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Civil Society Development Fund [ fr ]

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The Civil Society Development Fund, run by the Embassy of France in South Africa, supports the participation of South African Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) in local governance.


Although the South African Constitution mandates local governments "to encourage the involvement of communities and community organisations in matters of local government", research has shown that South African Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) are often not adequately equipped to participate in local governance.

The aim of the Civil Society Development Fund is to help bridge this gap in capacity. It focuses on developing CSOs’ capacity to advocate the interests of marginalized communities, to contribute to local public policies and to reinforce the accountability of local governments towards citizens.

Within this framework, the main objectives of the Civil Society Development Fund are :

- Improving local governance

- Advancing human rights

The Embassy of France in South Africa, following the principles of the European Charter on Local Governance, is keen to develop a coordinated approach alongside a range of South African and foreign stakeholders, including European Union Member States and their implementing agencies, United Nations agencies, private foundations and French CSOs. Projects co-financed by one or several of these stakeholders therefore receive preference.

Means of intervention

The Civil Society Development Fund offers project based grants.

The average grant per project is between €30 000 and €50 000.

Please note that a call will be published in the second semester of 2014

Projects are selected by a consultative committee, made up of representatives of the South African government, of foreign donors, of private foundations and of the French Embassy selects the projects.

For more information, please contact the CSDF OFFICER: | 012 425 17 10

Projects supported in 2009-2013

Download our brochure presenting the projects supported in 2009-2013

- ARESTA (Western Cape) : Promoting refugee rights, improve the self-reliance and sustainable livelihoods of refugees and disadvantaged young South Africa in Western Cape

- AFESIS-CORPLAN (Eastern Cape) : Promotion of Active Citizenship in Local Governance in the Eastern Cape

- Masimanyane Women centre (Eastern Cape) : Women’s Rights Education and Community Mobilisation Programme

- Gay and Lesbian Memory in Action/Lesbian and Equality project (Gauteng): Asiphephe Project: A New Initiative to Improve Safety and Security for LGBTI People in South Africa

- Social Justice Coalition (Western Cape): Promoting active citizenship through education, policy, research, and community mobilisation

- Luleki Sizwe (Western Cape):We are One

- Hillbrow Entrepreneurship Initiative (Gauteng): [Support to Entrepreneurship]

- The Mvula Trust (KZN) : Raising citizens’ voice in service delivery

- Planact (Gauteng) : Capacity building for participatory local governance in urban development processes

- The Built Environment Support Group (KZN) : Deepening Democracy programme

- The Alliance for Children’s Entitlement to Social Security (KZN) : Enabling Document Campaign

- Rhodes University Legal Aid Clinic (Eastern Cape) : Legal Advise Office programme

View CSDF Projects in a larger map

Please note that the Embassy of France does not provide direct funding outside of the CSDF.

For more information, please contact :

012 425 17 10   

publie le 31 March 2014

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