Call for Proposals: Strengthening Association and Assembly Rights in Africa using the Guidelines on Freedom of Association and Assembly

Deadline: 30 June 2019

The International Center for Not-for-Profit Law (ICNL) is seeking proposals to support pilot national initiatives identified by members of the various regional networks as part of its “Strengthening Association and Assembly Rights in Africa through the ACHPR Guidelines” program.

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ICNL aims to support innovative and impactful action by CSOs on the African continent to use the Guidelines to promote and protect the fundamental rights of association and assembly in Africa, and to expand space or navigate restrictions. To achieve these program goals, ICNL will provide small grants and technical assistance as needed.

For several years, ICNL has worked closely with the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights’ (ACHPR) Study Group on Freedom of Association and Assembly to develop Guidelines on Freedom of Association and Assembly in Africa (the Guidelines) under the supervision of the Special Rapporteur for Human Rights Defenders in Africa. The ACHPR adopted the Guidelines in 2017. In addition to their persuasive value, the Guidelines are a useful tool for states to ensure compliance with their obligation to protect fundamental freedoms of association and assembly and, more practically, to guide their work on state party reporting and drafting of internationally compliant laws. The Guidelines are also essential for the monitoring, advocacy and engagement undertaken by national human rights institutions, CSOs and media, amongst others.

Following the ACHPR’s adoption of the Guidelines, ICNL supported regional networks of human rights organizations to disseminate and popularize the Guidelines within their memberships and develop regional initiatives to support the practical use of the Guidelines. It is essential to ensure that continental and regional action is complemented by efforts at national level.

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Eligibility Requirements

Proposals are welcome from any non-profit organization operating in Africa.

Selection Criteria

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Applications will be evaluated based on the following factors:

  • Compliance with eligibility requirements and application procedures;
  • Demonstrated commitment of applicant to protecting civic space and understanding of the ACHPR system;
  • Quality of proposed project, including:
    • level of innovation and potential impact or multiplier-effect of the proposed project,
    • the proposed methodology/design, and
    • project feasibility (e.g., activities are targeted to achieve stated results, and anticipated results are realistic and attainable);
  • Likelihood that the proposed project will enhance civic space in Africa;
  • Sustainability of the proposed project beyond the grant period;
  • Proposed budget and apparent value for money;
  • Inclusion of reasonable indicators to measure project success; and
  • Level of collaboration and inclusion in the project of other organizations within the applicant’s sector and/or across sectors.

How to Apply

To apply for a grant, applicants must submit the following fully completed items via email at the address given on the website, with the subject “Strengthening Use of ACHPR Guidelines”.

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  • Application Coversheet;
  • Proposal (no more than five pages); and
  • Line-item Budget (no more than $15,000).

For more information, please visit

  • Avatar Sylvestre Sidie Kallon says:

    I am from Sierra Leone. Is it possible for a National Human Rights Institution to apply.

    • Avatar Ritu at fundsforNGOs says:

      Hi Sylvestre Sidie Kallon,

      For more information regarding eligibility criteria, application process and more, please visit the link provided at the end of the post.

      Good Luck!

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