Save Our Species CFPs: Threatened Species Grants Program

Deadline Extended till 19 May 2019

Please Note: There has been some new requirements in the eligibility criteria under the Call for Proposals SOS African Wildlife Threatened Species Grants; matching funds are now required.

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IUCN SOS is issuing a call to Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) to submit proposals targeting the conservation of any of the target species mentioned above, and/or other African species, particularly equids, bovids, and giraffes.

The objective of this Call for Proposals is to enable and support CSOs engaged in the conservation of selected threatened species to carry out sustainable conservation measures at local level to protect the species, their habitats and to improve the livelihoods of the people who depend on them.

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Financial Allocation

  • Grant size can vary from a minimum of EUR 25,000 and a maximum of EUR 450,000.
  • A minimum of 10% confirmed matching funds is required for grants from EUR 25,000 to EUR 99,999 and 20% confirmed matching funds is required for grants between EUR 100,000 and EUR 450,000. Therefore, the maximum contribution from SOS will be limited to a maximum of 80% of the grants up to EUR 450,000 and 90% of the grants up to EUR 99,999.
  • The budget must include ALL the costs of the project funded from ALL sources. It is not sufficient to only include the costs equal to SOS contribution requested.
  • ALL costs of the project, independent of the funding source, must comply with SOS eligibility rules. ALL costs of the project are subject to verification, be it spot checks or final audit.
  • The proposed project activities should be consistent with the amount requested and include a work plan. It is important to be realistic as to what can be achieved with the available amount and within the implementation period of the project. Expenses incurred outside Africa must be kept to a minimum and carefully justified.

Project duration

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The maximum duration of the project should be 30 months. The start date of the project will be determined by the date of the signature of the grant contract. The performance of the contract cannot start before its entry into force. Project Results and Activities need to be clear and attainable within the timeframe of the grant.

Eligibility criteria

  • Eligible Actors

    • In order to be eligible for a grant the applicant must be:
      • a legal person and
      • be non-profit-making and
      • be a civil society entity, local or international non-governmental organisation. Projects presented by local and national CSOs, including indigenous organizations (Community Based Organisations) will be favourably considered. African NGOs are encouraged to apply. International NGOs applying will be required to work closely with national stakeholders, local communities and with the consent and all required authorizations from the government. If international NGOs apply, overseas costs (indirect costs, salaries and international travel) will have to be minimal and justification for their need provided. In the case of international NGOs having a legally registered office in Africa, SOS will privilege the signature of a grant agreement and direct transfer of funds to their African registered office. Working with governments is encouraged although governments and government-affiliated entities are not eligible to receive grants directly. The costs of travel for government bodies (for example for attending a workshop) can be reimbursed if they are directly linked to the project.
      • grantees cannot have a conflict of interest in applying for this call. A conflict of interest may arise in particular as a result of economic interests, political or national affinities, family or emotional ties, or any other relevant connection or shared interest.
      • grantees cannot be current employees of IUCN or close relatives (i.e. immediate family) of IUCN employees.
      • grantees can submit a maximum of two applications as the lead organization, but they can be a sub-contractor in as many applications as they want.

Eligible Activities

  • Projects must focus on improving the status of the target threatened species (African Wild Dog, Cheetah, Ethiopian Wolf, Leopard and Lion) and/or other threatened species native to Sub-Saharan continental Africa. 70% of available funding is earmarked for projects targeting the five species of large carnivores. Other eligible species include other carnivores as well as equidae, bovidae and giraffidae. Applicants are requested to check the Red List status of the species they propose to target through their project on in order to make sure that their application will be eligible for funding. Priority will be given to projects focusing on Critically Endangered and Endangered species. Projects targeting Vulnerable species (other than the five large African carnivore species mentioned above) will be accepted in cases where immediate investments are necessary to avoid rapid declines. NB: projects responding to emergency situations should be submitted under the Rapid Action Grants open-ended call.
  • Projects must be implemented in Sub-Saharan continental Africa (with the exception of South Africa). The following countries are eligible: Angola, Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Djibouti, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Swaziland, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe.
  • Project proposals must indicate how they will address agreed recommendations. If a project is proposed outside the Key Landscapes for Conservation / priority sites identified in the European Union’s “Larger than Elephants” strategy or include activities not included in existing action plans and strategies, this must be stated clearly and detailed reasons given.
  • Projects must implement concrete conservation activities on the ground.
  • Projects that are slated to provide benefits to multiple threatened species and their habitats will be viewed favourably in the selection process.
  • Applications for projects that include aspects of human-wildlife conflict should demonstrate a thorough understanding of the underlying social and political contexts of the given conflict situation, and how the work proposed will address some of these. Where this is not possible, the proposal should explain how such an understanding will be gained before a conflict mitigation strategy is developed.
  • Applications that address illegal wildlife trade and that include a component engaging indigenous peoples or local communities should include clear thinking on the “theory of change” or logical sequence that is likely to lead to a reduction in poaching for the illegal wildlife trade, with attention to the underlying incentives facing community members and how the project intervention changes these. Where this is not known, the proposal should explain how this understanding will be increased in order to formulate such a theory of change.
  • Proposed activities must observe all relevant environmental and social Principles and Standards. Short-listed projects will be subjected to a full Environmental and Social Management System (ESMS) screening through the use of the ESMS questionnaire.

How to Apply

Applications must be submitted online via given website.

For more information, please visit

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