What is the most unique aspect of SGP?
"The implementation of Small Grants Program (SGP) is decentralized and country driven. SGP complements the regular and medium-sized GEF-funded project by providing a window for the direct participation of NGOs, local communities, and other grassroots organizations. GEF SGP is rooted in the belief that global environmental problems can only be addressed adequately if local people are involved, and that with small amounts of funding, local communities can undertake activities, which will make a significant difference in their lives and their environment. The Small Grants Program is working at the local level to combat the global environmental problems and achieve more sustainable livelihoods, in addition to global environmental benefits."
What is the most significant contribution of the National Steering Committee (NSC)?
"The National Steering Committee (NSC), the central element of SGP, is responsible for the review, selection and approval of projects, and for ensuring their technical and substantive quality. The NSC comprises representatives from local NGOs, government, academic and scientific institutions, UNDP country office, co-funding donors, government GEF Operational Focal Point and the private sector.
The NSC develops the country program strategy, considers whether is feasible and meets SGP criteria, and examines what kind of technical support is needed for implementation. The NSC is responsible for final approval of grants, helps undertake site visits and review, ensures monitoring and evaluation and contributes to developing and implementing strategies for country program sustainability.
Government membership of NSCs and collaboration with local communities helps highlight areas requiring policy change at the local and national levels and influence decision-making process. The objectivity, transparency and credibility of the NSC are of paramount importance to the success of the country program, and maintaining good relations among stakeholders."