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 vision is of a Commonwealth of equal, just, and inclusive
societies. Our mission is to contribute to that vision by:
- Supporting the active and constructive participation of Commonwealth
citizens in all aspects of their governance
- Nurturing the growth of vibrant and free civil societies in all
- Advancing the principles and ideals of the Commonwealth
The Foundation’s Strategic Plan 2021-2026 is strongly linked to the Commonwealth Charter and its values and aspirations. It also seeks to reflect and advance the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in particular, SDGs
three, five, and 13-16, including all relevant targets focussing on participation in decision-making at all levels. It identifies three thematic areas of focus:
- environment and climate change; and
- freedom of expression,
with gender equality as a cross-cutting theme. Civil society projects that aim to advance these themes will be supported through this call for applications. See section five for further information on our thematic areas.
The Foundation offers grants of up to £200,000 over four years in support of innovative project ideas and approaches that seek to strengthen the ability of civic voices to engage with governments and that have the potential to improve governance and development outcomes through their active participation.
Eligibility for grant funding under this call depends on the following criteria:
- The applicant is a registered not-for-profit civil society organization
- 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 (see further information on
- 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
organization’s total annual income.
- The average of the applicant organization’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
Proposals must relate to projects that are expected to begin within the second half of 2022.Eligible Regions: Australia, Bangladesh, Barbados, Brunei Darussalam, Canada, Cyprus, Guyana, India, Jamaica, Kenya, Kingdom of eSwatini, Kiribati, Lesotho, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Malta, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, New Zealand, Pakistan, Rwanda, Saint Kitts, and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Seychelles, Sri Lanka, South Africa, The Bahamas, Uganda, United Kingdom, Zambia
Applicants must apply through the web-based application portal(through the given link) by following steps:
- Register to apply
- Find Yourself on the dashboard
- Make an application
- Saving your progress
- Adding other users to view or edit your application
- Revision and submission
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 on the official website)
- A copy of the organization’s registration certificate1. This should be a
scan of an official registration document provided by the relevant
authorities in the country where the organization is registered.
- For grants of £15,000 per annum: a copy of the organization’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 organization’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 organization’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.
Application Deadline: November 30, 2021Application ClosedOfficial link