What has been the most significant contribution of the National Steering Committee (NSC)?
"Participation in the NSC built capacity of its members, among which were representatives of state institutions who reviewed and evaluated projects in the field of environmental protection, biodiversity conservation and good agricultural practices. This is of key importance for Bulgaria which is challenged to absorb substantial EU funds. The NSC served as a venue for building partnerships among stakeholders – state institutions, local authorities, NGOs and the scientific community. We believe together, we managed to select the best 108 proposals of over 290 submitted ideas. This is an excellent example of bringing professionals together to work voluntarily for a common cause – global environmental benefits via local actions. "
In your view, what is the most unique aspect of SGP?
"SGP achieves results with a friendly approach to grantees. The programme has an easily understandable guidance and non-discriminatory project approval process. Among the unique aspects of SGP is supporting community-based organizations to develop and implement projects – something that is allowed only under a few donor programmes. The entire SGP Country Programme Strategy is adapted to country conditions and is based on consultation with different local stakeholder groups. "