Eurodiaconia has been working closely with the European Commission to see how social service providers can be supported at this time of the pandemic. One of the key areas we have been discussing is access to EU funds. As a result of this work with other partners, the European Commission will hold an online webinar on Wednesday the 3rd o June from 10 am – 12 noon titled “Task Force/Help Desk on support to social servicesto respond to Covid-19 crisis”.
The European Commission is mobilizing all means to face the challenges brought by the COVID-19 outbreak. One of the measures put in place is the Coronavirus Response Investment Initiative (CRII and CRII Plus) which seeks to re-direct unspent EU Structural Funds to national, regional & local communities fighting COVID-19.
The CRII has a fundamental role to play in addressing the impact of the pandemic in social services across the EU. Due to the COVID-19, some social services have been forced to close while many of them have swiftly adapted to ensure care and support within the current circumstances and rules (social distancing, etc.). The CRII foresees the adaptation of the ESIF rules to respond to this situation but there is still a lot of uncertainty on how these rules work and especially how social services can benefit from the new flexibility and the opening of new funding opportunities.
This webinar is bringing together all relevant actors at national and European levels– EC, Managing Authorities, service providers and organisations representing social services users´- to engage in a constructive dialogue and exchange of innovative ideas on how to use the CRII to ensure the continuity and quality of care and support services. Inspired by the Partnership Principle, this activity is meant to be the starting of stable and fruitful cooperation to jointly plan and design the ESIF funding opportunities addressing both the short and long term challenges of social services across the EU.
It is very important that we have as many social service providers present in the webinar to show the needs of the sector and so you can have our main questions answered.
We would also like the webinar to address the issues social service providers have and to that, we are trying to gather key information from them in advance. With our other partners such as FEANTSA, Caritas Europa, EASPD, and others we are putting together an overview of the various projects and activities that need to be funded and to that end we would like to ask social service providers to answer 2 quick questions.