The East-West Management Institute (EWMI) Advancing CSO Capacities and Engaging Society for Sustainability (ACCESS) is pleased to announce the Citizen Outreach Grants (COG) program for Georgian civil society organizations (CSOs), primarily those from the regions, to undertake efforts focusing on protecting citizens’ rights and interests during the COVID-19 pandemic and amplifying citizens’ voices in pandemic response.
Building on the growing sense of solidarity and the aid networks formed during the first weeks and months of the COVID-19 crisis, EWMI ACCESS accepts applications for civil society initiatives that have strong potential to –
- mobilize local communities and citizen groups,
- bring their needs and priorities to the attention of decision-makers, and
- draw on community action and input to decentralize COVID-19 responses.
EWMI ACCESS will prioritize applications that meet one or more of the following objectives:
- Focus on vulnerable, marginalized, disproportionally affected, and/or underrepresented groups and build their power to effect long-lasting change;
- Strengthen the meaningful participation of local communities in designing, implementing, and evaluating government’s response plans and actions addressing the pandemic (this may include creating and integrating a mechanism to bring evidence from the field to policy-makers);
- Identify the gaps left by the government and address them through advocacy and/or resource mobilization (this may include the problems that are being de-prioritized during the pandemic thus causing irreparable damage);
- Strengthen community resilience to new waves of COVID-19.
- EWMI ACCESS will award a maximum of six grants of up to $20,000 USD
- EWMI ACCESS will not fund projects that propose any of the following:
- Projects/activities that duplicate or conflict with existing efforts (including those supported by USAID or other donors);
- Support for or lobbying on behalf of a particular political party;
- Religious activities; however, EWMI ACCESS may support a religious organization for non-religious aims if its proposal corresponds to COG objectives;
- Humanitarian activities;
- Theoretical research; or
- Individual and/or group travel as a primary project activity.
- Georgian CSOs, primarily those from the regions, are eligible to submit applications to the COG program. The applicant organization must be legally registered in Georgia as a non-profit, non-commercial organization. Applicants should meet the following criteria:
- Have at least two years of operational experience. As a rule, EWMI ACCESS will not provide “start-up” funding, although EWMI ACCESS may make an exception if sufficient evidence is presented to show that the organization’s directors and experts have adequate prior experience and the organization is filling a niche that has been underserved in the past.
- Have a governance structure that ensures proper rotation of leadership and delegation of power, including at least a Board of Directors, a Chairperson, and an Executive Director. The same individual should not hold the position of the Board Chairperson and the Executive Director, unless the size of the organization precludes this separation. If the above criteria are not met, the applicant must submit a proposed reform process that will work towards meeting these standards.
- Have a transparent system of bookkeeping that is in compliance with Georgian legislation and International Accounting Standards (IAS). If such a system is not in place, the grantee must work closely with EWMI ACCESS to ensure that accurate expense reports are prepared and a transparent bookkeeping system is put in place.
- Must not be a debtor, must have canceled any debt to the state, or have arranged for debt collection prior to receiving the first disbursement of EWMI ACCESS grant funds.
- Must operate as an independent, non-politically affiliated organization.
- Civil servants, political appointees, members of the current parliament, staff of public broadcasting companies, and/or leaders of political parties cannot participate in a grant project as a director. In most cases, these individuals are also excluded from being grant-remunerated participants in projects.
- Institutional Support:
- COG applicants can include institutional development activities as part of their applications. The purpose of this optional support is to enable organizations to implement self-initiated organizational strengthening initiatives that will contribute to their effectiveness and sustainability.
For more information, visit EWMI ACCESS.