On 13th of February 2015, European Commissioner for International Cooperation and Development Neven Mimica and Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of Croatia Vesna Pusić, opened the European Year for Development 2015 (EYD2015) in the Coratian Parliament. On that occasion two round tables were organised, where civil society representatives together with government representatives shared experiences of Croatian development cooperation and development aid.
Once again, the Platform CROSOL was presented, and board president Gordan Bosanac explained the projects that CROSOL is going to implement as a part of the EYD2015.
After the official part, the president of CROSOL had a meeting with Commissioner Mimica, where he explained the challenges that small European platforms are facing with regards to the changing conditions in the next „Development education and awareness raising - DEAR calls“. The European Commission (EC) is giving funds through DEAR calls, but only for big projects and to „big players“ which means small platforms and organisations do not have sufficient capacities to apply or implement this kind of projects.
CROSOL and other EU13 platforms started an advocacy initiative in order to change that, and they are asking the Commission to give also smaller grants. Their request got approval from other, bigger EU platforms, and eventually the letter that had been written for Commissioner Mimica was signed by 25 European development CSO platforms.
Commissioner Mimica agreed that there should be equal opportunities for smaller and biger platforms, he has promised that he will personally take attention on what is going on with the call and its criteria, and that the call has t
o be open towards potential "consortia of small NGOs". He agreed that more administrative burden on the EC should not be barrier for awarding more grants.
The letter was also given to Minister Vesna Pusić, to representative of the EC in Croatia and to MEP and member of the Development Committee of the EP Davor Ivo Stier.
Read the lobby letter here.
Photo courtesy by CROSOL: Commissioner Neven Mimica and CROSOL President Gordan Bosanac.
Information provided by Ela Naranđa, CROSOL