The EU announced forthcoming funding for civil society and media organisations through the IPA III Civil Society Facility (CSF) and Media Programme and the NDCI Human Rights and Democracy (DHR) Programme for Kosovo, planned to be launched at the end of February 2022.
Fifty-five civil society organisations took part in an online consultation session with the EU Office in Kosovo, organised by the EU TACSO 3 project, which aimed to give all CSOs in Kosovo an opportunity to voice their opinions on how EU funding for civil society is used during 2022.
The main areas of support presented were: a) Sustainability and resilience of civil society organisations; b) Freedom of expression and media resilience and c) Combatting discrimination.
The sustainability and resilience of civil society organisations area focuses on civil society capacities and is based on multi-year support to the sector and the current identified needs. Progress on the enabling environment was noted in the past years in Kosovo and is considered to be among the more positive examples in the region. However, challenges remain in fighting corruption.
In relation to the freedom of expression and media resilience, the area will focus on support to investigative journalism and in increasing the role of journalists in terms of professional, ethical and labour standards. Media literacy aims to equip youth with the tools to encourage critical thinking and judge information in an objective manner.
Combatting discrimination area was presented by giving a full emphasis on the anti-discrimination policies. Among other things, this includes hate speech. The aim is to support projects that implement the policies already in place for anti-discrimination. Cooperation from several organisations is considered of added value. In terms of healthcare policies and patients’ rights, the call will be opened for projects that have activities and are external and independent of the sector and address universal access to healthcare. Management of vaccination policy and other areas related to the health insurance, as well as monitoring of this sector could be of interest.
Feedback from participants related mostly to simplification of procedures for smaller NGOs that will be subject to sub-granting, in order to reach smaller diverse organisations that have no capacity to apply. In terms of contracting modalities, there were suggestions to simplify the monitoring of the work done by the smaller organisations. Additionally, media literacy, hate speech and investigative journalism were also recommended as topics to be considered for the call. Other topics related to rights of LGBTQI and language rights were lobbied for by participants as an important aspect of combatting discrimination. All verbal and written comments were noted. Full event report can be found on this link Consultation Meeting Report IPA III CSF and Media Meeting Kosovo
For further details on priority sectors IPA Civil Society Facility and Media Programme 2021–23, Action for Kosovo and the NDCI Human Rights and Democracy (DHR) Programme please click here.
Please find a copy of the published call for participants in the consultation here.
For more information on the EU TACSO 3 project, please visit https://tacso.eu/
* This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSC 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo Declaration of Independence.