Project News

CALL FOR APPLICATIONS

Smart Start

Sustaining civil society impact through social entrepreneurship and innovations in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, and Turkey

 

Deadline for submission of the applications is June 13, 2016.

 

1. Objectives and description

Smart Start is a regional project, funded by the EU - CIVIL SOCIETY FACILITY AND MEDIA PROGRAMME 2014-2015 (Support to regional thematic networks of Civil Society Organisations).

This project is being implemented in IPA beneficiaries’ countries in the Western Balkans and Turkey, by project consortium: Centre for Civil Society Promotion - CCSP (Bosnia and Herzegovina), Centre for Research and Policy Making (Macedonia), Institute for entrepreneurship and economic development (Montenegro), Centre for Development of Non-Profit Sector (Serbia) and YADA Foundation (Turkey), with support by partner organization CEDRA HR from Croatia. 

Overall objective of Smart Start: To help create an enabling environment for social entrepreneurship of civil society organizations (CSOs) and to improve their sustainability, financial viability and social impact in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey.

Within the specific objective related to strengthening long-term financial sustainability and impact of 50 selected CSOs in five partner countries through start-up financial support and socially and environmentally responsible use of self-financing strategies, social innovations and social enterprise, Smart Start project is inviting civil society organizations to apply for support in developing social business/income generating activities.  

First Phase: Smart Start will select 100 CSOs in 5 countries (20 per country) which will receive tailor made capacity building support aimed at development of skills needed for developing social entreprenurship of CSOs. Business plans will be developed during tailored training sessions, and will be based on ideas developed by CSOs.

Second Phase: Selection of grant recipients will be based on business plans submitted by 100 CSOs, participants of the capacity building program in the First Phase. Financial support will be used as start-up fund for selected CSOs, and eligible costs will be related to purchase of necessary equipment, services, education of staff, material etc. 

 

2. Financial allocation provided by the Smart Start

The overall indicative amount for financial support to selected CSO is EUR 308.500. The Smart Start consortium reserves the right not to award all available funds. 

Financial support per one selected CSO will be in amount of maximum EUR 6.170. Requested contribution by CSO is minimum 10% (Smart Start support in amount of EUR 5.553 and contribution by CSO in amount of 617 EUR).

In-kind contribution is not acceptable as a contribution by CSO, but it will bring some additional points in business plan assessment. 

3. Eligibility

In order to be eligible for Smart Start support, applicants must: 

1. be a non-profit entity, registered as association of citizens or some other similar form of civil society organization (foundations are not eligible); 

2. be local organisation registered in one of the following countries: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia and Turkey;

 3. have an idea to start selling products and/or services of CSO in order to strengthen its sustainability and ensure continuous support to beneficiaries or  have already started income generating activities in their CSO (including founding of separate legal body owned by CSO).

Type of CSO is not important, but it is preferable that applicant is an membership based CSO.

 

4. Process of application

4.1. Applications timeline

  • Deadline for applications: June 13, 2016
  • Selection on 100 CSOs: June 20, 2016
  • Education: September 2016-February 2017 
  • Business plans assessment: March 2017
  • Implementation of projects: April 2017 - April 2018

4.2. Documents to be submitted

A. Application Form

B. Supporting documents

  • If applying as CSO starting its economic activity for the first time, or developing its already existing economic activity, but not registered as separate legal body - copy of registration, copy of statute, profit and loss statement and balance sheet for fiscal years 2015 and 2014; 
  • If applying as CSO already owning a registered social enterprise - copy of registration, copy of statute, profit and loss statement and balance sheet for fiscal years 2015 and 2014, for CSO and for company owned by CSO.

4.3. Submission of the application

Interested CSOs should send a request for the Application Form to the respective country point of contact: 

Project staff will send an Application Form to potential applicants no later than three days after submission of the request. Applications should be submitted by email only, to the point of contact in country of registration of the applicant (as per list in the table above).

Language to be used in application writing is local language. 

Each applicant will receive confirmation by email three days after project proposal submission. If not, applicants are advised to contact Smart Start partners by email addresses provided above. 

Deadline for submission of the applications is June 13, 2016. 

 

4.4. Selection procedure 

Selection procedure has two rounds: 

 

4.4.1 Selection of 100 CSOs for participation in education process

Smart Start consortium will establish selection committee which will select 20 CSOs per country. Selection committee will consist of project staff and local experts. 

Project partners will sign Memorandum of Understanding with all of 100 selected CSOs, which will determine objectives and working principles, resources and duration of cooperation between selected 100 CSOs and project partners. 

After signature of the MoU with 100 selected organizations, Smart Start consortium members will start with Organizational Entrepreneurship Capacity Assessment (OECA) process in these CSOs, which will last for two months. The main purpose of OECA will be to identify, design and deliver appropriate technical assistance measures, including content and design of 5 training modules that will follow.

 

4.4.2. Selection of 50 CSOs that will receive financial and technical support

Selection of 50 CSOs who will receive financial and technicalsupport in implementation of the business ideas will be based on assessment of business plans developed by 100 CSOs during capacity building activity and submitted to Smart Start consortium members. Selection committees will be established in all five target countries, consisting from representatives of EU delegations, business sector, local government and academia.