Whitley Award

Whitley Fund for Nature


Grant amount: £35,000

Anticipated deadline: Oct 31, 2018

Applicant type: Postdoctoral Researcher Faculty Working Professional Nonprofit

Funding uses: Applied Project / Program

Location of project: Micronesia; Afghanistan; Albania; Algeria; Angola Expand all

Location of residency: Afghanistan; Albania; Algeria; Angola; Argentina Expand all

Location of citizenship: Afghanistan; Albania; Algeria; Angola; Argentina Expand all

View website    Save Need help writing this grant?

Overview:

About Whitley Fund for Nature


The Whitley Fund for Nature (WFN) is a UK registered charity offering Whitley Awards and ongoing support to outstanding nature conservationists around the developing world.

We aim to:
  • Find and fund the most effective grassroots conservation leaders in developing countries.
  • Support the scale-up of projects with a track record of success, founded on scientific evidence and community involvement.
  • Fund practical work that will have a long-lasting impact on the ground.
  • Provide a platform for winners to boost their national and international profile.
  • Work with winners to improve awareness of the serious problems facing biodiversity worldwide and address them through effective and inspiring solutions.
Whitley Awards

Application to the Whitley Awards is open and applicants do not need to be nominated. Whitley Awards are for successful and dynamic, mid-career conservation professionals who are leading wildlife conservation projects that involve local communities.

WFN seek applicants from grassroots conservation NGOs incorporated in biodiversity-rich developing countries, rather than in-country staff from NGOs headquartered in developed countries – but if you are in doubt please contact us.

We are interested to see applications from conservationists working to conserve freshwater and marine ecosystems in addition to those that conserve terrestrial biodiversity.

 What kind of conservation work does WFN fund?

Ecosystem landscape level approach – WFN has a broad scope of interest but projects must be focused on nature conservation. Threatened habitat conservation; projects utilising flagship species as a focal point for mobilising local communities; biodiversity conservation and linked livelihood development projects which reduce pressure on wild resources or utilise wild resources sustainably; human-wildlife conflict resolution; in-situ conservation of endangered species – all would be projects we are interested in. In all cases, measurable biodiversity conservation impact is essential. Take a look at our past winners in the Winners’ Projects section of this website to get a better idea of what WFN funds. Projects that take an ecosystem approach are generally favoured over a purely species specific approach.

Local stakeholder involvement – WFN look for projects which actively involve and genuinely engage the local community and build capacity. Community and stakeholder education is considered very important to successful nature conservation projects. But Winning projects will have an explicit biodiversity conservation focus. Purely or predominantly development projects will not be eligible.

Evidence of prior success of proposed activities is essential, with appropriate metrics.

Pragmatic, replicable and scalable – Pragmatic, grassroots initiatives will be given priority over purely scientific or academic activities. WFN is keen to support those who have started on a smaller scale and now want to expand their activities. WFN value the experience and strong local knowledge project leaders acquire on a small scale, and their enthusiasm to apply this on a larger scale. 

Measurable outcomes – We seek projects that deliver real change and include actions that will have clear, measurable outcomes. It is important to demonstrate that careful thought has been given to determine what indicators can be measured to evidence impact. For example, where training is undertaken – how will you measure actual change in behaviour, what will be the actual change delivered as a result of workshops; how will you know if the anti-poaching patrols have been effective or if the protected area is having the desires results?

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

Eligibility:

  • Who is eligible to apply?
    • Not High Income Economy countries –
      • Whitley Awards focus on individuals working in locations where international funds are hardest to raise, most needed, and will make the largest conservation impact.
      • The strategic focus of the Whitley Awards is national conservation leadership in countries that are not defined as a High Income Economy by the World Bank.
      • Exceptions to this criterion include Equatorial Guinea and certain island nations in the Caribbean.
        • If you have any questions about eligible countries, please contact WFN.
    • Nationals with local support –
      • Whitley Awards winners are nationals of the countries where their conservation activities are focused (i.e. they were born there or have lived there a long time and have achieved national status) or are local to the region in which they work.
      • This is because we have found these people often have the understanding necessary to bring about long term change and build capacity locally.
      • Recent expatriates from developed, high-income economy countries are not eligible for Whitley Awards.
    • Grassroots conservationists –
      • Whitley Awards seek applicants from grassroots conservation NGOs incorporated in biodiversity-rich developing countries, rather than in-country staff from NGOs headquartered in developed countries who have access to a greater variety of funds – but if you are in doubt please contact us.
    • Good communicators –
      • all applicants must be able to communicate in English, and be capable of compiling a written report to describe and quantify the success of their work with appropriate academic references.
      • To gain the maximum benefit from winning an Award, you need to be able to utilise media opportunities presented as a result – these can often be even more useful to your cause than the financial award involved.
      • Should you win a Whitley Award, professional media training will form part of the Awards week in the U.K.
  • What projects will WFN fund?
    • Wildlife conservation projects led by local leaders based in countries that are not defined as a High Income Economy by the World Bank.
      • Exceptions to this criterion include Equatorial Guinea and certain island nations in the Caribbean.
      • If you have any questions about eligible countries, please contact WFN.
    • Nationals with local support – a key focus of the Whitley Award is to boost the profile of leaders who are nationals of the country in which they are working.
      • There are some exceptions, for example long term residency (15+ years) or commitment to country/region/ building capacity of local team members for future leadership.
    • Grassroots conservationists from locally incorporated NGOs in biodiversity-rich developing countries, rather than in-country staff employed by NGOs headquartered in developed countries – but if you are in doubt please contact us.
    • Good communicators and passionate leaders –
      • people who will inspire others and importantly, who will collaborate and share results.
      • Please note applicants must be able to communicate in English.
    • Leadership and teamwork –
      • Whitley Awards are won by individuals backed by an appropriate team, not individuals working in isolation.
    • Scientific evidence –
      • Projects that are based on scientific evidence and understanding – this can be in the leader, expertise on the team, or via partners/collaboration.
    • Ecosystem / landscape level projects are preferred.
      • Genuine flagships are great, but not if results are purely species-specific.
    • Local stakeholder involvement –
      • Work involving (and benefitting) the local community and stakeholders is essential.
    • Evidence of success –
      • Projects that are able to demonstrate evidence of success.
      • We do not generally fund pilot projects or work that is at the start-up stage.
    • Pragmatic, replicable and scalable –
      • Grassroots, pragmatic work that is realistic, but ambitious too. We look for applicants on the cusp of ‘something big’ and work that is replicable or scalable.
    • Measurable outcomes –
      • Actions that will have clear, measurable outcomes – we look for applications that have given careful thought to what indicators can be measured to evidence impact.
    • Cost-effective –
      • Projects that demonstrate value for money and ability to manage funding at the Whitley Award level (£40,000).
      • Organisations with Audited Accounts are preferred.
    • Need for support –
      • Projects for which an Award will make a big difference.
      • Priority will be given to those that can demonstrate need.
    • Sustainable projects –
      • we want the work to continue into the future, well past the Whitley Award. Successful proposals will demonstrate long-term planning.
    • Publicity –
      • Work that needs publicity – ones that will do well if ‘doors can be opened’ via the media and enhanced recognition.

Ineligibility:

  • What projects will WFN not fund?
    • High Income Economies – Projects based in High Income Economies as defined by the World Bank. If your project is based in a country that has recently been re-classified as having a High Income economy, please contact WFN.
    • Recent Expatriates – such leaders do excellent work around the world but are not the focus of this Awards scheme, which aims to champion local leaders.
    • ‘One-man bands’ – people who operate alone or who are reluctant to collaborate.
    • Pure research / expeditions / conference attendance – winners need to have larger aims than ‘research and publish’. Any research should be applied research.
      • PhD projects, MSc dissertations, undergraduate projects, expeditions and conference attendance are not eligible for the Whitley Award – if PhD/MSc students benefit from a project funded that is great, but we will not fund these alone.
    • ‘Start-up’ or pilot projects.
      • Evidence of prior success is very important.
    • Pure rural development – Pure rural/ economic development where direct conservation benefits are hard to quantify.
    • Land purchase or projects focussed on construction of buildings as these activities are rarely feasible with in the one year time frame of our Awards.
    • Animal welfare & rehabilitation of captive animals – Our focus is on nature in the wild.
    • Captive breeding – We recognise it as useful conservation tool, but at the level of funding we have available, we can’t make much impact.
      • Therefore, we would only fund captive breeding where underlying causes of species decline in the wild have been fully addressed prior to breeding species in captivity.
    • Government employees – However, we are aware that grey areas exist where conservationists will often be affiliated with government institutions in order to operate. If this is the case, please contact WFN.