The Regulation (EU) No 375/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 3 April 2014 establishing the Euro pean Voluntary Humanitarian Aid Corps (‘EU Aid Volunteers initiative’) (1) and related legislation (2) establish a framework for joint contributions from European volunteers to support and complement humanitarian aid in third countries.
The present call for proposals will provide funding to support actions aimed at deployment of EU Aid Volunteers to support and complement humanitarian aid in third countries in projects focusing on disaster risk reduction, disaster preparedness and linking relief rehabilitation and development.
The objective of the call is to fund projects involving the deployment of EU Aid Volunteers. These projects will contribute to strengthening the Union’s capacity to provide needs-based humanitarian aid aimed at strengthening the capacity and resilience of vulnerable and disaster-affected communities in third countries by focusing on disaster preparedness, disaster risk reduction and enhancing the link between relief, rehabilitation and development (LRRD). In addition, these projects may also strengthen the capacities of implementing sending and hosting organisations participating or intending to partici pate in the EU Aid Volunteers initiative, including in tools and methods of early warning for disasters.
With this call the European Commission and the Education, Audiovisual and Cultural Executive Agency (hereinafter referred to as ‘EACEA’) expect to achieve the following results:
— 350 junior/senior volunteers deployed to projects in resilience building and disaster risk management in vulnerable fragile or disaster affected countries and forgotten crises in third countries,
— for 100 junior professionals: possibility to take part in apprenticeship placements in Europe before deployment,
— opportunities for online volunteering to support or complement the project activities,
— projects funded under this call provide synergies and complementarity to EU-funded operations in humanitarian aid or civil protection in the respective countries/regions.
2. Budget available
The total budget earmarked for the co-financing of projects under this call for proposals is estimated at EUR 8 400 000.
— for the first round (projects submitted by 17 May 2016) it is foreseen to use 50% of the available amount (EUR 4 200 000),
— 50 % (EUR 4 200 000) will be available for the second round (projects submitted by 1 September 2016).
The maximum grant will be EUR 1 400 000. Grant requests below EUR 100 000 will not be considered for funding. The EACEA expects to fund 8 proposals.
The EACEA reserves the right not to distribute all the funds available in either round.
3. Eligible bodies
All organisations involved in the project will be referred to hereafter as the ‘consortium’.
All organisations (applicant and partners) involved in applying within this call, and acting as either sending or hosting organisations, must be certified under the EU Aid Volunteers initiative. Details about the certification mechanism can be found at:
https://eacea.ec.europa.eu/eu-aid-volunteers/funding/certification-mechanism-for-sending-and-hosting-organisations_en The applicant (lead partner) must be a certified EU sending organisation under the EU Aid Volunteers initiative.
The remaining consortium partners are either certified sending or certified hosting organisations under the EU Aid Volunteers initiative.
Project proposals involving sending and hosting organisations that have applied for certification before the deadline for submitting applications (Section 8) will be included in the eligibility check and evaluation phases. However the selection of these project proposals would be subject to the outcome of the certification process.
A project consortium must involve at least two certified sending organisations from two different countries and two certified hosting organisations.
Non-certified organisations specialised in any areas relevant to the objectives or the actions of the project may be involved as partner in the consortium in order to contribute with their specific expertise (Article 8(3) Delegated Regula tion (EU) No 1398/2014). Such organisations have to meet the criteria as defined in the Regulation (EU) No 375/2014, Article 10(3) or (4).
Partners must submit a mandate to be signed by the persons authorised to enter into legally binding commitments, thereby enabling the applicant to act on behalf of the partners.
The consortium may also include as associates other specialised organisations contributing to the objectives of the project and having a real role in the action. They do not have to meet the eligibility criteria referred to in this section. Such associated partners have no contractual relationship with the EACEA but have to be mentioned in the e-form. They may be for example private for profit companies, universities.
4. Eligible activities
Activities supported under this call must include:
Deployment of senior and junior EU Aid Volunteers to humanitarian aid projects in the area of disaster risk reduction, preparedness and LRRD in third countries based on identified needs. This includes selection, recruitment and prepara tion of EU Aid Volunteers and communication activities in compliance with the Communication Plan of the EU Aid Volunteers initiative.
Activities to support the implementation of the main action may include:
— Apprenticeship placements for junior volunteers in EU sending organisations
— Capacity building of vulnerable, disaster affected communities and local organisations — Capacity building of hosting organisations
— Technical assistance for sending organisations
— Activities to promote involvement of online volunteers as well as employee volunteers to support the actions of the EU Aid Volunteers
Project activities may include:
— information, communication and public awareness
— hazard, risk analysis and early warning
— contingency planning and preparedness for response
— protection of livelihoods, assets and small scale mitigation works Activities within capacity building and technical assistance may include:
— Training courses/train the trainers
— Activities to reinforce and foster partnership building
— Study/scoping visits to refine and finalise needs assessment of the action
— Seminars and workshops
— Twinning arrangements and exchange of staff
— Exchange of good practice
— Study visits
— (only for technical assistance) Coaching and mentoring of key sending organisation paid staff and volunteers
— (only for capacity building) Study visits of up to 3 months for key paid staff or volunteers from third countries to be based in European applicant/partner organisations
Capacity building activities should be undertaken by senior volunteers or junior volunteers with significant experience in capacity building and supervised by a senior professional.
On-line volunteering activities should be related to the project and shall be implemented via EU Aid Volunteers Platform developed by the Commission.
5. Eligible candidate volunteers
Sending and hosting organisations shall adhere to the standards and procedures regarding candidate volunteers and EU Aid Volunteers as provided by Regulation (EU) No 375/2014, Delegated Regulation (EU) No 1398/2014 and Implementing Regulation (EU) No 1244/2014.
The following persons having a minimum age of 18 years shall be eligible to apply as candidate volunteers: — citizens of the European Union; and
— third country nationals who are long-term residents in a Member State.
Candidate volunteers can be:
— junior professionals, in particular recent graduates with less than five years’ professional experience and less than five years’ experience in humanitarian action;
— senior professionals with five years’ professional experience in positions of responsibility or expert positions.
Selection of candidate volunteers is undertaken by sending and hosting organisations in conformity with Implementing Regulation (EU) No 1244/2014 (Chapter 2). Selected candidate volunteers must participate in the mandatory training programme provided within the EU Aid Volunteers initiative (1). Those who have successfully passed this training and assessment will be eligible for deployment as EU Aid Volunteers.
In addition, junior EU Aid Volunteers who have been required by sending and hosting organisations to undertake an apprenticeship placement shall complete it and be assessed successfully.
6. Eligible activity venue and timeframe
Apprenticeship placements prior to deployment (only for junior volunteers) must take place in one of the sending organisations participating in the project for a maximum duration of 6 months, where possible in a country other than their country of origin.
The deployment can range between 1 month as a minimum and 18 months as a maximum.
A list of third countries for deployments and capacity building in 2016 has been defined prior to the call according to a needs assessment methodology similar to that for humanitarian aid actions but excluding areas with on-going armed conflict. This list plus details of the methodology can be found under the following link: https://eacea.ec.europa.eu/eu-aid- volunteers/funding_en
The project activities can take place beyond the partner countries as long as the countries concerned are also on the list of countries mentioned above.
Projects submitted for the first deadline of 17 May 2016 must start between 1 October 2016 and 31 January 2017, with a maximum duration of 24 months.
Projects submitted for the second deadline of 1 September 2016 must start between 1 February 2017 and 31 May 2017, with a maximum duration of 24 months.
Applications for projects scheduled to run for longer periods than that specified in this call for proposals will not be accepted.
No extension to the eligibility period beyond the maximum duration will be granted.
Shortly after the start of the project, a meeting will be convened by the Commission/EACEA in Brussels to present the project and to allow for networking between sending organisations. Maximum 1 participant per sending organisation should participate in this meeting. Travel costs related to this 1-day meeting in Brussels are eligible costs and need to be taken into account.
7. Award criteria
Eligible applications will be assessed on the basis of the following criteria:
— Relevance of the project (maximum 30 points)
— Quality of the project design and implementation (maximum 30 points)
— Quality and relevance of the partnership and cooperation arrangements (maximum 20 points)
— Impact and dissemination (maximum 20 points)
Projects scoring less than 60 overall points will not be considered for funding.
8. Deadline for submission of applications
Grant applications must be drawn up in one of the EU official languages, using the electronic application form (e-Form) specifically designed for this purpose. The e-Form is presented at the following address: https://eacea.ec.europa.eu/ documents/eforms_en
The electronic application form duly completed must be submitted by 12:00 (mid-day, Brussels time) on 17 May 2016 for the round 1 and on 1 September 2016 for the round 2.
No modifications to the application are allowed once the deadline for submission has elapsed. However, if there is a need to clarify certain aspects or for the correction of clerical mistakes, the EACEA may contact the applicant for this purpose during the evaluation process.
Applications sent by post, fax or e-mail will not be accepted.
Please note that no more than one project proposal per round can be submitted by the same applicant under this call for proposals.
All applicants will be informed in writing about the results of the selection process.
9. Additional information
Applications must comply with the provisions contained in the application guidelines — Call for proposals EACEA
14/2016, be submitted on the e-Form provided for this purpose and contain the relevant annexes. The said documents can be found at the following address: https://eacea.ec.europa.eu/eu-aid-volunteers/funding_en
In case of questions, please contact: EACEA-EUAID-VOLUNTEERS@ec.europa.eu