This call is based on Regulation (EU) No 375/20141 which has established a European Voluntary Humanitarian Aid Corps ('the EU Aid Volunteers initiative') as a framework for joint contributions from European volunteers to support and complement humanitarian aid in third countries.
The Union carries out its humanitarian aid operations based on needs and in partnership with implementing organisations. Those organisations should play a significant role in implementing the EU Aid Volunteers initiative in order to ensure ownership by the actors in the field and to maximise the potential uptake of the actions under that initiative. The Union should entrust such organisations notably with the identification, selection, preparation and deployment of EU Aid Volunteers, as well as with follow-up during and after assignments, in accordance with standards and procedures established by the European Commission (hereinafter referred to as "the Commission").
2. Objective of this Call:
In the framework of the EU Aid Volunteers initiative, organisations sending EU Aid Volunteers (hereinafter referred to as "sending organisations") and organisations hosting EU Aid Volunteers (hereinafter referred to as "hosting organisations") shall be certified through a procedure, as provided for in Article 10 of Regulation (EU) 375/2014. Certification will be a requirement for organisations to fulfil in order to participate in future calls for proposals related to deployment.
A robust certification mechanism is necessary to ensure that sending and hosting organisations comply with the standards laid down in the Delegated Regulation 1398/20142 and the procedures laid down in Implementing Regulation 1244/20143. Such a certification mechanism is based on the principles of
simplification and non-duplication, differentiation between sending and hosting organisations, cost- effectiveness, transparency and impartiality, encouraging diversity and accessibility.
The overall objective to which this call will contribute is to support implementation of the EU Aid Volunteers initiative by establishing a certification mechanism for sending and for hosting organisations ensuring that these organisations comply with the standards and procedures referred to in Article 9 of Regulation 375/2014, the programme legal base.
The specific objective of the present call is to compile a list of certified sending and hosting organisations.
Requests for certification may be submitted by organisations applying for certification as Sending Organisations in the framework of the EU Aid Volunteers initiative. Sending organisations shall be eligible for certification, if:
a) they adhere to the standards and procedures referred to in Article 9 of Regulation (EU) 375/2014;
b) they are active in the field of humanitarian aid as defined in point (d) of Article 3 of Regulation (EU) 375/2014; and
c) they belong to any of the following categories:
(i) non-governmental not-for-profit organisations formed in accordance with the law of a Member State and whose headquarters are located within the Union,
(ii) public law bodies of a civilian character governed by the law of a Member State,
(iii) non-governmental not-for-profit organisations established in the countries referred to in Article 23 under the conditions laid down in that Article and the agreements mentioned therein,
(iv) public law bodies of civilian character established in the countries referred to in Article 23 under the conditions laid down in that Article and the agreements mentioned therein,
(v) the International Federation of National Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.
Requests for certification may be submitted by organisations applying for certification as Hosting Organisations in the framework of the EU Aid Volunteers initiative. Organisations in third countries (i.e. non EU countries) shall be eligible as hosting organisations if:
a) they adhere to the standards and procedures referred to in Article 9 of Regulation 375/2014;
b) they are active in the field of humanitarian aid as defined in point (d) of Article 3 (Regulation 375/2014); and
c) they belong to any of the following categories:
(i) non-governmental not-for-profit organisations operating or established in a third country under the laws in force in that country,
(ii) public law bodies of a civilian character governed by the law of a third country,
(iii) international agencies and organisations.
4. Submission Procedure - Information and documents to be provided:
Applications for certification should be submitted in one of the official languages of the European Union using the mandatory forms available from the Agency's website: https://eacea.ec.europa.eu/eu-aid-volunteers_en
Organisations wishing to submit an application for certification are requested to read the guidelines accompanying the forms.
No modifications to applications are allowed once an application has been submitted. However, if there is a need to clarify certain aspects or correct clerical mistakes the Agency may contact the applicant for this purpose during the evaluation process.
Successful completion of the certification process entails no obligation on the part of the Agency or European Commission concerning the conclusion of grant agreements under the EU Aid Volunteers initiative.
5. Submission Procedure - General description of the procedure:
Organisations that consider themselves eligible as defined in point 3 of this call are invited to submit an application in accordance with the rules set out on the Agency's web-site.
In order to assist organisations to plan their applications for certification, the Agency will publish on its web- site the dates (months) during which applications will be considered. In order to have an application
considered in a specified month it must arrive at the Agency's premises no later than 15 calendar days before the 1st of the month in which the Evaluation Committee will meet.
The Commission will decide on the applications for certification submitted by the sending and hosting organisations. The list of the organisations selected for certification, established by the Commission, will be published by the Agency on its website. Moreover, the Agency will send (a) a written confirmation of the award of the certification to the selected organisations and (b) the Commission rejection decision and the reasons thereof to the unsuccessful candidates.
6. Use of the list resulting from this notice:
The list resulting from this notice will be used exclusively for purposes of the EU Aid Volunteers initiative. Details of certified organisations will be made publically known on the EU Aid Volunteers central platform.
7. Expiry date of the list resulting from this call for expressions of interest:
Certified sending and hosting organisations shall undergo re-certification after three years following the decision of the Commission awarding the certification, or at any time in the event of substantial amendments to the standards or procedures in place for the EU Aid Volunteers initiative. The Commission may also decide to suspend or terminate certification following the rules indicated in Art. 37 of Regulation 1244/2014.
A decision of the Commission not to award certification and reject the application shall indicate that the rejected applicant organisation may only re-apply after a twelve-month period, starting from the date of receipt by the applicant of the decision of rejection. The decision shall specify also the available legal remedies against the decision.
8. Exclusion criteria:
Organisations shall be excluded from participation in the certification process if they are in any of the following situations:
a) they are bankrupt or being wound up, are having their affairs administered by the courts, have entered into an arrangement with creditors, have suspended business activities, are the subject of proceedings concerning those matters, or are in any analogous situation arising from a similar procedure provided for in national legislation or regulations;
b) they or persons having powers of representation, decision-making or control over them have been convicted of an offence concerning their professional conduct by a judgement of a competent authority of a Member State which has the force of 'res judicata';
c) they have been guilty of grave professional misconduct proven by any means which the Agency/Commission can justify including by decisions of the European Investment Bank and international organisations;
d) they are not in compliance with their obligations relating to the payment of social security contributions or the payment of taxes in accordance with the legal provisions of the country in which they are established or with those of the country of the Agency/Commission or those of the country where the certification mechanism is to be performed;
e) they or persons having powers of representation, decision-making or control over them have been the subject of a judgement which has the force of 'res judicata' for fraud, corruption, involvement in a criminal organisation, money laundering or any other illegal activity, where such illegal activity is detrimental to the Union's financial interests;
f) they are subject to an administrative penalty referred to in Article 109(1) of Regulation (EU, EURATOM) No 966/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 25 October 2012 on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union and repealing Council Regulation (EC, EURATOM) No 1605/2002
Applicants shall provide a declaration on their honour stating that they are not in one of the situations of exclusion listed above. In case of doubt, they may be requested to provide supporting evidence of non- exclusion.
9. Other information:
General terms and conditions applicable to this call: All documents submitted by organisations become the property of the Agency and will be regarded as confidential. Expenditure on preparing and submitting certification applications will not be reimbursed by the Agency. Submission of an application in response to this notification implies acceptance of all provisions and conditions stipulated in therein.
Processing of personal data:
If processing replies to the present call involves the recording and processing of personal data (such as: name, address and CV), such data will be processed by the Agency and the Commission pursuant to Regulation (EC) No 45/2001 on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data by the Community institutions and bodies and on the free movement of such data. Unless indicated otherwise, replies to this call and any personal data requested are required for the purposes indicated above in point 2 and will be processed solely for those purposes by the Agency (EACEA), which is acting as data controller.
Applicants are informed that for the purposes of safeguarding the financial interests of the Union, personal data may be transferred to the supervisory instances of the Agency (i.e. European Commission, Court of Auditors, European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF), etc.) and the judicial authorities (i.e. EU courts, European Ombudsman, etc.).
Personal data (name, given name if natural person, address, legal form, registration number and name and given name of the persons with powers of representation, decision-making or control, if legal person) may be registered in the early warning system (EWS) only or both in the EWS and central exclusion database (CED) by the Accounting Officer of the European Commission, should applicants be in one of the situations mentioned in:
the Commission Decision 2008/969 of 16.12.2008 on the early warning system (for more information see the privacy statement on http://ec.europa.eu/budget/contracts_grants/info_contracts/legal_entities/legal_entities_en.cfm),
the Commission Regulation 2008/1302 of 17.12.2008 on the central exclusion database (for more information see the privacy statement on http://ec.europa.eu/budget/explained/management/protecting/protect_en.cfm#BDCE).
As detailed in the abovementioned privacy statement, any party entered into the database has the right of access and rectification of the data concerning it, upon request to the Accounting Officer of the European Commission.
Details concerning the processing of your personal data are available on the privacy statement at the page: http://eacea.ec.europa.eu/about/documents/calls_gen_conditions/eacea_grants_privacy_statement.pdf .
The procedure for the certification of sending and hosting organisations wishing to participate in the EU Aid Volunteers initiative is managed by the Agency.
All enquiries concerning the certification procedure and the processing of personal data should be put in writing and sent to: EACEA-EUAID-VOLUNTEERS@ec.europa.eu