We welcome queries on the Call for Proposals to "firstname.lastname@example.org" quoting the relevant Fund in the subject line. Our aim is to respond to all queries within 3 working days. However, if the query is complex or requires us to consult with other areas, it may take longer. Note that we may not be in a position to respond to queries received by phone (unless they relate to routine process matters) to ensure that we can deliver a clear and comprehensive reply. Also, please ensure to submit your query in good time, as queries received shortly before the Application deadline may not be responded to before the deadline.
Click on the links below to see FAQs grouped under the following headings:
What objectives is the ESF PEIL Integration and Employment of Migrants Activity set up to achieve?
The broad objectives of the ESF are to help prevent/combat unemployment; to make Europe’s workforce and companies better equipped to face new challenges and to prevent people losing touch with the labour market through investment in education, skills and employment support. The PEIL 2014-2020 is the sole vehicle through which the ESF will be applied in Ireland during the 2014-2020 programming period. This OP takes into consideration and complements actions in the human capital area to be taken at EU and National level aimed at making Europe a more attractive place to invest and work, enhancing knowledge and innovation for growth and creating more and better jobs.
The Operational Programme in Ireland contains four Priority Axes comprising some 20+ specific activities. The Integration and Employment of Migrants Activity, the subject of this call is part of the Priority 2: Promoting Social Inclusion and combating discrimination in the labour market
What project objectives will be funded?
ESF Priority 2.7 Integration and Employment of Migrants has as its objective to engage with the most vulnerable legally resident migrants who are experiencing barriers to participation and employment because of language difficulties, lack of training or social exclusion.
Who can apply?
Public, Private and Voluntary Bodies are eligible to apply.
What types of activities can be funded?
Funding is available for activities that will increase the employment potential for the target groups. Indicative actions, all of which must be specifically targeted at migrant employability could include employment training, workplace language training, training in CV preparation, interview skills, work placements, referral to other services (where appropriate), and mentoring.
Is funding available for projects that operate outside of Ireland?
The geographical scope of the funding for activities in the 3 most recent calls are confined to intervention activities in the Republic of Ireland.
Can the projects start later than February?
The latest start for projects is 30 June 2017.
Who are the target groups?
EEA Nationals who are resident in Ireland.
Third Country Nationals (TCN) with permission to enter employment in Ireland.
Will this be the only call for AMIF/ESF PEIL between now and 3-4 years time? The reason I ask this is because project duration can be from 1-3 or 1-4 years long depending on the fund. If a project was submitted now for a 1 year timeframe, am I right in assuming that no more funding under AMIF or ESF will be available until the 3 / 4 year timeframe of this call runs out?
There are no plans for further calls under ESF PEIL 2.7 Integration and Employment of Migrants (4 year projects) and the further calls for proposals under the specific objectives under AMIF and under ESF PEIL 2.9 Gender Equality will not take place until 2019 (indicative date at this stage). However, should the funding advertised in the calls launched 22nd September 2016 not be allocated in full the Department may review the matter at a later date.
Is there any scope to apply for funding across the strands?
There is nothing to prevent an organisation preparing an application under more than one Fund. It is precluded that a project action can be funded by more than one fund. It is acceptable to prepare an application that will have linkages but each application will be a distinct project. Each of the strands of funding will be scored and assessed separately. The 25% matching funding requirement under AMIF must not originate from any other EU Fund as this is specifically excluded by the Commission.
How much funding is available?
€3.3 million is available in this call.
What is the eligibility period for expenditure?
Projects will be funded for a minimum period of 1 year and a maximum period of 4 years.
Projects shall commence in the period from 1 February 2017 to 30 June 2017.
Expenditure will be eligible from the date of commencement of the project to a maximum period of 4 years
Can an organisation submit applications under each of the three calls (ESF PR 2.7, ESF PR 2.9 and AMIF)?
Yes, an organisation can submit applications under each of the calls provided the projects are separate and distinct projects. The 25% matching requirement which applies to AMIF only, cannot be funded from any other EU fund.
Is it possible for one organisation to apply for 2 strands of funding, in our case the two PEIL ESF programmes?
Yes it is possible for one organisation to apply for 2 strands of funding so long as they are discrete projects.
What type of outcomes are envisaged for the participants?
A wide range of outcomes that are aimed at integrating and increasing the employability of migrants will be considered. Proposals must include detailed outputs and results that are intended to be achieved with the funding.
Successful applicants will be required to provide ongoing participant monitoring and evaluation data up to 6 months after the completion date.
What is the timeframe for implementing projects?
Projects shall commence in the period from 1 February 2017 to 30 June 2017. Projects will be funded for a maximum period of 4 years from date of commencement. Projects shall end no later than 30 June 2021. Participant data must be collected for 6 months after the final participant has completed participation.
With regard to older migrants their options are limited. Can the focus be on the inclusion and learning aspect of the PEIL?
The focus for PEIL ESF is on Employability and increasing the employability of participants and should inclusion and learning activities improve the employability of older migrants, then these activities are eligible. The AMIF fund has a broader focus on migrant integration more generally.
An EU citizens right to reside may relate to their employment status. The right to reside can be affected by lack of employment. Can this programme be used by participants to gain their status?
EU citizens have the right to seek work in Ireland.
As we are seeking to assist employability it is a requirement that the person is eligible to take up employment in the State.
Is a legally resident TCN family member on Stamp 3 eligible for the funding ? There may be the potential if they went through a training programme to transfer to a stamp 1?
The funding is targeted at people in the State who are permitted to seek work without the need for a work permit. Primarily those on Stamp 4 are eligible. People on a work permit are not eligible.
In relation to these specific guidelines, we would like to clarify whether it is mandatory that clients of programmes are fully unemployed and therefore completely detached from the labour market due to a lack of skills or other impediments, or if it is possible to include clients who may be employed, but in jobs which are unskilled with little prospects or scope for self-improvement?
No participants do not have to be unemployed and improving employability can include improving future labour market status. One of the common output indicators that all projects will have to gather is the 'labour market status' of all participants, which includes the indicators: Employed (C005) Unemployed including LT (C001) Unemployed LT (C002) Inactive IET (in education or training) (C003) Inactive NET (not in education in training) (C004). Participants on the Integration and Employment of Migrants Activity can be drawn from any of these groups. Further information on indicators to be collected from all participants is available in Appendix 1 and 2 of the Information and Guidance for Applicants document available here: Information and Guidance for Applicants (ESF PEIL 2.7 Integration and Employment of Migrants)..
Are recognised refugees, and resettlement caseloads, who receive refugee status in Ireland included within the TCN grouping (ESF fund / Integration and Employment of Migrants) ? This group does have the right to work in Ireland. They are not technically nationals of another state however, as upon being granted Refugee Status, their prior nationality is in a way void. They are not yet Irish nationals either, however do have the right to live and work in Ireland, and in time gain the right to apply for Irish citizenship?
Persons who have been resettled in Ireland and those who receive refugee status in Ireland are included in the TCN grouping and are eligible persons to benefit from the funding. Refugees and resettled persons do not lose their nationality when they get a declaration that they are a refugee or when they are resettled.
What sort of project monitoring and evaluation is recommended - internal or external?
Information on project monitoring and evaluation obligations to be met under the AMIF and ESF PEIL is available in Section 5 of the Information and Guidance for Applicants document. Any other project monitoring or evaluation is a matter for the applicant organisation.
Who manages the Fund in Ireland?
The ESF PEIL Priority 2.7 Fund is managed by the Office for the Promotion of Migrant Integration (OPMI), Department of Justice and Equality. The EU Funds Unit, Department of Justice and Equality will be managing the day to day administration of the fund on behalf of OPMI.
Can projects funded under the last programme be funded under this new programme of funding?
This is a new Programme of funding. All processes and criteria for selection are new. There may be actions that build on previous project achievements. These Calls are not seeking to roll over funding from previous programmes.
Do all the partners need to be legally registered or is it sufficient for the lead partner only?
It is the lead partner who will sign the grant agreement, it is therefore sufficient for the lead partner to be the only legally registered entity.
Is it a condition of the call that an applicant organisation must have charitable status to apply for funding?
It is not a condition of eligibility for an organisation to have charitable status. If however, an organisation is a charity, it is a requirement for all charities to register as a charitable organisation.
Is there a preferred model for the application, either as a single organisation application or as a joint application?
There is no additional weighting or scoring for joint applications although geographical scope will be considered. It is acknowledged that the size of the budget is greater than previous funding rounds. A lead applicant is required to make the application.
Would it be better for a National Organisation to apply as the lead for Community Groups?
Grants are large and there must be a single proposal that meets the minimum grant amount. If actions are happening at the community level, the organisations are encouraged to collaborate in bringing together a range of actions that will meet the minimum grant application.
Can an organisation act as lead applicant in several applications under the same call?
Yes, an organisation can act as lead applicant in more than one application under the same call as long as the projects are separate and distinct projects.
Is it possible to submit an application in a single capacity and also as a partner in another project?
Yes, you can apply both as a lead organisation and as a partner on another project.
Can Northern Ireland delivery be referred to as evidence of experience in question 4.2?
Yes, relevant experience of delivery of programmes in Northern Ireland can be used to indicate past experience.
Would it be permissible for an individual to be a participant in two ESF co funded projects i.e. SICAP and PEIL? For example, under PEIL, could a participant be referred from a SICAP funded employment mediation service to an action funded under PEIL. If so could the participant re-engage with the SICAP service having completed the PEIL intervention?
In principle, we cannot see any reason why participants in the PEIL programme could not also participate in other programmes. However, it will be important that the PEIL initiatives are clearly distinct, in their activities, projected outputs/outcomes, and their costs. It will be important for successful applicants to maintain detailed financial and operational records specifically for the PEIL programme (as described in the "Information and Guidance for Applicants" document), which are capable of being validated by EU Funds Unit, to ensure ongoing financial support.
The application must be made online, what documentation are projects required to submit at application stage?
Applicants are advised to read the Information and Guidance for Applicants very carefully before submitting their application. In particular, prior to submitting your application, you should refer to Sections 1.7 and 1.10 and the checklist of documents in Section 12 of the Application Form Part I. Please note that other than the required documents, no other additional attachments will be accepted.
When completing the Budget Cost (Application Form Part II) is it necessary to itemise expenditure every year or for the 3 years?
You are requested to itemise the budgeted projected costs for each year of the duration of the project.
What happens after I submit an application?
Applications will be assessed by project assessors in the EU Funds Unit and a report prepared for an Appraisal Committee. The Appraisal Committee will make recommendations for project funding to the Department of Justice and Equality. Notice will be provided to projects in December of the success or otherwise of their application.
Can applications forms be printed down, completed and returned by post?
No, applications for each of the calls will only be accepted online through the dedicated email address email@example.com.
What are the closing dates for the Calls?
PEIL ESF Integration and Employment of Migrants
12 noon, 3 November 2016
PEIL ESF Gender Equality
12 noon, 8 November 2016
12 noon, 10 November 2016
Is there a deadline for receipt of clarification questions for each project?
We have not set a closing date for queries, and therefore will attempt to respond to all queries received up to the closing deadline for the application process. However, we have a 3-day target turnaround, and therefore, cannot be confident of responding to all queries received within 3 days of the closing date for applications, particularly those which are more complex or may require us to consult with other specialist sections for advice.
If I can not fit all the information about my organisation's project within the word limits on the application form, can I either exceed them or send additional information in an attachment with the application form?
No, applicants should keep to within the word limit if possible and additional information on the proposed project attached separately will not be included in the application assessment. There are no plans to apply a very strict word count on applications. However, were it to be excessively over the limit, in the interest of fairness to all applicants, we might have to have regard for that in the appraisal process. Applicants are free to insert diagrams into the answer boxes.
The application must be signed by an Authorised Agent. Should this be the CEO or a Board Member or is this an internal decision for the organisation?
It is an internal decision for an organisation who signs off on the form but someone at the level of CEO, Board Member or equivalent level would be recommended - it should be someone who has sufficient authority within your organisation to deliver on the commitments made in the application form.
Is it acceptable to put charts or diagrams in the application?
Yes, the inclusion of charts and diagrams within the text boxes for answers on the application form (part I) is a matter for the applicant.
In reference to section 1.9 of the specification: ‘Successful applicants will be required to enter into a Grant Agreement with the Department of Justice and Equality’ – can you please advise where a copy of the grant agreement can be accessed?
We are not making a sample grant agreement available at this stage. A grant agreement will be forwarded to all successful applicants following the project appraisal process.
Section 2, question 2.2 refers to the “operational reporting requirements for ESF PEIL funds”. Is there a specific document outlining these requirements or is it referring to Section 5 of the Guidelines document? If it is a separate document, could you let me know where to find it?
For the purposes of Application, the information in Section 5 should be adequate. There are ESF Regulations, specifically EU 1303/2013 (Common Provisions Regulation) and EU 1304/2013, these along with some guidance in relation to PEIL are available on www.esf.ie. However, the level of detail in these regulations and guidelines is not necessary for the purposes of making an application. Should your organisation's application be successful, then EU Funds Unit will issue procedures documents for projects and work with you to make sure you are aware of and implement the necessary requirements.
Does the question in Application Form Part I Section 3, question 3.2 refer to EU and government/public service related grants only?
Section 3 refers to all grant funding received, regardless of the source. This question is to get an idea of the history of managing grants within the organisation.
In relation to Section 7 of the application form, the staff section only provides space for 3 members of staff – are we able to include additional text boxes if we have more than three staff delivering the project?
Yes if you are proposing more than 3 project staff you may include additional text boxes.
Please can you confirm what costs you are expecting to see in Section 8 Project actions and outputs table e.g. does this need to include office rents, staff costs? Do the costs listed here also need to reconcile with those in the Application Form part 2 cost template?
If you have direct costs associated with an action (e.g. you hire a trainer and/or a room for a seminar), then that cost would be included in section 8. Indirect costs should not be included under the actions. There is no requirement either way to include or exclude apportioned direct staff costs.
On an overall basis, the "total cost of your project" listed under section 7.1 of the application form should tally with Part 2 of the Application Form. It is not a requirement that the total cost of the actions in Part 8 should tally with the total cost in Part 2.
Are we able to expand the project plan section of the application form to include additional outcomes or actions if required?
Yes it is appropriate to expand beyond the number of Outcomes allowed for on the application form.
In the question and answer section it alludes to match funding of 25% yet in guidance notices it states that 50 % of funding comes from EU and 50% from Dept of Justice. Could you please clarify?
The requirement for 25% matching funding is in relation to AMIF only. Projects funded under PEIL ESF will be 100% grant funded. This will be paid from the Department of Justice and Equality and is 50% funded by the Exchequer and 50% funded by the European Commission.
In relation to PEIL ESF project funding, it notes in the guidelines that the total cost of the project should not exceed the total direct staff costs plus 40%. Just to clarify does this mean that it would be appropriate for the direct staff costs to equal 60% (or slightly more) of the overall budget and for all other costs to equal 40% (or slightly less of the overall budget)?
All other costs amounting to 40% of direct staff costs should be regarded as a maximum, not a goal, and all figures should have a rationale for how they have been estimated which should include providing value for money.
I note that there is a minimum amount of funding that organisations may apply for however is there a maximum amount set?
No, there is no maximum amount set.
Is guidance available on the eligibility of expenditure items?
The EU Funds Unit will be providing a guidance document dealing with the eligibility of expenditure items, for each of the AMIF and ESF calls, in advance of the sign off of grant agreements.
As a general rule of thumb, all necessarily incurred direct staff and project costs will be eligible for funding together wih apportioned indirect overhead and administration costs once these can be supported by a reasonable apportionment policy. In the case of AMIF only, up to 75% of these costs will be eligible, the remaining 25% being funded via the matching funding arrangement that the project has entered into.
Categories of Cost
When drawing up your project budget you should seek to allocate cost to the most appropriate category as set out below.
Direct staff costs
All staff costs, including contract staff with a direct role in the project. Reasonable recruitment costs may also be included.
Indirect staff costs
Costs of administrative management and support staff
Direct project costs
All costs (not included separately in another category) incurred directly in operating / running the project
All shared office costs including light and heat etc. Being apportioned to the project.
All directly attributable administrative expenditure incurred on the project e.g. stationery.
Travel and subsistence
Travel and subsistence costs of Direct Staff
All asset purchases
All goods (including equipment below minimum asset value) purchased for use in its entirety in the project. No further use / value expected beyond the project.
All office rental cost and project activity room rental costs.
What are the procurement regulations that must be complied with?
A snap shot of the procurement requirements is outlined below. A file record should be maintained.
Less than €5,000 obtain verbal quotes from at least 3 competitive suppliers. Select lowest price/most suitable.
€5,000.01 to €25,000.00 A minimum of 3 written quotations sought from competent suppliers who ordinarily supply the relevant service.
€25,000.01 to € EU threshold Full Tender Action
Further information on the national procurement guidelines are available on the etenders website
If my application is successful, when will grant funding commence? / How will grant funding be provided to the projects and with what frequency?
Funding will be provided through EFT direct to your nominated bank account. An initial funding amount of 20% - 30% of total grant funding will be provided. Subsequent funding will be provided in accordance with the grant agreement and subject to need. Funds on hand will be monitored through the quarterly financial expenditure reports submitted to the EU Funds Unit, subsequent funding may be delayed where there is considerable under spend in the projects.