How to handle the budget?
As we know from our experience, financial matters are often the main obstacle for people who start their adventure with youth projects before making their own project. Fortunately, budgeting is very simple thanks to the Erasmus+ Program.
The good news is that with Erasmus+ you have no influence on how much money you get. This amount is predetermined (flat rate) and calculated automatically based on the length of the project, the number of participants and the places from which participants are traveling. If you fill in the information in the ACTIONS section of the application correctly, the budget will fill itself.
Read on if you want to know exactly how it works.
Division of the budget
Project funding can be divided into three categories: organizational support, travel costs, and special costs.
The basic category in the budget is organizational support. These are funds that will allow you to cover all costs necessary for the exchange (e.g. hotel rental, workshop materials). The grant amount depends on the country where the project takes place. For example, for Poland it is EUR 34 for each participant, for each day of the project. The total amount of organizational support is calculated by multiplying this rate by the number of participants and the number of days of the project.
If your project lasts 5 days + 2 travel days and 20 people (including group leaders) participate in it, the amount of organizational support will be:
34 EUR * 7 * 20 = 4 760 EUR
Warning! Organizational support grants are not awarded for a preparatory visit, but can be applied for under special costs.
This is the second main component of the project budget. This appropriation is intended to cover participants’ travel to and return from the location where the project takes place. The amount for each participant depends on the distance in a straight line from each organization’s site to the project site. The European Commission has defined distance ranges for which a specific rate is set to cover travel costs. It is:
Distance ranges for travel costs
- EUR 0 if the distance is less than 10 km
- EUR 20 if the distance is between 10 and 99 km
- EUR 180 if the distance is between 100 and 499 km
- EUR 275 if the distance is between 500 and 1999 km
The rates for longer distances can be found in the Erasmus + Program Guide.
This calculator can be used to check the straight line distance: https://ec.europa.eu/programmes/erasmus-plus/resources/distance-calculator_en.
The total amount in this part will be calculated as the sum of the amounts for each group participating in the project.
Let’s assume that your project involves 3 groups: from Poland, Germany and Italy. The organizations are based in Kraków, Berlin and Turin, respectively, and each group consists of 7 people. Your project takes place in X in the Białowieża Primeval Forest because it is about ecology. This means that the travel grant will be calculated as follows:
- There are 398 kilometers from Krakow to Białowieża in a straight line, so participants from the Polish group will receive EUR 180
- from Berlin to Białowieża there are 706 kilometers in a straight line, so participants from the German group will receive EUR 275
- from Turin to Białowieża there are 1450 kilometers in a straight line, so participants from the Italian group will receive EUR 275
In total, the grant for travel costs will be:
7 * 180 + 7 * 275 + 7 * 275 = 5110 euro
For example, if your project involves the participation of people with disabilities who require extra care, or you have to bear the costs of applying for visas because of the countries participating in the meeting, you can request additional funds to cover such expenses. This amount is not a lump sum, but must be indicated by you.
Total project budget
The total project budget consists of the sum of organizational support, travel costs and special costs. It cannot exceed EUR 50,000.
What else should you know about the budget?
You receive co-financing for the project in two installments. After the grant is awarded, you will receive the first installment of 80% of the total project budget. You will receive the remaining 20% after the project is settled, so during the implementation of the activities, the organization will probably have to cover it with its own funds, to receive a refund later.
In the case of Youth Exchanges, no own contribution is required (100% of the costs are covered by Erasmus+), which is good news.