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Monday, December 10, 2012 10:00 AM - Tuesday, December 11, 2012 11:30 AM

Sustainable Communities in Central America and the Caribbean Awards Ceremony

The “Sustainable Communities in Central America and the Caribbean Project” funded by the U.S. Permanent Mission to the OAS and implemented by the Department of Sustainable Development.  

 OAS Secretary General José Miguel Insulsa announced the recipients of 14 small grants under the "Sustainable Communities in Central America and the Caribbean Project."

  • The purpose of the project is to strengthen the capacity of civil society organizations and community associations in Central America and the Caribbean to build sustainable communities in the framework of the Energy and Climate Partnership of the Americas (ECPA).
  • In this context, one of the Project components includes awarding  US$50,000 grants on a competitive basis to community associations, academic institutions and non governmental organizations in OAS member countries in Central America and the Caribbean in order to finance community collaborative Sub-projects across four different pillars:
    • Clean Energy and Energy Efficiency
    • Resilience to Natural Hazards
    • Sustainable Transport Solutions
    • Waste management, Recycling (including electronic waste) and Improved Water Resource Management
  • The Department of Sustainable Development has extensive experience in the implementation of small grants programs under the Inter-American Biodiversity Information Network (IABIN) and the Western Hemisphere Migratory Species Initiative (WHMSI), where over 140 small grants were awarded between 2008 and 2012. Evidence demonstrates that small grants are a valuable resource to: i) target small and/or community based organizations, ii) affect social change at the local level and promote community involvement, iii) focus on capacity building and institutional support of beneficiaries iv) serve as seed funds for long term sustainable change, and v) encourage greater dialogue, collaboration and exchange of experiences and lessons learned between different institutions in the region.
  • The Department of Sustainable Development issued a Request for Proposals (RfP) and received over 60 high-quality proposals from 14 different countries. With the assistance from a technical review panel made up of specialized international organizations and US Government agencies (see annex 1) as well as civil society organizations with technical expertise in urban development, 14 proposals were selected to support sustainable development at the community level.
  • Selecting the winning proposals was not an easy task for the technical review panel as they covered a great range of priority areas and targeted significant needs in OAS Member States. Proposals were selected based on: i) potential for innovation and technical approach, ii) project relevance as a direct response to a specific local need, iii) intended impact including the projects’ potential to improve local development patterns, iv) scope and inclusiveness of beneficiaries and stakeholders v) the likelihood of significant community improvements and the ability of the project to serve as a model or be replicated in communities with similar needs.