Swiss-Romanian Cooperation Programme

Thematic Fund Civil Society ParticipationThematic Fund Partnership and Expert Fund

In 2010, Switzerland committed supporting Romania in its endeavour of reducing the economic and social disparities existing between Romania and other countries of the European Union, and contribute within Romania to the reduction of economic and social disparities between the dynamic urban centres and the structurally weaker peripheral regions.

The Swiss-Romanian Cooperation Programme (SRCP) is part of a non-refundable aid offered by the Swiss Federal Council to 13 EU member states who joined between 2004 and 2013. Switzerland support is an expression of solidarity with new EU member states and puts the grounds for stable economic and political connections with these countries.

In 2011, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation selected a consortium formed by KEK-CDC Consultants, The Civil Society Development Foundation and the Romanian Environmental Partnership Foundation as the Swiss Intermediate Body for managing and administrating the Partnership and Expert Fund and the Thematic Fund for Civil Society Participation.

Through the two thematic funds a total of 141 projects were implemented with a total value of 23 million CHF. On the one hand, projects have greatly improved the provision of social services, e.g. by implementing a new tool in tele-assistance and home care for the elderly or by raising awareness about public health issues and policies, like breast cancer prevention.

On the other hand, various projects have reached outstanding results in terms of environmental protection, like conserving the dolphin population of the Black Sea, introducing a new bill for Green Public Procurement or by introducing amendments to the law on the administration of green spaces. Other projects were very successful in raising awareness about the importance of conserving traditional fruit varieties or by introducing the selective collection and management of electric and electronic waste.

Additionally, all projects have increased the organisational capacity of the NGOs and the institutions involved. Numerous new strategies and working tools have been developed, enhancing the level of expertise of NGO staff. Programme partners also report an increased capacity for advocacy and policy making, which are crucial for civil society organisations to play an active role in the development of the country.

The Swiss-Romanian Cooperation Programme – Partnership and Expert Fund and Thematic Fund for Civil Society Participation – was guided by the following principles: transparency, social inclusion, equal rights and opportunities, sustainability and environmental protection, proactivity towards all actors involved, subsidiarity and decentralisation.

Switzerland is convinced that successful socio-economic development and stability owes a lot to its pluralistic society, which recognizes and promotes all segment of the population and accepts the diversity of opinions they express. This conviction has motivated Switzerland to support the strengthening of a vibrant civil society, ready to provide important services to society and to actively participate in public decision making, thus promoting sustainable livelihoods, solidarity as well as social and economic cohesion in Europe.