Trust for Mutual Understanding Grant

Trust for Mutual Understanding

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Grant amount: Approximately US $10,000

Next deadline: Nov 1, 2019 (Letter of inquiry)

Later deadlines: Feb 1, 2020 (Full proposal), May 1, 2020 (Letter of inquiry), Aug 1, 2020 (Full proposal)

Applicant type: Nonprofit

Funding uses: Conference, Research, Training / Capacity Building

Location of project: Albania; Armenia; Azerbaijan; Belarus; Bosnia and Herzegovina Show all

Location of residency: United States

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The Trust for Mutual Understanding awards grants to American nonprofit organizations to support the international travel component of cultural and environmental exchanges conducted in partnership with institutions and individuals in Russia and Central and Eastern Europe. 

Approximately two-thirds of TMU’s awards are for arts and culture and one-third for environmental projects.

Activities common to both fields include advanced training programs, workshops, conferences, seminars, joint research projects, and exchanges intended to aid organizations seeking greater institutional stability.

  • Arts and Culture: Creative artistic collaborations, curatorial research projects, performances given in conjunction with lecture/demonstrations and/or workshops, conservation and historic preservation projects, arts management programs, and cultural documentation activities.
  • Environment: Ecosystem and habitat conservation programs, land use planning projects, activities that facilitate more effective international contact between environmental organizations, measures designed to preserve biodiversity, and efforts to encourage environmental sustainability.

Priority consideration is given to projects that:

  • Involve direct, in-depth professional interaction, with the potential for sustained collaboration
  • Show evidence or professional accomplishment and innovation
  • Respond to social contexts and engage local communities

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • TMU grants are made to American nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations, and typically, it is those organizations that submit Initial Inquiries and, if invited, Final Proposals.
    • The Initial Inquiry may also be made by an individual or institution in any of the countries in which TMU is active. If invited, individuals or organizations that do not have 501(c)(3) status may then submit a Final Proposal through the fiscal sponsorship of an American nonprofit organization.
  • Expenses eligible for TMU funding include:
    • International airfare
    • Airport transfers
    • Travel insurance
    • Visas (and all applicable visa processing fees)
    • Lodging, and per diem
    • TMU also allows up to 20% of the total eligible expenses to be allocated toward “administrative costs.” (For example, if the total eligible expenses is $10,000, $2,000 can be used toward “administrative costs.”)
  • Projects must start after July 1 (Nov. 1/Feb. 1 deadlines) or January 1 (May 1/Aug. 1 deadlines). 


  • TMU does not make grants directly to institutions or individuals abroad.
  • Countries not listed on TMU’s geographic focus are ineligible for funding.