May opportunities for social innovators

by Joana Silva / April 2024

This May we bring you social entrepreneurs and changemakers another exciting selection of fresh opportunities to help drive change. We prepared for you a variety of funding opportunities, awards and fellowships. Whether you’re looking to scale your impact, kickstart a new project, or connect with a global network of like-minded changemakers, May offers the perfect timing to explore resources tailored for growth. Discover all of them below!

1. WIDEF Grants Programme 2024

Deadline: 6 May

Supports initiatives that empower women in development sectors globally by funding projects that demonstrate clear strategies for impactful change and enhance women’s roles within their communities. This programme encourages applications that push for systemic change in public policy and community attitudes. Funding ranges from $500,000 – $1,500,000.

2. 100 Women Current Grant Round

Deadline: 8 May

Provides funding up to $50,000 to global projects aiming to improve gender equality by focusing on innovative solutions that address systemic barriers faced by women and girls in various spheres, including education, health and economic participation. The fund prioritises projects that can demonstrate sustainable impacts and potential for scalability.

3. African Union Civic Tech Fund 2024

Deadline: 12 May

Aims to enhance civic engagement and public governance in Africa through technology, supporting civic tech organisations that develop tools and platforms to increase transparency and citizen involvement in governmental processes. The fund is particularly interested in solutions that can be replicated across different regions. Offers a special prize of “Youth Innovation Champion” of 50,000 euros in total.

4. Youth Innovation for a Sustainable Future

Deadline: 19 May

Also read:  April's opportunities for global innovators and changemakers

Offers opportunities for young volunteers in Europe, the Middle East and Africa to engage in sustainable development initiatives, empowering youth through practical experiences in projects that tackle environmental and social challenges. Participants gain valuable experience that contributes to their personal and professional development. Special prize for “Youth Innovation Champion” of 50,000 euros and best project prizes of 30,000, 20,000, 10,000 and 5,000 euros per continent.

5. Oxfam Young Leaders Fellowship Programme 2024

Deadline: 19 May

Equips young leaders in Asia with essential skills to combat poverty and promote justice, providing training, mentorship and resources to develop leadership capabilities in addressing critical global issues. The programme also offers a network of peers and professionals for ongoing support and collaboration. Each fellow will receive a total amount of 3,600 USD.

6. Japanese Award for Most Innovative Development Project 2024

Deadline: 24 May

Recognises and supports outstanding innovation in development projects that offer novel solutions to global challenges, highlighting projects that have a significant impact on their communities. The award focuses on sustainability and the potential for the broad application of innovative solutions. Three winning projects will receive grants worth 125,000 USD in total.

7. Japanese Award for Outstanding Research on Development 2024

Deadline: 24 May

Honours significant research contributions that enhance development practices or policies, supporting research that has demonstrable potential to effect change and improve lives in developing contexts. This award encourages pioneering approaches that tackle complex development issues. Three winning projects will receive grants worth 60,000 USD.

8. BeChangeMaker Programme 2024

Deadline: 25 May

Also read:  April's opportunities for global innovators and changemakers

Provides aspiring social entrepreneurs worldwide with resources and coaching to turn their ideas into actionable solutions, focusing on harnessing innovative approaches to address social and environmental issues. The programme is designed to help participants refine their business models and accelerate their ventures’ growth. For teams of 2 to 5 people, between 18 and 35 years old

9. Global Youth Summit 2024

Deadline: 26 May

The Global Youth Summit is a fully funded summit in Cape Town, South Africa happening on 21-25 October that engages young leaders (21-29 years old) in workshops, networking and mentorship to develop their skills and impact.

10. Women Deliver Emerging Leaders for Change East Africa Cohort 2024

Deadline: 30 May

Supports young leaders in East Africa to lead and enact change within their communities, offering leadership training and resources to help women implement effective solutions to local challenges. The cohort aims to build a vibrant network of women leaders who are committed to fostering change. Flexible, trust-based grants available for emerging leaders between 5,000- 50,000 USD.

11. Social Impact Award local incubation programs

Deadline: 31 May

The SIA Incubation programme is designed to support young innovators aged 14 to 30 from Europe, Central Asia and Africa as they transform impactful ideas into viable social enterprises. Participants will have access to expert mentors, the opportunity to network with fellow social entrepreneurs and the chance to compete for the Social Impact Award, which includes pre-seed funding and a ticket to the prestigious international SIA Summit.

12. Toyota Foundation International Grant Programme 2024

Deadline: 1 June

Also read:  April's opportunities for global innovators and changemakers

The grant program focuses on deepening mutual understanding and knowledge-sharing among people on the ground in East Asia, Southeast Asia and South Asia who are finding solutions to shared issues. Total grants of 70 million yen.

13. Western Union Foundation Fellowship 2024

Deadline: 1 June

Leadership and venture development programme that supports community leaders and entrepreneurs from marginalised communities through training, mentorship and funding. Includes a pool of $36,000 in venture development stipends to be distributed among fellows.