Thursday, 23 June 2011

European Commission Call for Proposals

The European Commission through the European Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights (EIDHR) has issued a call for proposals with the overall objective of enhancing the respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms in countries and situations where they are most at risk and where human rights defenders and civil society organisations work under severe constraints and are most under pressure.

Since this is a restricted call for proposals, only concept notes outlining the proposed project have to be submitted by the eligible applicants. Detailed proposals will be requested from shortlisted applicants after successful review of their concept notes.

The specific objective of this call is to provide direct support and protection to human rights defenders and to reinforce their capacities to do their work in the short and long-term, as well as to provide tangible support and means of action to local civil society in the promotion of human rights and fundamental freedoms in some of the world’s most difficult, dangerous and unpredictable political situations and/or where they are the most vulnerable and threatened.
For the purpose of this call for proposals, the concept “most at risk” refers to countries and situations characterised by a serious lack of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms; where human rights and fundamental freedoms are systematically violated; where there exists high risk to human security making it difficult for civil society and human rights defenders to operate, and where there is little or no room for political pluralism. Therefore, the gravity and persistence of the violations together with the effectiveness of the action are two key considerations for assessing and prioritising action proposals.

There are two lots to becovered under this call for proposals:
Lot 1: In Country Actions: This lot targets actions taking place in one single country that aim at enhancing respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms and at supporting human rights defenders taking place either in countries either in situations where they are the most at risk.

Lot 2: Transnational Actions (global and/or regional): This lot targets global and/or regional actions aiming at enhancing respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms and at supporting human rights defenders taking place either in countries either in situations where they are the most at risk.

The deadline for submission of concept notes is 1 August 2011. For more information, visit this link

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation applications for Access to Learning Award

The annual Access to Learning Award from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation recognizes the innovative efforts of the public libraries and similar institutions outside the United States, especially from developing countries or those working with disadvantaged communities involved in connecting people to information and opportunities through free access to computers and internet. The Award provides a grant of $1 million to the to support future activities of the grantee organization.

The Access to Learning Award encourages new, innovative ways to provide computer and Internet services to people without access, and promotes greater development of public access technology programs around the world.

An international advisory committee made up of librarians, information technology experts, and foundation staff evaluates applications based on candidates’ innovative efforts to:
  • make computer and Internet access free to the public
  • train the public in using technology and accessing information
  • educate staff on technology use
  • reach out to underserved communities
The committee further reviews the ability of the candidate to serve as a model of innovation for other communities.

The committee selects a list of final candidates for consideration by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Following an independent financial and organizational review of the finalists, the foundation selects the award recipient.

The deadline to submit applications is 30 September 2011. To access the application form and other details, visit this link.

Commonwealth Foundation’s New Grants Initiative

The Commonwealth Foundation has announced the launch of a Special Grants Fund for Civil Society Organizations and Commonwealth Associations (CAs) to undertake strategic and innovative projects that will promote the 2011 Commonwealth theme on ‘Women as Agents of Change.’

This year, the theme celebrates the significant contributions that women make to development and their relatively untapped potential as agents of change.
‘Women as agents of change’ is a pertinent theme for the Commonwealth in 2011 because:
  • 2011 marks the 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day (8th March)
  • the Commonwealth has its first female Chair-in-Office, Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar of Trinidad and Tobago;
  • 2011 is a key milestone marking five years to the realisation of the Millennium Development Goals.
Grant applications for up to £20,000 are invited from registered CSOs and CAs across the Commonwealth from 1 June -1 July to undertake projects lasting between three to six months which meet at least two of the following criteria:
  1. Foster collaboration and learning between women’s organisations in more than one Commonwealth country;
  2. Involve collaboration with national women’s machineries (NWMs) and governments in promoting women and girls’ social, economic and political empowerment;
  3. Showcase the achievements of women in addressing social, economic and political change at national or regional levels.
  4. Projects which will have an impact on women at a regional level;
  5. Bring together women from different geographical, social and ethnic background to promote national and regional priorities.
Priority will be given to applications which address one or more of the following areas:
  • Capacity enhancement for Women’s organisations in policy development and implementation.
  • Implementation of the Commonwealth Gender Plan of Action (PoA)
  • Women’s leadership and participation in democratic governance.
  • Social protection and girls’ development.
  • Opportunities for rural women and girls.
  • Women’s social, economic and human rights.
Each eligible organisation can submit only one application to the Fund.
The deadline to submit proposals is 1 July 2011. For more information and application form, visit this link.

International Development Achievement Award

The Guardian International Development Achievement Award 2011 is now open to accepting nominations to recognise some of the unsung heroes of international development. The Award is now in its third year and aims to celebrate the outstanding contributions to global poverty alleviation. It is run in association with Marie Stopes International and in partnership with Barclays and GSK, the award runs concurrently with the Guardian International Development Journalism Competition.

Nominations are sought of “people who have made a profound contribution to the alleviation of poverty, working above and beyond the call of duty to make a difference to the lives of some of the world’s poorest people. This contribution can be made either directly – through their own work or activities – or indirectly as a result of others using their achievements to improve their lives (e.g. technological inventions or agricultural research).”

One nominee will receive the Award, provided that the quality of entries meets the standard required by the judging panel. If entries do not meet the standard required, the judges reserve the right not to select an Award winner.

Entries must be made in accordance with the instructions given in this entry form and must be received on, or before, the closing date of midnight on 31 July 2011.
For more information, visit this link.
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