Environmental Investment Programís (EIP) Small Grants Program for NGO Capacity Building (SGP) along the SCP and BTC Pipeline Routes

Project Implementation Period: October 2004 - November 2006

It was a collaborative project of NACRES and Save the Children the aim of which was to expand the capacities of local NGOs, to engage citizens in environmental education programs, and to solve the existed environmental and social problems on the targeted territory (along the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline route).†††

Our organization announced a small grants competition. Within the frames of the Small Grants Program we coordinated environmental researches, conducted trainings for the targeted groups and offered them help during their work on the projects and implementation period. We conducted consultations concerning environmental issues. ††††

The program covered 7 target regions in Samtskhe-Javakheti and Kvemo Kartli: Gardabani, Marneuli, Tsalka, Tetritskaro, Borjomi, Akhaltsikhe, Adigeni. At the programís initial stage, which was dedicated to the preliminary evaluation envisaged by the program, NACRES assessed environmental problems in Kvemo Kartli and Samtskhe-Javakheti. The research was based on rapid participatory assessment (PRA) principles and included the following:

- Survey of environmental literature on the 7 target regions in Samtskhe-Javakheti and Kvemo Kartli;
- Obtaining of additional information on the target regions from environmental organizations registered in Tbilisi;
- Determining the level of activity of these organizations throughout target regions;
- Organization of meetings with local residents in the target regions to identify major environmental problems affecting the population.

As a result of the research, more than fifty different environmental problems were identified in connection with three major ecological resources (biodiversity, soil and water) in the following fields:

- Protected areas;
- Wild species and their habitats (including soil degradation);
- Agricultural biodiversity;
- Hunting and fishing;
- Monitoring of natural resources;
- Biotechnology and bio-security;
- Ecological education, informing the community and fostering public participation in decision-making and implementation processes.

A document detailing the results of the assessment of environmental problems was disseminated throughout all targeted regions.

In the process of evaluating environmental projects, preference was given to projects dealing with the following 4 priorities identified through the assessment of environmental problems:

- Protection and sustainable use of biodiversity;
- Problems of soil degradation;
- Water pollution;
- Waste management. ††

NACRES and Save the Children Federation held trainings for the members of regional advisory committees (RACs) that were elected to discuss the projects. A certain period of time was dedicated to collaboration with Intermediary Support Organizations (ISOs). The chief function of ISOs was to assist other NGOs in the given regions.

28 NGOs were given small grants. NACRES held numerous trainings and workshops based on the specific interests of individual NGOs and worked to help develop project proposals presented by these organizations from an environmental viewpoint. It is noteworthy that through NACRES and Save the Children support some of the NGOs, i.e. Tsalka and Adigeni organizations implemented the environmental projects for the first time.†

For detailed information please contact Kakha Artsivadze: kakha.artsivadze@nacres.org



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