The following release was originally issued by the USAID SCALE-NRM project in the Solomon Islands.
AUKI, SOLOMON ISLANDS – The Strengthening Competitiveness, Agriculture, Livelihoods and Environment – Natural Resource Management (SCALE-NRM) project team based in Malaita Province, Solomon Islands, successfully completed four Pre-Application Conferences (PACs) at the four regions of Malaita.
The PACs were conducted at Auki, Atori, Malu’u and Afio for almost 100 organizations that were selected from the preliminary expression of interests call for the Forest and Development Fund (FDF).
FDF is an initiative under the U.S. Agency for International Development’s (USAID’s) SCALE-NRM project, which is implemented in the Solomon Islands by Winrock International.
The PACs provided detail instructions to the organizations, on project proposal development that meets both Winrock and USAID requirements.
Participants expressed gratitude not only with the support provided to help them develop project proposals but more so, for the knowledge imparted on proposal development, which they say will help their organizations in future applications for support from aid donors.
The grants are categorized into three categories namely, Innovative, Critical and Capacity Development grants.
On March 24, SCALE-NRM made its first call for Expression of Interests (EOI) for associations, institutions and community groups, to submit initial applications for forest and development grants aimed at strengthening and supporting organizations working to enhance natural resource management and livelihoods in Solomon Islands.
The first EOI call attracted a high number of applications from interested groups, demonstrating the vitality of the agribusiness sector in the province and widespread interest in supporting natural resource management.
All organisations that qualified through the initial FDF process have already submitted their detailed application proposals after the PACs. Final successful applicants will be announced after screening is conducted by an independent panel and approved by USAID.
SCALE-NRM has allocated SBD$3.2m for the first round of FDF. Additional rounds of FDF grants are expected periodically. SCALE-NRM encourages the public to listen out for the next call for expressions of interest which is expected later this year.
The Forests and Development Fund will provide grants to Solomon Islands organizations for activities that support the SCALE-NRM objectives of protecting forest, enhancing livelihoods, and building capacity of organizations on Malaita.
SCALE-NRM is designed to address the underlying causes of forest degradation in the Solomon Islands. The program will implement a range of activities to improve forest governance and ensure sustainable forest management. The project is being implemented over a five-year period, from October 2020 to September 2025. The SCALE project operates in Malaita province due to a specific request from the central government of Solomon Islands to address unmet development priorities in the largest province. SCALE-NRM is a partnership between USAID and Winrock International.
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In the Solomon Islands, USAID partners with the Solomon Islands government, development partners, the private sector, academia, civil society, and others to have a greater development and humanitarian impact. USAID’s work focuses on economic growth, strengthening disaster preparedness and climate change response, health, and democratic governance. The United States considers Solomon Islands an important partner to foster a free and open Indo Pacific region. Our close and deepening relationship with Solomon Islands is based on mutual respect, shared history, and the common values of strength through diversity, fairness, and freedom.
SCALE-NRM is a comprehensive five-year investment in economic growth and trade in the Solomon Islands, with specific emphasis on the development of the agribusiness sector and improved management of the forestry sector. In support of the Solomon Islands’ National Development Strategy 2016-2035, the project has three objectives: (1) improve the enabling environment for increased trade and investment; (2) promote the development and expansion of the agribusiness sector; and (3) improve natural resources governance. Through five implementing partners, SCALE will work in provinces most in need of development as identified by the Solomon Islands government, with an initial focus on Malaita Province.
For additional information, please contact Ednal Palmer, SCALE-NRM communications coordinator.