Norwegian Financial Mechanism Programme 2009–2014
The Norway Grants represent €800 million in funding allocated to Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Cyprus, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, and Slovenia between 2009 and 2014.
The funding backs programmes and projects in priority areas agreed with each country. Green industry innovation, carbon capture and storage, research and scholarships, decent work and social dialogue, public health and gender equality, judicial capacity building and combating cross border crime all feature as key areas of support.
The Norwegian Financial Mechanism Programme 2009–2014 for Slovenia includes two programme areas:
• “Public Health Initiatives” and
• “Mainstreaming Gender Equality and Promoting Work-Life Balance”.
The objectives of the programme for both programme areas are:
• improved public health,
• reduced health inequalities,
• gender equality,
• work-life balance promoted.
The Programme will contribute to the achievement of objectives with development and testing of new innovative approaches/models/interventions that build on local partnerships between non-governmental organizations, public institutions and local communities. At the national level the programme will also focus on capacity building and training of public professionals in collaboration with the Norwegian National Institute of Public Health from Oslo (NIPH).
The same approach is used for both programme areas: focus of interventions to only 3 priority areas, capacity building in cooperation with partners from the donor state and achieving sustainability of the programme through partnership. By focusing on few priority areas and key target groups, the programme funds are concentrated and can influence more significantly the development of the capacity at the local, regional and national level in a relatively short period.
In the field of Public Health Initiatives the programme will focus on reducing inequalities among user groups, prevention and reduction of life-style related diseases and improving mental health services in the Republic of Slovenia. A pre-defined project will be implemented by the Institute of Public Health of the Republic of Slovenia in the area of public health The project in the programme area Public Health Initiatives will focus on integrated models of health protection through a life-cycle approach, improve access to prevention, treatment and care system, strengthen capacity and enforce inter-sectoral cooperation, in particular in four areas: preventive healthcare for children and adolescents, education in the field of health of pregnant women, children and adolescents, reduction of chronic diseases of work active population as well as on senior citizens programmes.
In the field of Gender Equality and Work-Life Balance the programme aims to raise awareness and promote research on gender equality issues by focusing on challenging unequal power relations between women and men in economic and political decision-making. A pre-defined project implemented by the Ministry of Labour, Family and Social Affairs in the area of equal opportunities will be implemented in the programme area Mainstreaming Gender Equality and Promoting Work-Life Balance. The objective of the project will lie in challenging unequal power relations between men and women and tackling the social imbalances regarding the gender power structure. Sustainable results which will be achieved through gender equality policy may be jeopardised if the structure, which feeds on the stereotypes and prejudices deeply rooted in the men-women worth dichotomy, is not broken.
Two calls for proposals are foreseen under the programmes of the Norwegian Financial Mechanism Programme and the European Economic Area Financial Mechanism Programme to be launched in Autumn 2013. The first call for proposals will make 14.5 million EUR available for several programme areas:
• Conservation and Revitalisation of Cultural and Natural Heritage with the objective to safeguard and conserve cultural and natural heritage for future generations and make it publicly accessible.
• Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services with the objective to halt loss of biodiversity and improve consistency with the environmental legislation (expected outcomes are increased capacity to manage and monitor the Natura 2000 sites effectively, avoided fragmentation of ecosystems, increased awareness of and education in biodiversity and ecosystem services, including awareness of and education in the linkage between biodiversity and climate change, and economic valuation of ecosystems).
• Public Health Initiatives with a view of improving public health and reducing inequalities in health (expected outcomes are reduced inequalities between user groups, reduced or prevented lifestyle-related diseases and improved local capacity for mental health services through establishment of new structures).
The second call for proposals will target small projects in the area of Mainstreaming Gender Equality and Promoting Work-Life Balance. This involves the so-called small grant scheme which will make available a little less than 1 million EUR. The aim of the projects will be to improve the gender equality situation in order to correspond to the equal opportunity policy at the national and European level – equal awareness of, empowerment and participation of both genders in all spheres of life, both public and private. The expected outcomes are awareness raised and research on gender issues, improved balance between work, private and family life, and balanced representation of both genders in decision-making and leading positions in the economy and politics.
The Norwegian Financial Mechanism Programme aims to strengthen bilateral relations between the Kingdom of Norway and the Republic of Slovenia through cooperation with several Norwegian institutions by common programme and project development, implementation, monitoring and evaluation at the national, regional and local levels.