CAP LIFE LAT
Capacity Building for the LIFE Programme implementation in Latvia (CAP LIFE LAT) is a LIFE project created by the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development and the Administration of the Latvian Environmental Protection Fund.

Objective of the CAP LIFE LAT project is to increase the volume of successful LIFE projects in Latvia by supporting the project applicants and beneficiaries. 

To achieve this objective, the LIFE support unit has been established, and it provides advice and recommendations from experienced experts. For more efficient achievement of the objective, regular trainings for the LIFE project applicants and beneficiaries are being organised, a mentoring programme has been developed, and a special Advisory Board has been established within the project.

Experienced experts support the LIFE project applicants and beneficiaries within the project. Advice and recommendations are available to the interested parties every business day. Besides, regular trainings for the LIFE project applicants and beneficiaries, as well as exchange of experience events at the local and Baltic level are being organised. 

The LIFE support unit provides, among other, translation of LIFE documentation and guidelines.

 

Strategic vision of the CAP LIFE LAT project:

  • Increase in the number of applications;
  • Increase in the number of approved proposals.

Results planned within the project:

  • Higher public awareness of the opportunities provided by the LIFE programme;
  • Emergence of applicants, which have not implemented the LIFE projects before — local governments, companies, scientific institutions, and other organisations;
  • Increase in the number of submitted proposals by 10%;
  • Increase in the number of supported proposals by 10%;
  • Establishment of a functioning and competent LIFE support unit.

Duration of the CAP LIFE LAT project: from 1 January 2016 to 31 December 2019.

Project status
Title
Status
A.1: Streamlining the LIFE Programme implementation in Latvia
In progress

The action focuses on conceptual improvements in implementing the LIFE programme in Latvia. This action will lead to a better understanding of the general objectives of the LIFE Programme, and intends to assess the weak points in its implementation, e.g. gaps in the policy, setting financing priorities, analysis of costs and benefits etc.

In 2017, several studies have been carried out:

  • An assessment of priorities of Environmental and Climate policy for attracting funding for LIFE programme;
  • A study on integration and complementarity of funding sources available for implementation of nature, environmental and climate policy in Latvia;
  • A nation-wide public survey about LIFE Programme, nature conservation and environment;
  • An assessment of environmental governance and information projects submitted so far;
  • A study on the potential of innovation in the context of LIFE sub-programme ‘Environment and Resource Efficiency’;

An analytical model for measuring cost-effectiveness of LIFE projects in Latvia has been developed.

An initial report on priorities for funding in LIFE in Latvia with summary of all research results has been prepared; it is expected to use it as a resource for developing further strategic plans in regard to improving the implementation of LIFE programme.

In 2018 and 2019 prepared documents are being monitored and updated if needed.

 

A.2: Assessment of the LIFE Programme’s priorities
In progress

Action A.2 assesses the LIFE MAWP and the annual calls, interprets the LIFE priority areas in relation to Latvian policy priorities and to actual environmental policy developments at EU level.

First Annual working paper was developed in 2017, and is updated yearly onwards.

Annual Working paper – LIFE Priorities in Latvia 2017 (LV)

Annual Working paper – LIFE Priorities in Latvia 2018 (LV)

An analysis of project proposals submitted during previous call and their results is performed annually, identifying successful and less successful attempts, and common mistakes. The obtained data will further serve as a resource for defining priorities and suggestions for upcoming calls.

Lessons learned 2015 (LV)

Lessons learned 2016 (LV)

Lessons learned 2017 (LV)

A.3: Building capacity for the new LIFE opportunities
In progress

The action intends to analyse new opportunities in LIFE financial instruments (e.g. integrated projects), and encourage stakeholders and interested parties to apply for these financial instruments in 2018 and thereupon.

In 2018 a seminar on integrated projects was organized with a participation of a wide range stakeholders, that resulted in 2 submitted integrated projects concept notes to EC.

Also, in 2018 a study on integrated projects was done and recommendations for integrated projects in Climate sub-programme were developed.

A.4: Adjustments of national legislation supporting LIFE implementation
In progress

The action intends to perform an analysis of existing national co-financing rules and to generate suggestions for improving these rules in a way that would foster the implementation of LIFE programme in Latvia.

In 2016, modifications of national co-financing agreement have been made and gaps in rules and procedure were assessed.

In 2017, an assessment of existing rules has been performed, developing new co-financing rules and procedure with modified conditions. Consequently, the call for national co-financing was announced earlier to allow project applicants to know the status of their application as soon as possible.

In 2018 regulation was adjusted taking into account the conditions of the new Multiannual Work Programme, feedback from applicants and previous experience. A new application template was developed to ensure that information given in national co-financing application is as close as possible to information required in eProposal, at the same time allowing applicants to construct their budget based on the costs of actions.
 
A.5: Establishing Latvia’s LIFE Help Desk
In progress

Since April 1, 2016 LIFE Help Desk has been set up as separate department within the Administration of Latvian Environmental Protection Fund. The team consists of 5 people (Project Manager/HD Leader, 2 Senior Experts, a Communication Specialist and Financial Assistant to Project Manager). The main goal of LIFE Help Desk is to increase the amount of successful LIFE projects in Latvia by providing assistance and support to the project applicants and implementers.

In 2016-2018, LIFE Help Desk employees have consulted more than 500 people and/or organisations (by phone, email and face-to-face) – potential applicants of LIFE projects. The HD team also organized more than 10 informative seminars as in Riga, and in regions, as well as meetings for LIFE project implementers in Latvia and in the Baltic States. The HD team also participated in international experience sharing events with other EU member states and successfully executed other actions of the project.

LIFE Help Desk

 

A.6: Seminar & training programme
In progress

The action intends to organise at least 40 seminars and trainings on different topics to raise the capacities of all involved parties (i.e. potential and current LIFE project applicants and implementers, LIFE Help Desk staff and staff of the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development), and to set up a mentoring program.

In 2016, a training for LIFE Help Desk and a seminar on project writing for project applicants were organised. In September 10 mentors were recruited to the project: a group of experienced people familiar with LIFE programme who will assist LIFE Help Desk in consulting the new applicants.

In 2017, a training for LIFE Help Desk on financial and administrative issues took place and projects writers seminar with a participation of foreign expert (lecturer) was organized.

In 2018, LIFE HD organised 4 writers workshops with different accents, as well as a number of seminars on subjects important to both project implementers and potential project applicants (communication issues, procurement issues, socio-economic and ecosystem service assessment).

Assessment of training needs (LV)

Mentors of LIFE Programme (LV)

Writers seminar 2016 (LV)

Writers seminar 2017

Seminars on the concept note preparation for Environment sub-programme (LV)

Climate sub-programme project writing seminar (LV)

Workshop on project budgeting (LV)

Seminar on communications issues (LV)

Seminar on procurement issues (LV)

Seminar on socio-economic and ecosystem service assessment (LV)

A.7: LIFE Consultative Board
In progress
The goal of LIFE Consultative Board is to provide informative assistance to the staff of LIFE Help Desk and thereafter contribute to improving the quality of projects in LIFE programme in their application and implementation stages.
 
On April 29, 2016 LIFE Consultative Board was established and it consists of experienced LIFE project implementers from different organisations (governmental institutions, NGOs, universities etc.). 
In 2016, LIFE Consultative Board was called to two meetings, and has been advising LIFE Help Desk continuously as needed.
 

In 2016-2018 Consultative Board meets at least two times a year and consults LIFE HD when needed.

 

A.8: Technical support for solving language barriers
In progress
The action intends to reduce the issues due to language barrier, as all guidelines for the LIFE programme calls are normally available in English.
 
In 2016, all guidelines for sub-programmes, contract conditions, financial and administrative guidelines, and assessment guidelines have been translated from English to Latvian.
 
In 2017, after the Call all the translated documents have been adjusted considering the changes.
 
 
A.9: Experience exchange on LIFE project applications & implementation
In progress

The action intends to take over the best practices and projects of other countries, facilitate partner searching for projects in Latvia, provide exchange of experiences and meet the EU priorities.

In 2016, Latvian and Baltic networking meetings were successfully organised.

In 2017, LIFE Help Desk staff attended a platform meeting in Tallinn, Estonia, dedicated ecosystem services. Additionally, a stakeholders study visit took place in Slovenia – eight potential project applicants along with LIFE Help Desk staff attended an international conference dedicated to celebration of 25th anniversary of LIFE programme.

In 2017 and 2018, the 2nd and 3rd Latvian and Baltic networking meetings was organized.

Latvian Networking meeting 2016 (LV)

Baltic Networking meeting 2016 (Riga) (LV)

Study visit to Slovenia (LV)

Latvian Networking meeting 2017

Baltic Networking meeting 2017 (Parnu)

Latvian Networking meeting 2018 (LV)

Baltic Networking meeting 2018 (Klaipeda)

A.10: Experience exchange on LIFE programme implementation & capacity building
In progress

The action intends to adopt the best practices from other EU countries in regard to implementation and capacity building of LIFE programme. The action includes planned study visits to other member states implementing LIFE programme, participation in the European Commission’s trainings, as well as experience exchange visits to other member states that implement capacity building projects.

Each year project staff participates in the European Commission conducted training in Brussels, Belgium.

In 2016 project staff participated in the capacity project meeting in Hungary, gaining valuable experience and knowledge from the representatives of other states.

On June 29-30, 2017 an informal meeting of the national contact points of LIFE programme was organized, during which the attendees discussed details of the upcoming Multiannual working programme (2018-2020) and project staff participated in experience exchange activities in Lithuania and Bulgaria.

In 2017 LIFE HD staff participated in experience exchange visits to Poland and Croatia and hosted Bulgarian LIFE Capacity building project representatives visit in Latvia.

Experience exchange in Hungary

NCP training 2017 (LV)

National contact point meeting in Riga

The Bulgarian delegation visit (LV)

Experience exchange in Croatia (LV)

NCP training 2017 (LV)

Experience exchange in Poland (LV)

B.1: Evaluation of Project impacts via applications
In progress

The action intends to assess the impact of CAP LIFE LAT by evaluating the effectiveness of submitted and implemented LIFE projects.

Every year the potential and submitted project proposals are summarized – starting from submission of concept notes to evaluating their achievements and further development. 

In 2017, evaluation tools for project self-assessment and cost-effectiveness has been developed, as well as a tool that will help to determine the amount of project funding returned to the state’s budget. These tools allows LIFE HD to carry out project impact evaluation and assist in providing advice.

In 2018, cost-effectiveness tool was integrated www.lifeprogramma.lv website, giving users the possibility to compare the potential LIFE the idea of the project with already implemented in other countries and Latvian LIFE projects. Tool available here: www.lifeprogramma.lv/projektu-pieteicejiem/pieteikties                                                  

 

B.2: Setting the scene for better uptake of the Project results
In progress

The action aims to perform a yearly project self-assessment, analysing the implementation of the project and its impact, as well as achievement of the set indicators. Project self-assessment is made at the end of each year.

Project Self-assessment 2016 (LV)

Project Self-assessment 2017 (LV)

C.1: Promoting LIFE in Latvia
In progress

The action intends to promote LIFE programme in Latvia among potential applicants and implementers and in general public.

In 2016, a communication plan for promotion of LIFE programme in Latvia has been developed. The project staff has performed several promotional activities, i.e. organised an information day and “15 Years of LIFE in Latvia” event, produced four video clips about the opportunities of LIFE programme. LIFE programme has also been actively promoted in printed and online media, and an informative booklet has been produced.

In 2017, a public survey was carried out to gain insights on opinions among the population of Latvia regarding climate change, different issues regarding environment and recognition of LIFE programme, as well as to assess the directions for further communication.

In 2017 and 2018, implementation of communication plan continues, actively promoting LIFE programme to different target groups through different channels.

Informative LIFE events are organized each year for the general public, as well as for smaller, specific groups – outings, information seminars.

LIFE programme Info day 2016 (LV)

LIFE programme Info day 2016 – video (LV)

LIFE of 15 years in Latvia booklet

LIFE of 15 years in Latvia event

LIFE programme videos (LV with English subtitles)

LIFE programme Info day 2017 - presentations (LV)

LIFE programme Info day 2017 - video (LV)

Survey results (LV)

LIFE programme Info day 2018 – presentations (LV)

LIFE programme Info day 2018 – video (LV)

C.2: Setting the scene for better uptake of the Project results
In progress

The action intends to encourage wider dissemination of results created by LIFE projects in Latvia through analysing current weak points and achievements, and providing assistive tools for dissemination of results.

A yearly summary on LIFE programme’s projects is prepared by HD each year.

In 2019 it is planned to develop several useful tools for dissemination of project results, for example, Layman’s report form, After-LIFE plans etc.

Yearly summary of LIFE programme in Latvia 2016 (LV)

Yearly summary of LIFE programme in Latvia 2017 (LV)

 

C.3: “Best Latvian LIFE Project” award
In progress

The action intends to foster the recognition of LIFE programme and strengthen the feeling of belonging among implementers of projects to LIFE programme by awarding the best projects in Latvia award once every two years.

In 2016, at the ‘15 Years of LIFE in Latvia’ event the first awards for the best projects were awarded in 5 categories. The next project award ceremony will take place in November 2018.

LIFE award ceremony 2016

C.4: Latvian LIFE website
In progress
The action is focused on promotion of LIFE programme, and its goal is to collect all the information on LIFE programme in Latvia, activities of capacity project and other LIFE projects in Latvia, and present them in an easy-to-read way.
 
At the end of 2016, the webpage www.lifeprogramma.lv was launched and it is being regularly updated in both Latvian and English languages.
D.1: Project Management
In progress
The action aims to ensure successful project implementation according to the proposal.
 
In 2016, a project management team was formed and it is collectively responsible for project implementation in regard to project activities, financial management and accountability.
 
D.2: Steering group
In progress
The goal of the project steering group is to supervise the process of project implementation in all its stages. The steering group was created in 2016 and consists of representatives and heads of departments of the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Regional Development, as well as representatives of non-governmental organisations working with the LIFE programme.
 

Steering group meetings are held at least twice a year.

Project number:
LIFE14 CAP/LV/000002
 
Name of the project:
Capacity building for the LIFE programme implementation in Latvia
 
Contacts:
Jānis Vēbers
E-mail: janis.vebers@lvafa.gov.lv
Mobile: 28665583
 
Homepage:
www.lifeprogramma.lv
Capacity project events
Best LIFE projects in Latvia award ceremony
22
nov
The 3rd Baltic Networking Meeting
25
sep
LIFE Projects Latvia Annual Meeting 2018
31
aug
LIFE INFO DAY 2018 on March 1th
01
mar
Capacity Project
03
oct
The 3rd Baltic Networking Meeting in Klaipeda, Lithuania
LIFE programme actors from the Baltic Sea region have met for the third yearly networking meeting, this time in Klaipeda, Lithuania.
25
sep
22 applications from Latvia were submitted to the European Commission LIFE programme 2018
In September, 2018, the application for the European Commission (EC) LIFE programme competition for funding environmental and climate protection projects has been completed.
16
mar
Call for concept notes for National co-financing is open
The LIFE Help Desk team announces call for concept notes for National co-financing
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