United Nations Democracy Fund Grants

Deadline: 31 December 2015
Open to: civil society organizations, non-governmental organizations, independent and constitutional bodies, global and regional inter-government bodies
Grants: ranging from USD 100,000 – USD 300,000


The United Nations Democracy Fund invites civil society organizations to apply for funding for projects to advance and support democracy. UNDEF supports projects that strengthen the voice of civil society, promote human rights, and encourage the participation of all groups in democratic processes. The large majority of UNDEF funds go to local civil society organizations — both in the transition and consolidation phases of democratization. Proposals are subject to a highly rigorous and competitive selection process, with fewer than two per cent chosen for funding. Projects fall under one or more of seven main areas:

  • Community Activism;
  • Rule of Law and Human Rights;
  • Tools for Knowledge;
  • Women’s Empowerment;
  • Youth Engagement;
  • Media and Freedom of Information;
  • Strengthening Interaction with Government.


The following institutions are eligible for UNDEF grant funding:

  • Civil Society Organizations and Non-Governmental Organizations, engaged in promoting democracy. These are anticipated to receive the bulk of the funding;
  • Independent and Constitutional Bodies, including Election Commissions, Ombudsman Institutions, National Human Rights Institutions and other independent governance bodies, for project proposals facilitating the inclusion of the voice of civil society;
  • Global and Regional inter-government bodies, organizations and associations other than the United Nations, for project proposals which strengthen the voice of civil society.


UNDEF projects are two years long.  Applicants can request a grant of  a minimum of USD 100,000 and a maximum of USD 300,000.

How to apply?

The deadline for applications is 31 December 2015. To apply for a grant please submit your project proposal online HERE. Project proposals submitted by e-mail, regular post, facsimile, diplomatic or UN pouch, hand or courier delivery or any other channel will NOT be considered. Neither will project proposals in any language other than English or French.

For more information please visit the official website, read Project Proposal Guidelines and see the FAQ section.

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