This F.A.Q.’s page shows all questions Voice has received since the launch on the 1st of September 2016 regarding mainly the global Calls for Proposals Learn from Innovation and Our Turn to Talk. Questions regarding national calls can be found on the relevant country pages. Questions are sorted per subject. This page will be updated on a regular basis. Latest update: 21 July 2017
If you have additional questions that are not responded to below please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org The Emails will be responded to on a regular basis and then uploaded to this page.
- VOICE GENERAL
Q: Voice offers various types of grants. How can we apply for any of these grants?
A: Grant applications are accepted in response to a Call for Proposals. Each Call for Proposals will ask for applications for one or more of the various types of grants that Voice can offer. At this moment Voice has announced two global Calls for Proposals in addition to many national Calls. For a complete overview of all Calls for Proposals please check https://voice.global/calls-for-proposals-overview/
Q: What is a call for proposals and how does this relate to the grants within Voice?
A: A call for proposals is an open invitation to apply for a grant from Voice. Grant applications cannot be accepted unless it is in response to a call for proposal. Calls for proposals can be made on global level or on country level and will always be for one or more of the four grant types. Calls for proposals will always be within the limits (duration and amount) of the grants type, but do not always have to cover the full possibilities of that grant type, meaning that exceptions can be made dependent on the needs of the programme, country or target group. Calls for proposals can have a specific deadline or can be rolling, which means organisations can apply any time. Decisions on applications will be made in accordance to the timeline outlined in the call for proposals. Within all calls for proposals eligibility criteria will apply. Eligibility criteria can differ per call for proposals depending on country or context analyses.
Q: What are the Voice focus countries and what does it mean?
A: The Voice focus countries are Nigeria, Niger, Mali, Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Cambodia, Laos, Philippines and Indonesia. All Voice funded programming (on both global and country level) must substantially benefit one or more target groups in the thematic areas in one or more of the Voice focus countries. If an application does not meet this requirement then it will not be funded.
Q: Can Voice support proposals in other countries than the Voice focus countries?
A: Yes, but only for a grant awarded under a global call for proposals and only when the proposal substantially benefits one or more target groups in the thematic areas in one or more of the Voice focus countries. Voice cannot approve any applications for projects in a single country other than Voice focus countries.
Q: Could you explain what you mean with a consortium?
A: When applying for a grant from Voice, organisations can partner with other organisations. If that happens we speak of a consortium. One of the consortium members will have to take the lead in the application and will therefore be referred to as the lead applicant or lead party. We can imagine that organisations use the word consortium in their own field of work. It should be noted that the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation “Dialogue and Dissent” Strategic Partnership are also called “consortium partners” and are ineligible for funding from Voice. This must both be seen separated from the meaning of a consortium for the application for a grant within Voice.
Q: We are an organisation specialised in one of the areas that Voice will work on. Can we assist in the context analysis?
A: The context analysis has been completed and has been summarised on the country pages. A global context analysis will be published soon. Overall we are very happy to see many organisations taking part in the community of stakeholders that works together with the Voice country teams on the context analysis, now and in the future. Please contact us via email@example.com for any questions relating to the context analysis.
GLOBAL CALL FOR PROPOSALS: Our Turn to Talk
- ELIGIBILITY FINANCE
Q: The eligibility criteria say that “This Call for Proposals is only open to organisations with a maximum annual turnover of €2 million”. Does it refer only to the applicant or lead partner or also to the other consortium members?
A: This eligibility criteria only applies to the lead applicant. For the Our Turn to Talk Call for Proposals, the lead organisation must have a annual turnover of less than €2 million. For national calls for proposals this limit is different.
Q: Is the maximum turnover of €2 million for the organisation as whole or can it be related to the country programme only?
A: The lead applicant must not have an annual turnover exceeding €2 million. This maximum is measured as a total for the organisation not per country programme or budget. This criterion does not apply to the co-applicants.
Q: Could you explain the 30% income rule?
A: Applicants of the Our Turn to Talk Call for Proposals must show that grants awarded from Voice derive no more than 30% of the total annual income of the applicant organisation. The applicant can show this by outlining the income of the prior year and/or awards and grants it has secured for future years. When in a consortium, this applies to the lead applicant always, but also to the consortium as a whole. If the lead organisation derives more than 30% of its annual income from a grant from Voice, this may be offset by the income of the other parties in the consortium by looking at the income of the consortium combined. This income rule applies to the global calls for proposals. For national calls this is different.
The way to calculate the 30% rule is to divide the requested amount by the annual income plus the requested amount in your application. If the result of this calculation is over 30% you can either reduce the requested amount or team up as part of a consortium where you can add up the income of the consortium partners.
Lead Applicant's Income 2016 = Euro 500,000
Eligible amount 30% = Euro 233,000 (233,000/(500,000+233,000)
Desired amount for a successful project = Euro 500,000
Solution: partner with another organisation with an annual budget higher than Euro 500,000. Keep in mind that the maximum income restriction only applies to the lead applicant and NOT co-applicants.
Q: We feel that Voice is limiting local and small NGO’s since the project budget can only be 30 percent of the total income of the organisation. However, these NGO’s don’t have a lot of money, so 30 percent will be very little.
A: Voice has been designed to fund smaller organisations and therefore we have introduced a maximum turnover elgibility criteria of €2 million. The 30 percent rule is to prevent dependence on Voice as well as give an indication of the financial absorption capacity. This rule only applies to the global calls for proposals. National calls have different rules that are decided on depending on the context analysis and purpose of the specific grants. One solution to allow for a bigger requested budget is to partner up with another organisations as you can join the budgets.
- ELIGIBILITY COUNTRIES/RESIDENCE OF ORGANISATIONS
Q: Is the current call for the Voice focus countries or (also) for the other countries?
A: All Voice funded programming must substantially benefit one or more target groups in the thematic areas in one or more of the Voice focus countries. If an application does not meet this requirement then it will not be funded. For the ”Our Turn to Talk" Call for Proposals, activities can be proposed and can be implemented in countries that are not Voice focus countries, if it helps to meet the objectives of the proposal and as long as there is at least one Voice focus country involved.
Q: Are NGOs based/registered outside of Africa or Asia eligible to apply to your call (as long as of course our work is implemented in the target countries)?
A: An organisation based outside of Africa or Asia, may apply for the Our Turn to Talk but only as a co-applicant in a consortium with the lead organisation based in Africa and/or Asia that operates in one or more of the Voice focus countries.
Q: The lead applicant must be based in Africa or Asia. Does ‘Based’ means ‘have an office’ in?
A: The lead applicant must be founded and registered in Africa and/or Asia as an independent not-for-profit civil society or community-based organisation with an operational bank account in the applicant’s name.
Q: Our organisation in not based in one of the Voice Focus Countries. Can we still find a way to apply, maybe through partnership with other organisations?
A: Yes, organisations may make applications in consortium with other organisations. Voice does not facilitate matching or connecting organisations for this purpose. All organisations are encouraged to apply so long as the lead applicant is based in Africa and/or Asia. Also, the lead applicant (or a consortium member) must operate in one or more of the Voice focus countries. Further all Voice funded programming (on both global and country level) must substantially benefit one or more target groups in the thematic areas in one or more of the Voice focus countries. If an application does not meet this requirement then it will not be funded.
Q: We are an organisation based in the UK. If we partner with an organisation based in one of the Voice target countries, can we apply for this Call for Proposals. Would we be eligible to apply as a consortium with UK-based organisation acting as the lead, or does it need to be listed as a co-applicant or vice-versa?
A: Consortium applications are eligible for the Our Turn to Talk grant as long as the lead applicant is based in Africa and/or Asia. The co-applicants may be based outside Africa and/or Asia.
Q: Can an application propose activities in countries that are not Voice focus countries?
A: To foster cross-country learning, some activities can be proposed for implementation in countries that are not Voice focus countries. It should be noted that a successful application will substantially benefit one or more target groups in the thematic areas in one or more of the Voice focus countries.
Q: Do you have preference for how many countries a project focuses on?
A: This global Call cannot focus on just one country but rather have a regional or global influencing focus with at least a part of the activities in at least one of the Voice focus countries. Proposals that focus on the interaction between national and regional influencing are of particular interest to Voice.
Q: Would it be okay to focus on one country and one target group within this call?
A: No, that is NOT possible. The global call is the only opportunity we have to work with countries other than the Voice Focus Countries and for multi-country projects. If you like to work on single country projects please apply to the many national Calls for Proposals available via https://voice.global/calls-for-proposals-overview/ .
- ELIGIBILITY CONSORTIUM
Q: Consortium partners of the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation “Dialogue and Dissent” Strategic Partnership are ineligible for funding from Voice. Does this also include local/overseas programme partners, or the consortium partners based in the Netherlands only?
A: Consortium Partners of the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation “Dialogue and Dissent” Strategic Partnership are ineligible for funding from Voice whether as a lead applicant or a co-applicant. Overseas or local programme sub-partners or sub-grantee can apply, but only for projects that are not funded by the Strategic Partnership.
Q: Would it be possible for a government agency to apply, even in a consortium?
A: A government agency is not eligible to receive funds from Voice. The applicant (and all consortium members) must by non-governmental organisations, although we recognise that (local) governments can be an ally for positive change.
Q: Can the consortium include a private sector actor such as a research or communications firm?
A: Consortium Members may be a private sector actor, however profits cannot be derived from Voice grants nor can the proposed grant fund commercial services, investments or other commercial activities.
Q: Can we create partnership or consortium with Oxfam Novib or Hivos to apply for a grant?
A: No, this is not possible. Oxfam Novib and Hivos are contracted to manage Voice and can never be a consortium member in an application for a grant within Voice.
Q: What if the consortium is a group of new actors? Will they be disqualified based on experience even when as individuals they have been working on the issues informally?
A: The lead applicant of a consortium must be a legally registered not-for-profit civil society or community-based organisation with an operational bank account in the applicant’s name. Other consortium members may be informal groups, movements or unregistered organisations.
- ASSESMENT OF PROPOSALS
Q: Will Voice seek to approve projects in different geographical areas, and covering all target groups? Or doesn't that play any role in the selection process and will the highest scoring proposals be approved regardless of their region/country/target group.
A: In principle the best applications are funded by Voice. However we always seek a balanced distribution between regions and/or target groups. This will be depending on the specific goal of the call for proposals and the applications made within that call.
Q: How competitive is the call? Could you give more information on what is the funding ceiling is for the call for proposals or how many projects you expect to be approved? And what is the range of expected project budgets?
Since this is the second global Call for Proposals it is hard to foresee what to expect. For the first global Call for Proposals we received an overwhelming 355 proposals so as a measuring stick you can sssume competition will be stiff. For this second global Call we have a budget of 2.5 million EURO that we are looking to allocate. But all is depending on the quality of the proposals that we will receive. We could decide to adjust the budget when we feel the need for that and the quality of the proposals merit it.
Q: Could you outline the assessment process?
A; The assessments will always be done in two layers. For country calls the assessment will be done in country. The first assessment will be done by the country team of Voice and then by the country or regional director of Oxfam Novib or Hivos. For global calls the assessment will be done by the Voice Coordination Team in The Hague and then by the Voice programme manager. We use a three-step approach on eligibility and pre-screeening, project and finally organisational check. The process is fully described in the Grant Manual available for each Call for Proposals.
Q: What can be a proposed start date for the projects? Is January 2018 okay?
A: With each Call for Proposals we aim to respond to the applicants six weeks after the closing date. For Our Turn to Talk this means 1 November 2017 although it depends somewhat on the volumte of proposals we receive. We are expecting most proposals will suggest to implement their projects within 4 months after the closing date of the Call so January/February 2018 is desired.
Q: When will results of the applications be announced?
A: All applicants will receive the results of their application within 6 weeks after the closing date of any Call for Proposals. With a closing date of 15 September 2017 for Our Turn to Talk this means 1 November 2017 although it does depend on the number of proposals received in which case we will contact the candidates.
Q: Will the awarded grants be published?
Yes, a list of the grants that are accepted will be published via https://voice.global/grantees-overview/. An exception will be made for grants that have requested and received confidential treatment, because of safety issues for their staff and target group.
Q: Is it possible for an organisation to be part of 2 applications. For example in one application as the lead applicant and in the other application (for another region) as implementing partner?
A: Organisations can apply for multiple grants, whether this is in a consortium or not. This can be within the same grant type and even within the same call for proposal, but also within all future calls for proposals. However Voice can only contract an organisation as a lead applicant for one grant at a time. This does not apply to co-applicants although we strive for a fair and equitable distribution between organisations.
Q: Can we submit a project that will be co-financed by another donor? Could Voice award a cover of for example 50% of the entire project?
A: Voice can provide a grant to co-fund a project that meets the other requirements of the call for proposals.
Q: Can the application only be submitted in English?
A: For the global calls, the application can only be submitted in English. For national calls for proposals we will accept English or French and for smaller grants even local languages and in the form of audio or video. For more information please see https://voice.global/calls-for-proposals-overview/
- LEARNING & INNOVATION
Q: This question is about ‘importing’ innovative methods to test. For instance in one area an organisation has used innovative methods. A CSO in another area knows about this and wants to test and try these themselves. The outcomes will be interesting for the organisations in both areas, and one learning organisation makes use of the innovative approach of another. We ask because the proposal format seems to ask only about one organisation, its learning capacity and the dissemination of what has been learnt within the same organisation.
A: An application can learn from innovation from within one organisation or between organisations. For consortium applications, we ask that each consortium member to provide an “organisational background” using the template found within the application format.
Q: What is the scale of dissemination required? Is it only for the organisation itself and the ‘surrounding’ target group, or can it also be: making it known to the world, or spreading it over the 10 Voice countries, or spreading it within networks of target groups, or…?
A: The scope of the dissemination of the findings is dependent upon the objectives of the project and the needs of the target audience.
Q: Would you kindly clarify, what exactly is meant by "programming"? is this only IT and other technology-related programming, or could it be policy-related programming too, which, e.g. informs advocacy activities of civil society?
Programming in the referred text refers to all type of programming, the designing and planning of a project or programme. "Implementing innovative programming" therefore refers to strategies, approaches, methodologies, and tools that are innovative. Technology can be part of that but not necessarily. Innovative means not necessarily new but in a different, creative or new way addressing issues.
Q: Speaking about the learning aspect of a grant. To what extent should this be research based?
First of all this depends on how you would identify research. Research for Voice, but also learning could be many things. It is important that an applicant can describe how they see learning and research. It may be including a university as a project partner, but it could also be an assessment of why a certain approach of project was a success or failure.
- FUTURE CALLS FOR PROPOSALS
Q: Is there an application format for organisations seeking grants under the "Influence grant?" The format available on the website seems to be tailored to the "Innovate and Learn" Grants.
A: Each call for proposals has its own application form which forms part of the application process. For a full overview of the Calls for Proposals please see https://voice.global/calls-for-proposals-overview/
Q: There are some eligibility criteria listed on the website in connection to the Our Turn to Talk influencing Grant call. Will the same criteria apply to the other funding streams or whether it is likely to differ? More specifically, in the eligibility criteria it states that “this Call for Proposals is only open to organisations with a maximum annual turnover of €2 million” – for our organisation this would rule us out in applying but would look to support partners in their applications. We are interested to know whether this same criteria would relate to the Influencing stream?
A: Voice is designed to enable small and medium-sized organisations to apply as lead applicants to build their capacity and track record as lead applicants. Therefore, the criteria related to limiting the maximum turnover is for all the calls for proposals unless it is specifically mentioned differently.
- INFORMATION & CONTACT
Q: Please inform me of the dates and venues for learning sessions about Voice activities and programmes. I was not able to find that on your web site.
A: Voice has published a calender for all Calls for Proposals via https://voice.global/calls-for-proposals-overview/ and will soon add dates for 2018 Calls for Proposals as well. In each Call for Proposal there is an overview of outreach activities where appropriate and you can also follow us on our Facebook page plus sign up to our bimonthly Newsletter VoiceMail via our homepage.
Q: Could you provide us please with the addresses of the country offices of HIVOS/ OXFAM NOVIB? We would like to inform our partner organizations in the ten VOICE countries to introduce or present themselves. Is it also possible to provide a contact person or an e-mail?
A: For a full overview of the team please see https://voice.global/who-we-are/ and click on Country Teams. There are Email addresses and contact details. In addition each country has an Email address constituted by the name of the country @voice.global. For example firstname.lastname@example.org
Q: Does Voice have a newsletter or notification system for new calls for proposals?
A: Yes we have a bimonthly Newsletter called VoiceMail where we announce all Calls for Proposals You can sign up via our homepage. If you haven't received it please check your SPAM folder and/or contact email@example.com