EU grants for villages

Whats it like? What to expect? How does it work? Questions and answers here about 'any' aspect of....'the good life'!

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Moscow_Wolf
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Postby Moscow_Wolf » Mon Nov 07, 2011 12:11 pm

Just wondering if ANYONE on here has been able to receive any form of EU Grant or Loan for anything relating to village life?

I am reading on property advertising links that Brussels is giving 'grants' for growing Walnuts, Almonds and keeping Bees (the latter I know have received funds, but how they got it, I don't know).

A neighbour who is relatively poor (but obviously clever) has just had a whole host of solar panels erected on his land and is now awaiting the connection to EVN who will pay ex amount of Stotinki per Kilowatt.

All I can find out is that the project was 'passed' some years ago, but the EU closed the purse strings for a while, but now it appears to be flowing again and the neighbour got the project done!

I must admit, I'm jealous as I would love to do something constructive with the aid of some EU coffers. I've read page after page of EU websites and am no closer to understanding how simple village folk such as myself can get access to it or, better still, find out what they're prepared to give grants for.

Any assistance greatly appreciated.

Moscow 'Not Dipping His Bread In' Wolf.

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qwerty
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Postby qwerty » Mon Nov 07, 2011 4:04 pm

Hi Wolfie,

I too wonder about these things, I'm doing the bee thing and also have walnut trees on my land already, but so far no one from Brussels has knocked on my gate, perhaps its all just urban myths about EU handouts, we've had too many years of brain washing by the tabloid press!!

I know bulgariadirect feature EU grants in their land advertising,I am on the look out for some land myself but I want it near my village and theirs has all been down South so far, perhaps its worth a cheeky phone call to find out how one goes about claiming these things....How cheeky do you feel Mr.Wolf!!

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truckyboy
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Postby truckyboy » Mon Nov 07, 2011 4:06 pm

So what your basically asking is for freebies, and at tax payers expense.
If you live in a village ( doesnt matter where ) and if you have a building that needs renovation, i suggest you start a collection, ask local builders i to help, and bobs your uncle. If you need to tart up the village, with seats, and nice flowers, make them your self, and grow the flowers.
On my trip this year through romania, i must confess that the villages have all been tidied up, and a credit to them, must say it left bulgaria in the shade, it seemed that they are taking great pride in being a member of the euro club, unlike bg, who couldnt care less where the grass grows, pavements, central reservations, etc, etc, with that mindset, expect no changes for a few years, and remember the old saying, `if you want something doing, do it yourself`

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qwerty
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Re: grants

Postby qwerty » Mon Nov 07, 2011 4:29 pm

truckyboy wrote: `if you want something doing, do it yourself`


Thats kinda what I've been doing so far, I give buckets full of walnuts to my neighbours cos I dont know what the hell to do with them all.

The Bees I'm kinda doing myself at the moment with help from my neighbours, It would be nice though to have some money thrown over the garden wall (Isnt that how the EU works.) BUT then there might be all sorts of rules and regulations that one must comply with...Its never simple is it!!

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grasshopper
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Postby grasshopper » Mon Nov 07, 2011 5:28 pm

a young bulgarian couple i know got a very nice grant for planting over 350 walnut trees but you must research as there strict guidelines.

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gimlet
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Postby gimlet » Mon Nov 07, 2011 6:41 pm

There are companies that organise getting EU grants. They're probably the only people who are up to speed on it.

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qwerty
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Postby qwerty » Mon Nov 07, 2011 7:05 pm

gimlet wrote:There are companies that organise getting EU grants. They're probably the only people who are up to speed on it.


Ahhh, thats the catch then, you have to "pay to play".....I know from my years in Turkey, from friends that worked in construction until they went back to being farmers, and there were indeed grants being thrust upon people.

The fees/costs of obtaining the grants far outweighed the grant itself but you only found that out a good way in to your application, people then abandoned their claims and the fees paid to the "fix it" companies were not refundable!!

Thats Turkey of course, not saying it would be the same here in BG.

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Postby Mat » Mon Nov 07, 2011 7:16 pm

There are companies who make applications on your behalf - I have a client who charges something in the order of 6000 leva for this. So they are only an option if you are a larger or more commercially orientated operator. EU agricultural assistance is designed to support professional farmers and encourage those more marginal operators to leave the industry. Thus although there might be some money around if you have say 100+ hives, any less than that and you are likely to struggle. Go to www.eufunds.bg and look and the rural development OP where you will find everything you need to know, in English.

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Postby qwerty » Mon Nov 07, 2011 7:38 pm

Mat wrote:There are companies who make applications on your behalf - I have a client who charges something in the order of 6000 leva for this. So they are only an option if you are a larger or more commercially orientated operator. EU agricultural assistance is designed to support professional farmers and encourage those more marginal operators to leave the industry. Thus although there might be some money around if you have say 100+ hives, any less than that and you are likely to struggle. Go to www.eufunds.bg and look and the rural development OP where you will find everything you need to know, in English.


Thanks very much for the info Mat, its just for the big boys then, my neighbour whos teaching me Bees used to produce 2 tons a year from 35 boxes, he knows about the EU grants etc but never applied for anything and with it costing 6k up front I can see why :lol:

He's retiring now and I'm taking over his hives slowly as I gain experience.

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Postby Simonita » Mon Nov 07, 2011 9:07 pm

qwerty wrote:
gimlet wrote:There are companies that organise getting EU grants. They're probably the only people who are up to speed on it.


Ahhh, thats the catch then, you have to "pay to play".....I know from my years in Turkey, from friends that worked in construction until they went back to being farmers, and there were indeed grants being thrust upon people.

The fees/costs of obtaining the grants far outweighed the grant itself but you only found that out a good way in to your application, people then abandoned their claims and the fees paid to the "fix it" companies were not refundable!!


That's not quite right. In theory anyone eligible can apply by responding to a Call for Proposals/ITT. There are several "live" Calls on the eufunds.bg website at present. In practice, people sometimes choose to pay professional "bid writers" in the belief that someone who has extensive experience of putting proposals together will stand more chance of success than an amateur. When I was involved in the assessment of bids for ESF funding years ago, it was relatively easy to spot the work of professional bid writers, and I wouldn't say that they were more successful overall. But it's a bit like private education - some people don't think that you can get anything of worth without forking out.

One of the current Calls is for improvements to water and waste water infrastructure. There is certainly a need for this in our village. Will we feature in a bid put forward by a dedicated fund-chasing team in the Obstima? I'm not holding my breath. I certainly wouldn't mind paying an extra 50 stots danuk to fund the setting up of such a team.


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