STEP Beyond Travel grants fund up-and-coming artists and cultural workers to travel between the EU and EFTA and countries bordering the EU.
Grants of €250, €400 or €700 depending on the starting country and destination.
Grants to travel from an EU/EFTA country to the following are as follows:
- South-Caucasus (Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia): €700.
- Turkey: €400.
- MED (Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, the Palestinian Terriroties, Syria and Tunisia): €400.
- MUBR (Moldova, Ukraine, Belarus and Russia): €400.
- Western Balkans (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia (FYROM), Montenegro and Serbia): €400.
The grant may be used for travel costs (cheap flights or other means of budget travel from the country of residence to the country of destination).
The European Cultural Foundation (ECF) is an independent non-governmental organisation that promotes cultural participation and cooperation in Europe and beyond. The aim of the ECF grant programme is to stimulate transnational cultural collaboration, artistic expression and the mobility of artists and cultural actors.
The STEP Beyond Travel Grants are designed to support travel across the wider European neighbourhood, including between EU-EFTA and non-EU/EFTAcountries. This includes countries such as Moldova, Ukraine and Turkey as well as Algeria, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Palestinian Territories, Syria and Tunisia. The aim is to encourage creative and inspiring modes of expression through collaboration and communication with other cultures.
All of the Foundation's activities revolve around the following three strategic guiding principles:
- Empowerment of people through art and culture – supporting different communities in Europe and encouraging the exchange and empowerment of underrepresented groups.
- Connecting sources of knowledge – sharing and connecting knowledge which is vital in creating an open Europe.
- Linking policy and practice – ECF is interested in projects that help to build an 'open Europe' by contributing to cultural policy development locally, nationally, regionally and at European level.
STEP (Supporting Travel for European Projects) Beyond offers grants to people (individuals or those representing an organisation) whose travel would contribute to these goals.
The following are not covered by the Fund:
- Applications in which the traveller and/or host organisation represents student bodies, commercial organisations, state institutions (such as governmental bodies and universities), amateur organisations, or organisations focusing primarily on education, therapy, religion or cultural heritage.
- Travel without at least one committed host organisation.
- Travel that is part of an organisation’s own regular activities.
- Travel within the EU/EFTA countries or within the South and East Mediterranean.
- Travel to/from countries not listed in the Fund's guidelines.
- Travel that started or took place before the funding decision.
- Art therapy.
- Lobby activities.
- Commercial activities.
- Internships and volunteer work.
- Pilgrimages and religious missions.
- Training for professional development.
- Travel for tourism and personal development.
- Primarily educational/academic projects or research.
- Summer camps, summer schools and student exchanges.
- Jury memberships, award ceremonies, competitions or auditions.
- Travels that are part of the traveller’s organisation’s regular activities.
- Festival and conference attendances that are not in line with the eligibility criteria and priorities.
- Folkloric events and initiatives that focus on presenting or conserving ethnic, national or any cultural heritage.
- Performing and promotion tours, recording sessions and residencies with only facilities provided (limited collaboration).
Applications will be considered from cultural practitioners who are based/active in one of the following countries:
- Bosnia and Herzegovina.
- Czech Republic.
- Macedonia (FYROM).
- The Netherlands.
- Palestinian Territories.
- San Marino.
- United Kingdom.
There is no upper age limit, but priority will be given to applicants at the beginning of their professional career who have not had many opportunities to travel.
A maximum of two individuals may apply for the same event/project, with clearly justified and complementary roles for each person in the travel itinerary. Each will be considered individually.
Grants are only available for the cost of travel, other costs must be met by other funding.
Travel grants are intended to support individuals to travel across borders to explore, network and set up new collaborations. It is also seen as a tool for professional development, ranging from planning, fundraising and application to payment procedures.
Travellers are expected to present a well-prepared travel itinerary and to have a clear plan of activities with at least one committed partner organisation or host in the destination country.
The following types of travel objectives are more likely to be supported:
- Attending a networking meeting for the first time to expand professional networks.
- First-time visits to the destination country.
- Setting up new cross-border partnerships for upcoming projects (especially in preparation/development phase). Experimental cross-sectoral partnerships are particularly welcome.
- Engaging in the local arts and culture scene, followed by knowledge sharing with peers at local and/or international level.
Attendance to capacity development training (such as workshops, talent development programmes, etc) may be supported in exceptional cases only.
Applications must be submitted at least 60 days prior to departure and are made online on ECF Labs, in the Step Beyond Lab.
The application must be made by the traveller, not the host organisation, and travel must not take place prior to confirmation of the funding decision.