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About the NED Grants Program
Each year the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) makes direct grants to hundreds of nongovernmental organizations worldwide working to advance democratic goals and strengthen democratic institutions.
Each year, NED makes more than 1,600 grants to support the projects of non-governmental groups abroad who are working for democratic goals in more than 90 countries.
Who NED Funds
NED funds only nongovernmental organizations, which may include civic organizations, associations, independent media, and other similar organizations.
NED encourages applications from organizations working in diverse environments including newly established democracies, semi-authoritarian countries, highly repressive societies and countries undergoing democratic transitions.
NED does not make grants to individuals, governmental bodies, or state-supported institutions such as public universities.
What Type of Programs NED Supports
NED is interested in proposals from local, independent organizations for nonpartisan programs that seek to:
- Promote and defend human rights and the rule of law
- Support freedom of information and independent media
- Strengthen democratic ideas and values
- Promote accountability and transparency
- Strengthen civil society organizations
- Strengthen democratic political processes and institutions
- Promote civic education
- Support democratic conflict resolution
- Promote freedom of association
- Strengthen a broad-based market economy
All proposed projects must be consistent with NED’s general purposes as outlined in the NED Statement of Principles and Objectives.
For more information on the types of programs NED supports in each region, please see Where We Work.
How Funding Decisions Are Made
Decisions are made on a quarterly basis by the NED Board of Directors. The Board considers the following factors:
- how a program fits within the Endowment’s overall priorities,
- its relevance to specific needs and conditions in a particular country,
- the democratic commitment and experience of the applicant.
Dates and Deadlines
Upcoming Board of Directors meeting dates and proposal submission deadlines are as follows:
Proposal Submission Deadline
September 14th, 2020
January 18 – January 29, 2021
March 15 – March 26, 2021
June 11 – June 25, 2021
*Proposals submitted after the deadline will be considered at the following Board Meeting.
Board of Directors Meeting
January 8, 2021
March 26, 2021
June 11, 2021
September 10, 2021
*Applicants will be notified of the Board of Directors’ decision by email within one business week of the board meeting date.
NED will not be taking online applications for the March board meeting.
Applications must include the following items:
- Organization Profile Form
This form collects the same basic organizational information.
- Application Proposal Form
This form collects project specific information.
- Proposal Narrative
Please follow the PROPOSAL GUIDELINES to prepare in advance the Proposal Narrative in English or your local language. The narrative should describe the project.
- Proposal Budget
This is the financial description of the project you would like to conduct with NED funds and should correspond to the activities in the Proposal Narrative. Please follow the PROPOSAL GUIDELINES for additional instructions and use the Microsoft Excel BUDGET TEMPLATE whenever possible. You will attach this file to your online application.
- Registration Documents (if applicable)
Please include your Certificate of Registration or other documentation showing the legal status of your organization. If your organization is not registered, this documentation is not required. Instead, please include an explanation (in the transmittal email) as to why your organization is not registered and the status of any pending applications for registration.
NOTE: we are rolling out the Organization Profile Form and the Application Proposal Form as part of our transition to an online application and grantee portal. If you are unable to complete these forms,
please use the Proposal Cover Sheet instead. In your email transmitting your documents, we would appreciate it if you could provide feedback on the Organization Profile and Application Proposal Forms, so we can improve the forms for future use.
- Organization Profile Form
How to Apply
To apply for a grant, please complete the required forms and write a narrative proposal describing your project. Submit the forms and proposal via email or secure communication to the appropriate address based on the region in which your project will take place:
Latin America & the Caribbean: firstname.lastname@example.org
Middle East & North Africa: email@example.com
Global (takes place in more than one country not in the same region): firstname.lastname@example.org
If you have already applied for the June 11th 2021 board of directors meeting through our old online application system, you do not need to do anything else at this time. If we need additional information to review your proposal, someone from NED will be in touch to request it.
Applications are due March 26th.
To apply by post:
Send all of the application materials to
National Endowment for Democracy:
Attn: Grant Proposals
1201 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20004 USA
To apply by fax:
+1 (202) 378-9407
Be Aware of Scams
Scam Advisory: Recent reports indicate that individuals are posing as the NED on email and social media. Read more.
1025 F Street NW. Suite 800, Washington DC 20004