Top 5 African grant making organizations supporting projects in Africa

Curious to know what are the popular African based organizations that are making grants in Africa?

In a previous blog, we discussed which were the top 5 organizations channeling international aid to Ethiopia. While the African continent as a whole is a major recipient of Official Development Aid (ODA) from the international community, we now want to focus on grant making organizations and foundations that are supporting the continent from within.

Are you in need of funding to carry out projects in one African countries or more? Then, considering the African donor market is definitely an option you might wish to consider not only to diversify your funding sources, and secure additional funding, but also to be more representative of the communities your organization is trying to serve through those projects.

Join us as we are highlighting 5 must-consider grant making organizations that are operating from and in Africa. Excited already? Then read on!

African Development Fund (ADF)

Established in 1974, the African Development Fund (ADF), administered by the African Development Bank (AfDB), operates in 38 African countries, and benefits from contributions from 32 member countries. It focuses on poverty reduction as well as economic and social development in the least developed African countries. This in mind, the organization provides concessional funding for projects and programs tackling those issues, as well as technical assistance for studies and capacity-building activities.

Over its 44 years of operations on the African continent, the AFD invested over $45 billion to support Agriculture & Agro-industries, Climate Change, Economic & Financial Governance, Education, and Energy. The organization channels its assistance towards small and medium scale enterprises, African intermediary organizations, community-based organizations and agricultural cooperatives.

Africa Enterprise Challenge Fund (AECF)

Launched in 2008, The African Enterprise Challenge Fund (AECF) is a development institution which encourages businesses to innovate, create jobs, leverage investments and markets in an effort to create resilience and sustainable incomes in rural and marginalized communities in Africa.

To date, the AECF invested over $310 million, and provides various grants ranging from $250,000 to $1.5 million, to projects in the following sectors: Agriculture & Agribusiness, Renewable Energy & Adaptations to Climate Change, and Rural Financial Services & Communications Systems that support the both two sectors.

African Women’s Development Fund (AWDF)

The African Women’s Development Fund (AWDF) is a gender-focused Pan-African organization that was created in 2000 and awarded $41.7 million since. It focuses on funding projects conducted by autonomous women’s organizations in 46 countries over Africa and the Middle East.

The organization’s mandate is to mobilize financial, human and material resources to fund women-led initiatives and advance the realization and fulfilment of women’s rights throughout the continent. Transdisciplinary projects must therefore have a strong focus on economic women’s empowerment to be considered as potential grant recipients. In addition, organizations must have a majority of women staff, be registered in Africa, and operate at the local, national, sub-regional or regional levels.

ELMA group of foundations

Founded in 2005, ELMA is a group of philanthropic foundations that invest globally to improve the lives of children, with an emphasis in Africa. Each foundation conducts activities that are children-centric while focusing on a specific development area, from health to relief efforts, to economic growth, to music. The Elma Foundation is the most prominent organization among them. It focuses on Health and exclusively invests in projects throughout the African continent that either:

  • Increase the quality and quantity of the workforce supporting children;
  • Make pregnancy and delivery safe for women, and ensure that newborns receive appropriate care;
  • Improve access to quality early childhood care and education;
  • Ensure that children and adolescents with HIV are identified, treated early, and maintained on treatment;
  • Control and, where possible, eliminate neglected tropical diseases;
  • Demonstrate how the private sector can expand coverage of quality health and education.

ELMA group of foundations resorts to various tools to support the relevant organizations, projects and programs. It allocates grants to African and / or community-based organizations, as well as tailored capacity-building support in the areas of fundraising, financial management, leadership, monitoring and evaluation, and program development. ELMA also co-invest with other funders, and prefers long-term investments that drive impact.

TY Danjuma Foundation

TY Danjuma Foundation is one of the biggest Nigerian private independent philanthropic organizations that is committed to improving the quality of life of Nigerians, with a clear focus on Health and Education. The foundation supports non-profit and non-governmental organizations that are registered in the country and that are implementing programs related to health and education. So far about $9,836 million have been invested in projects throughout Nigeria. One of TY Danjuma Foundation’s main strategy is to work through partnerships to support innovation and build institutional capacity. 

Joseph Agodzo

With a background in both Sustainable Development and Entrepreneurship, Joseph has more than 7 years of experience working with Social Purpose Organizations in Africa. He has been helping organizations grow by combining his skills in sustainability and entrepreneurship.

Claire Barthet

Over the years, Claire put her marketing and communication skills at the service of both non-profit and cultural organizations in Europe, Asia and South America. She also shaped and trained teams in both sectors. She now enthusiastically shares her experience with Han Valk Fundraising Consultancy as well as with our partners.

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