Commonwealth Foundation Grants call 2021-2022
As one of the three intergovernmental pillars of the Commonwealth, the Foundation operates within that critical space between government and the people. The Foundation works to bring the voice of civil society into all aspects of governance, supporting civil society engagement in shaping the policies and decisions that affect people’s lives.
The Foundation’s Strategic Plan 2021-2026 is strongly linked to the Commonwealth Charter and its values and aspirations, and it identifies three thematic areas of focus which are detailed in the green box below. Civil society projects that aim to advance these themes will be supported through this open grants call.
Eligibility for grant funding under this call depends on the following criteria:
- The applicant is a registered not-for-profit civil society organisation (CSO).
- The applicant is registered in an eligible Commonwealth Foundation member country and the proposed project will be implemented in the
country of registration. Please see a full list of eligible countries at commonwealthfoundation.com/grants. (Projects can be implemented in one or more eligible Commonwealth Foundation member countries. and can have a national, sub-national, regional or international remit).
- In multi-country projects, the Foundation encourages collaboration with partners in each involved country
- The applicant has documented experience, over at least two years, working on participatory governance and advocacy within the proposed
- The total grant amount requested must be between £15,000 and £30,000 per year for a maximum of two years.
- The requested grant amount should not exceed 70% of the applicant organisation’s total annual income.
- The average of the applicant organisation’s total annual income over the past two years must be less than £2m.
- The project proposal must address at least one of the priority themes and demonstrate appropriate and meaningful integration of gender considerations.
- Proposals must relate to projects that are expected to begin within the second half of 2022.
Applicants must address one or more of the Foundation’s three priority themes:
(ii) Environment and climate change
(iii) Freedom of expression
We seek to support initiatives that encourage and make possible meaningful and constructive engagement between civil society and government around policy and decision-making relevant to these three themes.
The Foundation’s themes overlap and connect in myriad ways. Applicants are encouraged to explore those intersections when developing their proposals and, where appropriate, consider addressing more than one theme.
Possible health focus areas may include supporting civil society to engage meaningfully with government on:
- Advocating for universal health coverage
- Realising the right to health through better availability, quality, and accountability in health services and delivery
- Developing programmes and policies that address the social determinants of health.
Possible environment and climate change areas may include supporting civil society to engage meaningfully with government on:
- Developing, reviewing and improving laws, policies and practices aimed at addressing environmental and climate threats
- Monitoring the implementation of relevant laws, policies and practices — such as national climate plans or commitments
- Addressing mitigation and adaptation challenges.
Participation of young people
Young people are central to the Foundation’s mission and vision. Applications are encouraged from CSOs working to support and advance the involvement of young people in their own governance, as well as from CSOs that include young people in their structure.
Small and vulnerable member states
The Commonwealth is a champion of small states and carries a special duty to support and advocate for the interests of small and vulnerable states. Applications from eligible small and vulnerable states are strongly encouraged.
An optional creative component
The Foundation understands the power of creative expression to influence change. This call will pilot support for the inclusion of a creative element into projects. This is an optional element and would be funded separately (up to 15% of the total grant awarded). Please refer to the ‘information for applicants’ document to find out more.
Method of Application
Applicants are required to complete an online application form. All applications must include the following additional documentation:
• A logic model and activity timeline (completed using the template provided).
• A copy of the organisation’s registration certificate1. This should be a scan of an official registration document provided by the relevant authorities in the country where the organisation is registered.
• For grants of £15,000 per annum: a copy of the organisation’s most recent audited accounts or annual accounts. Note that annual accounts must include a balance sheet, a profit and loss statement and notes about the account. They must be signed off by the organisation’s Board or its principal executive officer. Audited or annual accounts must not be older than December 2019.
• For grants of £15,001 and above: a copy of the organisation’s most recent audited accounts. Note that audited accounts must include both the accounts and the opinion of the external auditor who has certified them. They should not be older than December 2019.
Further Enquiries: [email protected]
Application Deadline: 30 November 2021 1pm GMT
For More Information: