I am pleased to announce that the ICANN organization is restarting the Community Regional Outreach Program (CROP). The Fiscal Year 2023 (FY23) CROP space is now available for use by eligible community groups. FY23 CROP trips will be available starting Monday, 16 January 2023.
CROP funding is open to the five Regional At-Large Organizations and five Generic Names Supporting Organization constituencies (Business Constituency, Intellectual Property Constituency, Internet Service Providers and Connectivity Providers Constituency, Noncommercial Users Constituency, and Not-for-Profit Operational Concerns Constituency).
These community groups have relied on CROP extensively in the past to support their regional outreach and engagement efforts. We encourage eligible ICANN community groups to begin collaborating with regional Global Stakeholder Engagement teams, and we look forward to supporting group outreach and engagement work through CROP for FY23 and beyond. Please consult the FY23 CROP workspace for details.
CROP was developed as part of ICANN's fiscal year 2014 (FY14) budgeting process when ICANN community leaders outlined several key benefits that could be achieved through a programmed approach to global outreach. These included:
- Building local and regional awareness and recruitment of new community members.
- Engaging more effectively with current members and reactivating previously engaged ICANN community members.
- Communicating ICANN's mission and objectives to new audiences.
In recognition of the potential that such a regional outreach program could bring to the ICANN community's continued growth and development, the FY14 budget allocated resources to launch the Community Regional Outreach Pilot Program.
In fiscal year 2017, after testing this program for four years, CROP became part of the core ICANN Budget. It was renamed the Community Regional Outreach Program and is coordinated by ICANN's Policy Development Support function in collaboration with ICANN's Global Stakeholder Engagement team.
In February 2020, the ICANN organization paused CROP due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The resumption of CROP follows the successful conclusion of the first two hybrid ICANN Public Meetings, most recently ICANN75 in Kuala Lumpur.
The health and safety of all community members continues to be ICANN's top priority. Therefore, ICANN will continue to monitor relevant national and international public health guidance from the World Health Organization, the United States' Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and other national authorities.