13th UNDEF Project Grant: Inviting CSOs & NGOs to Advance & Support Democracy


Deadline: 15 January 2019

The United Nations Democracy Fund (UNDEF) is seeking proposals for the thirteenth round of its UNDEF project grant to advance and support democracy.

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UNDEF supports projects that strengthen the voice of civil society, promote human rights, and encourage the participation of all groups in democratic processes. The large majority of UNDEF funds go to local civil society organizations — both in the transition and consolidation phases of democratization. In this way, UNDEF plays a novel and unique role in complementing the UN’s other, more traditional work — the work with Governments– to strengthen democratic governance around the world.

Focus Areas

UNDEF invites project proposals covering one or more of eight main focus areas:

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  • Gender equality
  • Community activism
  • Rule of law and human rights
  • Youth engagement
  • Strengthening civil society interaction with Government
  • Media and freedom of information
  • Tools for knowledge
  • Electoral processes

In this Round, UNDEF particularly welcomes proposals in the areas of gender; rule of law; media; or electoral processes focusing on elections scheduled for 2020 at the earliest.

Funding Information

  • In principle, UNDEF grants will be allocated for projects with default duration of two years. However, it is acceptable to UNDEF if a successful applicant completes a project in less than two years. Grants will not necessarily match the full amounts applied for.
  • Grant allocations will be of a minimum of US$100,000 and not exceed US$300,000 for any given project. Applicants must request an amount within this range. The majority of projects are granted no more than $250,000.

Eligible Beneficiaries

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  • UNDEF funds projects implemented by non-UN organizations, not individuals, profit-making or government entities. Eligible applicants must be duly constituted nationally or internationally and have legal status.
  • At the project proposal stage, applicants will be required to indicate the type of organization applying for funding:
    • Civil Society Organizations and Non-Governmental Organizations engaged in promoting democracy
    • Independent and Constitutional Bodies,
    • Global and Regional inter-government bodies, organizations and associations other than the United Nations
  • UNDEF’s priority is Civil Society Organizations and Non-Governmental Organizations. The organization must be legally constituted. UN accreditation is not a prerequisite to apply for UNDEF funding. UNDEF encourages local CSO’s to submit high quality project proposals.

Priority Countries and Regional Balance

Strong preference will be given to applicants from countries and regions where the challenges of democracy are more critical, such as countries emerging from conflict, new and restored democracies, the Least Developed Countries (as per the official classification of the UNOHRLLS), Low Income Countries (“Low Income Economies” as per the World Bank’s official classification based on Gross National Income per capita) and Middle Income Countries (“Lower and Upper Middle-income Economies”, idem).

Eligibility Criteria

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Local and Global/Regional Projects: UNDEF will invite proposals for projects that either take place in one country only (local) or occur in several specified states of a region or sub-region (regional) or intend to operate at the global level (global). UNDEF will reserve at least 80% of its programmable resources in each funding round for projects taking place in one country and will allocate no more than 20% to global/regional projects.

How to Apply

Project proposals can be submitted only through Online Project Proposal System via given website.

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For more information, please visit https://www.un.org/democracyfund/apply-for-funding

Tips for Applying for the United Nations Democracy Fund
The United Nations Democracy Fund (UNDEF) Call for Project Proposals 2019 is now open from 15 December 2018 to 15 January 2019 for NGOs to apply. Check out our Best Tips for Applying for the United Nations Democracy Fund. [more]

  • Avatar Sharon Ruth Nansamba says:

    Thanks to you UNDEF, this will help the programs and activities run if we’re to Achieve UN Vision of No leave girl and women behind by 2030.

  • Avatar Mohammed Saadi says:

    IRAQ IS ELIGIBLE TO SUBMIT A PROPOSAL?

    • Avatar Priyanka says:

      Hi Mohammed Saadi,

      Yes, you can apply for this grant as this opportunity is open to citizens of any country. For more information on eligibility criteria, application process and more, please visit the link given on the last line of the post.

      Good luck!

  • Avatar Yuvraj says:

    Is a Nepali non-profit eligible to apply for the fund?

    • Avatar Ritu at fundsforNGOs says:

      Hi Yuvraj,

      This opportunity is open to citizens of any country. You can apply for this opportunity if you fulfill the eligibility requirements. To learn more on eligibility criteria and how to apply please visit the link provided at the end of the post.

      Good luck!

  • Avatar RAJIB Shaikh says:

    Thanks to you UNDEF

  • Avatar Goodwin Banda says:

    it is more easier to send through email

  • Avatar Jeh Timothy Jeh says:

    Are there any other options/ dates for next proposals?

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