Grants to strengthen CSOs as Independent Actors of Good Governance and Development

European Commission

Relevent Country: Moldova

European Commission invites applications to strengthen CSOs as independent actors of good governance and development in their own right.

Civil Society Organisations are vital to the attainment of human rights, the rule of law, accountability, democracy, peace and stability in the partner countries, and are key partners in devising and implementing policies and programmes that meet people’s needs, including humanitarian needs, reduce inequalities, realise rights and deliver inclusive services and fulfil the central commitment of the 2030 Agenda to leave no one behind.

Civil Society is a vital actor for conflict prevention, resilience, peace and security in fragile and/or conflict-affected contexts and are furthermore often the basis of resilience at community level, and vital partners in risk reduction as well as in response to crisis.

Objectives and Priority Issues

The aim is to contribute to an inclusive, participatory, empowered, and independent civil society and democratic space in partner countries; and an inclusive and open dialogue with and between Civil Society Organisations.

The specific objectives of this call for proposals are:

  • Lot 1: Strengthening capacities of local CSOs’ to engage in policy dialogue at national level and in dialogue, implementation and monitoring of EU and national development plans and programmes, uphold and promote an enabling environment in the Republic of Moldova
  • Lot 2: Strengthening capacities of local CSOs to engage in gender equality and youth inclusion and strengthened capacity of local women’s and youth partner CSOs
  • Lot 3: Strengthening capacities of local CSOs to engage in home affairs, security and migration in view to enhance dialogue between civil society and national authorities as well as between national authorities and citizens.


  • The priorities of this call for proposals are support to civil society organisations, Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) reform agenda, and gender equality.
  • All actions should be gender sensitive and rights-based. The actions should address crosscutting issues related to gender-equality, environmental practices, inclusion of people with disabilities and minority groups.

Funding Information

  • The overall indicative amount made available under this call for proposals is EUR 5,500,000. The contracting authority reserves the right not to award all available funds.

Indicative allocation of funds by lot:

  • Lot 1: minimum amount: EUR 2,900,000; maximum amount: EUR 3,000,000
  • Lot 2: minimum amount: EUR 1,900,000; maximum amount: EUR 2,000,000, subject to the adoption of the general budget of the European Union for 2024
  • Lot 3: minimum amount: EUR 490,000; maximum amount: EUR 500,000
  • Any grant requested under this call for proposals must fall between the following minimum and maximum percentages of total eligible costs of the action:
  • Minimum percentage: 50 % of the total eligible costs of the action.
  • Maximum percentage: 95 % of the total eligible costs of the action.

Types of activity

  • The following types of activities may be financed under this call. However, the lists are not exhaustive.

LOT 1:

  • Initiating and contributing to national policy dialogue on civil society and civil society contribution to governance and development;
  • Enabling civil society participation in and contribution to policy dialogue and decision-making processes at all levels;
  • Supporting civil local society contributions to regional and international dialogue fora, processes and platforms;
  • Supporting CSO organisational capacity related to internal governance; programme, project and financial management; advocacy etc.;
  • Supporting CSO sector-specific technical, research, analysis and advocacy capacity;
  • Supporting CSO effectiveness, accountability and transparency;
  • Supporting CSO financial management capacities;
  • Supporting local CSO networks and platforms to promote coordination, collaboration and exchange.
  • Supporting CSOs contribution to actions aimed at preventing, addressing and mitigating risks and vulnerabilities, including those related to conflict, and in building communities resilience in relation to crises and promote peace and conflict prevention in fragile and conflict affected countries;
  • Supporting CSOs capacity to benefit from digital tools in the conduct of advocacy and in the implementation of their daily activities;
  • Support CSOs in raising awareness of public authorities and citizens regarding the possible opportunities and challenges posed by the digital transformation, and support CSOs in advocating for strong policies, legislation and regulatory frameworks aimed at addressing those challenges and harnessing the opportunities of digitalisation, in line with the EU’s human-centric approach;
  • Support CSOs in strengthening digital skills of citizens in order to create an inclusive digital transformation;
  • Supporting CSOs awareness of digital threats as well as their digital security through training and secured digital infrastructure;
  • Support and strengthen CSOs capacity to reduce the digital gender gap and other gaps related to age, disability, location, social and economic status, discrimination and migration/refugee status;
  • Technical and legal support to strengthen CSO partners capacity and ability to uphold, preserve and promote an enabling environment;
  • Support for civil society advocacy related to an enabling environment, including support to strengthen the positive narrative of civil society and counter defamation, hate speech and digital harassment on social media platforms;
  • Support for local and national civil society networks and platforms and civil society participation in multi-stakeholder dialogue fora aimed at strengthening alliances for civil society with other actors including media, private sector, academia etc. including ensuring accessibility of meetings and platforms to enable diverse organisations to participate.

LOT 2:

  • Initiating, contributing to, and supporting policy dialogue on youth and gender equality and women’s rights and enabling the active participation of youth, youth organisations, women and women’s organisations in decision-making processes at all levels;
  • Supporting capacity building and training for youth and women’s organisations, and for CSOs working specifically on youth inclusion and gender equality;
  • Strengthen the rights of young people, including of those more marginalised, such as girls, young with disabilities or belonging to other marginalised groups, and their empowerment and involvement in public affairs, including by promoting their participation in their economy, society, and decision-making, notably through their active engagement in youth organisations;
  • Strengthening the capacity of CSOs to carry out gender-responsive budgeting and planning;
  • Involving men and boys’ associations, women’s organisations, faith-based organisations, youth organisations, and media in the transformative process of engendering social change, in particular by challenging stereotypes.

LOT 3:

  • Initiating, contributing to, and supporting policy dialogue on security, migration and enabling the active participation of organisations, in decision-making processes at all levels;
  • Supporting where needed capacity building and training for CSOs working specifically on rule of law, security and reform agenda;
  • Supporting the conduct of survey, studies, dialogues with different partners;
  • Monitoring, supervising and evaluating the implementation of the reforms and activities laid out in both the enlargement process and the implementation of the strategy MIA;
  • Ensuring transparency and enhancing public accountability in the framework of the implementation of the reforms and activities;
  • Organising public roundtables and other consultations in relation to the reform and MIA daily activities with citizens and civil society organisations;
  • Developing policy analysis with recommendations for a successor documents for the Sectorial Development Programmes, based on international good practices with the engagement of the civil society/citizens;
  • Carrying out outreach/communication related to the reform and MIA activities to citizens in their communities, particularly in the local language;
  • Concerning abovementioned activities, pilots that would inform policymaking and contribute to enhancing the existing co-ordination mechanisms between the competent public authorities and civil society, are encouraged.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Lead applicant

In order to be eligible for a grant, the lead applicant must:

  • be a legal person and
  • be non-profit-making and
  • be a specific type of organisation such as: non-governmental organisation, international (inter-governmental) organisation as defined by Article 156 of the EU Financial Regulation
  • be established in a Member State of the European Union or Republic of Moldova or any other eligible countries as stipulated in the basic act NDICI-GE This obligation does not apply to international organisations
  • be directly responsible for the preparation and management of the action with the co-applicant(s) and affiliated entity(ies), not acting as an intermediary


  • The lead applicant must act with at least 2 co-applicants.
  • Co-applicants participate in designing and implementing the action, and the costs they incur are eligible in the same way as those incurred by the lead applicant.
  • Co-applicants must satisfy the eligibility criteria as applicable to the lead applicant himself.

Affiliated Entities

  • The lead applicant and its co-applicants may act with affiliated entity(ies).
  • Only the following entities may be considered as affiliated entities to the lead applicant and/or to co-applicant(s):
  • Only entities having a structural link with the applicants (i.e. the lead applicant or a co-applicant), in particular a legal or capital link.
  • This structural link encompasses mainly two notions:
  • Control on the annual financial statements, consolidated financial statements and related reports of certain types of undertakings:
  • Entities directly or indirectly controlled by the applicant (daughter companies or first-tier subsidiaries). They may also be entities controlled by an entity controlled by the applicant (granddaughter companies or second-tier subsidiaries) and the same applies to further tiers of control;
  • Entities directly or indirectly controlling the applicant (parent companies). Likewise, they may be entities controlling an entity controlling the applicant;
  • Entities under the same direct or indirect control as the applicant (sister companies).
  • Membership, i.e. the applicant is legally defined as a e.g. network, federation, association in which the proposed affiliated entities also participate or the applicant participates in the same entity (e.g. network, federation, association,) as the proposed affiliated entities