10 Augut 2022
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Strengthening Competitiveness Agriculture and Livelihoods – Natural Resource Management (SCALE nNRM) project has opened the second round of Forest and Development Fund grants for expressions of interest on 29 July 2022.
This funding opportunity closes on 30 September 2022. All eligible organizations are encouraged to apply.
The Forest and Development Fund will provide grants to Solomon Islands organizations for activities that support the SCALE-NRM objectives of protecting the forest, enhancing livelihoods, and building the capacity of organizations.
The geographic scope of this round of grants will be Malaita Province.
In marking the commencement of the second round of the Forest and Development Fund, SCALE -NRM project Chief of Party, Dr Morgan Wairiu, reiterated the importance of tribal groups, associations, and institutions rising up to take ownership of developments in their settings.
“You are transformative actors and drivers of societal change, and guardians of your natural resources. The SCALE-NRM project only provides the space and enabling environment, but activities to manage and protect forest resources as well as alternative livelihood activities must be driven by tribes and communities,” said Dr. Wairiu.
The Solomon Islands National Government, the Malaita Provincial Government, and USAID jointly launched this initiative in March 2022.
Mr. Russell Comeau, Director of the U.S. Embassy’s Office in Solomon Islands, said during the March launch that investing in communities and pursuing partnerships with the private sector could result in reduced pressures on the forests and climate change benefits.
He expressed hope that with the Fund, “we will promote sustainable and inclusive economic development for the Solomon Islands.”
Meanwhile, the successful applicants during the first round of Forest and Development Fund, launched in March have been notified and SCALE-NRM is working with them on their grant agreements.
A total of 1,367 applicants responded to the first call, and 81 were shortlisted who subsequently submitted full project proposals in June.
The final 20 applicants selected are going through pre-award assessment for USAID’s final approval before the grant agreements with them are signed.
Expression of Interest forms for the current Forest and Development Fund round are available for collection at the Winrock Office in Auki or on request via email at Forest.Grants@winrock.org.
The SCALE-NRM project is designed to address the underlying causes of forest degradation in Solomon Islands.
The program will implement a range of activities to improve forest governance and ensure sustainable forest management.
The project is being implemented over a five-year period, from October 2020 to September 2025.
The SCALE project operates with an emphasis on Malaita province due to a specific request from the central government of Solomon Islands to address unmet development priorities in the largest province.
SCALE-NRM is a partnership between USAID and Winrock International.
Source – Solomon Star News.