we’re looking for brand new concepts to fund in May 2020
Since we started in 2004, the innocent foundation has been working towards a world of #ZeroHunger.
Until the 29th of May, we are inviting concept notes from organisations who require funding for innovative projects that help hungry families feed themselves and adapt to climate change.
We recognise many organisations will be involved in responding to COVID-19, our funding is focused on improving food security as we see this as a crucial step in helping communities recover and rebuild following a public health crisis.
What we’re looking for:
- A brand new idea, or a better way of delivering a proven idea to tackle hunger.
- To address the root causes of hunger and a clear plan to measure impact.
- To help families adapt to climate change.
- Innovation with the potential to scale and fundamentally disrupt the status quo.
- Initiatives helping the hungriest families in countries, rated alarming or serious on the Global Hunger Index (or can demonstrate desperate levels of hunger in countries with a moderate rating).
- Change-makers, visionaries and innovators. Strong social entrepreneurs with a great team behind them.
- A sound strategy, with an ambitious appetite for scale and systems-level change.
- A clear endgame. Our partners know what they’re striving for and how to get there, particularly after our funding ends.
- Legally incorporated not-for-profits.
- Community Interest Companies if they’re registered in the UK.
What we offer:
- We make investments of up to £50k per year for multi-year projects (up to 5 years). In exceptional cases we may provide more but that’s likely to be by invitation only.
- We can provide seed funding for initial pilots or proof of concepts (where you have limited evidence), money for test and transition (where we expect you to focus on evidence-gathering) or money for scale up – where there’s rigorous evidence and still serious room to grow.
- We are happy to fund up to 100% of costs, but equally we are happy to co-fund.
We won’t fund (so don’t ask):
- Core costs alone, but are happy to include these as overheads pro-rata to the project.
- Major capital costs like buildings or machinery.
- The promotion of religious or political causes, general appeals or circulars, individual sponsorship, events or conferences.
What we mean by innovation:
- Does your idea test, challenge, or improve on the status quo?
- Does your approach fundamentally increase people’s food security, disrupting an unsustainable equilibrium and preventing the problem from getting worse?
- Whatever the type of innovation, you need to explain how it will meaningfully benefit hungry people’s lives. For example, does your idea allow you to have a bigger impact on behaviour than alternatives? Does your financing mechanism allow you to reach the unreachable? Is your technology cheaper and affordable?
- How does your idea help vulnerable communities increase resilience to climate change?
What we mean by potential to scale and disproportionate multiplier effect:
- You must be able to demonstrate that your idea has the potential to be a cost effective way (per £1 of investment) to deliver greater results than standard food security practice.
- You have a compelling plan for achieving long term growth and sustainability.
- We want to see how your plans ladder up to reach more people in the long run. How could your approach be replicated in a whole new country and beyond?
- If you’re not currently at scale you should be ready to explore who would likely implement and pay for the innovation at scale.
What we mean by social entrepreneurs with great teams:
- Social entrepreneurs have innovative solutions to tackle hunger. Offering ambitious, new ideas for systems-level change, with global relevance.
- Teams must have strong knowledge and expertise of the issue they are trying to address and the context in which they’re working.
- Teams must be able to communicate their ideas in a clear, concise and compelling way.
- We’d like to see that your team has clear roles, responsibilities, and time commitments needed to be successful.
- We’re not always looking for one individual to spear-head your project but we are looking for teams to have a social entrepreneurial approach.
You are unlikely to be successful if:
- You’re working in conflict settings or in areas providing humanitarian aid.
- You’re replicating existing efforts in a new context without being able to describe how this is new or revolutionary.
- Your project has a limited scale of impact, even if the project is successful.
- You’re not committed to measuring and evaluating your success.
- You’re working on measures to reduce obesity.
- Your admin costs are more than 10% of the project’s overheads.
- You’re unable to describe the direct impact the project will have.
- Your idea lacks evidence of effectiveness, or the cost of initial proof-of-concept is too high.
- You have a good idea but without a great team to take it forward.