PCLG launches small grants initiative

In May 2023, the People and Conservation Learning Group announced the launch of a small grants initiative for 2023, funded by the Arcus Foundation and delivered by IIED. Applicants were able to apply for grants up to US$7,500 to support people and great ape conservation in three great ape range states: Cameroon, Democratic Republic of Congo and Uganda.

Article, 15 May 2023

At the heart of this small grants initiative run by the People and Conservation Learning Group (PCLG) is supporting the self-determined priorities of local communities and Indigenous groups. Therefore we didn't prescribe the type of activities that will be considered for funding, provided that the funded activities support issues and challenges related to both people and great apes (see criteria below).

This page provides information on the initiative.

There is also more information on the history of PCLG, and how it has evolved into a small grants initiative that supports locally-led action.

Overview of small grants initiative

Budget available: The overall grant budget was $60,000 to fund small grants in all three target countries. Applicants were encouraged to apply for small grants of between $2,000 and $7,500, however this could be up to a maximum of $10,000 if the case was well justified. We are prioritising support to smaller organisations that may find it more difficult to access funds from other sources.

Timing of activities: Activities proposed in the application must be completed by the end of December 2023. Light reporting on the delivery of the activities is to be completed by January 2024.

Submitting an application: Due to the high number of applications received, we set a final deadline to apply of 18 June 2023.

Application review process: Applications are being reviewed on a monthly basis until the total budget ($60,000) for the small grants has been spent. Applications will be screened by the PCLG team at IIED, then reviewed by the in-country PCLG coordinators and the IIED team against the criteria.

Criteria: To be considered for funding, the application needed to meet the following criteria.

  1. Clear benefit from the project for people and great apes
  2. Activities must take place in Cameroon, DRC or Uganda
  3. Activities must be led by  local or Indigenous organisations, associations or groups, and
  4. Reasonable and cost-effective budget

The small grants initiative did not prescribe the type of activities the funding will support, since the funding is designed to support locally led action. Local communities are best placed to define their own priorities.

The small grants initiative was keen to fund projects which foster collaboration between or within different networks of organisations, groups and individuals. Examples of projects that have been funded previously can be found on the project page.

Some examples of activities the smalls grants initiative will not support include: sensitisation/education projects; tree planting projects; law enforcement; project evaluations; water and sanitation projects or equipment needs.

  1. How do I apply?

There were two stages involved in applying for the small grants initiative.

Stage 1: By sending in responses to the following questions (up to 750 words if submitting a written application or up to five minutes if submitting a video or recorded application). Languages accepted were French and English, as well as Rukiga and Rufumbira in Uganda and Baka and Bagyéli in Cameroon.

Stage 1 application questions:

  1. Your details (name, email address, telephone number, etc.)
  2. Name of your organisation
  3. Is your organisation legally registered in your country? If so, please let us what type of organisation you are registered as (e.g. association, enterprise, cooperative, NGO). Note that you can still apply for a small grant if your organisation is not legally registered.
  4. Do you have an organisational bank account? (Please do not provide bank details at this stage)
  5. Country in which the funded activities will take place 
  6. Problem related to people and great ape conservation which you would like to address, and the reasons why this is a priority
  7. Proposed activities – tell us why this is the best way to tackle this problem
  8. Amount requested and preferred currency

Answers could be submitted:

STAGE 2: If your idea is preselected for stage 2, we will be in touch to ask for more details. If your idea is unsuccessful in reaching stage 2, we will be in touch to let you know.

If you have read this webpage and still have a question, please contact [email protected].

We look forward to hearing from you!