Haapsalu Business and Non-Profit Development Center (Western Estonia)
Kalda 4, Haapsalu 90503 Laane County, Estonia
Tel/Fax: 372-47-35-538; e-mail: evk@haapsalu.ee
website: www.evk.haapsalu.ee

Haapsalu NGO Support Center was established in 1995, and it is one of a Network of Estonian NGO Support Centers. There are 9 centers all over Estonia. The main objectives of the Support Centers are to develop civic initiative and voluntary activities, and to develop the third sector environment in cooperation with nonprofit organizations and the public and business sectors. Our main tasks are:

  • informing and communicating with local organizations and authorities;
  • providing counseling and consultations;
  • conducting trainings.
Our parent organization is Haapsalu Business Support Center which focuses on economic counseling of enterprises. Since January 2000, the counseling and training of NGOs was added to the Center's core activities.

Description of activities

1. NGO Counseling
a. Start-up counseling/ defining a mission
b. Funding: grants and partnering
c. Translation: from Russian or Estonian to English

2. Small Business Counseling
a. Start-up counseling / Business plans
b. Funding - loans, grants, investing
c. Business expansion planning

3. Seminars and education

a. NGO:
i. Tax law
ii. Funding
iii. Volunteerism
iv. Project writing
v. Networking
vi. Partnering with for-profit companies
vii. Computer usage
viii. Public speaking.

b. Business:
i. Bookkeeping
ii. Tax law
iii. Safe workplace
iv. Marketing
v. Business start-up training
vi. Technical / Computer usage
vii. Language

4. Outside Projects
a. Information Technology Academy (IT Academy) - Development of Distance Education Courses
b. Business Around the Baltic Sea (BABS) - Creation of business-to-business contacts among Baltic Sea countries
c. Small and Medium Sized Enterprise Link (SME Link) - Creation of database linking SMEs in Estonia and Sweden.

5. Community Internet/ Computer Center
a. Computer lab available to all NGOs and SMEs in Laane County (Western Estonia)
b. All computers have Internet access and Microsoft: Word, Excel and PowerPoint
c. The lab contains five computers and one printer.

In order to fulfill its goals and mission, as a member of NGO Support Centers' Network, Haapsalu NGO Center focuses on four main roles: membership organization (advocacy, involvement and monitoring); civil society developer (public policy, philanthropy development), participation in law-making, networking, organizing events); platform for cooperation (local and international organizations, public agencies, businesses, universities) and service provider (information exchange, counseling, training, support, employment).