“Although Ukraine adopted most of the European legislation to prevent industrial air pollution recently, all work is still ahead. The civic initiatives play a key role in promoting real changes at local and regional levels. We would like to encourage them especially in enforcing strong Regional and Municipal Emission Reduction Plans, participation in decision-making and using legal tools to protect environment and human health,“ explains Marcela Cernochova, the project coordinator from Arnika.
Who can receive the funds?
The Small Grants Program is intended for civic initiatives from any region of Ukraine. It is designed primarily for small non-governmental organizations and initiatives that are created on a voluntary basis. Brand new organizations or initiatives can also be supported and one applicant can submit several project ideas. Outside of the grant program, it is also possible to apply to receive EcoCity monitoring station, which is another way organizers want to support the environmental initiatives.
“The small grant helped us work with town officials and the most polluting industries. Thanks to the support of experts and the possibility to organize writing competition, we were able to increase our influence on the public and carry out a fundraising campaign for the development of civic air pollution monitoring system. We organized a hackathon of ideas for the towns's sustainable development strategy and created an online catalogue of environmentally responsible businesses. But the residents remember the most a series “Workshop to create the town” - attended by more than 150 people,” said Alina Mashenko, coordinator of the “Nikopol Clean Air Monitor” - one of the initiatives supported by the Small Grants Program in 2020.
In 2020, in total 6 local projects received funding from the Small Grants Program - 15 stations of public air monitoring from EcoCity were installed, about 10,000 people were reached through information campaigns and broadcasts, 26 webinars and meetings were held and about 50 applications and documents to the authorities were prepared.
Small grants are provided by Arnika (Czechia) and FreeArduino (Ivano-Frankivsk) within the Clean Air for Ukraine Project, funded by the Transition Promotion Program of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic and the National Endowment for Democracy (USA).