Following last year’s Financial Support of Third Parties (FSTP) live regional event held by EU TACSO 3 Project in December 2022 in Belgrade, Reactor’s Grants Manager, Ana Azgour, attended the second annual regional gathering in November 2023 in Sarajevo. As before, the event was organized for representatives from CSOs from the Western Balkans and Turkey, with a purpose to discuss progress, new developments, current practices and common issues, as well as exchange experiences and knowledge on successful FSTP practices.

FSTP (sub-granting) is an instrument through which the EU provides funding to one (larger and more experienced) organization, as a main grant applicant, which then in turn does re-granting to smaller CSO’s and grassroot organizations, in order for them to help achieving the objectives of the main action, while at the same time building their capacities. 

The main topics this event covered were as follows:

  • Reflection on the first year of the FSTP Community of Practice
  • Building simplified reporting procedures to enable sub-grantees to easily share their financial and narrative reports
  • Developing an inclusive selection criterion to reach more CSOs with limited capacity and experience
  • Gender analysis in the project/program design and development of gender-sensitive indicators
  • Strengthening the visibility and communication aspects of the grant beneficiaries
  • Monitoring of grant contracts (follow-up to a previous online TACSO training)
  • VAT practices and challenges, and summary of key issues to be presented to contracting authorities
  • Volunteering time and other common issues that arise during sub-granting processes

Furthermore, in the closing session, participants discussed topics that need to be explored further by the FSTP Community of Practice:

  • How to make subgrantees follow the instructions provided
  • How to make evaluation of proposals objective and define good evaluation criteria
  • How to overcome the time gap between payment of the last instalment and approval of the reports submitted by grant beneficiaries 
  • VAT and tax authorities (i.e. training for tax authorities, auditors, VAT for co-financing, EU Delegation precautions for HROs, Challenges from government/how to mitigate tax)
  • How to simplify the whole process from application to reporting
  • How to make communication and visibility more impactful
  • How can FSTP Community of Practice advocate change

The event was attended by around 50 participants from CSOs from the Western Balkans and Turkey region, that are managing the implementation of FSTP projects, as well as representatives from EU delegations from the region and EU TACSO 3 experts.

For further information: TACSO 3 Project – Second Annual FSTP Community of Practice Meeting