News story | Date: 2015-02-11 | Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Our NGO programmes have increased the capacity of civil society in Central and Southern Europe and helped to mobilise citizens to voice their concerns and actively engage with governments.
This is the key finding in the independent mid-term evaluation of the NGO programmes.
The report also confirms that the programmes are generally well-managed and effectively and efficiently run, demonstrating ‘an innovative and effective approach to management of public funds, outsourced to organisations independent of governments’.
Norway contributes close to €160 million to strengthen civil society development in Central and Southern Europe.
The funding is channelled through the EEA Grants to NGO programmes established in 16 beneficiary countries - Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia and Spain. This makes the Grants one of the prime funding schemes to the sector in Europe.
Around 1500 projects have received funding to date. In terms of bilateral relations, about 200 projects involve a partner from either Norway, Iceland or Liectenstein.
The report contains many more findings, lessons learned and recommendations that will be followed up and inform the development of future programmes.