The Community Connectivity Fund supports the development of Connectivity for Refugees projects by UNHCR Operations worldwide, providing them with access to the funding needed to implement, evaluate and refine solutions.

Through the Community Connectivity Fund, UNHCR Operations worldwide have access to an additional and complementary source of funding. This pool of funding makes it possible to design and implement connectivity initiatives which may otherwise require an investment that does not fit within immediate operational priorities. Such initiatives should have the potential to result in meaningful interventions that connect persons of concern.

Selected UNHCR Operations will be eligible for project funding coming from the operating level budget of UNHCR’s Innovation Service, as a complementary contribution to their own. Operations whose project proposals are selected will receive the funds by charging against the Innovation Service cost centre.



The deadline for receipt of submissions under this Call for Proposals is 1 August 2018. Proposals will be reviewed and selected as they are submitted to ensure timely implementation. Priority is given to early submissions.

Key dates:

  • Last possible day of proposal submission: 1 August 2018 (CLOSED FOR SUBMISSIONS)
  • Notification of shortlisted proposals within 2 weeks after submission;
  • Funds need to be completely expended/disbursed from the Innovation Service’s cost center by 1 December 2018.

Once a project is selected, the operation is asked to follow and adhere to Field Procurement guidelines and make budgetary commitments according to the deadlines communicated by UNHCR’s Innovation Service.

If administrative deadlines are not met, we reserve the right to reallocate the requested funds.


Submission of Connectivity Project Proposals

Interested UNHCR Operations worldwide, including Headquarters, are invited to submit their innovation project proposal by submitting the online application form at the end of this page. To promote a widespread inclusive footprint of the fund, no more than two proposals per operation may be selected for funding.

The maximum funding request per proposal is USD 30,000. Funding can only be spent on operational purposes. Projects must be implemented before December 2018. Funding can be requested to support any stage(s) of an ongoing or new intervention.

The provision of financial support will be matched with non-financial support through the Innovation Service.


Communities in Jordan are connected through a partnership between UNHCR, Facebook and Zain. Photo credit: UNHCR Jordan

Criteria for Selection

Project proposals will be evaluated according to the following criteria:

  • Concept: Effectiveness of the planned solutions and approaches to connect refugees, and how under-connected groups (for instance elderly, disabled etc.) will be supported through the initiative;
  • Criticality/priority: Criticality and urgency to solve the challenge;
  • Refugee/community engagement: Participation by persons of concern and host communities in the design and implementation of the project. Projects that are co-led or co-designed with communities will be prioritised;
  • Feasibility: Probability of success in achieving the desired results, including potential risks;
  • Impact: Anticipated positive effect on persons of concern to UNHCR or the Organization, both immediate outcomes and future impact taking into account increased scalability and transferability;
  • Sustainability/ownership: Potential for the project to be financially mainstreamed, owned/maintained and sustained or scaled up over time.

If the selection panel has additional questions during the review process, the Innovation Service may contact you for further information and clarification.


Monitoring and Reporting

Projects supported by the Community Connectivity Fund will be expected to submit two simple online reports on agreed process indicators relevant for measuring their implementation of the project. Project-specific key performance indicators will be used that also incorporate feedback from affected populations. One report will be submitted mid-way through the project, and one submitted after implementation when a firmer understanding of impact can be determined.