UN Women Grants Management System

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

Guidelines
Concept Note Budget Requirements

Please ensure the following guidelines are adhered to in developing your concept note budget:

  • Please note that you may not budget more than 40 per cent of the grant requested in a single year.
    • For projects requesting between US$ 50,000 and US$ 500,000: Personnel costs for managing the project must not exceed 20 per cent (20%) of the grant requested.
    • For projects requesting between US$ 500,001 and US$ 1,000,000: Personnel costs for managing the project must not exceed 10 per cent (10%) of the grant requested.
    • Please note that the amount you specify will be reviewed in relation to the overall project cost and will be subject to revision.
  • All projects are required to allocate US$ 10,000 of the grant requested for capacity development and knowledge exchange activities to be convened and managed by the UN Trust Fund for the benefit of all grantees. This amount should also be indicated in the first year of implementation under the Training/Seminar/Workshops budget line.
  • Please note that the UN Trust Fund will not support any international travel costs(including those related to international consultants).
  • Please specify what services related to project implementation the contractual services budget line will entail, and justify the need for it in the Budget Narrative.
  • Please specify which equipment is crucial for the implementation of the project, and justify the need for it in the Budget Narrative. Please note that the amount you specify must be minimal and will be reviewed in relation to the overall project cost. Please note that the UN Trust Fund does not allow for the purchase of hardware and furniture for offices. Please also note the UN Trust Fund will NOT give priority to project proposals in which the equipment purchases are too high in the context of total project costs.
  • Please explain any costs for equipment related to the project in the Budget Narrative.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Whether you can safely conduct or commission in-person / field-based monitoring and evaluation activities will be subject to the COVID-19 context in your country, and whether lockdowns and other restrictions in movement are in place. Therefore, in this time of crisis and in line with our commitment to ‘do no harm’, the UN Trust Fund would like to reiterate the following:

  • please prioritize your safety and that of your families, personnel and beneficiaries;
  • it is of utmost importance that you follow your government’s rules and guidelines regarding COVID-19 prevention and response; and
  • you can find complementary information in the WHO guidelines.

Each project must have an appropriate and proportionate budget for monitoring, evaluation and learning activities (i.e.: data collection, monitoring, knowledge management and evaluation). You should – at minimum - budget for (a) baseline data collection*; (b) ongoing data collection and monitoring during project implementation; (c) and end line data collection. *The UN Trust Fund does not require grantees to commission or produce a baseline study, however it is mandatory that qualitative and/or quantitative data is collected at the start and throughout the project to ensure progress can be tracked and reported in 6-monthly progress, annual and final reports.

On Final External Evaluation requirements, please include the following allocation in the M&E budget line, in addition to any budget allocated for data collection, monitoring and learning activities above:

  • For projects requesting US$ 150,000 or less: For Final External Evaluation please allocate US$ 10,000 for an external evaluation that may be undertaken by the UN Trust Fund. This amount should be indicated in the first year of implementation under the Monitoring and Evaluation budget line with UN Women as Responsible party in the budget in addition to any data collection and monitoring costs for your organization. This budget will be used by the UN Trust Fund for evaluation or learning activities that benefit organizations receiving small grants.
  • For projects requesting between US$ 150,001 and US$ 1,000,000, Final External Evaluation is OPTIONAL but highly recommended. Experience shows that irrespective of grant size, the minimum reasonable cost for a (non-experimental) External Evaluation is US$ 20,000, increasing depending on complexity and scale. Grantees will be expected to apply UN Women gender-responsive evaluation guidelines. This amount should be indicated in the final year of implementation under the Monitoring and Evaluation budget line with your organization as the Responsible party in the budget. If you choose NOT to commission a final external evaluation, you must provide a justification (in the budget narrative). Justification could include, for example, that the intervention funded by the UN Trust Fund is already part of a funded research or evaluation plan.

Please note that there is no specific limit/ceiling on the total budget for M&E activities, as applicants must devise an appropriate amount based on factors such as the size and scope of the project, average costs of M&E experts in your country/region and whether or not you will be able to conduct field work given the COVID-19 situation. Applicants must explain M&E budget calculations in the budget narrative section. Remote data collection may be a necessity, which can cost less, depending on the technology used. The UN Trust Fund values the knowledge that comes from organizations’ daily experience and expertise when implementing VAWG projects, especially during the pandemic, which is likely to go undocumented or overlooked, and hence we encourage investment in documenting practice-based knowledge and capturing learning through innovative methodologies.

  • Each project may be subject to an audit during its lifetime by a UN Women designated auditor. A provision at 3.5 per cent (3.5%) of the grant requested should be included in the first year of implementation to cover this cost. Please indicate UN Women as Responsible party in the budget.
  • Indirect project costs are related to administrative support of the project including financial management and information resources management. Other indirect expenses comprise additional rental of office space, office maintenance and utilities, telecommunications and office supplies.
  • The maximum indirect project costs cannot exceed seven per cent (7%) of the direct project activity cost requested per year and must be related to the approved project, with no exceptions. Please note that the amount you specify will be reviewed in relation to the overall project costs and is subject to revision.
  • This budget line is exclusively for small women’s organizations requesting US$ 150,000 or less.
  • Core funding is funding that can be used for costs not specifically attributable to the project activities, for example, costs associated with governance and board meetings, innovation and project development, fundraising-related costs, partnership and stakeholder management costs, quality assurance costs, organizational policies, procedures and systems costs, and other similar expenses.
  • The maximum core costs cannot exceed seven per cent (7%) of the direct project activity cost requested per year.
  • If awarded a grant, the organizations receiving the “core funding” will be requested to report on all the expenditures incurred under this budget line. In addition, the organizations will be requested to reflect and report on whether and how the core funding contributed to the realization of the organization’s mission and vision, in particular how the funds were used to support social change processes the organization is committed to.
  • This budget line is exclusively for small women’s organizations requesting US$ 150,000 or less.
  • Self-care costs can be used for a variety of expenses for the organization to respond to issues of staff burn-out and vicarious trauma as well as to promote overall staff well-being. Organizations have the flexibility to choose how to expend resources under this budget line so long as they demonstrate that the funds were utilized to promote self-care and benefit multiple staff members across the organization.
  • Self-care costs cannot exceed US$ 2,000 and may be included in one specific year or be spread across the grant duration.
  • If awarded a grant, the organizations receiving the “self-care” funds will be requested to report on all the expenditures incurred under this budget line. In addition, the organizations will be requested to reflect and report on whether and how the self-care contributed to staff physical, emotional or mental well-being.
  • All projects may include a reserve for contingencies not exceeding 4 % of the direct project activity costs to allow for adjustments necessary in the light of unforeseen requirements resulting from COVID-19, such as currency movements, inflation, special programming and emergency issues on the ground during times of sudden unforeseen crisis. It can be used only with the prior written authorization of the UN Trust Fund, upon duly justified request by the Organization.
  • Includes all general operating costs for running an office that are directly linked to the project implementation, such as utilities, office rent, bank charges, office stationery, communication and other costs which cannot be mapped to other expense categories.
  • Indications of matching funds, in addition to in-kind contributions (office space, staff, conference facilities, media outlets, supplies, other) should be clearly specified and broken down by budget line.
  • For large civil society organizations: Budget requests should be within the range of a minimum of US$ 150,001 to a maximum of US$ 1 million total for duration of three years. Budgets must be based on the proposed project and take into consideration the organization's operational and absorptive capacity.
  • For small civil society organizations, especially grassroots women’s organizations: Budget requests should be within the range of a minimum of US$ 50,000 and a maximum of US$ 150,000 for duration of three years. Budgets must be based on the proposed project and take into consideration the organization's operational and absorptive capacity.
  • For purposes of grant allocation, the UN Trust Fund considers an organization “small” if its annual organizational budget is less than US$ 200,000. Organizations with a larger annual budget are not eligible to apply for a small grant.
  • Costs of infrastructure such as purchase of land, property, acquisition of office space, construction, repair of existing buildings or offices, including for example, the building of service facilities, shelters or short-stay homes;
  • Purchase of any type of vehicles (i.e. cars, motorcycles, boats etc.);
  • Purchase of furniture and furnishing of service facilities, shelters or short-stay homes, unless those are specifically for a facility established for the purpose of the project;
  • Activities where a substantial part of the budget is allocated for travel and/or conference costs and services;
  • Regional/international learning events or international travel. Please note that the UN Trust Fund will only support those regional and international workshops that it convenes itself.
  • Prizes, awards for competitions or contests, and honorariums to outlets/journalists for publishing articles;
  • Monetary incentives for participation in trainings, workshops, etc.;
  • Costs that can be financed by other funding sources in the country or by the government (i.e. providing antiretroviral treatment);
  • Sub-granting (grants awarded using funds provided under the agreement with the UN Trust Fund);
  • Loans (funds extended for the purpose of investment/ return of capital) and debt servicing;
  • Duties, taxes and charges, including VAT, that are recoverable/deductible by the organization;
  • Non statutory bonuses, provisions, reserves or non-remuneration related costs.

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