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Profile

Background

“CALLISTO” is an Environmental NGO (a civil, not-for-profit society), which was founded in Thessaloniki, Greece, in July 2004.
    Main activities of CALLISTO include:
▪    Conservation of biodiversity and of areas of high natural and aesthetic value, with emphasis on mountainous ecosystems and forests in Greece, the Balkans and other neighbouring countries.
▪    Study, conservation and management of wild fauna populations, especially of large carnivores (bear, wolf, lynx, jackal) that inhabit the above areas.
▪    Elaboration and implementation of projects for the protection and management of wildlife and the natural environment.  
▪    Information, awareness raising, and activation of the public for imposing control on the decision-making centres regarding environmental issues.
▪    Development of environmental education and training programs.
▪    Development of voluntarism to serve conservation actions.
▪    Support for the establishment and operation of Protected Areas and Ecological Networks, in order to preserve biodiversity, as well as the natural and cultural heritage.
▪    Development of scientific research and its applications as well as building national, trans-Balkan and international cooperation and networking for the above purposes
   
Experience of key staff members in implementation of conservation and environmental projects
    The staff members of CALLISTO include experts with long experience and specialisation in the field of nature conservation and practical knowledge on monitoring large carnivore populations (brown bear, wolf) using radio-telemetry and non invasive molecular biology methods.
    Members of the society include also experts on other relevant fields: animation of volunteers, regional development, journalism, communication, vocational training.
   
Participation in National and International Nature Conservation Organisations or Networks
▪    The founding member and General Director/Coordinator of CALLISTO, Mr. Spyros Psaroudas, has been a Council of Europe consultant, Member of the “Committee of experts for the development of the Pan-European Ecological Network (STRA-REP)” and an Alternate Member of the National Committee for Protected Areas in Greece “Nature 2000”, representing the Greek Environmental NGOs from 2002 to 2005. Between March 2008 and March 2010, he was representing the larger Greek Environmental NGOs as full member of the National Steering Committee of the Greek Operational Programme “Environment and Sustainable Development” 2007-2013. From 2003 he is Full Member and from 2006 elected Secretary of the Board of Directors of the Managing Authority of the Rhodopes Mountain Range National Park, representing the Greek Environmental NGOs. He is also Chairman of the Scientific Advisory Committee of the Park.
▪    The founding member and Head of the Scientific Department of CALLISTO Dr. Giorgos Mertzanis is full member of the Core Group of the Large Carnivore Conservation Initiative for Europe (IUCN/SSG group), which works for the conservation of the five most threatened species of large carnivores in Europe: Brown Bear, Wolf, Eurasian Lynx, Iberian Lynx, and Wolverine. He is also member of the Bear Specialists Group (BSG)/SSC under the IUCN, as well as Alternate Member of the Board of Directors of the Managing Authority of the Northern Pindos National Park, representing the Greek Environmental NGOs. He has been co-ordinating the scientific teams working on the project “Monitoring and assessment of Egnatia highway construction impact on large mammals and their habitats in Grevena Prefecture, Northern Pindos Mountain Range”, financed by the “Egnatia Odos S.A.” (first phase: 2003-2005, second phase: 2007-2009).
▪    The founding member and President of the Management Board of CALLISTO Mr. Constantinos Godes has been co-ordinator of the Balkan Large Carnivores Conservation Network, an informal network that interlinks many experts and NGOs in Greece and the Balkans. He co-ordinated the scientific teams working on the project “Monitoring and assessment of Egnatia Highway Construction Impact on Large Mammals and their Habitats in the Area between the East Opening of the Metsovo Tunnel and the Entrance of the Panagia Tunnel - section 3.5.1/2 of the Egnatia Highway”, financed by the “Egnatia Odos S.A.”. He is member of the Society for Conservation Biology – SCB, and substitute member of the Core of the Large Carnivore Initiative for Europe – LCIE.
   
Completed projects (January 2017)

▪    “Monitoring and assessment of the impact on wolves (Canis lupus) from the construction of a new railway line between Lianokladi & Domokos, Central Greece”. Implementation of this four months project was completed on March 2006. For this work CALLISTO was subcontracted by a consortium of environmental studies offices (source of financing: ERGA OSE S.A., a state owned construction company, which is responsible for all technical works concerning development of the railway network in Greece).

▪    “Development of Cooperation on environmental issues through the Youth Programme” in the framework of the European Programme YOUTH”. This project realised in the Protected Area of the Rhodope Mountain Range in July 2005, and was financed by the Greek General Secretariat of Youth.

▪    “Production of a kit of school education materials about wolves (Canis lupus)”. The activity was performed as a consultancy service one in the framework of the LIFE-Nature Project “Improving Coexistence of Large Carnivores and Agriculture in South Europe” – COEX, N. LIFE04NAT/IT/000144, carried out by the Istituto di Ecologia Applicata (IEA) and co-financed by EU. For this work CALLISTO was subcontracted by IEA.

▪    “Capacity building of staff members of the NGO ERINA with assistance provided by the Greek NGO CALLISTO”. This project, financed by EC/DG Environment, Directorate E.3 “Enlargement and Neighbouring Countries”, lasted from December 2005 to October 2006 concerning consultancy services to the NGO ERINA, based in Skopje, The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia.

▪    “Guidelines for Population Level Management Plans for Large Carnivores in Europe”: The “Istituto di Ecologia Applicata”, Rome, Italy, who granted by EC/DG ENV for the implementation of this project, offered a contract to CALLISTO, for its contribution to the preparation of the aforementioned guidelines, concerning particularly the Management Plans for Large Carnivores in the South-Eastern Europe and the Balkans.

▪    “Training for the development of international cooperation in environmental issues” in the framework of the European Programme YOUTH”. This project realised in Protected Areas of Gramos and Voio Mountain Ranges, Prefecture of Kastoria, Region of Western Macedonia, in July 2006. It was financed by the Greek General Secretariat of Youth.

▪    “Cultural Egnatia”: The Hellenic Ministry of Culture (beneficiary of a project in the framework of the European Programme “Information Society”) offered a contract to “Callisto”, in order to contribute to the development of a bilingual website including information for the cultural heritage, the natural environment and the today’s culture of the areas the highway connects. The work of “Callisto” (collection of scientific data, preparation of texts and development of a database regarding sites of environmental interest along the Egnatia Highway) was completed on April 2007.

▪    “Development of Cross-Border Cooperation as a Basis for Effective Conservation of Brown Bear Population and Habitats in Western Rhodope Region”. A twelve-month cross-border cooperation project between Bulgarian and Greek NGOs and Municipalities for conservation of brown bear in Western Rhodope. The project was financed by the European programme PHARE and completed successfully in November 2007.

▪    “Application of Environmental Education Programmes in the Rhodope Mountain Range Protected Area”: CALLISTO undertook the task of designing and applying Environmental Education Programmes in the area. The “Management Authority of the Rhodope Mountain Range Protected Area” cooperated with CALLISTO on the implementation of this project in situ, which was completed in June 2008. In the framework of the specific project, CALLISTO implemented 17 environmental education programs in the protected area of Rhodope Mountain Range, in cooperation with the Managing Authority, the Municipality of Paranesti and the local Environmental Education Centre. More than 700 students participated in these programmes.

▪    “Institutional entrenchment and legal status for the Protected Areas in the Balkans and in the European-wide networks”: Organisation of a one-week international seminar on the “Legal and Institutional status of the Protected Areas and the Management Authorities established by the Balkan states”. Participants of the seminar will be fifty (50) young people that will be selected by nine (9) organisations from seven (7) Balkan countries: Greece (“Callisto” NGO), Bulgaria ( “Rhodope- a mountain for everyone” NGO, EcoArk NGO and “Agrolink” Association), the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (“Erina” - Journalists’ Legal Environmental Center), Albania (EDEN - Environmental Center for Development, Education and Networking), Bosnia & Herzegovina (“Livno” Youth Center), Croatia (Biology Department, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine University of Zagreb), and Serbia (Young Researchers of Serbia). The seminar implemented in March 2008, and its cost was covered by a grant provided to “Callisto” by the European Programme “YOUTH”, Action 3.1.2.

▪    “Awareness Raising and Information Campaign for the Mountain Ecosystems and Large Carnivores in the Transborder Area of Rhodope”. Implementation period: November 2005 – September 2008. For the implementation of this project, CALLISTO was financially supported by the EC (European Initiative INTERREG III A, Greece/Bulgaria) and by national funding. CALLISTO accomplished successfully the following tasks/actions in the framework of this project: (1) Elaboration of a joint plan for the promotion of tourist destinations of natural value and aesthetic interest; (2) Joint information campaign on coexistence of large carnivores (brown bear, wolf) with rural people; (3) Publication of a book on large carnivores and printing-dissemination of posters, leaflets, and other information material; (4) Publication and circulation of a newsletter concerning transborder mountain areas and large carnivores; (5) Production-circulation of TV spots and articles/news releases to the media; (6) Setup and operation of a website promoting the project tasks; (7) Organisation of daily meetings and participation in public events and exhibitions; and, (8) Awareness and Information actions supported by volunteers in the project area

▪    “Actions for Increasing Employment with active participation of NGOs – FIRST CIRCLE”. A twelve-month programme funded by the European Social Fund and the Greek Ministry for Employment and Social Protection. In the framework of this programme CALLISTO implemented the following Action Plans: (1) «Networking of Teachers, Pupils and Parents for promoting Environmental Awareness Raising, in Municipality of Eleftherio-Kordelio, Prefecture  of Thessaloniki», (2) «Awareness Raising and Application of Prevention Measures in Areas Recently Decolonized by Brown Bear», (3) «Information of Animal Breeders and Visitors on Implementation of Management Actions for Minimizing Conflicts between Large Carnivores and Humans in the Protected Area of Rhodope Mountain Range», (4) «Awareness Raising Campaign with participation of Volunteers for Mountain Ecosystems of the Kastoria Prefecture, NW Greece» and (5) «Intervention actions for Protection of Riparian Ecosystems around Pineios River, Thessaly».

▪    “Actions for Increasing Employment with active participation of NGOs – SECOND CIRCLE”. A ten-month programme having similar content with the previous set of actions implemented by CALLISTO (see “Actions for Increasing Employment with active participation of NGOs – FIRST CIRCLE” above). It was  also funded by the European Social Fund and the Greek Ministry for Employment and Social Protection. In the framework of this programme CALLISTO implemented the following two Action Plans: (1) «Awareness Actions and Motivation of Volunteers for Environmental Sensitisation of local Farmers, Animal Breeders and Visitors in Sidironero, Drama» and (2) «Interventions for Protection of Protected Areas in Western Thessaly». Implementation period: 1/3/08 – 31/12/08.

▪     “Master Plan for minimization of the habitats fragmentation caused by road construction and accompanying works”: CALLISTO won contract from the Hellenic Ministry for Environment, Land Planning and Public Works, after a relevant public tender. The study, which was completed in 2008, was financed in the framework of the Measure “Technical Assistance” of the Operational Programme “Environment 2000-2006”, and has been contributed substantially to the development of technical standards for minimization of the impact of highways on wildlife, especially mammals.

▪     “Consolidating the civil society on the Balkans for effective implementation of the environmental acquis””. The Bulgarian NGO “EcoArk” asked from “CALLISTO” to participate as partner in this project, aiming at capacity building of the EcoArk NGO and its local partners to help reconcile the interests of the tourist industry with the principles for conservation and sustainable use of the natural resources in areas of high biological diversity in the Rodopi Mountain Range. Specifically, CALLISTO provided staff members / experts who participated in the implementation of the Project and in the Seminar “Strengthening the capacity of environmental NGOs for successful nature conservation actions - Sustainable tourism development” held in Smiljan, Bulgaria, 28/7-30/7/2008.

▪    “Protection of Forests and forest-fire prevention with the active participation of volunteers”. This project was implemented in co-operation with WWF-Greece and a local NGO named “Pindos Perivallontiki”. Groups of volunteers were trained, animated and co-ordinated for organizing complementary to the Forestry Service wardening activities in Northern Pindos (Valia Calda) and Grammos Mountain Range, Western Macedonia. CALLISTO’s activities were sponsored by Latsis Foundation and OTE, the Greek Telecommunication National Company. The project was implemented between July and September 2008.

▪    «Monitoring of Wildlife in the National Park of Northern Pindos». CALLISTO was selected as beneficiary of a grant provided by the National Operational Programme “Environment” through the Management Authority of the Northern Pindos National Park, after a relevant public tender. CALLISTO provided the Park Authorities with the following services: (1) Inventory on and evaluation of the conservation status of the most important animal species and its habitats within the Park (including distribution and population numbers); (2) Development of a proper framework (platform, standard forms, databases etc.) for the future monitoring of the most important animal species within the Park; and (3) Recommendations for implementation of conservation actions concerning the most important animal species and its habitats in the Northern Pindos National Park. The project implemented between May and December 2008.

▪    “Exchange of experience and cooperation with Albania, on awareness raising and sensitization of local people on issues related with nature conservation”. In cooperation with a Consultants Company (“NEXT.COM”), CALLISTO won a contract from the Management Authority of the Northern Pindos National Park, funded by the INTERREG IIIA Greece-Albania programme, after a relevant public tender. In the framework of this project CALLISTO undertook the following tasks: (1) Preparation of a report on the National Park of Hotova (Albania) including information on important features of the natural environment and wildlife in the area. The report was used as main input for the printing of informative leaflets and the preparation of a multimedia application, in both English and Greek languages; (2) Preparation of an advisory report on the proper management of the National Park of Hotova including guidelines on the conservation of the Park; (3) Preparation of guidelines for the development of a Management Plan of the National Park of Hotova; (4) Participation in three meetings, one in Greece (N. Pindos N.P.) and two in Albania (Hotova N.P.), which were held in order to provide technical and scientific consultation to the Management Authority of the Hotova N.P. The project implemented between June and November 2008.

▪    “Monitoring and assessment of Egnatia Highway’s Construction Impact on Large Mammals and their Habitats in the Area between the East Opening of the Metsovo Tunnel and the Entrance of the Panagia Tunnel - segment 3.5.1/2 of the Egnatia Highway” (2007-2009): CALLISTO was subcontracted by  the state owned EGNATIA ODOS S.A. Construction Company (sources of financing: Greek Government - Hellenic Ministry of Environment, Land Planning & Public Works, and European Commission - EC/DG Regio). The project completed successfully in February 2009.

▪    “Monitoring and assessment of Egnatia Highway’s construction and operation impact on large mammals and their habitats in the area between Panagia and Grevena (segment 4.1)” (2006-2009): CALLISTO co-ordinated the implementation of the project and monitored-assessed the impact on large carnivores. The  NGO ARCTUROS participated also monitoring-assessing the impact on ungulates. For the necessary works, in Grevena Prefecture, Northern Pindos Mountain Range, CALLISTO was subcontracted by  the state owned EGNATIA ODOS S.A. Construction Company (sources of financing: Greek Government - Hellenic Ministry of Environment, Land Planning & Public Works, and European Commission - EC/DG Regio). The project completed successfully in March 2009.

▪    “Awareness Raising Campaign for Conservation of Large Carnivores in Greece and their Coexistence with Humans” (2007-2008): A fourteen-month project, approved for a grant in the framework of the Operational Programme “Environment” (EPPER III) financed by the EC (75%) and the Greek Government (25%). Main actions of this project included printing information material, organization of public events and meetings, and production of a 50’ minutes video film, covering topics such as prevention of damages made by large carnivores on agriculture, and mitigation measures for minimising the impact of roads on large carnivores. The project completed successfully in December 2009.

▪      “Monitoring the impact on wolves (Canis lupus) from the construction of the motorway of Central Greece (south part)”. Implementation of this twelve months project (budget: 280.000 euro) started on September 2009 and was completed on August 2010. CALLISTO was subcontracted by one of the construction companies (TERNA SA), for implementing the relevant (obligatory) environmental term.

▪      “Conservation genetics of brown bears in Greece”. Using a small grant 
(5.000 €) offered by the International NGO “EURONATUR”, CALLISTO staff members investigate the genetic structure of the bear population in Greece, contributing to the identification of major recolonisation routes of dispersing individuals and to the evaluation of the impact of large scale human disturbances on gene flow. The project started in June 2009 and its first phase was completed on December 2010.

▪      “Preparation of an Integrated Management Plan for the Pafos Forest, Cyprus”. The project was implemented by the consortium “D. Tsiaras - D. Palaskas – CALLISTO” in collaboration with the Forestry Department of Cyprus. The overall objective of the project was to improve the management of the Pafos Forest and the protection of biodiversity and other forest functions through the preparation and implementation of an integrated management plan. The project implementation period was from March 2009 to March 2011, with a total budget of 279.800 € (15.000 € for CALLISTO).

▪      “Monitoring and assessment of the impact on wolves (Canis lupus) from the construction of the new railway line between Lianokladi & Domokos, Central Greece – 2nd Phase: Construction”. This project (duration: 32 months, budget: 380.000 euro) was the continuation - 2nd phase of the similar project implemented between December 2005 and March 2006 (see “Completed Projects” above). It was started on October 2009 and completed on August 2011.

▪      LIFE+ Nature & Biodiversity Project “Demonstration of Conservation Actions for Ursus arctos* and habitat type 9530* in Northern Pindos N.P., Grevena Prefecture, Greece” (LIFE07 NAT/GR/000291). CALLISTO participated as associated beneficiary in this project, which was implemented in Grevena Prefecture, (January 2009 – June 2012), in cooperation with the Grevena Prefecture (Coordinating beneficiary) and, from January 2011, after changes made in the structure of the Local governments in Greece, with the Region of W. Macedonia, Grevena Regional Unit. Besides CALLISTO, other associated beneficiaries/partners included the Development Agency of Grevena (ANGRE), the National Agricultural Research Foundation/Forest Research Institute (NAGREF/FRI), and Business Architects Consultancy SA. Total budget of the project, supported by the EC, was 1.153.561 €. CALLISTO was responsible for implementing and demonstrating actions related with Conservation of brown bear populations and habitats in the project area, with a total cost of € 312.340. 

▪      LIFE+ Nature & Biodiversity Project “Improving the conditions for large carnivore conservation - a transfer of best practices” (LIFE07 NAT/IT/000502)”. This was an international LIFE project (Italy, Romania, Bulgaria and Greece) aiming at improving the know-how of conservation actors in what concerns activities for the conservation of wolves and bears. CALLISTO undertook the responsibility of implementing the project actions in Thessaly, Greece, with a total cost of € 173.144. Coordinating beneficiary was the Parco Nazionale del Gran Sasso e Monti della Laga, Italy, while other associated beneficiaries, apart CALLISTO, included the Parco Nazionale dei Monti Sibillini, Italy, the Parco Nazionale dell’ Appennino Tosco-Emiliano, Italy, the Transilvania University of Brasov, Faculty of Silviculture and Forest Engineering, Romania, the NGO Balkani Wildlife Society, Bulgaria, and the Ministry of Environment and Waters, Bulgaria. Implementation of the project started on January 2009 and was completed on March 2013.

▪      “Treatment-limitation and preliminary investigation of wolf-dog hybridization in the National Park of Kerkini Lake”. Following a tender and a bidding process organized by the Lake Kerkini Management Authority, CALLISTO was assigned to implement this one-month project (October-November 2013), financed by the “Green Fund” (Greek Ministry of Environment) with 6.900 euro including VAT.  CALLISTO made preliminary investigation of the wolf-dog hybridization in the study area (National Park of Kerkini Lake) and designed/organized the operation for the removal of hybrids from the area. CALLISTO’s experts prepared and delivered a technical report including operation results findings as well as maps and description of the recommended management actions and the related monitoring protocol.

▪      “Differentiation of tourist product: Eco-tourism Trails in the cross-border area for the promotion of alternative tourism”. The project (start date: August 2012 – end date: November 2014) was financially supported by the Greece - Albania IPA Cross Border Programme 2007-2013 (provisional budget: 263.265 €, share for CALLISTO: 23.137 €). In the frame of the project, five (5) eco-trails were created addressing specialized interests (religious routes, outdoor activities, wildlife watch) & integrated in GIS maps. Eco-tourism packages were developed & promoted to national & EU tourism stakeholders, combining the eco-trails created & including integrated tourist services. CALLISTO successfully completed the task to open, map, create and signaling a thematic bear trail near Nestorio village.

▪      Environmental Education Programme “The forest animals go to school”. The project, sponsored by the Greek Telecommunication companies “OTE” and “COSMOTE”, was implemented in the school year 2013-2014. Its total cost was 9.840,00 €, including 23% VAT.

▪      LIFE+ Nature & Biodiversity Project “Improving conditions of bear-human coexistence in Kastoria Prefecture, Greece - Transfer of best practices” (LIFE09 NAT/GR/000333). CALLISTO participates as associated beneficiary in this project (implementation period: October 2010 – September 2015), in cooperation with the Prefecture of Kastoria – and from January 2011 the Region of Western Macedonia/Regional Unit of Kastoria (Coordinating beneficiary) and the Development Agency of Kastoria (ANKAS), which was the other associated beneficiary. Total budget of the project actions, eligible for 75% co-financial support by the EC, was 1.128.326 €. CALLISTO was responsible for implementing actions related with research, concrete conservation, awareness raising, environmental education, coordination of volunteers, and monitoring of brown bear populations using radio-telemetry and non invasive molecular biology methods, with a total estimated cost of 536.000 €. 

▪      “Endangered mammals of Greece” - Environmental Education and Awareness Raising Activities. The project, sponsored by the Greek Telecommunication group of companies “OTE”, was implemented between December 2014 and June 2015. Its total cost was 9.840,00 €, including 23% VAT.

▪      LIFE+ Nature & Biodiversity Project “Conservation actions for improving conditions of human-bear coexistence in Northern Pindos, Greece - LIFE ARCPIN” (LIFE12 NAT/GR/000784)”. The project’s objectives was to improve the conservation status of the brown bear (Ursus arctos) in the Northern Pindos National Park and Grevena, measured in terms of population levels and trends. Its actions were planned to promote the sustainable coexistence of humans and bears in the project areas, by minimising bear-human interference and subsequent conflicts that are detrimental to the species. CALLISTO participated as associated beneficiary in this project (start date: October 2013), in cooperation with the Municipality of Grevena (Coordinating Beneficiary), the Development Agency of Grevena (ANGRE) and the Management Authority of the Northern Pindos National Park, which are the other associated beneficiaries of the project. Total budget of the project actions, approved for 75% co-financial support by the EC, was 1.582.160 € (share for CALLISTO: 610.640 €). CALLISTO was responsible for implementing certain actions, including implementation of measures against the illegal use of poison-baits, operation of Bear Emergency Teams, implementation of damage prevention methods, installation of special aversive means in human/bear conflicts hot-spots, contribution to stakeholder consultation & involvement, awareness raising and adult education using new Internet Media, environmental education, and, finally, monitoring of the impact of the actions implemented by the project. Due to financial problems of the Municipality of Grevena (Coordinating Beneficiary) and of the Development Agency of Grevena (ANGRE), the EC decided to initiate a standard termination procedure on 2/12/2016.

▪      ALPINE: “A Low Power, Intelligent sensor Network architecture for Environmental Management”. Main goal of the project is the design, implementation and evaluation of low power, energy-efficient sensor networks together with a suite of high-level, programming tools that are tailored to the specific requirements of real-time environmental management. Evaluation of the sensors will be made with the help of two pilot applications, one in the domain of hydrological infrastructure management and one in the area of bear and wolf management. CALLISTO is involved in all Working Packages (WP) of the project, however is especially responsible for implementation of the WP 6 – Wildlife Management. Foreseen implementation period of the project is September 2013 – September 2015. Leading partner is the “Athena” Research and Innovation Center, while associate partners, besides CALLISTO, include the National Technical University of Athens (NTUA), Democritus University of Thrace (DUTH), as well as the companies ALTEC, PRISMA and LINK, specialized in development and application of integrated information systems. Total budget of the project is 1.616.019 € (share for CALLISTO: 177.810 €). The 72,78 % of the project budget is financed by the General Secretariat for Research & Technology/Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports, in the framework of the Operational Programme "Competitiveness and Entrepreneurship" (OPCE II). The rest (439.909 €) is covered by own funds of the partners (61.870 € contributed by CALLISTO’s own funds).

▪      Scientific Monitoring of species and habitat types in the Protected Areas of Acheron and Kalamas, Greece. CALLISTO was subcontracted by OIKOM Environmental Studies LTD for monitoring the mammal species in the protected areas of Acheron and Kalamas, Region o Epirus, Greece. CALLISTO’s experts provide the following services: (a) Inventory on and evaluation of the conservation status of the most important mammal species and its habitats within the protected areas of Acheron and Kalamas; (b) Development of a proper framework (platform, standard forms, databases etc.) for the future monitoring of the most important mammals in the study area; (c) Recommendations for implementation of conservation actions concerning the most important mammal species in the study area (wolf, brown bear, otter, bats, wildcat etc.). Total budget of the project is approximately 500.000 € funded by the Greek Operational Programme “Environment” (share for CALLISTO: 40.000 €). Start date: 22/10/2013. Foreseen end date: 31/12/2015.

▪      Monitoring and Evaluation of the conservation status of mammal species of Community interest in Greece. CALLISTO cooperated in the preparation of the technical offer to the relevant tender and was subcontracted by Thomas Arapis (ATEPE Environmental Studies LTD) for monitoring wolf (Canis lupus) in Greece. CALLISTO’s experts provide the following services: (a) Inventory on and evaluation of the conservation status of wolf; (b) Development of a proper framework (platform, standard forms, databases etc.) for the future monitoring of wolf in Greece; (c) Recommendations for implementation of conservation actions concerning the wolf. Total budget of the project is 741.091 €, funded by the Greek Operational Programme “Environment” (share for CALLISTO: 37.055 € plus VAT). Start date: 11/03/2014. End date: 31/12/2015

▪      10 Years CALLISTO: Capacity Building & Application of Accountability Principles. The main purpose of the project funded by the EEA Grants (European Economic Area) through Bodossakis Foundation, was to strengthen CALLISTO’s capacity to be able to put into practice the principles of the Transparency and Accountability Charter of International NGOs. During the implementation of the project, October 2015-April 2016, Callisto developed a ‘principles and values framework’ and their strategy for the five-year period 2016-2020. In addition, the NGO created operating-procedures manuals, which were formed after a broad consultation of members, employees, economic supporters and volunteers of the organisation. By enriching the organisation’s website, producing  two leaflets (one of which bilingual) and a 40-page booklet regarding the results of the first ten years of CALLISTO’s actions, and by organising six public events in six cities of Greece, the organisation laid the foundations for the practical implementation of the principles of the International NGO Accountability Charter. All the accounting books of the organisation were converted from accounting category B to accounting category C, under the (Greek) Code of Accounting Books and Records.  Also, a cooperation with independent auditors that will annually monitor all the financial accounts of the organisation has been initiated. The annual report of the independent auditors is posted on CALLISTO’s website. Finally, the following actions took place: Exchanging examples of best practices and experience- sharing with other NGOs, establishing a volunteering  Legal Team (six meetings were held during the project), which will support interventions of environmental NGOs and other environmental groups (citizens’ associations,  Management Authorities of Protected Areas etc.) who are based in the wider region of Thessaloniki. In addition five training seminars on the use of new social media were organised.

▪      Environmental Education activities in schools of Thessaloniki and Athens. The project, sponsored by OTE/COSMOTE (the largest Greek Telecommunication group of companies), was implemented between December 2015 and June 2016. Its total cost was 9.840,00 €, including 23% VAT.   

Ongoing projects (January 2017)

Project “EC Large Carnivores Platform”. CALLISTO, in cooperation with the German company “adelphi consult GmbH”, submitted an offer to the European Commission/DG Environment and won the “Service contract for technical support for an EU Platform on coexistence between people and large carnivores”. The contract was signed on 4/11/2014 and its execution period is 36 months. Tasks undertaken include: A: Support to the work of the Platform, B: Operation of the Resource Centre of the Platform, and C: Organisation and facilitation of meetings. Specific sub-tasks undertaken by CALLISTO include: Compilation of relevant documents and good practices (collection and analysis of examples); Participation in elaboration of the communication plan and of a 4-page multilingual flyer; Provision of FAQs service for questions on best practice and advice; Participation in the elaboration of an E-mail bulletin with news on the internal work of the platform (6 per year); Participation in meetings with the Commission in Brussels; Organisation and facilitation of the Platform members annual meeting as well as of two regional workshops. Total budget of the project is approx. 429.000 €, funded by the European Commission (share for CALLISTO – subcontracted by “adelphi”: 103.215 €).

LIFE Project “Improving Human-Bear Coexistence Conditions in Municipality of Amyntaio” (LIFE15 NAT/GR/001108 - LIFE AmyBear). The project, with a total budget of 1.521.156 Euro, was approved for 75% financial contribution by the European Commission. CALLISTO’s share in the budget: 529.532 €. Coordinating Beneficiary is “Lever Development Consultants SA” and other Associated Beneficiaries, apart CALLISTO, include Municipality of Amyntaion and the Decentralized Administration of Epirus and Western Macedonia – Directorate of Forests of Florina Prefecture. Start date: 1/10/2016. Expected end date: 31/07/2020.

Environmental Education activities in schools of Thessaloniki and Athens. The project, for the school year 2016-2017, is sponsored by COSMOTE (the largest Greek Telecommunication group of companies), with a grant of 8.000 euro, plus 24% VAT. 

Environmental Education Programme in Northern Greece. The project is sponsored by “Stavros Niarchos Foundation”, with a grant of 56.000 euro, VAT included. Start date: August 2016. Expected end date: June 2017.