Commonwealth Foundation Grants Programme 2021-22 [Minimum Grants Upto Rs.15 L]: Submit by Nov 30: Expired

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Applications are invited from eligible candidates who wish to work to better civil society can participate in the Commonwealth Foundation grants programme 2021-22.

About the Foundation

The Commonwealth Foundation (CF) is an intergovernmental organisation that was established by the Commonwealth Heads of Government in 1966, a year after its sister organisation, the Commonwealth Secretariat.

The Foundation is located at Marlborough House in London, a former royal palace that was assigned for the use of these Commonwealth institutions by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, the Head of the Commonwealth. As the Commonwealth agency for civil society, the Foundation is funded by 49 member states to support participatory governance through its programmes.

About the Program

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.

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Applicants must address one or more of the Foundation’s three priority themes: 

  • Health
    • Advocating for universal health coverage
    • Realising the right to health through better availability, quality, and accountability in health services and delivery
    • Developing programmes and policies that address the social determinants of health.
  • Environment and climate change
    • Developing, reviewing and improving laws, policies and practices aimed at addressing environmental and climate threats 
    • Monitoring the implementation of relevant laws, policies and practices — such as national climate plans or commitments 
    • Addressing mitigation and adaptation challenges. 
  • Freedom of expression 
    • Advocating for a legal and regulatory environment that protects and upholds freedom of expression for all 
    • Promoting access to information and transparency in governance, including through a free and independent press, robust freedom of information laws and their practical application 
    • Supporting civil society to work with artists to raise awareness to issues of freedom of expression and engage in advocacy efforts around these issues


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 link given below).
  • A copy of the organisation’s registration certificate1. This should be a scan of an official registration document provided by the relevant authorities in the country where the organisation is registered.
  • For grants of £15,000 per annum: a copy of the organisation’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 organisation’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 organisation’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.

How to Apply?

Eligibility for grant funding under this call depends on the following criteria:

  • The applicant is a registered not-for-profit civil society organisation (CSO).
  • The applicant is registered in an eligible Commonwealth Foundation member country and the proposed project will be implemented in the country of registration.
  • The applicant has documented experience, over at least two years, working on participatory governance and advocacy within the proposed area/theme(s).
  • 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 organisation’s total annual income.
  • The average of the applicant organisation’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 considerations.
  • Proposals must relate to projects that are expected to begin within the second half of 2022

Other Criteria

The assessment criteria for applications are as follows:

  • The applicant organisation meets all eligibility criteria.
  • The application provides a clear description of the problem that the applicant is seeking to address.
  • The application provides a clear explanation of how the applicant plans to address the problem and contribute to its resolution.
  • The application makes a persuasive case for the proposed approach to the problem. Is the approach timely? Is it relevant? Is it feasible?
  • The applicant organisation demonstrates that it has the capacity to undertake the project and complete it successfully within the stipulated time.


November 30, 2021

Click here to view the official notifications for the Commonwealth Foundation Grants Programme 2021-22

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