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Robert Carr (http://www.focusright.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=74&Itemid=65)
Robert Carr civil society Network Fund: Request for Proposals

in WORLD, 03/08/2012

The Robert Carr Civil Society Network Fund (RC-NF) is pleased to announce a new funding opportunity for global and regional HIV/AIDS civil society and community networks.

The fund aims to:

Improve the capacity of global and regional networks to support meaningful participation of inadequately served populations, in influencing policy at global, regional, and national levels such as:  meeting universal access targets, ensuring high quality and equitable care, treatment and prevention support;

Improve organizational capacity and technical expertise of inadequately served populations to design, access, deliver and monitor a full spectrum of prevention, treatment, care and support services that respond to evolving community needs;

Improve organizational capacity and technical expertise of inadequately served populations to reduce policy and regulatory barriers, combat human rights abuses, stigma & discrimination and support access to legal services to meet community needs;

Enable community organizations to play a central part in ensuring that at local level all responses to HIV have sufficient, strategically targeted investments to deliver results.

The RC-NF has been designed to ensure that civil society networks, working at global and regional levels, have sufficient and predictable resources to enhance the quality, effectiveness and gender equity of the HIV response, especially in reaching inadequately served populations at local level, through global and regional action.

It responds to the fact that not only is there a reduction in adequate and reliable funds for networks, but that at country level there is inadequate attention paid to the communities and populations most in need of effective HIV prevention, treatment, care and support responses, and to protect their human rights and over turn stigma and discrimination (inadequately served populations).

Available Funding

An initial group of donors has provided the support for the establishment of the RC-NF and with the intention to commit funding for at least three years (although not all donors have confirmed their funding yet). The total amount available for all grant-making activities of the RC-NF is up to US$5 million for the first year (although not all donors have confirmed their funding yet). It is the ambition of the RC-NF to actively engage more donors in order to increase the level of funds available, and to secure sufficient funding to support the RC-NF for at least three years.

Global and regional civil society and community networks can apply for a grant to support core-funding and/or programmatic needs of the network for up to three years, depending on review of performance after one year against a results framework and availability of funds.

Only one application may be submitted per organization. Proposals must clearly demonstrate how support will enable the network to contribute to the identified outcomes and how they will track relevant indicators. It is expected that additional proposals for new activities or scale up can be submitted in subsequent years. These submissions will be subject to competitive review.

Who is eligible to apply?

Global networks, regional networks and alliances of networks (a combination of global and regional, or otherwise) that:

Are non-profit organizations (e.g., NGOs, CBOs, and other charitable organizations);
Focus in their work on HIV/AIDS and directly related issues (75% of activities and spending); and
Have strong management and leadership, and have the capacity to carry out the proposed activities, monitor contribution to outcomes within an agreed results framework, and to effectively manage the requested grant.

Who is NOT eligible and SHOULD NOT APPLY?

Individuals;
Government organizations or units;
For-profit organizations;
Organizations that already receive adequate levels of core funding;
Organizations that do not involve people living with HIV or members of the community they serve in the development and implementation of programs and activities.
Proposals below USD$50.000 or above US$500,000 (per network/per year) are not eligible for funding.

Funding Priorities and Areas of Interest

Shifts in donor approaches and priorities have led to a situation in which resources are declining for global and regional civil society networks. Also: while monies do flow to civil society, especially through PEPFAR and the Global Fund for HIV, TB & Malaria, it is still challenging for resources to reach the small, strategic and grassroots-based organizations that can often achieve the most.

The networks support their members directly to provide better and more targeted services, and to engage most effectively in national dialogue relating to policy, resourcing of the response and access issues.

Civil society networks have proven to be uniquely placed to reach and work with underserved populations and play an especially strong role in advocacy, including policy dialogue and influence by securing the voice and leadership of the grassroots and populations most affected.

When heard at the right level the networks create important policy developments at global, regional and national levels that then cascade and can lead to more effective and efficient national and local programmes (delivered by governments as well as civil society).

The donors that support the RC-NF acknowledge these roles of civil society, and the regional and global networks supporting grassroots work. The RC-NF therefore seeks to provide a more sustainable funding stream that will enable networks to mobilize matched resources and address these barriers through providing funding for:

core costs (all costs related to management, core and support staff - not exclusively related to projects – and office costs), and program activities that are directly linked to the results framework (the network’s main goals and objectives; not exclusively related to time limited and/or freestanding projects).

Applicants must clearly demonstrate how core support and program funding will contribute to achieving defined outcomes, and how progress will be monitored. Applicants are encouraged to seek the establishment of relevant collaboration, synergies or division of labor with other global and/or regional networks, as well as with those at national level, as appropriate. Applications from individual global and regional networks organizations are also welcome.

Forms and Instructions

Please use the following link to download a copy of this RFP, the application and budget form: www.rc-nf.org

Please read all of the instructions carefully as they contain the information necessary for the proper preparation and submission of a successful proposal.

The Application and Budget form must be submitted in English.

Applicants must also provide the names and contact information of at least two external references that are familiar but not affiliated with the network and its work. Please do not include letters of support or other documents from your references. References may or may not be contacted as part of the proposal review.

Deadline

All proposals must be received by 1 September, 2012. No applications will be considered after this date.

The Fund Management Agent will facilitate the review process by the Program Advisory Panel and present recommendations for funding to the International Steering Committee. The date before which the ISC will finalize its decision making process will be communicated in due course (and not later than 1 September 2012).

Submission

Applications and/or questions related to this process can be submitted electronically to the Robert Carr-Network Fund Management Agent:
Aids Fonds
Keizersgracht 390
1016 GB Amsterdam
The Netherlands
Email: rcnf@aidsfonds.nl

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