UN Women Grants Management System

The United Nations Trust Fund to End Violence Against Women Grants Management System

Frequently Asked Questions

About the Fund

  • What is the purpose of the Fund for Gender Equality?

UN Women’s Fund for Gender Equality is a global grantmaking fund and an aid effectiveness instrument dedicated to the advancement of women’s economic and political empowerment at local, national and regional levels.

  • What types of grant programmes does the Fund for Gender Equality support?

Thematically, the Fund will continue to award Women’s Economic or Political Empowerment Grants with a focus on women in situations of marginalization:

  • Women’s Political Empowerment Grants:
  • To increase women’s political participation, leadership, and influence in the decisions that affect their lives, including through leadership trainings and education and with a focus on youth.

  • Women’s Economic Empowerment Grants:
  • To increase women’s political participation, leadership, and influence in the decisions that affect their lives, including through leadership trainings and education and with a focus on youth.

  • Who manages the Fund for Gender Equality?

A Secretariat manages the Fund’s activities at UN Women’s headquarters in New York, USA and relies on its Regional Monitoring and Reporting Specialists located in UN Women’s country, sub-regional and regional offices for the monitoring of its grants.

The Secretariat is guided by a Steering Committee comprised of a rotating group of representatives from donor and programme countries, civil society organizations, and multilateral agencies.

  • What is the size range of grants?

Grant size will range from a minimum of US$200,000 to a maximum of US$1 million distributed over a period of one to three years.

Eligibility

  • Who is eligible to apply?

Women’s community-based, national or regional non-governmental organizations:A “women’s organization” is an organization in which women make up a majority of leadership positions and hold a majority of the board are eligible to apply for a grant from the Fund for Gender Equality. In the case of women’s NGOs this can include, but is not limited to, women’s community-based organizations; women’s agricultural cooperatives and associations; women-led workers’ organizations; local, national or regional women’s funds; women’s human rights organizations; regional women’s networks.

Local or national governmental entitiesare also eligible to apply. These can include, but are not limited to, ministries of gender equality, finance, labor, and justice; human rights and electoral commissions; local governments; and parliamentary caucuses. Please note that regional or inter-governmental agencies are not eligible to apply.

Eligible programmes may be led by:

  • A single women-led non-governmental organization/ governmental entity
  • A partnership between 1 governmental agency and 1 women-led non-governmental organization (NGO)
  • A partnership between two women’s non-governmental agencies (NGOs)
  • A partnership between two governmental entities
  • If several organizations are applying together, how should they divide up the roles and responsibilities?

The lead and/or co-lead applicants are accountable for project management and contractual obligations. Additional “Non-lead” implementation partners may be part of the programme proposed, but non-lead partners cannot receive any direct disbursement of funds from the Fund for Gender Equality.

Transfer of money to non-lead partners can be executed by the lead and/or co-lead directly. The Fund highly encourages the use of Memorandums of Understanding to define roles, responsibilities and lines of accountability among lead and co-lead partners and among non-lead partners.

The roles and responsibilities of the lead/co-lead/non-lead partners – for example, the implementation of specific components of the proposed intervention – should be described in the proposal.

  • Which countries are eligible to apply from the Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Eastern Europe and Central Asia, and Latin America and the Caribbean?

For the second phase of grant making in the Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Central Asia, and Latin America and the Caribbean, applications will be accepted from the countries that can be found on the UN Women website.

  • Can programmes in the Arab States apply for the Second Phase of the Call (to be launched in 2012)?

No. For the second phase of grantmaking applications are only being accepted from programmes in eligible countries in Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Central Asia, and Latin America and the Caribbean.

The first phase of grantmaking, the in the Arab States, has already closed. Please visit FGE’s website to see a list of the 2011-2012 Arab State Grantees.

  • Does the Fund for Gender Equality support regional or multi-country programmes?

Yes, the Fund for Gender Equality supports multi-country (operating in several countries) as well as regional programmes.

For multi-country programmes: lead and co-lead women’s NGOs who plan multi-country implementations, may implement programmes in a maximum of 4 countries. In this case please note that the lead and co-lead organizations must be registered in their home country.

For regional programmes: the network must be legally registered as a women’s non-governmental organization/association in one of the countries of programme implementation. Networks must focus their work on a maximum of 4 countries for the duration of the proposed programme.

  • Do I need to be a legally registered entity/organization to apply?

Yes. Lead and co-lead non-governmental women’s organizations must be legally registered in their home country. Lead and co-lead non-governmental women’s organizations proposing a multi-country programme must be legally registered in their home country.

Articles of incorporation or other proof of legal registration are a required attachment for any grant application. Applications without these documents will be considered incomplete and will be withdrawn from the application process.

Regional networks proposing a regional programme must be legally registered as a women’s non-governmental organization/association in one of the countries of programme implementation.

  • Can organizations that are not legally registered apply?

No, organizations that are not legally registered are not eligible to apply.

  • Which types of organizations are not eligible to apply?
  • Multilateral organizations (UN organizations, international financial institutions etc)
  • Private sector entities
  • Individual public authorities or private citizens
  • Global or large international non-governmental organizations
  • Non-governmental organizations that do not focus on women’s issues or are not led by women
  • Research institutions, think tanks or academic institutions
  • Organizations with global scope, even those with local offices in eligible countries (e.g. international charitable organizations with national boards, grantmaking organizations that fund in more than one region)
  • Can multilateral organizations (UN organizations and offices, international financial institutions, etc.) apply?

No. The Fund for Gender Equality seeks to fund local efforts and partnerships. Multilateral organizations (UN organizations, international financial institutions, etc) are not eligible to apply for grants, and cannot apply as either a lead or a co-lead partner.

  • Can international non-governmental organizations (such as confederations of organizations) with local offices apply?

No. The Fund for Gender Equality seeks to fund local efforts and partnerships. International NGOs (e.g. international charitable organizations with national boards, grantmaking organizations that fund in more than one region), even those with local offices in eligible countries, are not eligible to apply for grants and cannot apply as either a lead or a co-lead partner.

  • Can I apply if I am based in the global North but the programme is in an eligible country or territory?

No. International organizations with headquarters in the United States or Western Europe are not eligible and may not apply as either a lead or a co-lead partner.

  • Can I apply for a programme based in multiple countries?

Yes. Multi-country or regional programmes may be implemented in a maximum of 4 countries, provided that the lead and co-lead non-governmental women’s organizations proposing a multi-country programme are legally registered in their home country. However, applicant organizations applying for multi-country or regional programmes can only submit only ONE application for this grantmaking cycle.Organizations that submit multiple applications will be automatically disqualified.

  • May I submit more than one application?

No. Organizations that submit multiple applications will be automatically disqualified.

  • Can an organization be a lead or co-lead on one application and a partner (non-lead) on another application?

No, organizations can submit only one application as either a lead, a co-lead or an additional non-lead partner.

  • What kinds of programmes are not funded by the Fund for Gender Equality?

The Fund for Gender Equality will not consider requests to fund:

  • Programmes with an exclusive focus on the elimination of violence against women, as these are funded by the UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women. (For more information about the UN Trust Fund to End Violence against Women can be accessed through this link: http://www.unwomen.org/how-we-work/un-trust-fund. )
  • Can grantees with ongoing projects funded by the Fund for Gender Equality apply for new grants?

No, grantees with ongoing projects at the time of the Call for Proposals cannot apply for a new grant at this time.

  • Can an organization that has received a grant in a previous funding cycle submit a new proposal?

Yes, provided the organization has submitted their final reports; complied with all grant closure requirements for their previous FGE funded programme and received their final tranche of funds, they may compete again for funds.

  • Can an eligible organization submit the same proposal to another funding source besides the Fund for Gender Equality? If yes, what if two or more funding sources approve the same proposal for a grant?

Yes. Eligible organizations are encouraged to submit their proposals to additional funding sources, as the Fund for Gender Equality is extremely competitive and receives many more proposals than it is able to fund. In the case of two or more funding sources approving the same grant, organizations would be expected to communicate:

  1. Whether funding from the Fund for Gender Equality and additional sources cover the entire cost of the proposed programme;
  2. Whether there is still a funding gap, and the organization’s proposed strategies to bridge that gap;
  3. Whether the amount received exceeds the resources required for the programme, and the exact amount that will be needed from the Fund for Gender Equality.
  • Are the categories of Catalytic and Implementation grants from the Fund for Gender Equality’s first grantmaking cycle still applicable?

No. The Fund has changed its formula for funding based on lessons learned from the first call. We no longer divide our grants between Implementation and Catalytic Programmes, instead, we are focusing on our two types of grants: women’s political or economic empowerment.

Budgets and Funding Requests

  • Must applicants contribute to the project budget?

This depends on whether the lead and/or co-lead are from civil society or a government. While all applicants – whenever possible – are encouraged to make financial and/or in-kind contributions, non-governmental/civil society organizations are not required to do so.

However, governmental agencies arerequired to provide a statement of commitment to or proof of matching funds—equivalent to the grant amount that they specifically are requesting from the Fund for Gender Equality—to be applied toward programme implementation (this applies to all governmental agencies as lead and co-lead). Proposals from governmental agencies without identified commitment will be automatically disqualified.

For governmental applicants only, programmes that demonstrate higher levels (than matching levels) of government contributions to the programme will be prioritized.*

  • What costs are covered by a Fund for Gender Equality grant?

In general, programme personnel, direct programme costs, (limited) equipment, monitoring, evaluation, communications, administrative, training and partnership costs are supported by a Fund for Gender Equality grant.

  • What costs are not covered by a Fund for Gender Equality?

UN Women’s Fund for Gender Equality does not support costs of infrastructure such as purchase of land, property, acquisition of office space, construction or repair of existing buildings or offices, including for example, the building and furnishing of service facilities, shelters or short-stay homes.

  • What is meant by “direct programme costs”?

Direct programme costs are all costs that are incurred for and can be traced, in full to the activities, projects and programmes of an organization in fulfillment of its mandate and any other inputs necessary to achieve the results and objectives established for programmes and projects.

  • Must a minimum amount be budgeted for monitoring and evaluation?

Yes. UN Women recommends that 10% of the total budget should be allocated for evaluation purposes and 2-3% of the total budget be allocated to ongoing monitoring, baseline and end line studies.

  • Must a minimum amount be budgeted for administrative costs?

Yes. The rate of indirect costs (Administrative Costs) shall be fixed at a 7% of the total of the budget.

  • Must a minimum amount be budgeted for training costs?

Yes. 5% of total programme budget should be reserved for training costs including the Fund for Gender Equality required training on Results-Based Management during the mandatory Technical Assistance phase and one convening that the Fund will have with all its grantees during the next year after the grant award.

  • Are there any restrictions on the purchase of equipment?

Yes. A list of any equipment valued at over $1,500 should be provided to the Fund’s Secretariat and each item should be properly marked and inventoried. Purchase of any equipment over the threshold of $30,000 must first be approved by the Fund’s Secretariat and details must be provided to ensure a transparent procurement process. Further details regarding the sale of such equipments at the end of the programme will be provided at a later date.

  • What costs should be allocated under the “Other” category?

The “Other” category is meant to allocate programme funds for any unforeseen costs in programme implementation. It is recommended that the “Other” category not be more than 1-2% of the total budget. Organizations are encouraged to plan accordingly for possible unforeseen costs arising during the project implementation in the budget.

  • What are the Fund for Gender Equality auditing requirements?

For programmes under $750,000 USD, a clean audit certificate of the organization is required annually (with clear confirmation that FGE funds have been separately identified). In addition, for grants above $750,000 USD, a specific audit of FGE funds will be required from the grantee partner once in the lifetime of the programme (when 70% of total grant amount has been disbursed).

  • Is creating additional budget lines permissible?

No. The existing budget lines should be used to detail all costs relevant to the satisfactory completion of the project.

  • Can an already awarded organization request additional funds during implementation?

No. Requests for budget increases cannot be accommodated. The budget awarded with a grantee contract represents the total funds available and allocated for the programme.

  • Will the grant amount awarded by the FGE to successful applicants be the exact grant amount requested by the applicant?

No. FGE conducts analysis of the financials of successful grant applicants. Based on this analysis, as well as the total budget available for this grant cycle, and the grantee track record, FGE may adjust the final financial award (which is often lower than the amount requested).

Application Process

  • What is the timeline for the application process?

The Fund for Gender Equality will conduct this grantmaking cycle in a staggered manner in order to further increase access and language availability.

The first phase of the current grantmaking cycle (2011-2012) in the Arab States has now closed. March 1st, 2012 FGE will open the second grantmaking phase to applicants from eligible countries in Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Central Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean.

The timeline for the second phase of the 2011-2012 Call for Proposals (in Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Eastern Europe and Central Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean) is as follows:

Fund for Gender Equality Second Call for Proposals (Phase II) announced, including sample Grant Application Form March 1st, 2012
Online Application period for submission of Grant Applications from eligible countries in Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Central Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean March 12th – March 23rd , 2012
Technical Committee reviews and recommends grants from eligible countries in Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Central Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean April 16th – June 8th, 2012
Semi-Finalists for Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Central Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean notified June 15th, 2012
Mandatory Technical Assistance phase for selected Semi-Finalists to develop a Full-Fledged Project Document; Results Chain and Budget June 18th – August 17th, 2012
Steering Committee ratifies recommendations September 3rd – September 14th, 2012
Grants from eligible countries in Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Central Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean announced October 1st, 2012
Successful grantees will be required to participate in results-based-management training to revise and prepare detailed work plans (grantees must allocate a % of their FGE grant award to pay for the travel costs for this training October 2012 (dates to be confirmed)
  • Can I submit my application in a language other than English?

Yes. Applicants for the second phase of the 2011-2012 grantmaking cycle (in eligible countries in Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Central Asia, and Latin America and the Caribbean), may submit their applications in English, French or Spanish.

  • When is the grant application form available? Where can I find it?

The Grant Application form is available now and can be downloaded here:http://www.unwomen.org/how-we-work/fund-for-gender-equality/application-guidelines.

  • How do I apply for a grant?

Grant Applications mustbe submitted via the Online Application Database. In addition to the Grant Application, applicants will have to submit all required attachments. Please see the Call for Proposals for specific details.

Applicants are encouraged to apply early in order to ensure they have sufficient time to fill out the application and upload all required attachments before the close date.

  • What are required attachments for my grant application?

Please see the Call for Proposals for specific details regarding required attachments that must be uploaded through the Fund’s online application. Note:

  • All attachments must be submitted in one of the Fund’s eligible languages (English, French and Spanish). Applicants must provide translations into English of these required attachments if they are selected as semi-finalists. Note that the rest of the application will not need to be translated, only the attachments.
  • Accepted attachment formats include: .doc, .xml, .pdf and .jpeg.
  • Please note that the lead and co-lead organizations can only upload two files per section. If you have multiple documents please merge them into one.
  • Applications without these documents will be withdrawn from the application process.
  • When will the Online Database be available?

The online application will be available March 12th – March 23rd, 2012. The URL to access the online application will be posted on the FGE website here:http://www.unwomen.org/how-we-work/fund-for-gender-equality/application-guidelines.

  • Can I submit my application by email, mail or fax?

No. Only applications submitted via the online application will be accepted.

  • What is the process for assessing Grant Applications?

Proposals are assessed by an independent Technical Committee comprised of experts in women’s economic and political empowerment, who are based in the regions of the world, to ensure contextual analysis of the proposed programmes.

  • How will I know if I have been selected as a Semi-Finalist?

Selected semi-finalists will be notified by email on or before June 15, 2012. Semi-Finalists will be invited to participate in a Technical Assistance phase during which they will develop a Full-Fledged project Document; a programme results chain and a final budget.

  • Is the Semi-Finalist Technical Assistance phase mandatory?

Yes. All Semi-Finalists must participate in the Technical Assistance phase and submit a Full-Fledged project Document; a programme results chain and a final budget in order to continue to be considered in the assessment process

  • How will I know if my application has been selected to receive a grant from the Fund for Gender Equality?

Grantees from eligible countries in Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Central Asia, and Latin America and the Caribbean regions will be announced in October 2012 on the FGE website.

  • How many grant applications will be selected?

Due to the high volume of proposals received, only a small percentage of applicants will be successful in the Fund for Gender Equality application process.

  • Can I contact FGE for an update on my application?

No. Due to the high volume of proposals received, it is not possible to offer individual feedback on specific proposals.

  • How can I contact FGE if I have a technical question or an inquiry related to the application process?

The Frequently Asked Questions address most issues/problems that might arise in the application process. Please read the answers to the questions carefully. Only if you do not find the answer here, please send an email to fund.genderequality@unwomen.org with “APPLICATION HELP” and your name in the subject line.

Online Application

  • I don’t remember my user password.

In order to retrieve your password, go the online application website http://fundforgenderequality.unwomen.org/index.php Click on the link entitled “Forgot your Password.” An automated message will be sent the email associated with your account with instructions on how to reset your password.

  • Can I switch the language of my application once I have begun filling out my application?

No. There is no way to switch languages once you have made your initial language selection. If you do want to choose a different language, you will have to start from the beginning and create a new login with a different email address and password.

  • In what languages is the application available?

In the second phase of the 2011-2012 grantmaking cycle for eligible countries in Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Central Asia, and Latin America and the Caribbean, the online application is available in English, French and Spanish.

  • Is there any difference between the English, French and Spanish applications?

No. The application documents and application process are exactly the same in all languages.

  • Do I have to fill out the application in order?

No, the application does not have to be filled out in order. Use the navigation links on right hand side of the application to move from section to section. Make sure to save your work often by clicking on the “Save” button on the bottom of each page or on the right hand side.

  • Do I have to fill the application out at once?

No, with your user name and password you can log in as many times as needed to complete the application.

  • Does the application have a spell checker?

No, but if you use the Mozilla Firefox browser, misspelled words will be underlined in red. You can choose your language preference in the browser.
To download Mozilla Firefox, click here: http://www.mozilla.com/en-US/firefox/firefox.html.

  • Can I print my application?

Yes. You can click on “Print Application”, located on the right hand side navigation to print your application.

  • Can I save my application to a WORD document?

No. There is no way to save your application as a Word document.

  • How do I know when I have completely filled out my application?

In the application, on the right hand side, there is a section called “Application Sections.” When all the mandatory fields of the application are filled out, a green check mark will appear next to the “Organization Information” and “Required Attachments” sections. At that point, your application is complete, and you can click on the Submit Application link.

  • How do I submit my application?

Once your application is complete (see question above) click on the “Submit Application” link, located on the right hand side navigation panel. On the following page, you will be asked to confirm your submission by clicking on the “Submit My application Now” link. An email message will be sent to the account associated with the application confirming that the application has been successfully submitted.

  • Can I make changes to my application after I have submitted it?

No, it is not possible to reopen a submitted application under any circumstances.

  • What do the red asterisks mean?

Questions marked with a red asterisk signify that they are mandatory and must be filled out in order to submit the application.

  • What do the green checkmarks next to the categories in the Navigation / Checklist mean?

The green check marks signify that a section has been fully completed. Before being able to submit your application there must be a check mark by each section.

  • Let’s say I finish filling out a section and the green check mark does not appear next to a section name?

Review the sections missing the green check mark and ensure that all the questions with a red asterisk are filled out.

  • What if I only have my documents (annual reports, etc.) in hard copies, not on a computer?

For hard copies, please scan your documents and upload them as PDFs. No mailed documents will be accepted.

  • What if there are not enough upload fields for me to upload all my attachments?

There are a limited amount of upload fields and so applicants will need to save all the supporting documents for one question into one or two files, depending on the question and number of upload fields available. FGE will not accept any documents sent by email, fax or post.

  • I am trying to upload a file, but am having problems. What do I do?

Your files can not exceed 5 MB in size. If your file is larger than 5 MB, please consider scanning only the pertinent sections and re-trying. If you are still having problems, please send an email to fund.genderequality@unwomen.org with “APPLICATION HELP” and your name in the subject line.

It is highly recommended that groups apply as early as possible to become familiar with the online technology (groups can begin to upload the required documents the first week of the online application for example). Required attachments take time to collect. Please prepare those as soon as possible in appropriate formats.

  • Are the word limits the same if I'm applying for a programme in multiple countries?

Yes. The word limits are the same for single- and multiple-country applicants. Please do not exceed the stated limits.


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