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Bids invited for projects promoting human rights and democratic values in Sri Lanka

The British High Commission is seeking implementing partners to deliver the project activity between May 2019 and March 2020.

Human Rights and Democratic Values

Human Rights and Democratic Values

The purpose of this notice is to alert potential implementing partners to an opportunity to bid for grant funding to deliver project activity promoting human rights and democratic values in Sri Lanka.

We are seeking projects which reflect the following themes: strengthening democratic institutions, reinforcing press freedom, mainstreaming gender issues and promoting gender equality, and tackling inter-communal tensions.

The High Commission particularly welcomes expressions of interest (EOIs) which:

  • bring together one or more of the thematic areas (for instance reflecting gender issues in another strand of work)
  • include project activities across several strands, including through working in partnership with various implementing partners

Priority themes

The activities will focus on the following priority themes. Suppliers are encouraged to identify target areas within and across these themes, and justify their focus.

Strengthening democratic institutions

Targeted capacity building or initiatives to support national democratic and legislative institutions in identified areas, including to support parliamentary oversight and civil society engagement.

Reinforcing press freedom

We welcome suggestions for activities which support press freedom in Sri Lanka. This could include:

  • supporting journalistic practice in identified ‘needs’ areas in Sri Lanka (such as through data-driven and investigative journalism) – e.g. through direct capacity building to journalists, or initiatives to support spread journalistic best practice and learning
  • initiatives to boost civic literacy, especially where potential scalability or sustainability can be demonstrated

Mainstreaming gender issues and promoting gender equality

We welcome creative suggestions from bidders to mainstream gender issues (broadly defined) and promote gender equality across Sri Lanka. This could include:

  • raising awareness and supporting efforts to tackle SGBV, especially at national scale
  • supporting increase in women’s participation in public life
  • supporting work to acknowledge and further issues related to the LGBTIQ community

Tackling inter-communal tensions

Proposals to promote inter-religious dialogue and conflict management at a local, regional, or national level to tackle inter-communal tensions.

Delivery mechanisms

Suppliers should consider the best delivery mechanism to meet needs. Suppliers may want to consider capacity building (direct, or through ‘train the trainer’ models) alongside more creative mechanisms such as support to peer to peer networks or sector initiatives, and creating relevant products/resources (eg: technical ‘tool kits’, theatre productions).


The successful implementer should be able to commence work from May 2019 and complete all project activity by mid-March 2020 (subject to final funding decisions).


We anticipate budget provision for a number of projects with individual costs up to £50,000.


EOIs are open to community and civil society organisations.

EOIs should be submitted in the form of a concept note on maximum two-sides of A4.

EOIs should cover the type of project intervention and delivery proposed, as well as how it will address value for money. Bidders must provide a broad indication of proposed activities to be delivered, anticipated outcomes, and sustainability approaches post-completion of the project. They must also demonstrate an ability to deliver all project activity before mid-March 2020, with a substantial portion within the first half of the project. An outline activity based budget must be submitted as an annex to the EOI.

Deadline for submitting expressions of interest

EOIs must be submitted to the British High Commission at no later than 1700hrs local time on Friday 12 April 2019. Please indicate the EOI heading in the subject line.

EOIs will be considered separately by a panel of assessors. Submitters of the strongest proposals will be invited to develop and submit a detailed proposal and activity-based budget for consideration in early May. The High Commission aims to inform bidders of the outcome of their EOI by Monday 22 April.

Published 1 April 2019