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Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Conservation Fund (SVGCF) launches its First Call for Proposals!

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On May 12, 2020 – The CBF celebrated an important milestone with the Saint Vincent and the Grenadines Conservation Fund (SVGCF) – they issued their first call for proposals, which is an important milestone for any Conservation Trust Fund. Below is a brief summary of the SVGCF Call processand what we can look for from them as they move forward. Congratulations to Chairman Michael John, Executive Director Vanburn Harry and their amazing team!

Of the SVGCF’s four goals in their current strategic plan, two were prioritised or this first call:

  1. Protect and enhance ecosystems
  2. Educate, raise awareness and empower citizens of SVG to support conservation efforts.

Submissions were received from a wide cross section of applicants which included academia, NGOs, the private sector, statutory bodies / government agencies and CBOs. In total, 15 concept notes (CN) were submitted on or before the stipulated deadline.

In keeping with the SVGCF operational procedures and grant making frame work, the grant making process was followed. After being reviewed by the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC), six (6) CN were recommended for approval by the SVGCF Board. All 6 CN were approved and asked to submit full proposals. The TAC selected and recommended 3 proposals to the SVGCF Board for funding. All 3 recommendations were approved for funding by the SVGCF Board:

 

ORGANIZATION PROJECT TITLE GRANT SIZE (US)
1. SERENITY DIVE INC. Reef replanting and school dive program $34,200.00
2. SUSTAINABLE GRENADINES INC. Building a Zero Waste Ecosystem for Enhanced Biodiversity for Birds and People at Belmont Salt Pond $33,640.00
3. TOBAGO CAYS MARINE PARK Enhancement of resource management capacity within the Tobago Cays Marine Park $47,000.00

 

The next steps for the Fund will be to sign the grant agreements and make the initial disbursements so that grantees can start and implementation of the projects can begin.

In terms of lessons learned, the SVGCF noted that they were not expecting the limitations of the applicants’ capacity to effectively communicate their intentions. As a result, the SVGCF has taken the decision to work with grantees and other applicantd to improve their capacity in project writing which will ultimately improve the proposals in the next round of call for proposals.

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Asha-Gaye Cowell
Program Officer, Conservation Finance
Asha-Gaye Cowell is the Conservation Finance Program Officer. She has a diversified academic background, which includes a BSc. Economics and Statistics with first class honors, MSc. International Public and Development Management and a Visiting Fellowship Certification from the University of Oxford where she studied Behavioral Economics along with Strategy and Ethics. Complementing her academic prowess is a cross-section of professional experiences, including work with the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), UNECLAC, USAID, the Permanent Missions of Jamaica to the UN, among others. With extensive civic involvement, volunteerism, and strategic partnerships, Asha is very passionate about leadership, international and regional development, economics, youth and climate change.

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Divers in exploring coral reefs in the Caribbean.
Photo by CLEAR Caribbean at Tobago Cays, St. Vincent & the Grenadines