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42 small-scale fishers selected to receive WWF grants to move towards sustainability


Between March and May this year, WWF and Blue Seeds launched a Call for Grants for small-scale fishers in the Mediterranean aimed at supporting the access to the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EMFF) in the transition to sustainability.

42 small-scale fishers from Italy, Croatia, Slovenia and Spain were selected to receive upfront capital (from €5,000 to €20,000) as well as technical assistance needed to prepare the EMFF request for the funds. The Granting Committee received 111 applications from Spain, France, Italy, Slovenia, Croatia and Greece, requesting three times the available budget.
 
The grants will support actions in favour of the implementation of sustainable fishing methods such as the purchase of more selective gear, the construction of storage for fish processing, pescatourism, etc.

This Call for Grants open to European Mediterranean countries was used to test the interest of small-scale fishers in a pre-financing mechanism that supports the access to EMFF funds. Depending on the capacity of this Call for Grants to effectively mobilise EMFF funds, and following further analysis of fishers' capacity and need for technical assistance, it might be possible to develop a system that can provide funding in advance to fishers wishing to submit a request for funds to the new European Maritime Fisheries and Aquaculture Fund (EMFAF) and eventually accelerate the transition of Mediterranean small-scale fishers towards sustainability.

This initiative is part of WWF's work to transform small-scale fisheries towards sustainibility in the Mediterranean. 
 
SSF Italy