Closing Conference of the “STRONG CSOs” EU-funded project
17 Oct 2018
The closing conference of the “STRONG CSOs” EU-funded project took place on 16 October 2018 in Yerevan.
The main purpose of the event was to wrap-up the project through presenting its activities and achievements for the whole implementation period: 01.10.2015 – 22.10.2018, as well as the outputs and outcomes of the 17 small projects, sub-granted within the project’s Small Grants Scheme. The “STRONG CSOs” project was one of the first biggest EU-funded projects focused on civil society organisations in terms of building their capacities both in theoretical and practical dimensions. A large scale of capacity building activities (trainings, coaching and individual and/or institutional advice, pro bono consulting, round table discussions, etc), was offered and organised by the Project for the civic sector. Besides, it also included small grants component, which covered the practical dimension of the project. The total budget of the Project (as per contract) was 2,777,745.60 EUR, out of which more than 1,000,000.00 EUR was dedicated to the implementation of the sub-granted projects.
More than 130 people, including representatives of the Delegation of the European Union to Armenia, Embassies, international organisations, “STRONG CSOs” project partners, as well as civil society organisations, including the sub-grantees, participated in the event.
The Deputy Head of the Cooperation Section of the European Union Delegation to Armenia Mr. Gregory Tsouris together with the President of Podlaska Regional Development Foundation (consortium leading partner), “STRONG CSOs” project Grants Manager Mr. Andrzej Parafiniuk delivered welcome speeches at the opening of the conference.
Mr. Andrzej Parafiniuk thanked all the partners and implementers of the project, especially emphasising the beneficiaries and stated, “It is your commitment, the desire to gain knowledge and experience, understanding the goals of our joint action that allowed me to call today a great success without embarrassment”. Then Mr. Gregory Tsouris congratulated the project team and the CSOs involved in the project with the success and added, “We really hope to see most of the CSOs participated in these Small grants in the next rounds of available sub-grants with even more ambitious objectives and outcomes”.
Afterwards Mr Jarek Zarychta, “STRONG CSOs” project Team Leader presented the project components and main outcomes.
Mr. Andrzej Parafiniuk presented the outputs and outcomes of the project’s Small Grants Scheme. As a complementary to his presentation, an exhibition of the materials produced within the sub-granted projects was organised during the event in the venue so that the invitees could see the tangible results of the projects. In addition, 7 randomly selected projects were presented to the audience through live presentations and screening of the set of “Success stories” videos. These 17 projects were implemented by partnerships of 46 civil society organisations all over Armenia. It is estimated that over 55,500 people (2% of Armenian population) were positively affected by these projects outcomes.
Last but not least, findings of the CSOs capacity needs and gaps assessment 2018 and comparative analysis to the outcomes of similar research conducted in 2016 were presented, and the conference was completed with appreciation to the project partners and implementers.
We were happy to hear so many words of appreciation from our beneficiaries. This was indeed the most valuable and meaningful recognition of our work and support.
We would like to express our sincere gratitude once again to all our beneficiaries, including sub-grantees, partner organisations, trainers and experts, the EU Delegation and others for their collaboration, involvement and contribution in the successful implementation of the project. Thanks for being with us during this period.