Between the 25th and 27th of October, a monitoring visit at the end of the 14 month pilot phase concluded that the Slovak-Balkan Public Policy Fund (the Fund) has proved to be a successful support model for boosting the advocacy skills of the organizations in Albania, Macedonia and Montenegro. The monitoring visit included meetings of representatives from Pontis and BCSDN with state officials and other stakeholders targeted with the policy work of the grantees as well as the informal meeting with Macedonian grantees. The meetings showed tangible results from the policy work, such as: The Macedonian Energy Regulatory Commission presented the preparation of the new energy bills which take into account the recommendations of the Consumers Organization Macedonia (COM); Front 21/42 shared the 2 amendments on the IPPC directive now directly incorporated on the new law on Environment. This immediate impact was also noticed in Brussels where for example COM started the membership procedure with ANEC and where Montenegrin CSOs met with the MEP Tannock, rapporteur for Montenegro in the EP for the first time, meeting that will result in a first larger exchange with other CSOs in Podgorica in November.
The Slovak Balkan Public Policy Fund Programme (SBPPF) was implemented by the Balkan Civil Society Development Network in cooperation with Pontis Foundation from Slovakia and was supported by SlovakAid. The programme was implemented since September 2011 till October 2012. After the publication of the policy papers and the national advocacy plan of the organization were implemented, a study visit was organized for 4 of the organizations.