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General News of Wednesday, 13 February 2008

Source: GNA

CSIP invites proposals for funding

Accra, Feb. 13, GNA - The Cultural Initiatives Support Programme (CISP), an European Commission (EC) support project aimed at promoting culture on Wednesday called on institutions and individuals to submit proposals for funding on innovative ways to stimulate growth and wealth creation in the cultural sector.

The CISP, being funded with a two million Euro grant from the European Development Fund was in response to the need for funding to enable players in the cultural industry realise their initiatives and objectives.

Speaking at the launch of the First Call for Proposals in Accra, Mr Filiberto Ceriani Sebregondi, Head of EC Delegation, said the support attested to the EC's commitment to use culture to promote global peace. He said under the programme, the EC would support Ghana's National Cultural Strategy by funding activities within a period of three and half years in areas such as human resource development, employment, income generation, research and support to non- state actors in the cultural sector.

Mr Sebregondi said the CISP, which was also being implemented in Benin, Burkina Faso, Mali and Senegal, would further strengthen innovative and organizational capacity of cultural actors. He stated that the EC hoped to, among other objectives create a pool of information, develop capacities and skills of local cultural artists and increase dialogue and consultation among stakeholders. Mr Sebregondi said it was impossible to meet the needs of all applicants, thus there would be a second call for proposals in future. Professor George Hagan, Chairman of the National Commission on Culture (NCC) said the initiative was, among others, aimed at generating national revenue, foreign exchange and boosting tourist revenue for the country through culture.

He said the EC's support was very commendable and had come to augment a proposed one million dollar Cultural Trust Fund by the NCC aimed at promoting culture with similar objectives.

Prof Hagan, who is also Chairman for the CISDP Steering Committee said efforts were in place to ensure fairness and accountability at all levels and encourage all to apply in order to promote Ghana's rich cultural heritage.

Mr Kwasi Gyan-Apenteng, CISP Programme Coordinator said an initial 350,000 Ghana cedis had been earmarked to fund proposals that would be selected this year. He explained that interested persons in all creative disciplines would have to apply to the CISP's directorate at the Du-Bois Centre in Accra or online: WWW. Cispghana.org by March 31, 2008. The fund would be in two categories. Beneficiaries of the small grant would receive between 2,000 and 12,000 Ghana cedis while those who qualified for the big grant would receive between 30,000 to 50,000 Ghana cedis.

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