Contractual requirements – what you must do to publicise ESF
All organisations receiving ESF or match funds must comply with information and publicity regulatory requirements from both the European Union (EU) and the England ESF programme.
These requirements apply equally to the delivery of all your ESF and match funded provision:
- ESF logo and supporting references
- Project plaques for the 2007–2013 ESF programme
- Informing participants
- Project activity and achievements – publicising to wider audiences
- Key messages
- Contractual requirements and monitoring
All organisations in England and Gibraltar that receive ESF funds must acknowledge the support and financial help they receive from ESF and the EU.
ESF funding can be withdrawn if publicity requirements are not followed. Please ensure you comply and also retain evidence of your compliance.
Co-financing Organisations (CFOs) and other ESF funders pass on the requirements that apply to providers and sub-contractors through contractual agreements and supporting guidance and resources. Compliance is checked through monitoring activity.
You risk financial penalties if you do not comply with your contractual requirements.
Your project’s publicity measures must include the activities listed in this section of the toolkit.
ESF logo and supporting references
All information, publicity measures and websites related to the 2007-2013 ESF programme, including both ESF and match-funded activity, must include:
- the ESF logo for the 2007-2013 England and Gibraltar ESF programme (this is an EU regulatory requirement), and
- a reference to financial support from the European Union, for example "This project is financed by the European Union."
This is to help ensure as many people as possible get to know about ESF and what it does.
Use the logo on, for example:
- all information and publicity materials including websites
- ESF programme documents
- advertisements, press releases and other media targeted materials
- any document related to project delivery.
ESF logo – how to use the logo and downloadable files
Project plaques for the 2007–2013 ESF programme
You must display ESF project plaques at provider and sub-contractor 'main delivery locations' for ESF and match-funded provision.
This acknowledges and helps ensure visibility of the ESF and EU investment in your project.
These plaques are available at no cost to the project.
Plaque display is monitored – and you risk a financial penalty if they are not displayed.
You must inform all participants taking part in ESF or match-funded provision about the support from ESF and the European Union (EU) at the start of and throughout their activity.
You can achieve this through a range of measures.
At participant induction
You must ensure that clear messages are given on the role of the ESF and EU investment in relation to the project and wider ESF programme. For example:
- clear verbal explanations of EU and ESF support in presentations, plus clear display of ESF logo and references to EU support on any associated slides
- handouts given to participants, such as leaflets or forms containing the ESF logo. Explanations could contain a few ESF programme wide and project facts and be presented as engagingly as possible – for example as ‘did you know that……’ facts, supported by a strong ESF visual look
- an example of a leaflet used by the National Offender Management Service CFO is available below. This includes a clear reference to support from the European Social Fund, plus the ESF logo. As is the case here – supporting messages can be tailored to your project.
- the use of ESF DVDs or other audio/visual material produced by the provider, CFO or other funder, ESF Managing Authority or European Commission. For example the ESF Managing Authority has produced a short, engaging film “ESF and you” telling the stories of three former and two current participants - and how ESF funded skills and employment activity is improving their lives
- handing out low cost ESF promotional materials such as pens that show the ESF logo.
Throughout their activity
Examples of measures include:
- displaying the ESF project plaque prominently in your main delivery location used by participants
- placing other strong visual materials, such as ESF posters in training and other locations used by participants
- reminding participants of ESF support during training and other classroom sessions, for example on or around Europe Day (9 May each year)
- ensuring all project materials include the ESF logo
- encouraging people who are pursuing IT focused learning to access the national website at www.dwp.gov.uk/esf and other ESF websites
- informing participants of opportunities to apply for ESF individual awards – and where they are interested in being nominated, working with them on the completion of nomination forms. For example, the annual Adult Learners’ Week awards run by NIACE recognise learning achievements. Nominations can be submitted from around October to January and the winners receive their awards in May. Other national and local ESF awards initiatives also take place. Your CFO will have details of any that may be running in your area.
Project activity and achievements – publicising to wider audiences
Providers and sub-contractors receiving ESF or match funds must publicise project funding, activity, achievements and impact to wider audiences through a range of information and publicity measures.
When publicising your project, remember that you are seeking to promote and raise awareness of the ESF programme, as well as the activity or main story. Wherever possible, aim to ensure that your communications include the following:
- a clear reference to the European Social Fund (in full – not just the ESF abbreviation), plus an acknowledgement of EU support (for example: “This project is financed by the European Union”) and details of what activity it is funding
- the ESF logo
- a general message about what ESF does.
- Getting started – examples of publicity measures and main target audiences
- Engaging the media – guidance, templates and examples of effective practice to help you engage effectively with the media when publicising activity to wider audiences
- ESF logo
National level – main message
The main message to promote about the 2007- 2013 England ESF programme is:
ESF in England is investing in jobs and skills – focusing on people who need support the most and helping them fulfil their potential.
Wherever possible, incorporate this message in your publicity measures, particularly those targeted at external audiences, including the media and public.
National level – supporting messages
Depending on the nature of your communication you may wish to include:
- messages and facts available on the national ESF website – the 'About ESF' section includes regularly updated information on the focus of ESF, its added value and some supporting statistics.
- shorter general messages about the ESF programme – for example, ESF is:
- transforming lives through better skills and better job prospects
- adding value to EU and national strategies
- contributing to policies to increase employment
- contributing to policies to develop a skilled and adaptable workforce
- addressing distinctive local labour market needs, and
- mainstreaming equal opportunities and sustainable development.
Where appropriate, tailor these messages to the specific focus of your project.
If you would like support or to discuss using national level messages in your communications, please email: ESF.email@example.com
Local and project level
Your CFO or ESF funder may have produced branding or other guidance that contains one or more main messages about how ESF is being used locally or in support of their organisation’s strategic objectives. Please refer to this guidance or if in doubt, contact your CFO or ESF funder.
As a provider or sub-contractor you may well have one or more key messages that need to be used when publicising your project. If in doubt contact your project manager or colleagues responsible for communications activity.
Contractual requirements and monitoring
The ESF publicity requirements set out in this toolkit are included within the agreement your organisation has with your CFO or funder.
Your project manager or CFO or funder can provide details of the contractual publicity requirements and any supporting guidance and resources you need to use.
- Compliance with ESF publicity requirements is monitored by your CFO or funder and the ESF Managing Authority. You will need to collect and retain evidence of publicity measures through which you are meeting the requirements.
- Financial penalties can (and have been) imposed on projects if the publicity requirements are not followed and there is a lack of evidence of compliance.
- Providers are responsible for asking sub-contractors to comply with contractual requirements and follow any publicity guidelines and procedures from their CFO or funder.
- Before undertaking any external public relations activity, providers and their sub-contractors should consult their CFO or funder.
Participant awareness of ESF and EU support and measures taken to inform them are monitored and maybe audited externally. A lack of participant awareness or of evidence of measures taken is likely to be viewed as non-compliance with requirements – leading to a risk of a financial penalty being imposed.
In 2011-2013 we need to significantly improve participant awareness of ESF support (from less than 50% in 2010). We can only achieve this by provider and sub-contractor actions to raise participant awareness.