Global Affairs Canada Call for Proposals: Dismantling Barriers & Improving the Quality of Education for Women and Girls

Global Affairs Canada Call for Proposals: Dismantling Barriers & Improving the Quality of Education for Women and Girls

The Dismantling Barriers and Improving the Quality of Education for Women and Girls in Fragile, Conflict and Crisis Situations call for proposals is part of Canada’s $400-million commitment to education for women and girls in crisis and conflict situations, announced in June 2018 at the G7 Summit in Charlevoix, Quebec. The call aligns with Canada’s Feminist International Assistance Policy and aims to support a sustainable development approach to increasing access and reducing barriers to quality education for women and girls in fragile, conflict and crisis situations, including in refugee-hosting countries. This call also aligns with commitments made by Canada at the Global Disability Summit in 2018 to increasing access to quality education for women and girls with disabilities and ensuring that their interests and priorities are taken into account.

The total amount of funding available under this call for proposals is up to $80 million over five years. Global Affairs Canada may fund any number of proposals or none, up to the maximum funding available. However, the department expects to fund up to seven or eight initiatives with project durations of at least three years up to a maximum of five years.

You must submit your proposal through the Partners@International portal before 12 p.m. (noon) Eastern Time on Wednesday, February 13, 2019. We will not accept any late submissions. Please read the portal instructions carefully, and plan to submit your application at least three business days before the closing date to ensure that technical difficulties do not prevent you from submitting your proposal by the deadline.


This call will support development assistance projects in fragile, conflict and crisis situations, including in refugee-hosting countries. The call is intended to promote greater coherence between humanitarian actors and host governments and to increase access and reduce barriers to quality education for women and girls. Projects must clearly demonstrate collaboration with one or more local organization(s) or include a plan outlining how this collaboration will be formed.

Please note that humanitarian assistance is not eligible under this call for proposals and will continue to be funded through normal humanitarian channels.

Your proposal must align with at least one of the following three programming pillars in fragile, conflict and crisis situations, including in refugee-hosting countries:

  1. Barriers: Address harmful social norms and other barriers that hinder the demand for, and access to, education for girls and women in order to increase the equitable access to safe, secure, quality and inclusive education and learning opportunities for girls, adolescent girls and women, including those with disabilities.
  2. Systems: Expand and improve the provision of inclusive, gender-responsive, safe, accessible, equitable and quality pre-primary, primary and secondary education.
  3. Skills: Increase girls’ and women’s equitable access to quality gender-responsive skills development and higher education.

Your proposal must:

  • advance gender equality in a targeted or fully integrated manner;
  • apply a human rights-based approach and examine how intersecting identity factors impact access for and inclusion of those most at risk of being left behind, including persons with disabilities, Indigenous peoples, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex populations and other vulnerable groups;
  • demonstrate existing organizational capacity to readily implement the project in the proposed country(ies); and
  • integrate strategies and efforts to ensure the sustainability of results that are practical, realistic and comprehensive.

Aligned with the Charlevoix Declaration, your proposal must also demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of the project’s context and issues. Please document the ways in which your project will (at least one of the following must be included):

  • address at least one of the critical cycles in a girl’s education—pre-primary (early years), primary (childhood), secondary (adolescence) or skills development (transition to adulthood);
  • support boys’ or men’s engagement to accelerate progress toward gender equality in education;
  • support innovative education delivery;
  • promote coordination between actors to support education across the humanitarian-development continuum; and
  • build the evidence base through research and strengthened gender-sensitive education-management information systems and advocate for girls’ and women’s rights and empowerment.

Canada’s Feminist International Assistance Policy states that “no less than 95 percent of Canada’s bilateral international development assistance initiatives will target or integrate gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls.” Priority will be given to proposal designs that meet the requirement of targetingor fully integrating gender equality and women’s and girls’ empowerment. To support this, your proposal’s logic model must have gender-equality outcomes. Moreover, its theory of change must indicate:

  • key elements of your gender-equality analysis  that take into consideration the differentiated impact of crisis on girls’ and boys’ education, as well as the root causes of gender inequalities that could be exacerbated during crisis (such root causes of gender inequalities include: discriminatory social norms and harmful practices; systemic gender-based discriminations in policies, laws, regulations, curriculums, infrastructure norms and standards, processes and accountability mechanisms within the education system; as well as security- and conflict-related issues that could increase the exclusion of girls, especially those in the most vulnerable groups, from education opportunities);
  • key measures and approaches to advance gender equality;
  • analysis of the contribution or impact of civil society, women’s rights organizations and/or research bodies working on advancing gender equality;
  • assumptions underlying the advancement of gender equality;
  • risks related to advancing gender equality and strategies to respond to them;
  • methods to foster the participation of women and girls and/or the organizations and networks that defend their interests, especially female-led women’s rights organizations;
  • evidence, best practices or lessons learned on advancing gender equality; and
  • key indicators to measure progress in changing behaviors, practices, decision making and accountability with regard to gender equality.

Organization eligibility

Carefully review the following eligibility screening requirements for submitted application packages for this particular call.

This call is open to Canadian organizations, which may submit an application alone or in collaboration with other organizations, either as signatories or non-signatories. Applicants are encouraged to collaborate with other Canadian or international organizations.

The signatory (or signatories) must:

  • be legally incorporated in Canada and registered in the Partners@International portal;
  • provide two separate financial statements for the most recent fiscal years (audited statements are preferred; if these are not available, the statements must be signed by a member of each signatory’s board of directors, by the board’s delegate or by the owner(s); note also that since financial statements usually provide comparative information from the previous year, these statements will be used to do a three-year trend analysis);
  • provide an Organization attestation signed by the applicant’s chief financial officer or a duly authorized board member; and
  • submit only one application under this call as the lead signatory (the lead signatory is the signatory that will complete the organization and contact information in the proposal form; if your organization submits more than one application under this call as a lead signatory, we will consider only the application with the earliest submission time stamp).

Required project parameters

Carefully review the points below to determine whether your proposed project is in alignment with the parameters of the call. We will not respond to questions about the eligibility of your proposal. You must be able to answer “yes” to all the following statements in order for your application to be considered for funding under this call.

  • Geographic scope: Your proposed project will take place in one or more official development assistance (ODA)-eligible fragile, conflict- or crisis-affected or refugee-hosting countries such as those included in this indicative index: Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development’s States of Fragility Framework 2018: Highlights. Applicants wishing to propose projects in ODA-eligible fragile, conflict- or crisis-affected or refugee-hosting countries that are not included in this index may do so with an accompanying rationale aligned with the call for proposal objectives.

Please note that, as per Section 4 of the Organization attestation, funding must not knowingly be used, either directly or indirectly, in a manner that contravenes Canada’s economic sanctions and export and import controls regimes. Information on Canadian sanctions and export and import controls can be accessed at Types of sanctions and Export and import controls. Note: Approximately 75% of the funding will be allocated to initiatives in sub-Saharan Africa.

If your proposed project does not conform to the above requirements, it will be considered ineligible and will not be assessed under this call for proposals.

Required project experience

Your application must be able to demonstrate the required experience below to be considered for funding under this call. The signatory(ies) and/or non-signatory partners must provide two examples of projects in Section 5.1 of the application form. Collectively, the two examples must demonstrate the following:

  • a minimum of five years of experience implementing development cooperation and/or humanitarian projects in fragile, conflict or crisis situations, including in refugee-hosting countries, in one of the fields related to the three core objectives (dismantling barriers to improve access for women and girls to a quality education; investing in quality education systems; and supporting skills development, especially for women and girls); and
  • experience in the achievement of gender equality results in fragile, conflict or crisis situations or refugee-hosting countries.

Additional guidance

Please note that Global Affairs Canada will not consider projects that include new construction. However, the department will consider refurbishment of existing structures. Refurbishment means any improvement to an existing structure. All refurbishment activities must contribute to the objectives of this call for proposals. Organizations are required to demonstrate, in Section 5.2 of the proposal form, previous experience if undertaking construction or refurbishment. Organizations undertaking infrastructure-related projects will be required to submit a detailed construction plan, including a detailed construction budget, after signing a contribution agreement and prior to project implementation.

Preference may be given to proposals that:

  • are submitted in collaboration with other Canadian organizations;
  • include activities that take place in sub-Saharan Africa; and
  • demonstrate innovative approaches, such as new business models, approaches, policy practices, partnerships, technologies and behavioural insights and methods of delivery, or any solutions that address development problems and gender equality more effectively than current approaches.

How we assess your proposal

Please note that this call will use a one-step application process. The comparative assessment process is described below. In this call, applicants must submit a shortened full proposal.

Applications to this call will first undergo an eligibility check to verify that they meet all organization eligibility requirements and required project parameters listed on this page. Next, eligible applications will be assessed to ensure that the required project experience has been demonstrated. Applications that meet this requirement will proceed to merit assessment, as described in How we assess your proposal. Applications that do not meet the required project experience will not be further assessed. You will be notified if your application is found to be ineligible or does not meet the required project experience.

The assessment criteria that will be used for this call are found at Full proposal assessment criteria.

Available resources

A number of online resources can help you develop your application package. We strongly encourage you to read all the following tools and guidance before beginning your application process. Failure to meet the mandatory requirements, minimum standards and deadlines will result in it not being considered for funding.

How to submit your application package

Important: Please note that if you intend to apply to this call for proposals, you must send an email to by Wednesday, February 6, 2019, requesting the budget template for this call. Please reference the Dismantling Barriers and Improving the Quality of Education for Women and Girls in Fragile, Conflict and Crisis Situations call for proposals in your email when requesting the budget template. This template must be completed and uploaded to the portal along with all other documents, as outlined below. You are strongly encouraged to request the budget template as soon as possible.

If your organization is not already registered in Global Affairs Canada’sPartners@Internationalportal, be sure to register it as soon as possible, as it can take 10 or more business days to process your registration request.

In order to be considered in this call, you must upload the application form and supporting documents and submit them through Global Affairs Canada’s Partners@International portal by 12 p.m. (noon) Eastern Time on Wednesday, February 13, 2019.

Your application package must include all the following documents:

How to access and use PDF forms

Use only Adobe Reader/Adobe Acrobat to work on the standardized PDFs to be submitted with your application package. If you use other software, the data you enter may not appear once submitted to the department and the application will be considered ineligible.

If you are having difficulty downloading the proposal form, it is generally due to the type of software you have (or do not have) on your computer. Please read and follow the help instructions. If you have all the correct software installed, download the form to your desktop and open it directly in Adobe Reader; otherwise, other software installed on your computer may try (and fail) to open the form using your default settings.

Questions regarding the Partners@International portal

Please read and follow all the instructions for using the Partners@International portal (linked on the right-side menu). Do not open multiple windows within the portal, as this may cause technical problems.

Do not try to register or submit at the last minute.

It may take up to 10 business days to register your organization. If you encounter technical difficulties while registering or trying to submit a proposal, send an email to Please note: during the last two weeks before a call closes, the service standard for replying to your enquiry is three business days. Technical support for the portal is available only from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday to Friday.

Questions about this particular call

A webinar is scheduled for 1 to 3 p.m. Eastern Time on January 10, 2019, to review information pertaining to this call page and the application form. One hour will be dedicated to questions and answers. To participate in this webinar, please follow the instructions below:

To participate in the online meeting:

  1. Click on this WebEx session link
  2. If your name and email address are requested, enter them
  3. If a meeting number is required, enter 556 779 995
  4. If a password is required, enter kRXQi322  
  5. Click “Join”

To join the teleconference only:
Provide your phone number when you join the meeting to receive a call back. Alternatively, you can call the following numbers:
Call-in toll-free number: 1-877-413-4782 (Canada) 
Call-in number: 1-613-960-7511 (Canada) 
Attendee access code: 887-9445 

For assistance:

  1. Go to Government teleconference service—Webex meetings
  2. On the left navigation bar, click “Support”
  3. Call 1-800-226-6338 or 613-941-9554
  4. Email

If you still have questions about this call after reading the general Questions and answers about applying for funding, please send them to by 12 p.m. (noon) Eastern Time on Friday, January 11, 2019. We will not respond to questions received after this deadline or to questions on specific organizational circumstances or specific project proposals. Applicants will not receive emails with responses. Answers will appear only on the Questions and Answers page for this call for proposals to ensure that all applicants have access to the same information at the same time.Report a problem or mistake on this pageShare this page

Deadline for submitting a proposal for this call: 12 p.m. (noon) Eastern Time on Wednesday, February 13, 2019. Please review the “How to submit your application package” section of this call page carefully.

Source:Government of Canada


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