National minority umbrella organisations can now apply for support

As of today, 23. January 2019, the umbrella organisations of national minority cultural associations can apply for support for their activities. The application round is designed to contribute to the sustainable operations and systematic development of the umbrella organisations and their members in Estonia. This year’s application round, financed by the Ministry of Culture, is valued at €457,000. Applications can be submitted to the Integration Foundation until 25 February.

There are 18 active umbrella organisations in Estonia for national minority cultural associations, of which there are around 260 in total. The activities of the umbrella organisations represent an important resource for the country, as they have the potential to significantly boost inclusivity among national minorities and to promote stronger ties to Estonia, thus enriching society and cultural life in the country.

The 2017 study conducted by the Integration Foundation entitled ‘The impact of participating in the national cultural activities of national minorities in Estonia on their ethnic identity’ revealed that such participation increases interest in the cultures of all of the people living in the country, including Estonian culture itself. “People also tend to keep a closer eye on cultural life in the country and in the place where they live, there’s greater involvement in social and political activities, a more tangible connection’s created with Estonia and a stronger national identity emerges,” explained Irene Käosaar, the director of the Integration Foundation.

The activities of the umbrella organisations of national minority cultural associations promote cultural diversity within Estonian society and contribute to the development of a more cohesive society. Applications are open to legal entities registered in Estonia and operating under private law which have at least five members that are involved in the promotion and development of the cultural heritage of national minorities in Estonia.

Applicants must have been operating as umbrella organisations for at least two years prior to applying.