About EU PROGRES
1. Is participation of municipalities in EU PROGRES activities obligatory?
Participation of municipalities in all activities is voluntary. However, when municipalities receive EU PROGRES funding or other support they will have an obligation to use received support in a transparent, accountable, efficient and effective way, and in full accordance with the needs of their citizens. This is our main condition.
2. Who makes EU PROGRES team of employees?
EU PROGRES is a team of about 30 people, originating mainly from the South and South West Serbia. We are proud of the fact that domestic experts play a key role in the implementation of the entire Programme.
3. How much funds are allocated for individual municipalities and by which formula?
No funds are allocated in advance to municipalities. Provision of financial, technical or other support to individual municipality will depend on needs and likelihood that a particular activity will achieve desired impact. Most importantly, the municipalities which show commitment and engagement in majority of EU PROGRES activities and not only in those ‘more interesting’, such as funding of infrastructure projects, will be in a position to attain more significant support and funding. In short, the more work and commitment of municipalities will result in more support from EU PROGRES.
4. Is EU PROGRES an NGO?
EU PROGRES is a partnership programme, funded by the European Union, the Government of Switzerland and the Government of Serbia, and implemented by United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) and 25 participating municipalities. So, EU PROGRES is not an NGO, but rather a development programme funded by the international donors and implemented in partnership, in the first place, with participating municipalities, and with an ultimate goal to improve the quality of citizens’ living conditions.
5. Will bigger municipalities have advantage over smaller municipalities in terms of EU PROGRES support?
Although bigger municipalities, generally, have stronger capacities and are able to prepare more good quality project proposals than smaller municipalities, EU PROGRES will ensure, through establishment of appropriate criteria, fair and even distribution of support, as much as possible. For example, individual municipalities will be able to win funding for implementation of only one local infrastructure project during the one public call for proposals, no matter if they submitted more than one good project. Another example is establishment of geographical criteria – during distribution of support, EU PROGRES will strive to ensure fair geographic distribution of support.
6. Where are your offices?
EU PROGRES has project offices in Novi Pazar and Prokuplje and a sub-office in Vranje. The Programme is implemented in the field, through direct cooperation with municipalities, civil society and local community. We believe this is a special quality in our approach – only in the field and in every day communication with our partners and citizens we can understand their needs.
7. Do you support any political option?
EU PROGRES is a development programme and does not support any political option at any time under any circumstances. The Programme cooperates with representatives elected by the citizens in 25 participating municipalities. Our objectives are not political – EU PROGRES will work, in accordance with strategic framework set by the Serbian Government, to improve governance, infrastructure, and quality of municipal services and to promote area potentials. Our ultimate objective is better life of the people in the South and South West Serbia, and our ultimate partners and beneficiaries are citizens, and not political options.
8. What is the percentage of required municipal financial contribution?
Municipalities will be required to provide minimum 10% co-funding for the grants awarded for implementation of municipal infrastructure projects. Co-funding will be also expected in other schemes considering provision of grants to municipalities.
9. What is the value of projects that may be funded under EU PROGRES?
There is no straightforward answer to this question. EU PROGRES includes a broad range of activities and will provide co-funding for implementation of projects worth from several thousand EUR up to several million EUR. For example, maximum value of municipal infrastructure proposals is 100,000 EUR while maximum value of Citizens Involvement Fund projects is 20,000 EUR. Intermunicipal projects can be funded for more than 100,000 EUR but it depends on the partnership and co funding arrangements.
10. Who can apply for job with EU PROGRES?
All job advertisements are public and announced both on EU PROGRES website at www.progresprogram.org and on UNDP Serbia website at www.undp.org.rs. In addition, job vacancies are advertised in relevant national newspapers, such as Blic and Politika. EU PROGRES is an equal opportunity employer and we strongly encourage female candidates to apply. All candidates who meet the required criteria have a chance to be employed.
11. What is Programme duration?
EU PROGRES has started in July 2010 and will last until June 2013.