Frequently Asked Questions

When is the application deadline?

EOCA has a TWO stage application process. Firstly, a short application form – no further documentation is needed at this stage. The deadlines for this application stage are 12 midday (BST) (GMT+1) / 13.00 CEST (GMT+2) on 15 June and 12 midday (GMT) / 13.00 CET (GMT+1) on 15 December for our two annual funding rounds.

If your project is then selected to our second stage, we will email you with the full application form and you will have 20 working days to complete this.

If you would like to see the type of questions asked on these application forms before that time, you can download our Example Funding Application Questions document.  Please note, this is NOT in itself an application form and can’t be submitted as such.  Actual questions may vary for each funding round.

Can an application be submitted after the deadline?

NO. We are sorry but no applications will be considered after the deadline has expired. Please do not leave it until last minute to submit your application.

What is an outdoor enthusiast?

EOCA defines an outdoor enthusiast as anyone who visits non-urban ‘wild’ environments, be it to walk, hike, explore, climb, canoe, swim, scuba dive, bird watch etc.

As EOCA is raising money from the European outdoor industry, we feel it is paramount that conservation and restoration work go hand-in-hand with the responsible use of the ‘wild’ areas we all enjoy.

What is a 'wild' space/place/area?

EOCA defines ‘wild’ space/place/area as non-urban environments and ecosystems occurring in as natural a state as possible, given the area’s location and use. This may include for example moorland, hills, mountains, coasts, rivers, forest, grassland, peatland, lake and ocean areas.

What is hands-on conservation?

EOCA defines hands-on conservation as practical, on the ground conservation work, such as tree planting, removal of invasive species, anti poaching measures, habitat restoration etc.

How long should my project last?

We are looking for projects up to THREE years in length (for June applications), and TWO years (for December applications).  Obviously we appreciate that sometimes projects run over, and that is OK, but please plan for no longer than three years. This can also be as part of a much larger, longer running project.

Does EOCA fund social/development projects?

EOCA will consider projects which provide social/development benefits, BUT the primary goal of the project must be to address a conservation issue or concern, with a link to the outdoor enthusiast.

Does EOCA fund research projects?

EOCA will NOT fund projects that involve only research. Projects that involve SOME research may be considered, providing that the project has an impact on a conservation issue, involves hands-on conservation, and has a link to the outdoor enthusiast.

Does EOCA fund educational projects?

EOCA firmly believes that education and communication are paramount to the successful implementation of a conservation project. Applications should therefore involve an aspect of this, and should be aimed at local communities and visitors. HOWEVER, EOCA will NOT fund projects that involve only education; the implementation of a conservation project with a link to the outdoor enthusiast is crucial to our funding.

What details do you expect in the project objectives and what do you mean by 'measurable and time orientated'?

Your objectives must be easily measurable and in a set time frame, for example: ‘number‘ trees to be planted by ‘date‘; ‘number‘ meters of trail to be created/restored by ‘date‘; ‘number‘ workshops to be carried out by ‘date‘; at least ‘number‘ volunteers/locals undertaking ‘project goals’ over ‘number‘ days. These are measureable objectives and outcomes of a project. Something like ‘educate school children about climate change’ is not.

Projects must also be completed and demonstrate a clear and measurable impact between 12 months and 2 years – for December applications – and between 12 months and 3 years for June applications, from the project start date. Additionally, we must be able to measure the progress of a project at the half-way stage when an interim report is required, before further funds are released.

What does EOCA require in a reference?

EOCA requires TWO letters of recommendation from organisations that have provided funding to you in the past and who you would not mind us contacting, if your project is shortlisted. The letters must outline how they have funded you in the past and how they worked with you. Your referees must know you and be able to comment on relevant projects you have implemented, as well as the effectiveness of those projects.
If you are a new organisation, you can provide a reference from someone you have worked with in the past who can verify the work you have undertaken.

Does the application have to be completed in English?

Yes. Due to the many diverse nationalities making up the EOCA funding panel, all applications MUST be written in English. Please also note that files must be saved with English characters/letters only as non-alpha numeric characters are rejected by our system, e.g. accents or punctuation.

Can a budget be submitted in a different currency?

No. All budgets must be in Euros.

How much money can a project apply for?

EOCA will fund a MAXIMUM of €60,000 per project for applications submitted in the June round, and a MAXIMUM of €30,000 per project for those submitted in the December round. Any applications over this amount will not be considered for funding. (The total project budget may be higher if there are other sources of funding.)

Can projects apply for funding if the grant is to be used in conjunction with other funding?

Yes. EOCA will only fund to a maximum of €30,000 – for December applications – or €60,000 – June applications, but we will fund projects of a higher budget if there are other sources of funding. The other sources of funding and the amounts must be detailed in the application.

Will EOCA fund organisational expenses?

EOCA funding will NOT contribute to the core running costs of an organisation (salaries/pensions/insurance) or its general administrative overheads (electricity, heating, stationery etc). However, EOCA will consider some expenses and overheads required for the successful implementation of the project, such as project co-ordinator/volunteer expenses. This will be assessed on a case by case basis.

When will we know if our application has been successful or not?

EOCA will initially send an email confirming safe receipt of your short application. You may then be contacted with any questions we have about your project. We will then contact you if we wish you to complete a full application form and you will be given 20 working days to do this.

Following review of the full applications, EOCA selects the project shortlist and you will be contacted by email to inform you whether your project has been chosen to be on this shortlist. For the June funding round you should expect to hear by the end of September, and for the December funding round you should expect to hear by the end of February.

The shortlisted projects will then progress to the final stages of the selection process, a public vote and a members vote. (Projects on the shortlist are all projects which EOCA would be happy to fund.) These votes will decide which projects on the shortlist will be successful in gaining funding through EOCA. The outcomes of the votes will be known by the end of October (for the June application round) and the end of May (for the December application round).

If we are successful when should our project start, and when do we receive the first tranche of funds?

Your project should only start after you receive the first tranche of funds, which will be released after contracts have been signed and accepted. For the December funding round, the first tranche is usually released around June of the following year, and for the June funding round, around November/December of that year.

If we are successful with our funding application do we need to report back to EOCA on the progress of the project?

Yes, this is a requirement of all projects EOCA supports. EOCA typically funds projects in three stages: 50% first payment, 30% approximately half way through and only after an intermediate report and financial statement has been submitted and accepted, and the final 20% after project completion and acceptance of the final report and financial statement. Further details of EOCA’s requirements are passed on to successful applicants.

Can I resubmit an application if we are not successful?

You can resubmit an application in the next, or a future, funding round. Please refer to EOCA’s ‘Policy on Applying for Funding‘ document.