LIFE 2014-2020: Environment Sub-Programme - LIFE Preparatory Projects for the European Solidarity Corps

European Union (EU)

Grant amount: Up to €2,000,000

Deadline: Sep 20, 2018 7:00am PDT

Applicant type: Government Entity Nonprofit For-Profit Business

Funding uses: Applied Project / Program

Location of project: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus Expand all

Location of residency: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus Expand all

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LIFE Preparatory projects to support deployment of European Solidarity Corps (sub-programme for Environment) contribute to strengthening the Union’s capacity to provide volunteering services for young people across the European Union. It focuses mainly on:

  • conservation of Natura 2000 sites
  • environmental protection
  • restoration of natural areas and ecosystems and on
  • capacity building among ongoing LIFE projects
This call embodies a joint initiative of the European Programme for the Environment and Climate Action (LIFE) and the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) aimed at concretely exploring the potential of using volunteer work for environmental protection activities, mainly targeted to Natura 2000 sites and species protected by the Birds and Habitats Directive. This initiative will be implemented by means of LIFE preparatory projects and builds on the mobilisation and deployment opportunities of volunteers provided by the European Solidarity Corps.

European Solidarity Corps

The European Solidarity Corps (ESC) is conceived to offer people under 30 in Europe the chance to support a non-governmental organisation (NGO), local authority or private company active in addressing challenging situations across the European Union – for instance: rebuilding communities following natural disasters; addressing social challenges such as social exclusion, poverty, health and demographic challenges; or working on the reception and integration of refugees.

The Corps will develop its own distinct identity, rooted in the core EU values of engagement and solidarity. By joining the Corps, participants will express their commitment and willingness to devote a period of their lives to helping others. By supporting others, including the most vulnerable in our societies and communities, young people will not only put the core EU value of solidarity into practice, but also acquire skills and experience, including language skills, that can be valuable when looking for a job or considering further education and training.

What are LIFE Preparatory projects?

According to the LIFE Regulation, Preparatory projects address specific needs for the development and implementation of Union environmental or climate policy and legislation.

There is no fixed minimum or maximum size for project budgets. For LIFE Preparatory Projects, maximum budget envelopes are established for each specific need. The maximum EU co-financing rate for LIFE Preparatory projects is 60% of the eligible project costs. However the reimbursement of the individual support for volunteers and their travel costs will be co-financed with a rate of up to 75% and will be based on unit cost rates.

Under this call, proposals may be submitted only for actions aimed at concretely to deploy volunteers and explore the potential of using volunteer work for environmental protection activities, mainly targeting Natura 2000 sites, species protected under the Birds and Habitats Directives and ongoing LIFE projects.

This call for proposals is aimed at selecting 5-7 small organisations or smaller number of big organisations in Europe which will deploy volunteers for in-country volunteering in environment protection activities, mainly targeted to Natura 2000 sites and species protected by the Birds and Habitats Directive, in line with the European Solidarity Corps objectives.

Each organisation will have to organise placement for at least 300 volunteers in countries of their residence (in-country volunteering) on activities focused on environmental protection, nature conservation and restoration of natural areas and ecosystems (mainly Natura 2000 sites and species protected by the Birds and Habitats Directive) at all levels.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • LIFE is open to public or private bodies, actors or institutions registered in the European Union.
    • Project proposals can either be submitted by a single applicant or by a partnership which includes a coordinating beneficiary (the applicant) and one or several associated beneficiaries.
  • Applicants may fall into three types of beneficiaries:
    • public bodies,
      • The term "public bodies" is defined as referring to national public authorities, regardless of their form of organisation – central, regional or local structure – and the various bodies, including public institutions, under their control, provided these operate on behalf of and under the responsibility of the national public authority concerned.
      • In the case of entities registered as private law bodies wishing to be considered for the purpose of this call as equivalent to "public law bodies", they should provide evidence proving that they comply with all criteria applying to bodies governed by public law and in the event the entity stops its activities, its rights and obligations, liability and debts will be transferred to a public body.
    • private commercial organisations, and
    • private non-commercial organisations (including NGOs).
  • LIFE proposals may be submitted in any of the official EU languages, except Irish or Maltese.
    • The Commission nevertheless strongly recommends that applicants fill in the technical part of the proposal in clear English.
  • LIFE projects shall take place in the territory of the European Union Member States.
    • The activities of the volunteer will target mainly Natura 2000 sites, species protected by the Birds and Habitats Directive and ongoing LIFE projects.


  • Any costs incurred before the project's starting date will not be considered eligible and cannot be included in the project budget.
  • A proposal may not be submitted if the financial contribution of any of the beneficiaries to the proposal budget is 0 Euro.