Grant Call for Kiwa Initiative Local Projects

The Kiwa Initiative Local Projects Component will open for submissions of concept notes on September 20th, 2023 for Very Small, Small and Medium Grants. Submission deadlines are November 12th 2023, 23:59 UTC+12:00 Fiji for Very Small and Small Grants and Medium grants.



This grant scheme will follow a two-step process. Applicants will initially prepare and submit short concept notes which will be reviewed and short-listed.

Download Concept Note Template (EN)

Download Concept Note Template (FR)




Budget range (€)


Closing Dates for Concept notes.

Invitations for Full Proposals

Very small

€25,000 – €50,000

Up to 12 months

November 12th 2023, 23:59 UTC+12:00 Fiji

December 2023


€50,001 – €100,000

Up to 20 months

November 12th 2023021, 23:59 UTC+12:00 Fiji

December   2023


€100,001 – €400,000

Up to 23 months

November 12th 2023, 23:59 UTC+12:00 Fiji

December 2023

Applications received after the above deadlines will not be considered but can be submitted again for the next round of calls of proposals. Successful applicants will be invited to submit a full proposal, including due diligence processes. There will be eight weeks allotted for applicants to submit their Full Proposal.

Applications must be submitted in English or French (for Pacific French Overseas Territories). All application documents must be submitted via email to: submit.kiwainitiative@iucn.orgQuestions can be directed to

Submission of applications

  1. Maximum attachment size per email is 20MB. For larger email sizes, please send email in numbered batches.

    1. E.g. “Kiwa Initiative Concept Note-Organisation Name (1), ….. (2), ….. (3)” , etc

  2. Feel also free to use Google Drives/ Dropbox / OneDrive and send the link via

  3. If you’re still facing difficulties, please contact Ms Varea Romanu at (Phone: +679 716 9306)

    and Ms Mereoni Tavakaturaga at (+679 777 2860)


Questions deadline for Very Small, Small and Medium Grants by November 3rd

A series of four (4) informative webinars in English will be organised virtually, at 11.00 am UTC+12 (Fiji time) on September 25th and October 5th, 12th and 19th.

To join the English webinars, click on 

The following sessions are planned for the Pacific French Overseas Territories : 

  • An information session on the Kiwa Initiative on Thursday October 5, 2023 at 10:00 am (UTC+11 New Caledonia time), 11:00 am (UTC+12 Wallis and Futuna time) or Wednesday October 4 at 1:00 pm (UTC-10 Polynesia time).
  • A workshop "Designing your concept note for the Kiwa Initiative" on Tuesday, October 10, 2023 at 9:00 am (UTC-10 Polynesian Time) - at Fare Te mana o te moana (PF 7 c/o mer, Hôtel Intercontinental Tahiti, Faaa 98704, French Polynesia)
  • A workshop "Designing your concept note for the Kiwa Initiative", Friday October 13 at 9:00 am (UTC+11 New Caledonia time), 10:00 am (UTC+12 Wallis and Futuna time) - online

Please consult the Grant Eligibility to ensure that your project concept will meet all grant-selection criteria and eligibility requirements. Please follow the guidelines carefully when developing and drafting a proposal, in order to ensure the highest possible quality of your project concept and consequently improve your chances of being selected for funding from the Kiwa Initiative Local Projects Component.



We support projects that…

Employ Nature-based Solutions (NbS) to achieve climate change adaptation benefits that are rights-based, gender-sensitive and socially inclusive. Specifically, integrating climate adaptation into:

  • Conservation of biodiversity and ecosystem services.
  • Sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystem services.
  • Enabling tools for conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystem services.

Nature-based Solution (NbS) were defined by IUCN in 2016, as “actions to protect, sustainably manage, and restore natural or modified ecosystems, that address societal challenges effectively and adaptively, simultaneously providing human well-being and biodiversity benefits”.


Please see below a list of example projects associated with each of these themes. This list is not intended to be exhaustive – applicants are encouraged to propose innovative approaches that align with the grant objectives.

Example projects that contribute to climate change adaptation



Conservation of biodiversity and ecosystem services

Eradication/control of invasive species, with climate change adaptation benefits

Coastal and marine ecosystem and natural resources management

Efforts to improve the conservation status of threatened species and their habitats

Vegetation/habitat mapping for restoration and conservation actions

Establishment/extension of Protected and Conserved Areas and increasing and gender participation

Development and implementation of marine spatial plans

Increasing PA management effectiveness (through training, management planning, habitat restoration, invasive species management, boundary demarcation, fire management, etc.)

Establishment of new financing mechanisms for species and habitat conservation (Payments for Ecosystem Services (PES), biodiversity offsets, etc.)

Analyses to better understand/quantify threats to biodiversity (including socioeconomic studies)

Actions to reduce detrimental edge effects and to protect core refugia for species populations

Sustainable use of biodiversity and ecosystem services

Actions to maintain hydrographic integrity and contiguity in freshwater ecosystems

Good agricultural and fisheries practices that promote species conservation and climate change adaption

Development of sustainable economic valorisation of biodiversity, ecosystems and ecosystems services (such as through ecotourism)

Enabling tools

Public awareness, education campaigns, training and capacity-building with tangible results

Enabling tools to support to local stakeholders (local communities and authorities) to help protect/manage biodiversity with links to Community Conserved Areas (CCAs) ecosystems (ecosystem management, participatory monitoring, etc.)




The call is inviting concept submissions from the 19 Pacific Island Countries and Territories (PICTs) listed below


New Caledonia, French Polynesia, Wallis and Futuna,

Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Timor Leste, Vanuatu,

Federated States of Micronesia, Nauru, Palau, Marshall Islands, Kiribati,

Niue, Samoa, Cook Islands, Tokelau, Tonga, Tuvalu

Eligible Entities:

The Kiwa Initiative call for local projects awards grants to local and international CSOs (including community-based organisations)and local/sub-national/national public institutions/authorities that meet the following criteria.

Eligible Entities Criteria





Grantee (Applicant) must be a legal entity, registered in one of the 19 countries/territories eligible to the Kiwa Initiative.

Grants cannot be awarded to private individuals or for-profit companies. Academic/research institutions are eligible


Grantee (Applicant) must not be an IUCN entity

Such as global IUCN programmes or national/regional offices.


Lead Applicant must hold a bank account in the name of the organisation.

Funds cannot be transferred to personal bank accounts.


Lead Applicant must be directly responsible for implementing the funded project

Applications cannot be made on behalf of a third party


Grantee currently funded by the EU can apply to the call for local projects of the Kiwa Initiative. 

An already allocated EU grant cannot be considered as co-funding to a local project financed by the Kiwa Initiative.

International NGOs

Projects must be endorsed by a relevant government authority in the country of implementation

Projects must be implemented in partnership with a local organisation (CSO or public authority)

Endorsement must be in writing (letter or email), and by relevant government department.

Local partners must be directly involved in implementing project activities. Partnership may include sub-granting.

Applications from international NGOs without local partners will only be considered if the international NGO provides a clear justification (such as absence of appropriate local partner).

Public institutions / authorities

19 eligible Pacific countries and territories as mentioned under the geographic scope



Co-applicants are subject to the same eligibility criteria as the lead applicant

Co-applicants must participate in project design and implementation

The project should:

  • Be implemented in one or more of the Kiwa Initiative eligible PICTs.
  • Align with the Kiwa Initiative’s investment priorities.
  • Apply NbS to climate change adaptation, including through biodiversity conservation, sustainable development, and sustainable use of ecosystem services.
  • Deliver more than research-based outcomes alone – research can be funded if it is accompanied by clear and tangible on ground follow-up actions, delivered within the project term.
  • Comply with the Environment Social Management System standards and principles of the local projects component of the Kiwa Initiative
  • Include objectives and activities that are realistic, achievable and cost efficient within the proposed project term and budget.
  • Be in accordance with Anti-Money Laundering /Combating the Financing of Terrorism (AML-CFT) requirements.

Projects which include the following topics cannot be supported under this grant scheme.

  • Purchasing land.
  • Activities that are illegal under local or international law.
  • The physical resettlement of people.
  • Activities that negatively impact (including removing or altering) physical cultural property, including those important to local communities and/or having archaeological, paleontological, historical, religious, or unique natural values.
  • Activities on indigenous peoples’ lands or territories without having obtained their free, prior, and informed consent.
  • Activities that include the procurement, handling, storage and use of unlawful pesticides.
  • Activities likely to negatively impact vulnerable groups within local communities.
  • Activities implemented with local communities, where there has been no prior consultation with said communities



Eligible concept notes will undergo a standardised review process based on the following   evaluation criteria



1. Relevance

Alignment with the investment priorities of the Kiwa Initiative local projects component including contribution to climate change adaptation

Consider national/regional context and “needs”

2. Feasibility

Consider the complexity and scope of the proposed work

Consider applicant’s management capacity and technical capacity

Consider synergies with other projects/initiatives

3. Technical quality

Consider whether proposed objectives are achievable and contribute to the proposed goal.

Consider whether proposed activities contribute to the achievement of proposed objectives

Consider if proposed activities generate proposed outputs and expected impacts.

4. Cost-effectiveness

Consider if the proposed budget is appropriate given the likely cost of the proposed work.

Consider applicant capacity for financial management

Short-listed concept notes will undergo Environment Social Management System ESMS screening to determine if any ESMS standards are triggered by the planned work, and what steps should be taken to avoid, minimise, and mitigate any undesirable impacts.


Coast of O Le Pupu-Puʿe National ParkPhoto: Coast of O Le Pupu-Puʿe National Park. PC James Atherton