
The Slovenian non-governmental organisations (NGOs) have been awarded EUR 1,875,000 under the EEA Financial Mechanism for the entire 2009-2014 period of which EUR 1.6 million are earmarked for projects and the remaining amount for strengthening the NGO network. 600 applications were submitted under two calls for proposals – the first call closed last year while the second one closed only recently – of which 33 projects were selected.
On the occasion of project presentation Arlid Moberg Sande, representative of the Norwegian Embassy, said that the EEA Financial Mechanism, established under the auspices of Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein, focuses on reducing economic and social disparities in the European Economic Area. The Slovenian NGO Programme is managed by the Slovenian Regional Environmental Centre (REC Slovenia) and the Centre for Information Service, Co-operation and Development of NGOs (CNVOS). A little over EUR 1,253,000 were distributed under the first call for proposals for small and medium-sized projects. Under the call for proposals, which closed last year, 369 applications were submitted with 15 projects being selected. Tina Divjak, representative of CNVOS, said that the projects, which have been underway for the past six months, have already brought “numerous positive changes”. The projects cover various areas – from making old toys reusable to encouraging young women to get involved in politics. One half of the projects cover Ljubljana with the other half being disbursed throughout Slovenia. The projects address various social issues ranging from the transition of young people with disabilities from the education system to the labour market, helping women who have sought refuge in maternity homes, to employment in the scope of the so-called green jobs. One of the results of the projects is also the opening of the studio of Roma fashion in Novo mesto and the forthcoming launch of the indigenous Cerknica lake dugout canoe. The call for proposals for small projects with a value of EUR 336,000 closed recently. 18 projects were selected from among 241 applications submitted. A total of 33 projects selected in the framework of both calls for proposals aim to enhance social equality, democracy, environmental protection and sustainable development, also said Tina Divjak. / Slovenian Press Agency