The program’s open grant competitions award grants to Polish non-governmental organizations for projects designed to share Polish experiences, especially in building civil society, strengthening social activities, promoting local government transformation, reforming education, and functioning of the free media. The maximum grant amount is ca. $17,500. About 30 grants are awarded annually.
Under the program, it is possible to apply for small travel grants which may be earmarked for project consultation before it is submitted, strengthening cooperation with a partner organization or evaluation of an implemented project. As part of a special path the “RITA” Program grants may be used for co-financing a larger project for which a given organization has been awarded a grant from other sources – Polish or foreign. However, such projects must comply with the “RITA” Program’s objectives as well as geographic and thematic areas of operation.
Additionally, the program offers Polish NGOs and schools training opportunities and experts’ support as well as assistance in establishing contacts and developing cooperation with foreign partners. Every two years, the meetings of the “RITA” Program Polish grant recipients, named “Ambassadors of Transition in the Regions”, are held. They serve integration of the Polish non-governmental organizations operating abroad and experience sharing on the subject of international cooperation. The social networking site www.civicportal.org which facilitates information-sharing between organizations and civic leaders is also available. The portal is also an e-learning platform offering training to Polish and foreign NGOs.
The main grant competition is announced twice a year. Applications can be submitted by mid- March and by mid-October. Applications for travel grants and subsidies for larger projects are accepted on an on-going basis until the funds set aside for these activities are exhausted.
In the years 2000-2019 a total of 1055 projects have been supported.
The Foundation has disbursed $15,133,196, including $496,268 for the current edition of the program.