World news story

Open call for bids in Colombia for the Human Rights Fund 2017-2018

Colombia is inviting proposals for the Human Rights Fund, supporting human rights and democracy work overseas.

Call for bids is open in Colombia for the Human Rights Fund

The Human Rights Funds (Magna Carta and Women, Peace and Security and Preventing Sexual Violence Initative (PSVI)) are the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office’s global funds to support human rights and democracy work overseas. The UK’s Human Rights Funds aim to make a difference to people’s lives, helping to build the capacity of governments and civil society to promote and protect human rights.

In Colombia for 2017-2018 we would like to invite proposals for the topics outlined above. We will particularly prioritise projects that focus in conflict-affected areas and that are cross-cutting across the themes stated.

We encourage bids from NGOs, civil society organisations and not for profit organisations. Although we are unable to enter into direct contract with government entities, we strongly encourage NGOs to consult and work in partnership with the government in order to ensure the effective implementation of proposals.

We will consider bids between £50,000 - £150,000. The average project last year was £80,000.

Please apply only to these thematic areas, bids outside them will not be considered.

Objective: Prevention of Sexual Violence in Conflict/Women, Peace and Security

Civil society and human rights defenders able to increase prevention and reduction of sexual violence in domestic and conflict related contexts, and able to increase their participation in implementation of the peace process and wider peace-building.

Priority areas for Colombia

  • countering traditional assumptions about sexual violence in conflict and working to end stigmatisation of victims of sexual violence
  • tackling impunity and promoting greater accountability through domestic judicial/legal reform, or awareness-raising of victims’ rights and redress.
  • increasing use of the UK’s International Protocol on the Investigation and Documentation of Sexual Violence in conflict to improve the capacity of local actors and first responders.
  • building the capacity of women to participate effectively in peace-building, including a gender approach in peace-building mechanisms such as the transitional justice mechanism

Objective: Support for human rights defenders protect the right of individuals and communities to advocate for their human rights, and reduce impunity

Priority areas for Colombia:

  • improving the protection of human rights defenders through strengthening monitoring and verification mechanisms and preventative measures
  • increasing access to justice and legal support of human rights defenders
  • reducing impunity in cases of human rights abuses against human rights defenders

Objective: Support an effective rules-based international order that stands up for universal rights - better understanding and implementation of international human rights standards

Priority areas for Colombia:

  • we will continue to fund a multi-year project to promote the “remedy” pillar of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights. We will not be funding new projects this year.

How to apply

Human Rights Fund is a strategic programme and we assess every bid we receive very carefully to ensure it will achieve its goals and that it fits with the Human Rights Fund strategy and the Colombia Human Rights Strategy.

Proposals should be sent to the British Embassy in Bogotá. The Human Rights team in the UK will not accept proposals submitted directly. Instructions for this bidding round in Bogotá are outlined below.

The following documents are attached and available in our website, please read all guidance.

  • Project Concept Form

  • Standard Terms and Conditions. Our Grant Contract is not negotiable. No article can be modified or taken out of the contract. Please revise it before you submit your application, to guarantee that you will be able to work under these terms and conditions.

Instructions for the Human Rights 2017-2018 bidding process Bogotá

Implementers are invited to submit project proposals commencing from 1 May 2017 and running for a maximum length of 11 months (until March 15 2018). Please refer to the guidance for detailed instructions. The Embassy in Bogotá is available for consultation via email:; however, please bear in mind that replies can take up to 5 working days.

Stage 1

Potential implementers are invited to submit a project proposal in CONCEPT FORM to by Thursday 23 March 2017, 5:00pm Bogotá time (concept form available in the website). Concept bids should be no more than three pages in length.

Three hard copies should also be delivered to the British Embassy (Carrera 9 No. 76-49 Recepción Edificio ING, Bogotá, Colombia). Email’s subject and hard copies should be addressed to the Political Team, labelled clearly: “Concept Form HR 17/18 –name of your organisation”. We will not consider proposals that are delivered after the deadline.

The Political Team will contact potential implementers if questions regarding the Concept Form arise. Unfortunately, due to the volume of bids we receive we will be unable to provide feedback to every proposal at this stage.

Stage 2

The Embassy in Bogotá will evaluate all Concept Forms and decide which proposals should move forward in the funding round. Only potential implementers invited to continue in the process will be contacted by the Political Team by Friday 31 March 2017, notifying them of the decision and inviting them to prepare full project proposal forms. If you have not heard from the Embassy by then please assume your bid has been unsuccessful.

Stage 3

The deadline for submitting full project proposals is 20 April 2017, 5:00 pm Bogotá time (again, only implementers that are asked to by the Embassy should send full proposals). We will not receive proposals after this deadline. Three hard copies should be delivered to the British Embassy (Carrera 9 No. 76-49 Recepción Edificio ING, Bogotá, Colombia), as well as a digital copy sent to

Hard and electronic copies should be addressed to the Political Team, labelled clearly “Full Proposal HR 17/18 –name of your organisation”.

Stage 4

The British Embassy in Bogotá will review and assess proposals locally before submitting supported projects to the Programme Team in London. Potential implementers will be contacted for adjustments and/or additional information regarding the projects.

Stage 5

Successful bids will be announced by 27 April 2017. Projects approved for funding will start in May 2017.

All proposals (concepts and full bids) must be submitted in English. The Budget must be presented in pounds (GBP), and an exchange rate of COP/£ 3,500 must be used; however, the Embassy will not cover any variances in the total amount of the budget due to the exchange rate.

Full proposals at Stage 3 must be supported by a realistic activity based budget, set out with as much detail as possible. This is a key requirement in evaluating the project proposal and lack of a detailed budget was among the top reasons why projects were rejected in previous years.

Selection Criteria

Bids will also be assessed against the following criteria:

  • value for money
  • alignment with HR Strategy, Colombia’s Human Rights priorities and FCO’s Foreign Policy Priorities
  • evidence of local demand/need
  • project viability, including capacity of implementing organisation(s)
  • project design, including clear, achievable objectives/outputs
  • sustainability
  • good risk and stakeholder management

All organizations with the competence and experience to develop projects supporting the fund’s objectives are encouraged to apply.

Project Concept Form 151210

Published 6 March 2017