the Fondation Segré Conservation Action Fund
The Fondation Segré Conservation Action Fund (hereinafter “the Fund”), launched in 2021, is an initiative financed by Fondation Segré and implemented through IUCN Save Our Species (SOS). The Fund aims primarily at providing small grants to small and local Civil Society Organizations* (CSOs) and young and early researchers to support conservation and research projects for all threatened animal species (terrestrial, freshwater and marine) and their habitats across Asia, the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean, Africa, and the Middle East.
The Fund provides two types of small grants:
- Conservation Action Grants: The objective of these grants is to support on-the-ground conservation actions with the goal of improving the status of threatened animal species and their habitats. Threatened species are those with a global Red List status of Vulnerable (VU), Endangered (EN), or Critically Endangered (CR).
- Research Support Grants: The objective of these grants is to support young and early scientists in their research to improve their knowledge of threatened species and their role in natural ecosystems. These grants intend to provide budding researchers with the opportunity to mature into seasoned conservationists.
Financing Instrument: Grants
Project scale: Conservation Action Grants amount to a maximum of EUR 50,000. There is no minimum grant amount.
Recipient countries regions/country groups: Asia, the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean, Africa, and the Middle East
small and local CSOs and young and early researchers
a) Eligible actors
In order to be eligible for a grant, the lead applicant and co-applicants must be:
i. a legal person and;
ii. be non-profit-making and;
iii. be a local or national civil CSOs, a local or an international non-governmental organisation (NGOs);
Projects presented by local and national CSOs including indigenous organizations (community-based organizations) will be favourably considered. International NGOs applying will be required to work closely with national stakeholders, local communities and with the consent and all required authorizations from the government. If international NGOs apply, overseas costs (indirect costs, salaries and international travel) will have to be minimal and justification for their need provided. In the case of international NGOs having a legally registered office in the country where the project is implemented, SOS will privilege the signature of a grant agreement and direct transfer of funds to their local registered office. Working with governments is encouraged although governments and government-affiliated entities are not eligible to receive grants directly. The costs of travel for government bodies (for example for attending a workshop) can be reimbursed if they are directly linked to the project;
iv. be directly responsible for the preparation and implementation of the grant project. Applications submitted by a body acting as an intermediary for a third party are not eligible;
v. have a bank account in the name of the organization;
vi. be authorized under relevant national laws to receive charitable contributions, including from sources outside their respective countries.
In line with the Fund’s objective, target beneficiaries are primarily local non-profit organizations. The lead partner may act individually or with co-applicant(s). If awarded a grant, the lead partner will become the beneficiary identified as the “Grantee” in the grant contract. The Grantee is the main interlocutor of the SOS Secretariat. The Grantee represents, and acts on behalf of any other co-applicant (if any) and coordinates the design and implementation of the action. The Grantee will bear full responsibility for the technical and financial implementation of the project.
An applicant can submit a maximum of two proposals as a lead partner and can be a partner organization, in any number of applications. Nonetheless, an organisation can only be awarded one grant as a lead partner. If two proposals where an organisation is the lead partner successfully pass the assessment steps, only the proposal with the highest score will be retained for the award of a grant.
Applicants benefiting from an ongoing SOS grant at the time of the submission deadline for applications cannot apply for a grant under this call for the same project location, but they may still apply for funding for another project location.
b) Conflict of interest and ineligibility
i. Applicants cannot have a conflict of interest in applying for this call. A conflict of interest may arise in particular as a result of economic interests, political or national affinities, family or emotional ties, or any other relevant connection or shared interest;
ii. Applicants cannot be current employees of IUCN / Fondation Segré, or close relatives (i.e. immediate family) of IUCN / Fondation Segré employees.
c) Eligible activities
i. Projects must focus on improving the status of threatened animal species (terrestrial, freshwater and marine). Plant and fungus species are not eligible. Animal species considered threatened are those listed as Vulnerable (VU), Endangered (EN) or Critically Endangered (CR) on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Only the species’ global Red List status is considered; sub-species and/or subpopulations of a species with a different Red List status than their parent species will not be considered. In the case of endemic species lacking a global Red List assessment, their national Red List assessment (if available) can be considered with the provision of publicly available references/publications.
ii. Projects that are slated to provide benefits to multiple eligible threatened species and their habitats will be viewed favourably in the selection process.
iii. Projects must implement concrete conservation activities on the ground.
iv. Research activities can be eligible within the framework of Conservation Action Grants as long as the proposal supports tangible conservation actions on the ground, using the results of the research within the timeframe of the project (pure research projects are not eligible).
v. Applications that address the illegal wildlife trade and that include a component engaging indigenous peoples or local communities should include clear thinking on the "theory of change" or logical sequence that is likely to lead to a reduction in poaching for the illegal wildlife trade, with attention to the underlying incentives facing community members and how the project intervention changes these. Where this is not known, the proposal should explain how this understanding will be increased in order to formulate such a theory of change.
d) Ineligible activities
i. The purchase of land and firearms, involuntary resettlement of people, or activities that negatively affect physical cultural resources, including those important to local communities;
ii. Activities adversely affecting individuals and local communities or where these communities have not provided their broad support to the project activities;
iii. The removal or altering of any physical cultural property (includes sites having archaeological, paleontological, historical, religious, or unique natural values);
iv. Financial support to third parties through sub-grants;
v. Pure research activities, captive breeding or conservation planning.
A small proportion of a grant budget can however be devoted to monitoring in order to inform the conservation results of the project and provide evidence of the improvement of the conservation status of the target species.
The application will be submitted online through the IUCN Grants Portal. In the online application, applicants will be asked to enter the following information about their project:
- Section 1: Project lead information
- Section 2: Project partner(s) information
- Section 3: Project overview
- Section 4: Project description
- Section 5: Project logical framework, monitoring plan and timeline
- Section 6: Environmental and social management system (ESMS)
- Section 7: Budget details
- Section 8: Due diligence
The review process and the final decision on awarding the grant are expected to take a minimum of 3 months following the deadline of the Call for Proposals. The evaluation of the proposals consists of the following process:
- Step 1: Eligibility Check: Done by the IUCN Save Our Species Secretariat to ensure that the proposal satisfies all the criteria specified in section 6 of this document. This includes also an assessment of the eligibility of the action. If any of the requested information is missing or is incorrect, the proposal will be rejected on that sole basis and will not be evaluated further.
- Step 2: Technical review: Projects will be evaluated by a Selection Committee consisting of representatives from Fondation Segré and IUCN Save Our Species. Based on the Selection Committee’s evaluation, proposals will be shortlisted. The shortlisted applicants may be contacted and asked to provide additional information as required, depending on the findings of the Environmental and Social Management System screening (available in the Guidelines file when the call is open) undertaken during the application stage.
- Step 3: Contract negotiation: The SOS Secretariat will inform the successful applicant that the project has been selected for funding. The applicant will be asked to address any of the issues raised during the project evaluation and it may be necessary to modify the proposal. Once the key issues have been addressed, IUCN will ask the applicant to sign a grant agreement.
* A Civil Society Organization (CSO) is a non-state and not-for-profit voluntary association.