‘EU Funds in Malta’ conference

Article written by Duncan Barry – Executive, MEUSAC
Published in The Malta Independent – 12.12.19

MEUSAC organised a conference about EU funds in Malta, which focused on providing information on the way forward for EU funding through both a technical and a practical perspective, and to inform the target groups of the event about the main funding opportunities available to them during the last year of the current programming period.

Speaking in front of a packed hall, MEUSAC Head Mandy Falzon started off by citing a number of success stories involving citizens as a result of EU funds. MEUSAC has helped organisations garner some €55 million in funds since 2008 after it stepped in to help these organisations tap into and apply for funds for their projects.

Minister for European Affairs and Equality Edward Zammit Lewis followed by emphasising the fact that the Ministry will be doing more to help entities who do not have enough resources and funds to get expert advice to apply for funds. He also lauded MEUSAC for its work in assisting organisations apply for funds.

Parliamentary Secretary for European Funds and Social Dialogue Aaron Farrugia called on organisations and businesses to think outside the box and emerge with more ideas or follow best practices of other countries while also highlighting that business plans are drawn up in a bid to apply for EU funds for their projects.

Director of EU funds at MEUSAC Darren Grasso spoke about the fact that EU funds help impact all citizens in a good way through an array of programmes.  He also mentioned the training sessions organised by MEUSAC on project development and writing. This, in itself, is vital for organisation representatives to attend as it helps them to get a good grasp on how to develop their project ideas.

A panel discussion was also held comprising of representatives of organisations that turned to MEUSAC for EU funding-related assistance, termed as success stories. The representatives of the Żejtun Local Council, Vets on Wheels and Hospice Malta gave an overview of their success story. Hospice, for instance, is working on an infrastructural project in Sta Venera to widen its free services for patients with terminal illnesses who require palliative care, having described MEUSAC’s support in the application process as ‘priceless’.

During the discussion, it emerged that a good application for funds depends on a detailed plan organisations applying for the funds should have, a plan with clear objectives. It is vital that projects are of benefit to society and the EU itself as well. It also emerged that those applying for funds should start off with small projects until they gain more experience and get contacts.

Representatives of various businesses, NGOs, local councils and Government entities later participated in workshops on the current EU funding opportunities available.

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