On March 12, 2010, the World Bank offices in Kazakhstan held a workshop for potential grant seekers under the Social Development Civil Society Fund (CSF). For the first time this workshop was conducted in a videoconference format and technically supported by the University of International Business.
This event was meant for potential grant seekers 2010 to get them acquainted with the goals of the CSF grant program, selection criteria for funding and practical experience of the past years. The key objective in organizing preparatory workshops under the grant program is to promote better quality of grant applications.
Facilities of the host university allowed connecting via videoconference 6 cities of Kazakhstan and record number of participants – about 100 nongovernmental organizations, including those from rural areas and remote towns. In total, the workshop was attended by representatives of civil society organizations from 15 locations in Kazakhstan, including Astana, Almaty, Ust-Kamenogorsk, Kostanay, Aktobe, Shymkent, Karaganda, Pavlodar, Taldykorgan, Kyzylorda, Atbasar cities.
The peculiarity of this workshop was participation of the last year (2009) grant program winners who shared their experience in writing grant applications and implementation of the selected projects. Besides, in response to the increased interest of the participants to the workshop’s subject, at least half of the videoconference time was devoted to questions and answers. Such interactive mode was positively accepted by the audience in all cities.
The workshop was conducted after announcement of the 2010 round of the CSF grant program during the period of submitting grant applications so that NGOs would have time to adjust their preparations in compliance with the knowledge gained. It should increase their chances to become winners in 2010.
Rather modest amount of financing allocated under the CSF grant program assumes limited number of winners (around 5 – 9 organizations a year) and therefore strong competition. Nevertheless, according to the feedback aired by the program’s 2009 grantees, the CSF grant program is less bureaucratic and simpler in terms of application submission and consideration procedures compared to other donors’ programs. Among other merits of the CSF grant program were named responsiveness and attention of the local CSF team both towards potential applicants and winners.
The World Bank expresses its gratitude to the nongovernmental organizations who rendered their assistance in organizing this workshop.
- Grant Program for civil society organizations was launched by the World Bank in 1983
- In Kazakhstan it has been since 2000
- 991 grant applications were submitted and considered during 10 years
- 83 projects were supported for the total amount of about USD 378,000.