/ About CISU / The Civil Society Fund / How to apply the Civil Society Fund

The Civil Society Fund is a special funding mechanism for Danish CSOs, which supports projects and partnerships with local CSOs in developing countries in the global South. The fund grants support up to app. €466.000 and distributes a total of app. €12 million each year. The Civil Society Fund is financed by The Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and managed by CISU.


The overall aim is "To contribute to the development of a strong, independent, vocal and diverse civil society as a prerequisite for long-term poverty reduction; respect and protection of human rights; and the promotion of equality, democracy and sustainable development" as stated in the Danish Government's "Danish Policy for Support to Civil Society".


Basic principles for the Civil Society Fund

Grants are provided to Danish CSOs, but local partners are responsible for implementation and the practical management. All development projects and activities should be planned with the aim of creating synergy between 1) strategic services; 2) organisational capacity building; and 3) advocacy. Read more about the basic principles for the Civil Society Fund here.


How to apply


Please note that only Danish CSOs cooperating with a partner in the global South can apply to the Civil Society Fund. Organisations from other countries can NOT apply directly.


Guidelines for the Civil Society Fund describe the requirements and assessment criteria that apply to all applications. The supplementary 'Budget Guide and Administration Guide' can be used in the process of writing applications and administering project grants. The guidelines were last revised in 2019, and they are available in Danish, English, Spanish and French. The guidelines reflect the policy framework established by the Danish Government.


Which interventions? The Civil Society Fund supports different kinds of interventions: small-scale interventions,citizen participarticipation interventions; development interventions; co-financing; capacity assessments and partnership programmes. It is a fundamental principle that the scale of the intervention applied for must match the applicant's experience and capacity. An association can apply for larger grants that face stricter requirements as its experience increases.


Which countries? 

It is possible to apply for interventions in all countries on the OECD-DAC’s list of ODA recipients. 


How to apply? Applications to the Civil Society Fund must be submitted online in either Danish or English. All forms and supplementary guides for budgetting, administration and auditing are available in both languages here. The forms and guides are also available in Spanish and French, but only as a support feature for partner organisations.

Download Guidelines
Address: CISU - Civil Society in Development, Klosterport 4a, 8000 Århus C, Denmark
Tel: 045 8612 0342, weekdays 10.00-15.00, Mail us at cisu@cisu.dk

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