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Applications Welcome for European Economic and Social Committee Civil Society Prize

The aim of the Civil Society Prize is to reward and encourage tangible initiatives and achievements by civil society organisations or individuals that have made a significant contribution to promoting European identity and integration. Its overall objective is to raise awareness of the contribution that civil society organisations and individuals can make to the creation of a European identity and citizenship in a way that underpins the common values that shore up European integration.

The competition is open to individuals and civil society organisations officially registered within the European Union and acting at European, national, regional or local level.

The specific objective of the 2019 Civil Society Prize is to reward innovative initiatives carried out on the territory of the EU which aim to raise awareness of and fight for gender equality in the EU. In the context of this prize, gender equality is understood to mean not only equal rights, but also equal opportunities, responsibility, empowerment and participation in all spheres of economic and social life.

Initiatives must have already been implemented or be still ongoing. Initiatives which are planned but which have not begun implementation by 6 September 2019 (closing date for submission of applications) are excluded.

To be eligible, activities/initiatives must cover at least one of the following areas:

  • Combating gender stereotypes, discriminatory social behaviours and prejudices in all spheres of economic and social life, included those which can limit the development of the natural talents of women and men and those linked to their educational and professional choices.
  • Raising awareness of the consequences of gender stereotypes produced by media content.
  • Combating horizontal segregation in the labour market both as regards fields with a predominantly male workforce, such as science and technology, and those with a strong female presence and often lower remuneration, such as education, healthcare and welfare.
  • Combating vertical segregation in the labour market, promoting equal opportunities for the participation of women in highly skilled jobs and leading positions on corporate boards.
  • Combating gender segregation patterns in education and training.
  • Promoting female entrepreneurship, especially in non-traditional sectors, strengthening women's access to finance and addressing the challenges faced by female entrepreneurs.
  • Raising awareness of the importance of women's economic independence.
  • Combating gender pay and pension gaps.
  • Promoting gender equality in decision making.
  • Tackling the specific needs of women with family responsibilities (children and adult dependents), promoting gender-related work-life balance, for instance through initiatives to split care and domestic tasks fairly and through the development of an affordable and accessible social and economic infrastructure for the exercise of equal rights (care facilities, work patterns, etc.)
  • Addressing the specific challenges facing vulnerable women, such as women with low qualifications, single mothers, female workers re-entering the labour market, women with disabilities, migrants, ethnic minorities.
  • Raising awareness, promoting mutual learning and disseminating good practices concerning the above.

Unlike previous versions of the award, organisations and individuals no longer need to be nominated; instead they should apply directly themselves using the online form by the 6 September 2019 deadline.

The 2019 Prize will be awarded on 11-12 December 2019.

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