Open Call for Refugee Leadership in Lebanon

Funders for Refugee Leadership in Lebanon: Terms of Reference and Call for Proposals


Movement across borders has become more politicized than ever before. National governments, increasingly hostile to newcomers fleeing conflict and economic hardship, are closing their doors to people forced to leave their homes. Simultaneously, international humanitarian aid and emergency assistance often falls short of meeting the needs of displaced people stranded in extended temporary situations, let alone laying the groundwork for long-term, systemic change.

In the Eastern Mediterranean, protracted displacement has become a reality for millions. Lebanon hosts the largest refugee population per capita globally, including Syrians displaced by 10 years of war and Palestinians who for several generations have been living in a state of transition and temporality, lacking access to basic rights. Unprecedented challenges and emergencies, together with the Covid-19 pandemic, have exacerbated protection gaps and strained social services, disproportionately affecting marginalized communities.

The severity of the situation for communities in Lebanon calls for refocusing funding priorities and approaches from donor institutions active in the Eastern Mediterranean. More locally-led initiatives that are closest to the hardest-hit communities, including Palestinian and Syrian refugees, should be supported in their work to identify localized and innovative responses to protection gaps—an approach that has proven effective in other complex contexts. Stronger coordination and alignment amongst donors and local actors are needed, as well as flexible and accessible capital.

A group of private donor organizations has come together to coordinate their funding in Lebanon and align it with local priorities, including humanitarian aid and the promotion of human rights. Funders for Refugee Leadership in Lebanon (FRLL) seeks to strengthen the role of refugee-led and local initiatives and to support communities to address their needs, speak in their own voice, and organize for broader change. The community of practice is composed of private institutions and has no governmental affiliations.

Funders for Refugee Leadership in Lebanon (FRLL) will disseminate grants ranging from $5,000 to $80,000 to local initiatives in Lebanon that fit the eligibility criteria detailed in this call for proposals for a grant period of 12 months.

Participating and Affiliated Donor Institutions:

  • Choose Love, Inc.
  • Global Whole Being Fund
  • Open Society Foundations
  • Robert Bosch Stiftung GmbH
  • Rockefeller Brothers Fund

For more information on participating donor organizations, see below. To join the Funders for Refugee Leadership in Lebanon (FRLL) as a donor organization, reach out to us at: [email protected]

Purpose: To support small-scale initiatives in Lebanon to work with communities of both newcomers and locals to address humanitarian needs and enable the promotion and realization of fundamental rights. Organizations must be refugee-led initiatives.

For this initiative’s purposes, “refugee-led initiatives” are formal and informal organizations, coalitions, and networks that prioritize meaningful inclusion of refugees in governance, program design, and decision-making. In Lebanon, refugee-led initiatives may be registered to or co-run with the host community, given legal restrictions.

Eligibility Criteria

  • You must be registered as a non-profit entity or working with a non-profit fiscal sponsor.
  • Your work must address basic needs and promote human rights.
  • Your organisation must have a strong reputation within your community, with peers who can attest to your work.
  • You must employ an inclusive, community-led approach.
  • You must work to close and prevent current and future gaps in services in camp, settlement or urban settings and/or promote human rights and community building.
  • You must have an annual turnover no higher than $1 million.
  • You must have a level of administrative capacity to share project updates and meet reporting requirements.
  • You must fit the definition of “refugee-led initiative” specified above.
  • At this time, we are unable to fund rights-based organisations which focus exclusively on migrant domestic workers.

Eligible organizations can apply for a grant in the range of $5,000 to $80,000 for either core costs or project support.

How to apply

Applications must be submitted via this form (Arabic - English), clearly laying out the proposed activities’ scope, intent and what would be achieved with the funding (written in either English, Arabic, or French).

A member of the committee is available to answer questions where additional guidance is needed. At the first stage of application, we will request a project budget.

If your proposal is selected, you will need to provide the following documents:

  • Organizational budget
  • Biographies of members of the board and key staff
  • Two-to-three contact details of references from peer organizations and/or donors. References will be requested at an advanced stage of the selection process
  • A copy of the latest accounts or financial statements
  • A bank statement/voided cheque clearly showing the bank account details
  • Proof of charitable or non-profit status

The application window will close at 12:00am Beirut Time on Sunday 13th June, 2021. Applicants will be notified by the end of July. We apologize in advance for not being able to offer feedback to unsuccessful applicants.

Sunday, 13. Jun 2021
Type of Call
Call for Proposals
Intervention Sector(s):
Displaced Population, Refugees