What is the Agency for the Support of Civil Society (ASCS)?
ASCS is a public, budgetary central institution and operates for the fulfillment of the mission and its objectives, in accordance with Law No. 10093 dated 09.03.2009.
The mission of the Agency for Support of Civil Society is to promote, through financial assistance, the sustainable development of civil society and the creation of favorable conditions for civic initiatives to the benefit and in the interest of the public, in accordance with Article 4 of the aforementioned law, and with the priorities and strategies of the government program, according to the respective field.
What are the forms of support the ASCS offers to fulfill its mission?
The agency offers various forms of grant funding:
Grant funding for projects: support for projects that include specific activities under the conditions stated in the call for project proposals.
Grant funding for institutional support: strategic investment given to organizations whose development is important for:
The increase of the sustainability of civil society.
And as a contribution to improving the capacity of civil society organizations in Albania.
Support is given based on an open and competitive process.
Institutional support can take the form of:
long-term grants for specific activities, the purpose of which is to improve the overall situation of all non-profit organizations in Albania (including the improvement of legislation, the application of new approaches to fundraising, capacity building activities for the sector, etc..),
grants to organizations whose activity is important for the existence of an independent civil society, including human rights groups, monitoring/watchdog organizations, etc.
Grant funding for individual support: support provided to individuals for:
Research/scholarship, participation in international conferences and other activities related to the development of civil society, if they bring results in Albania. Grant funding for these purposes may not exceed 3% of the annual budget accorded to the institution in each fiscal year.
What is the grant?
In accordance with paragraph 3 of Article 3 of Law 10093/2009, “Grant” is a specified amount of the fund for the support of civil society, stated in the bidding documents, during a specific procedure that is given without any beneficial interest to the competing subject by the funding authority during a specific procedure, in accordance with the criteria established by this law.
Who are classified as potential applicants for participation in the call for competition?
Depending on the forms of grant funding mentioned in the answer to the second question above, there are two categories of applicants:
Non-profit organization established and active in Albania.
Individuals, whose activity is related to the development of civil society.
Can another public institution, local or central, apply for grant support?
No, local or central level public institutions cannot be applicants for support by grants from ASCS. But participating NGOs or individuals may include them as partner organizations that contribute with their resources or are beneficiaries of the project.
How to apply and benefit from ASCS grants?
ASCS uses open and transparent competition procedures to the public, for each of the forms of grants (referred to in the answer to the second question above). The launch of these procedures is preceded by a public announcement of the Call for participation in the competition, on the website of the Institution and by the publication of the relevant notice in at least 3 of the national newspapers with larger daily circulation.
For each call published, ASCS issues relevant guidelines, rules and criteria for participation in the competition, for which each applicant should be directed to make a preliminary self-assessment according to guidelines published in the official website.
I represent a new NGO and have not yet received the NIPT number. Can I apply for grants to the ASCS?
No, prior registration and the issuance by the tax authorities of a NIPT number for each participating NGO in a call for competition is an absolute condition. In addition, in Calls already organized by the institution, priority has always been given to NGOs with active activities in recent years.
What kind of activities are not funded or excluded from participation in the Calls for competition?
Agency does not support projects, which are financed from other State budget lines and create overlapping.
Organizations that have an ongoing project supported by the Agency are not eligible to apply before completing and submitting the final report of this project.
Exempt from grant funding support are those draft proposals aiming to secure:
Benefits for the beneficiary subject arising out of the scope of the project funded by the ASCS;
Support to political parties;
Donations for charity issues;
Medical treatment or operations abroad.
Can I apply as an NGO with more than one NGO draft proposal on a particular Call?
Yes, you can apply with more than one project proposal to a certain Call, but keep in mind please that the ASCS does not finance more than once the same NGO in one competition procedure. This means that in case of qualification, you can be proclaimed a winner for one of the draft proposals with which you participated in a Call.
I represent an NGO founded as a membership association that is based on voluntary activities. Can I apply for grants to the ASCS?
You are welcome as all other NGOs to apply in conformity with the terms and conditions stated in certain Calls, as well as taking into account the specifics of the tax liability status that membership associations have.