The European Solidarity Corps Programme has recently been renovated by the European Commission over the 2021-2027 period. The news coming with it are part of the European Solidarity Corps Guide, the official guide available since April 15th 2021 in English.
Prior to read any further, you can check out the news on the ESC Internship & Jobs not being renovated or have a look at a general evaluation on the European Solidarity Corps Programme.
Quality Label of the Lead Organisation
The Quality Label as Lead Organisation is now mandatory to lead an ESC project.
Since its beginning, back in 2018, the European Solidarity Corps Programme has been allowing the more experienced organisations to apply for the “Volunteering Partnership”. Such feature consisted in submitting a 3-years plan about the ESC activities the organisation would had been in charge of, over that time. After approval, the organisations faced just one deadline per year to ask for funding to the activities to carry out on the following year. Such activities had to resonate with the ones on the 3-years plan. As a consequence, on the contributions’ request you could have found less boxes to fill out, as the qualitative selection happen backwards on the initial phase.
What was optional in the two-years period 2018-2020, is now the only way forward to be applicant organisation for ESC projects. Therefore, what was once only for bigger organisations, is now is the one-option over either individual volunteering projects and volunteering teams.
Such transformation comes from the new Quality Label: the one of the Lead Organisation, called “ESC50”.
The New Procedure
To submit your request for contributions to fund ESC volunteering projects and volunteering teams is now necessary, firstly, to apply for the Quality Label ESC50. As a consequence, there is no need to own the accreditation before the deadline, but just to have submitted the request for accreditation
The further step is to proceed with the funding request through the code ESC51.
Such procedure is necessary for ESC volunteering projects and volunteering teams, contrary to the Solidarity Projects (no accreditation requested).
Main features of the Quality Label as Lead Organisation
To submit the request ESC50, the applying organisation has to deliver a request similar to the one of the Erasmus+ accreditation. Similarly, the submission provides a multi-year plan of activities. It can cover from a minimum of 3 to a maximum of 7 years.
The accreditation refers to the organisation in general, covering the management of volunteering activities hosted by the requesting organisation or coordinating activities by the hosting organisations.
As such, the new accreditation allows to be Lead Organisation being at the same time Host and Coordinating Organisation (as provided by the old European Voluntary Service). The Lead Organisation can request contributions with reference to hosting mobility and coordination in its country, but also to outgoing mobility and coordination to send volunteers abroad.
How To Get the Accreditation as Lead Organisation
A tricky feature is surely the Standard Activities description.
This box needs to be filled out with the volunteering activities carried out by the volunteers hosted by the organisation itself. In other words, this is the room for activities of incoming mobility and not the coordinating activities upon other organisations (both in your country and abroad). Keep an eye on that, the queries on such activities are much and complex. Indeed, such queries replicate the accreditation process for the quality label as hosting entity. Pay extreme attention to this section, as it represents the prior evaluation. After that, all the organisations will have a multi-year plan. And once received the Quality Label, they won’t have to write articulate projects.