ACF announces a Call for Communication Campaign on Democracy

Active Citizens Fund

Relevent Country: Latvia

The Active Citizens Fund is seeking applications for the communication campaign on democracy to strengthen democratic culture and civic awareness in Latvia.

The objective of the call is, by funding a communication campaign, to promote awareness of democracy and the importance of people’s participation in democratic processes, also promoting positive attitude towards democracy and involvement in these processes and the campaign must also help create positive changes to at least one of the following indicators of ACF outcome “Democratic culture”:

number of people engaged in decision-making process is increased.

share of people involved in civic activities is increased.

share of people believing they can influence decision-making process is increased.

“Active Citizens Fund” is one of the programs funded by Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway (donor states) under the EEA and Norway grants. The EEA Grants operate in 15 European countries – Latvia, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Croatia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Hungary, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia. In all countries, the Active Citizens Fund is managed by operators which are independent of local, regional and central government, political parties and religious institution.

Main Challenges

The Active Citizens Fund in Latvia is based on eight main challenges of Latvian civil society identified by the NGO consortium from research, focus groups and analysis during the development of the programme. This competition is one of the tools to mitigate the following challenges:

  • Low civic participation, disbelief in the ability to influence democratic processes, lack of civic education.
  • Insufficient society’s and public administration’s understanding of the role of civil society and the importance of strengthening it for the development of a democratic state.
  • Lack of targeted policies for civil society development.
  • Unfavourable and unstable legal and financial environment for the growth of civil society.
  • High level of intolerance for “the different”.
  • Ethnic segregation rather than integration – national minorities are not involved in civic activities.
  • Civil society’s, including CSOs, low capacity and understanding of long-term development.
  • Unbalanced regional development of the CSO sector.

Funding Information

  • The total budget of the call is EUR 140 000.
  • The grant for one project shall be between EUR 100 000 and EUR 140 000.
  • The project grant rate is up to 100%.
  • The duration of project shall be 4 months between 01.01.2024 to 30.04.2024.
  • Conditions for planning the Project

General conditions

  • The project should include awareness-raising campaign that meets all of the following conditions:
  • it contributes to the objective of the call;
  • its content is not narrowed to a specific thematic area or to a particular form of participation;
  • its content is based on very specific examples of participation, reflecting the diversity of topics and forms of participation;
  • at the same time, the campaign should illustrate democracy as a system and interconnections of democratic processes, not as fragmented elements.

Specific conditions

  • The creative messages, communication methods and channels of the campaign are the choice of applicants, but the planning and implementation of the campaign must comply with the following conditions:
  • Scale of the campaign: the entire territory of Latvia, including remote rural regions (society outside cities).
  • The campaign is targeted at reaching the broadest possible public in Latvia, but without excluding the possibility for the project applicant to target certain elements of the campaign to specific target groups (e.g., Russian-speaking population, young people, seniors, civically inactive population, people with functional disabilities, etc.).
  • The campaign should use integrated communication tactics and channels specifically tailored to reach the selected target groups, including cooperation with national, regional and local media.
  • If campaign messages are tailored to different target groups, it should be ensured that the different messages are not contradictory (not conflicting) with each other.
  • The campaign shall focus on wide-scale communication, less on events. Events may be complementary to achieving the objectives of the campaign, but they cannot be the dominant form of communication.
  • According to the rules of EEA/Norway grants, project promoters must inform the public of the grant received, ensuring:
  • at least two events that inform public about the progress and achievements of the campaign, that highlight in particular EEA/Norway grant support for the project, and that are integral part of the campaign (e.g., launch and final event of the campaign, etc.);
  • creation of a website dedicated to the project (new website, section on an existing website of the organisation or page on social media platforms), which is regularly updated with project news and is available to interested parties after the end of the project. The website of the project can also be the website of the campaign, if one is planned.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Projects can be submitted and implemented by civil society organizations – associations or foundations that are legally registered in the Register of Enterprises of the Republic of Latvia and:
  • are independent of public administration, political parties, commercial organizations and their influence (among other things, such organizations or their official representatives are in minority (proportionally or by level of influence) among members or managing bodies),
  • by their nature/character/activities cannot be equated with political parties, religious or faith-based organizations, trade unions, employer associations, companies or cooperatives,
  • do not pursue the professional, commercial or direct economic interests of its members or founders and whose members/founders have no commercial interest in the outcome of the work of the organisation or of its activities.
  • Ineligible Projects or Activities
  • activities of a political, military or religious nature;
  • amateur or professional sport or culture activities (except cases when these activities are used as a tool/method to reach the aim of the project);
  • activities aimed to regrant the funding of the ACF to other natural or legal person within a procedure of a call.
  • Restrictions on Participation in the Call
  • Even if the project applicant meets all the above-mentioned requirements, it is not considered to be an eligible project applicant in this call/project promoter to sign the grant contract, if the respective CSO:
  • has any outstanding obligations in the EEA/Norway grants funds in 2009-2014 (operated by the Society Integration Foundation);
  • has been found guilty by a final judgement of criminal offences related to the use of funds from the EEA and Norway Financial mechanisms or EU structural funds, or other public funds;
  • is bankrupt or in the process of bankruptcy, or the process of reorganization or liquidation;
  • has been found guilty of grave professional misconduct or has been convicted of an offence concerning its professional conduct by a judgment which has the force of ‘res judicata’;
  • has committed fraud, corruption or any other illegal activity;
  • has submitted any false information for the purpose of receiving grant.