The Call

The Southern Africa Trust (the Trust) invites proposals from South African civil society, NGOs, academic institutions/think tanks and private sector organisations able to make a high impact contribution in addressing the challenges of migration, peace and security and climate change in Africa.

The UK’s bilateral aid programme to South Africa concluded in 2015, after 21 years. The Department for International Development (DFID)’s work in South Africa now focusses on UK-South Africa development partnerships, designed to address shared development challenges in Africa. This reflects the agreement made between Ministers, at the 2015 UK-South Africa Bilateral Forum, ‘to enhance partnerships to accelerate the implementation of the Global Goals in Africa’. One new programme designed to facilitate this is the UK-South Africa Development Partnerships in Africa (USDPA) programme.

Supporting Documents

  1. Annexure 1 – Value for Money Strategy and Action Plan
  2. Annexure 2 – Scoring Methodology
  3. B1 – Full Proposal Application USDPA Call for Proposals
  4. B3-Budget and Income Plan
  5. UK-SA Development Partnerships Business Case

The Trust is an independent, non-profit agency based in South Africa and working in the Southern Africa region. Its principal objective is to undertake activities that contribute to the reduction of poverty and inequality which include public policy, official poverty reduction processes, human rights, stakeholder engagement, human and economic development, research, training and capacity building.  The Trust has been commissioned as the managing agent of the USDPA programme, which includes managing a call for proposals for new UK-South Africa development partnerships projects in Africa.


South Africa is a key development partner for the UK. Its economy has a major impact on the economic growth of Africa. Its institutions play an important role in neighbouring countries in areas such as tax capacity building, financial inclusion and addressing poverty and inequality. It is a major contributor to peace and security across the continent. Its membership of global bodies like the G20 gives it an influential role as Africa’s representative in international policy making.

There are multiple development challenges in Africa whose resolution would benefit from South Africa’s proactive engagement. This call focuses on three areas of mutual interest and priority for the UK and South African Government i) better migration management, ii) greater peace and stability and iii) improved adaptation to climate change.

Better Migration Management for stability and growth across Africa

Cross-border movements of people in Africa have a long history, and constitute one of the major livelihood strategies and a driver of regional integration and economic growth in Southern Africa.  Of 4.4m migrants recorded across the SADC region in 2015, 2.3 million were living in South Africa, making it the major migrant destination in Southern Africa. Significant numbers of people who live and work in the country also do so unofficially and join the ranks of irregular migrants. Migration, if well managed, offers a range of development opportunities including regional integration, skills transfer, and poverty reduction and entrepreneurship.

However, migration also presents a range of development challenges for South Africa and the labour sending countries. For example, labour migrants are often less protected than other workers and can fall prey to organised crime and people trafficking networks, unscrupulous border control, immigration or public authorities, exploitative employers, discrimination and even xenophobic attacks in some host countries. Women and girls can be particularly vulnerable in this context.

Peace and stability

The last 25 years have seen remarkable progress towards poverty reduction alongside a steady decline in global conflict. For most of the period since the end of the Cold War, levels of global violence decreased. Nonetheless, the African continent continues to be plagued by a myriad of violent conflict, political crises and civil war. This has taken various forms: growing intra-state conflicts where another state supports one of the parties, often resulting in more deadly and prolonged violence; an increase in the number of non-state armed actors; a steep increase in violent extremism and terrorism; a growth in violence related to organised crime; and a significant rise in violent protest, bolstered by technological connectivity. All of these are having direct and indirect impacts on poverty reduction efforts and economic growth.

South Africa has a critical role to play in addressing insecurity in Africa through its government and non-government expertise and resources in areas such as mediation, peacekeeping, maritime security and supporting transition processes. Political instability is impeding economic growth and development in a range of countries, including Zimbabwe, South Sudan, DRC and Mozambique. There are also concerns around the recent increase in maritime insecurity in the Gulf of Aden and the Gulf of Guinea, which are of geopolitical and commercials importance to both the UK and South Africa. In addition, South Africa has a strong record of championing the role and inclusion of women in peace processes and peace operations, as well as addressing sexual and gender-based violence in conflict. It is the country with the highest percentage of female UN peacekeepers and remains fully committed in support of, and to the full and effective implementation of Resolution 1325.

Climate Change

As an indicator of one dimension of the anticipated impacts of climate change across Southern Africa, the 2015-2016 drought in Southern Africa is instructive. The drought had a significant impact on the region’s food production and economic growth. The poor 2016 harvest resulted in a shortfall in the regional maize production of 9.3 million tons, malnutrition of over half a million children, reductions in access to safe drinking water for 3.2 million children and a detrimental impact on economic growth across the region.

In future, the effects of climate change are expected to cause Southern Africa to experience increased variability in its rainfall, and reduced rainfall overall. This would in turn result in more frequent and extreme droughts and floods, generally hotter temperatures, absolute water scarcity in some areas and reduced agricultural produce – all of which would act as an impediment to robust economic growth.  South Africa is already experiencing these effects (for example, the current critical water situation in the Western Cape) and various institutions are leading the way within the region in piloting innovative approaches to both mitigation and adaptation. The region as a whole also suffers a significant shortfall in both public and private financing to address climate change.

Grant size

Funding will be provided for several grants over an 18-month period, as follows:

  • Small size grants of up to R1,500,000
  • Medium size grants of up to R3,000,000; and
  • Large size grants of up to R6,000,000.

Implementation timeframe

Projects will be implemented between February 2018 and July 2019.

The Scope of Proposals

The Trust welcomes applications from South African civil society, NGOs, academic institutions/think tanks and private sector organisations that provide innovative solutions to tackling Africa’s development challenges in any of the following:

Better migration management

Example areas of focus include:

  • Reducing informality of migrant work and exposure to and the practice of modern slavery;
  • Responding to the gendered nature of migration flows, journeys and occupations;
  • Protection of vulnerable migrants including unaccompanied minors, women, people with disabilities, refugees and asylum seekers;
  • Improving the organisation and representation of migrant workers in trade unions and other protection mechanisms.

Peace and Stability

Example areas of focus include:

  • Peacebuilding, mediation and conflict resolution interventions in conflict affected countries in Africa;
  • Peaceful political transitions in conflict affected countries, including transitional justice and support to good governance;
  • Research and policy engagement to maximize the effectiveness of South Africa’s peace and stability approaches in Africa.

Climate change

Example areas of focus include:

  • Strengthening the capacity of public and private institutions in Africa to access global climate change funds tackling mitigation and/or adaptation;
  • Supporting responses that tackle specific climate change challenges, e.g. gender and disability; private sector uptake of climate smart agriculture; adaptive health measures;
  • Strengthening the capacity of financial institutions in countries in the region to understand and invest in sectors helping to address climate mitigation or adaptation (e.g. renewable energy, water saving technologies, etc.);
  • Facilitating cooperative dialogue between stakeholders addressing a climate / natural resource management issue that covers more than one country in the region.


Civil society, NGOs, academic institutions/think tanks and private sector organization legally registered in South Africa and working in the identified priority areas.

Organisations not eligible

Applications will not be considered from organisations:

  • based outside South Africa
  • that undertake activities which may lead to civil unrest
  • that are linked to any terrorist organization
  • that discriminate against any group on the basis of gender, disability, race, colour, ethnicity, sexual orientation or religion

Evaluation Criteria and scoring

Each proposal application will undergo an initial screening to assess it suitability as follows:

No Main Criteria Sub Criteria Weighting (%) Score Total score
Strategic fit and experience in the sector/(s)
Show proven experience and track record in addressing complex problems in one or more of the priority areas. 5
Understanding of assignment and deliverables and clear rationale.  Alignment between proposal application and the programme objectives.  The proposed development intervention meets identified needs and has a strong chance of delivering sustainable, measurable change.


Show the project’s impact/outcomes/the difference that the proposed intervention will make, a realistic implementation plan, a feasible budget 5
Theory of change
With the aid of a diagram demonstrate a clear theory of change and innovative approach to address identified challenges.  The theory of change should clearly articulate the problem to be addressed by the intervention, provide a step by step process of intervention and answer how and why an activity will yield the desired outcome. 15
Capacity to deliver
Staff has the right skills, proven qualifications and experience to deliver a successful project, manage funds transparently and report results accurately. Clearly demonstrate the individual skills and capacity to deliver impact and outcomes as set out in the theory of change. 5
Demonstrate capacity to absorb the increased volume of activity associated with this grant. 5
Proposed project can be realistically implemented and measurable results delivered over an 18-month period. 5
Organisation has the capacity to engage in other African countries as required. 5
Demonstrate ability to leverage the capacity, expertise or experience of a South African institutions in order to address the African development challenges highlighted. 5
Value for money
Demonstrate how the proposed activities will achieve good value for money overall, and in terms of economy, efficiency, effectiveness, and equity.  Show that the proposed intervention will be delivered in a cost-effective way, including ensuring best use of people and financial resources without compromising on quality of results.  (see annexure 1) 20
Gender equity and inclusion
Demonstrate how the programme will tackle exclusion and address gender equality throughout its activities in order to empower and protect women. 10
How will the project promote the SDG principle to leave no one behind. 10
Risk matrix
Demonstrate that your organization has a risk register that is regularly reviewed.

Identify possible risks associated with the proposed project and explain how you will mitigate them.

  Totals   100%    

Due diligence

The Trust will undertake due diligence assessment of all potential grant recipients. This is to assess whether the organisation has the necessary policies, processes, governance systems and resources including human resources with the right skills and experience to manage the proposed grant accountably, for the purpose they are awarded, and to deliver the project successfully. The Trust will conduct assessment, including a visit to the office of the potential grant recipient. Organisations are expected to be prepared for the process anytime from receipt of their proposal by the Trust.

Submission process

  1. Before submitting proposals, all applicants are welcome to attend a roundtable meeting to be held at the Trust offices on the 13th of November 2017 at 10h00, to receive a briefing on the programme and application process by DFID and the Trust. This will also be an opportunity for applicants to ask questions and seek clarification where required.
  2. In order to be considered for funding, applicants are required to submit to the Trust, a written application that is structured according to a prescribed format.
  3. Applications are to be submitted electronically to the email address that is supplied.
  4. Each applicant is allowed to submit only one proposal (you should select the particular thematic area within which you wish to apply).
  5. The closing date for submissions is 30 November 2017. Grant applications should be submitted by midnight on that day.
  6. Successful applicants will be selected by January 2018.
  7. Selected funding beneficiaries will be informed by the end of January 2018.
  8. All proposals must be submitted by email to the Grants and Capability Manager, Southern Africa Trust, Email address:, Telephone 011 034 0400.

Appraisal and selection process

  1. Grants will be awarded through an open and competitive process. Each application will be assessed on its own merit.
  2. All proposals will be assessed based on their overall quality, results-oriented nature of the proposed project and alignment with the stated priority areas.
  3. Proposals will be appraised by independent experts and the DFID technical review team, and a final selection of applicants will be considered for grants.
  4. Where necessary, the review team may request further clarification or revisions to the proposals to ensure that the projects meet project criteria and includes an adequate level of detail.
  5. Recommendations on which grants to support will be prepared by the review team for the decision of the Trust board of trustees.
  6. Final grant approvals by the board of trustees, signing of agreements and first disbursements will take place by February 2018.