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Oak Foundations Joint India Programme Grants
Funds for NGOs


Activities: Others

The Indian government provides safety nets for the most vulnerable but many people find it hard to access them because of social and geographical barriers. We recognise that it will take time to make these provisions readily accessible for everyone and hope to assist in this process.
In the Joint India Programme, we have five Oak Programmes that work together to address a combination of issues that affect populations with less access to resources in Jharkhand and West Bengal located in east India. Ultimately, we aim to: improve the lives of the most marginalised groups; institutionalise practices that address poverty and social injustice; and build strong organisations at the grassroots.
We consider requests for funding that meet the overall mission and goals of the Foundation. We fund a variety of time-bound projects, core costs, technical assistance and collaborative activities. Each programme has its own funding criteria, geographic scope and requirements.
We occasionally initiate our own programmes or form initiatives in our areas of interest by issuing calls for proposals on our website, or convening policymakers and practitioners to explore solutions to critical issues.
Our principles
While each programme has its own areas of focus, as a whole, we adhere to seven funding principles. These include funding initiatives that:
target root causes of problems;
are replicable either within a sector or across geographical locations;
include plans for long-term sustainability;
strive to collaborate with like-minded organisations;
demonstrate good financial and organisational management;
value the participation of people (including children) and communities; and have secured co-funding;
Trends in our grant-making
Oak Foundation has an annual grant-making budget of more than USD 150 million and makes grants to organisations located in countries worldwide. See our recent Annual Report for more details on our grant-making.
Our grant-making has evolved over the years and in recent times we have increased:
the length and size of grants;
the number of core support grants;
support to capacity building, policy work, campaigns and new types of social movements; and joint programming work to address issues from many different perspectives.
Funding Restrictions
We do not provide support to individuals, and do not provide funding for scholarships or tuition assistance for undergraduate or postgraduate studies. We also do not fund religious organisations for religious purposes or election campaigns.
Except in special circumstances or in Zimbabwe, we generally do not provide programme grants under USD 25,000

Process: We respond to requests for support from organisations working in our areas of interest. These requests come to us first as a concept note. After approval of a concept note, programme officers will invite an organisation to complete an application for funding.
For programme officers to make the best possible recommendation for funding, they strive to gain the most comprehensive view of the organisation, its board members, the project and finances. Therefore, we have a rigorous due diligence and selection process, which includes extensive discussions, financial reviews and site visits.
Funding decisions are made by the Board of Trustees, either individually or as a group. While the Board of Trustees meets twice annually, grants are considered on a rolling basis throughout the calendar year.
This process does not have a set time frame. It can take from two months to more than a year in some cases from the submission of a concept note to final approval, as indicated in the chart on this page.
Timing depends on a number of factors, but we work to ensure the most efficient process possible. After the initial approval of a concept note, organisations are encouraged to reach out to programme officers to learn about the grant-making process and the stages of the application.
The lines of communication between the programme officer and the organisations are always open – it is a collaborative effort.
OUR APPLICATION PROCESS
We respond to requests for support from organisations working in our areas of interest. These requests come to us first as a concept note. After approval of a concept note, programme officers will invite an organisation to complete an application for funding.
For programme officers to make the best possible recommendation for funding, they strive to gain the most comprehensive view of the organisation, its board members, the project and finances. Therefore, we have a rigorous due diligence and selection process, which includes extensive discussions, financial reviews and site visits.
Funding decisions are made by the Board of Trustees, either individually or as a group. While the Board of Trustees meets twice annually, grants are considered on a rolling basis throughout the calendar year.
This process does not have a set time frame. It can take from two months to more than a year in some cases from the submission of a concept note to final approval, as indicated in the chart on this page.
Timing depends on a number of factors, but we work to ensure the most efficient process possible. After the initial approval of a concept note, organisations are encouraged to reach out to programme officers to learn about the grant-making process and the stages of the application.
The lines of communication between the programme officer and the organisations are always open – it is a collaborative effort.
OUR APPLICATION PROCESS

We respond to requests for support from organisations working in our areas of interest. These requests come to us first as a concept note. After approval of a concept note, programme officers will invite an organisation to complete an application for funding.
For programme officers to make the best possible recommendation for funding, they strive to gain the most comprehensive view of the organisation, its board members, the project and finances. Therefore, we have a rigorous due diligence and selection process, which includes extensive discussions, financial reviews and site visits.
Funding decisions are made by the Board of Trustees, either individually or as a group. While the Board of Trustees meets twice annually, grants are considered on a rolling basis throughout the calendar year.
This process does not have a set time frame. It can take from two months to more than a year in some cases from the submission of a concept note to final approval, as indicated in the chart on this page.
Timing depends on a number of factors, but we work to ensure the most efficient process possible. After the initial approval of a concept note, organisations are encouraged to reach out to programme officers to learn about the grant-making process and the stages of the application.
The lines of communication between the programme officer and the organisations are always open – it is a collaborative effort.
Submit Concept Note
Oak Foundation accepts unsolicited requests for funding through a concept note.
Follow these steps:
Step 1: Review Oak Foundation's criteria for funding
Read Oak Foundation's criteria for funding, review previous grants in our grant database and assess whether your organisation meets the general requirements of the Foundation.
Step 2: Read Programme requirements
Each programme has its own goals, geographic scope, funding restrictions and requirements for funding. Please read our programme pages for details. Step 3: Submit a request for funding
Organisations who are interested in seeking a grant should submit a concept note through our online form.
We will respond within three months if we require further information or if the applicant is invited to submit a formal proposal. Unfortunately, due to the volume of requests that we receive if you do not receive a reply, please assume your concept was not accepted.
We would be most appreciative if you do not contact the Foundation directly to discuss your request. For initial contact, please do not telephone or visit the offices. Thank you for your understanding.
Priority areas
Our grant-making involves the following:
Supporting safe migration and fair labour. For example, we fund the Jharkhand Anti-trafficking Network, a cohort of 14 local organisations. It supports migrant communities to access information that helps them collaborate with the government to ensure the effective implementation of laws and policies. This helps protect them socially and economically, thus helping prevent their exploitation.
Supporting sustainable urban development, responsive governance and safety in mobility. For example, we fund Ekjut in Jharkhand, which helps build the capacity of the State Department of Urban Planning and Development, city corporations and civil society to understand the needs of the urban poor and homeless populations, and provide them with appropriate services.
Supporting sustainable use and conservation of natural resources. For example, we fund the Global Greengrants Fund to support small and marginal farmers to practice organic agriculture as a strategy to adapt to climate change.
Supporting freedom from violence in public and private spaces. For example, we fund SWAYAM in West Bengal to mobilise communities to stop tolerating violence. It also provides support to survivors of violence, including psychosocial counselling, legal and medical aid and shelter. All of our grants work simultaneously on cross-cutting themes, such as:

empowerment, citizenship and leadership, by supporting communities (including women and other marginalised groups) to access information, participate fully in decision-making processes and realise their entitlements and full potential; and capacity building, by strengthening organisational practices that represent diverse communities, and improve systems abilities to represent grassroots people in negotiation with the government and other key actors.
For further information visit:http://oakfnd.org/india
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