Inter-American Foundation


Organizational profile:

The Inter-American Foundation (IAF) is a U.S. government agency that invests in community-led development across Latin America and the Caribbean. They directly engage local leaders, innovators, and entrepreneurs in underserved areas to create more prosperous, peaceful, and democratic communities.  

The IAF awards small grants to civil society organizations that promote inclusive economic prosperity, reduce food insecurity, combat corruption, prevent violence and crime, protect the environment and build resilience to natural disasters, and sustainably manage natural resources. Partnerships with the private sector and foundations as well as peer-to-peer learning among grantee organizations amplify its impact.

Support provided by the IAF to community-led solutions seeks to strengthen resilience and improve environmental outcomes through sustainable natural resource management. Their work prioritizes a holistic approach to development.

Financing Instrument: Grants, Technical Assistance

Project scale: IAF provides grants between US $25,000 and $400,000.

Eligible recipient countries regions/country groups: Latin America, Caribbean. The high priority region includes Guatemala, Honduras, El Salvador, Colombia, Mexico, Haiti, Nicaragua and Peru.

Eligibility Criteria:

IAF only supports community-led projects submitted by local and grassroots organizations that are based in independent countries of Latin America and the Caribbean. Your organization will need to demonstrate that it has a history of working together as a group and is capable of effectively using grant funds. IAF is unable to fund organizations located in Venezuela or Cuba and U.S., British, French, or other territories. 

Furthermore, IAF does not fund proposals submitted or directed by: Government entities (including municipal governments and public universities), individuals, privately held companies and groups that do not contribute financial or in-kind resources to the proposed activities.

The IAF looks for projects with the following characteristics:
Are inclusive

  • Involve many community voices in developing, carrying out, and evaluating the project, including those who will benefit from the project
  • Engage partners in local government, the business community, and other civil society organizations

Use community resources

  • Include counterpart resources like money, land, supplies, infrastructure, labor, and office, storage, and meeting space. These resources can come from your organization, those who will participate in the project, and other sources.
  • Identify a path to become sustainable after the IAF grant ends

Focus on results

  • Impact the community in a positive and measurable way
  • Show potential for strengthening all participating organizations
  • Enhance participants’ capacity to govern themselves

Application guidelines: 

IAF invites proposals for its grant program on a rolling basis. There is no deadline. Applications in Spanish, Portuguese, English, French or Haitian Creole are accepted throughout the year. Applications can be emailed to From October 1, 2023, a new online system will be in place for submitting applications. 

Last updated: 29 August 2023

Publication Date
Thursday, 04 March 2021
Applicable location
Forest conservation and management
Private sector and industry
Community forestry
Financing opportunities