Home » Calls for Grants » Announcements 2020 & #8211; 4th Call

Keep up with previous calls in our newsletter and in the news!

In this section you will find past calls, basic documents and templates, and the CEPF Cerrado logical framework.

You will also have access to the map with Key Areas for Biodiversity and Conservation Corridors for the Cerrado, as well as the Cerrado Biodiversity Hostpot Ecosystem Profile and summaries.

Don't miss our Strategic Directions and Investment Priorities.




4th Call for Letters of Intent (CDI)

Cerrado Hotspot




Eligible countries: Brazil

Opening of the Notice: September 7, 2020

Closing of the Public Notice:  October 23, 2020, 11:59 pm & #8211; Washington DC Time

Attention! The Alliance for the Cerrado informs EXTENSION the call. Proposals can be submitted until Nov 11 at 11:59 pm (Washington DC time).

Support type: Large Project (above US$50.000 and maximum up to US$250.000)


The Partnership Fund for Critical Ecosystems (CEPF), the International Education Institute of Brazil (IEB), the Humanize Institute and the Nova Era Institute are pleased to invite proponents to the Call for Letters of Intent (CDI) aimed at receiving innovative and relevant research projects strengthening of civil society organizations working on conservation of the hot spot from the Cerrado. Only one proposal will be selected under this call.



Covering more than 2 million square kilometers, the hot spot of Cerrado biodiversity is one of the largest hotspots in the world and the most biologically rich savannah regions. However, the Cerrado is also one of the world's largest producers of cattle and agricultural products, and accounts for 30% of Brazil's gross domestic product. In view of the loss of 50% of its original vegetation cover so far, CEPF's investment was designed to have a lasting impact on the capacity of civil society to positively influence public policies and private initiatives aimed at the conservation and sustainable development of the hot spot.

In Brazil, an alliance was formed, Cerrado Alliance, between the Partnership Fund for Critical Ecosystems (CEPF), the International Education Institute of Brazil (IEB), the Humanize Institute, the Nova Era Institute, and the Grupo Boticário Foundation for Nature Protection to direct their efforts around development sustainable use of the Cerrado Hotspot for believing that collaborating to keep the Cerrado standing and valuing local communities contributes to biodiversity conservation and income generation. Aliança Cerrado wishes to improve the technical and management conditions of civil society organizations in the Cerrado, strengthening them for the proposition, execution and management of projects focusing on the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity in the hotspot, encouraging entrepreneurship and business with a socio-environmental impact and strengthening the management of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs).

The Par Partnership Fundto Critical Ecosystems (CEPF) wishes to protect the most biologically rich and threatened regions on the planet, known as priority hotspots of biodiversity. A fundamental objective is to guarantee the engagement of civil society in the conservation of biodiversity. CEPF is a joint initiative of the French Development Agency, Conservation International, European Union, Global Environment Facility, Government of Japan and World Bank. More information about the fund can be found on the CEPF. Since 2016, CEPF has been providing grants to civil society organizations for the conservation of the Cerrado hotspot, with a total investment of US$8 million, based on Ecosystem Profile (PDF –13.6MB).

After a competitive process, the International Education Institute of Brazil (IEB) was selected by CEPF in 2016 to act as its Regional Implementation Team (RIT) and coordinate the implementation of CEPF's investment strategy in hot spot from the Cerrado from 2016 to 2021. As RIT, the IEB works in many ways to promote cooperation and synergies between Civil Society Organizations, seeking to overcome isolation, fragmentation, individualism and duplication of efforts. More information about RIT can be found on the CEPF Cerrado.



This call WILL BE SPECIFIC BY FOCUSING ONLY IN THE STRATEGIC DIRECTION 6 OF THE ECOSYSTEM PROFILE & #8211; STRENGTHEN THE CAPACITY OF CIVIL SOCIETY ORGANIZATIONS TO PROMOTE THE BEST MANAGEMENT OF TERRITORIES AND NATURAL RESOURCES AND TO SUPPORT OTHER INVESTMENT PRIORITIES IN HOTSPOT and Investment Priority 6.2 & #8211; Develop and strengthen the technical and management capacities of civil society organizations in the field of environment, conservation strategy and planning, political dialogue, resource mobilization, in accordance with regulations and other topics relevant to investment priorities.

At the Hotspot Logical Framework 2016-2021., this investment priority is linked to the goals and result 6, that are:

  • At least five networks and / or alliances of civil society organizations strengthened, with enhanced skills to participate in relevant forums.
  • At least 100 members of governance bodies and councils (national councils, basin committees, protected area management councils, Citizenship Territories, state and municipal councils, etc.) with a strengthened capacity to participate and influence forums related to conservation and the sustainable use of the Cerrado.
  • At least 40 civil society organizations with institutional and technical skills (environment, planning strategy for conservation, management, policy formulation, resource mobilization and reporting, regulatory frameworks, etc.) developed and strengthened to function effectively and participate in relevant conservation and management actions, in accordance with the Ecosystem Profile.
  • At least two multi-stakeholder initiatives (MSI) involving the private sector (global commodity chains), small farmers, traditional communities, governments and promoted donors, to identify synergies and catalyze integrated actions and policies for conservation and sustainable development from the Cerrado.
  • At least 20 publications (books, manuals, technical reports, websites, etc.) or awareness-raising actions (broadcasting spots, wide-ranging public campaigns) on the Cerrado's biodiversity, ecosystem services, protected areas, restoration, widespread sustainable practices, climate resilience and civil society participation.
  • At least one tri-national awareness initiative for the protection and management of Cerrado KBAs in Brazil, Bolivia and Paraguay launched

Read more about Strategic Directions and Investment Priorities in this document. THE Hotspot Logical Framework 2016-2021. is available on here.

ATTENTION: Letters of Intent that include other Strategic Directions and Investment Priorities will not be considered eligible for this call.

More specifically and taking into account the strategic direction and investment priority 6.2 of the logical framework of the Ecosystem Profile, this announcement seeks to encourage the implementation of an institutional strengthening program. In this call, the objective of Aliança Cerrado for this Investment Priority is to support projects that seek to contribute to the Cerrado civil society organizations:

  1. Comply with all legal requirements from a tax, tax and labor point of view;
  2. Leverage your administrative and financial management capabilities (administrative and financial processes and records, organizational structure, etc.);
  3. Acquire new knowledge and skills in the use of participatory tools for diagnosis, planning, monitoring and evaluation of projects;
  4. Develop skills to structure and elaborate projects,
  5. Know how to define and implement effective communication strategies;
  6. Develop skills for resource mobilization (private or government funds, etc.);
  7. Acquire technical knowledge on relevant topics to achieve the conservation goals in the hotspot;
  8. Have their actions aligned with the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
  9. Guarantee female protagonism in conservation and sustainability, increasing the qualified participation of women and the discussion of gender in civil society organizations in the Cerrado, meeting objective 5 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development;
  10. Develop a systemic vision to think beyond the limits of the organization and, in the light of the mission and institutional objectives, with a clear awareness of their role in the social and political context and, in a systemic way, expand the potential of reaching their results through the strategic performance with other actors in the local, regional, national and even international scene.
  11. Adapt to increasingly virtual and collaborative work, including data security issues.

The goal NO IS TO SUPPORT SPECIAL COURSES AND WORKSHOPS, but rather, training processes structured until March 2022, linked to a clear strategy for strengthening local organizations, using approaches and methodologies that combine classroom and / or virtual modular courses with practical pedagogical field activities, in which the participants can implement in their organizations, closely monitored by field mentors throughout the training process, intervention plans developed by them, ensuring the internalization of concepts and skills in the practice of their organizations. We encourage proposers to use creativity and innovation in the use of a combination of methodologies and pedagogical techniques of non-formal education such as exchanges, training of trainers, conversation circles and exchanges of experience, tutorials, etc.

We estimate to serve five organizations at each pole (see below), totaling at least 40 organizations. Three organizations led by traditional peoples and communities or indigenous peoples and three led by women must be part of this group. Organizations must be pre-selected from the CEPF Cerrado portfolio and suggestions from Aliança Cerrado organizations. The proponent must consider in his Letter of Intent a period in which the final selection of organizations that will participate in the training processes will be carried out with Aliança Cerrado. The costs of any travel should be considered in the proposals.

We understand that the face-to-face steps are unlikely to occur due to COVID-19. However, these hubs can be maintained if meetings are scheduled in a favorable period. We emphasize that the work in these centers will facilitate network learning, since the members have already had previous contact. With the inability of face-to-face meetings, we recommend that courses be prepared in a virtual environment and that they be made available later for future consultation.



Proposals for Investment Priority 6.2 can be implemented in ALL O hostpot Cerrado, within the Brazilian territory. We strongly recommend that the training processes, especially the face-to-face stages, be structured around the following cities: Campo Grande (MS), Teresina (PI), Palmas (TO), Arinos (MG), Campinas (SP), Belo Horizonte ( MG) and Brasília (DF). The geographical boundaries of hot spot Cerrado are available in a map in the kml version (can be viewed in Google Earth).

ATTENTION: Letters of intent with proposals outside the Cerrado's geographical limit will not be considered for this call.



Non-governmental organizations, community groups, private companies, research institutes and foundations and other civil society candidates can apply to receive funds.

We encourage formation of consortia, considering that a single organization will hardly add all the specialties and themes for the implementation of a training focused on strengthening organizations in their entirety. The organizations proposing this call have drawn up a list of potential organizations that can form a consortium. This is a suggestive list that does not represent a pre-selection or any type of preference in choosing the organizations or executing organization that will lead the consortium.



Letters of Intent must request amounts above US$50.000 and a maximum of US$250.000. The project must be divided into two investment periods: from March 1 to August 31, 2021 and from September 1, 2021 to February 28, 2022. Intermediate results must be presented for at least these two phases of the project, as well as final results. The Letter of Intent for any project that requires disbursements beyond February 28, 2022 will not be considered eligible.



  • The Letter of Intent (CDI) must be formulated for a major project and divided into two blocks: from March 1, 2021 to August 31, 2021 and from September 1, 2021 to February 28, 2022. However, we reinforce that the scope of the Letter of Intent must contemplate the two blocks and divide the budgets in US$.
  • CDIs can be submitted in both Portuguese and English.
  • CDIs must be submitted through CEPF's online system ConservationGrants. CDIs SHOULD NOT submitted to CEPF Cerrado or CEPF email. Any CDI sent by e-mail, even within the term of this notice, will not be considered.
  • When applying, include the duration of the project (in months) and your contribution to achieving the goals and intermediate indicators of CEPF (Logical Framework for the Cerrado Hotspot Ecosystem Profile).

The proposal must be submitted in the CONSERVATIONGRANTS until Friday, 23 October 2020, at 23:59 & #8211; Washington DC Time.. After that time, the system will be blocked for receiving proposals. Attention! The Alliance for the Cerrado informs EXTENSION the call. Proposals can be submitted until Nov 11 at 11:59 pm (Washington DC time).

If you do not have an account registered in the ConservationGrants system, you will need to register a new account. In case of technical difficulties in the registration, contact us by email: conservationgrants@conservation.org

Before starting to fill out the Letter of Intent (CDI) in the system, we recommend that you fill in the Word versions of the CDI forms at English or Portuguese for Large Projects, which are available for download. Then, check your answers, considering the specific guidelines of this notice and the FAQs. This will facilitate the subsequent filling in of the CDI information in the system.

We suggest that the proponents do not leave to submit their proposals on the last day, as there will be no time to resolve any technical problems. CEPF Cerrado and the organizations linked to Aliança do Cerrado are not responsible for occurrences of any kind that make it impossible to submit proposals in the registration systems, even on time.



The selection process for proposals to CEPF Cerrado consists of the following steps:

Screening of Letters of Intent & #8211; The Regional Implementation Team will select the Letters of Intent that have met all of the basic eligibility criteria, which were defined in this call. These criteria are: presentation on time, use of the appropriate CDI model and its correct and complete filling, location of the project within the eligible areas and focus of the project on the themes (Strategic Direction, Investment Priority) and budget mentioned in the call.

Selection Committee - Eligible projects will be evaluated by a committee, which is made up of a small number of representatives of the institutions that make up the Aliança Cerrado, which will meet to discuss and define, based on technical criteria, a semi-final list of projects in a consensual way.

These semifinalists will be interviewed by phone or video by the members of this selection committee together with the CEPF secretariat. Before the interviews, the semifinalists should send a brief presentation in PowerPoint or PDF about their project. These interviews will be an opportunity for proponents to answer any questions, feedback or concerns raised during the previous stages of the selection. The semifinalists will also have the opportunity to clarify any doubts about the process of contracting and implementing the project.

After the interviews, the committee will meet again to define the finalist of the selection process.

Final selection - The successful candidate will be notified by email and invited to submit a complete proposal.

All applicants who have not had their projects approved will receive official communications by email.

The candidate whose CDI receives a positive review will be invited to submit a complete proposal through ConservationGrants. This proposal must still be adapted until the closing of the final contract. The full proposal that receives a positive review will be supported with two grants: one between Conservation International, as host of the CEPF Secretariat, and the applicant's institution; and another between the IEB and the candidate's institution. The grant agreement with Conservation International will be in English and will be closed in US dollars.



Before starting the registration process for this call, we strongly recommend reading the following reference documents:

Call for Letters of Intent


Ecosystem Profile

Portuguese and English

Ecosystem Profile Technical Summary

Portuguese and English

Ecosystem Profile Logical Framework


Ecosystem Profile Investment Priorities



Portuguese and English

Civil Society Organizational Capacity Monitoring Tool (Civil Society Tracking Tool & #8211; CSTT) and Gender Monitoring Tool (Gender Tracking Tool & #8211; GTT)

Portuguese and English

CEPF is committed to integrating gender into its portfolio. Applicants must design projects and write proposals that consider gender issues in realizing their conservation impacts.

CEPF has developed a number of resources that can help candidates design and implement projects that integrate gender issues (Gender Toolkit / CEPF Gender Toolkit) and understand what CEPF looks for in a proposal (CEPF Gender Fact Sheet, available in english only). Visit the CEPF on gender issues to learn more about how CEPF addresses this issue in the projects it supports. 

Aliança Cerrado will evaluate your project based on its consideration of gender.



After reading all the reference documents for this call, if any doubts persist, contact cepfcerrado@iieb.org.br or visit our page Contact Us on the CEPF Cerrado website.



We understand that the 11 themes that should be explored to strengthen the institutions of the Cerrado are quite diverse and that is why we believe that the formation of a consortium of institutions is fundamental for the fulfillment of the objective of this notice.

For this reason, Aliança Cerrado presents the list below to encourage the formation of a consortium between several institutions with a leading institution.

We emphasize that this list of organizations presented below is merely suggestive and that it does not represent a pre-selection or represents the entire universe of organizations that can participate in this notice. It should only serve as a stimulus for the formation of potential consortia.


Phomenta & #8211; https://phomenta.com.br/

Philanthropy & #8211; https://www.filantropia.ong/capacitacoes/todos-os-cursos

Quality Associados & #8211;  https://www.qualityassociados.com.br/

Instituto Donar & #8211; https://www.institutodoar.org/quem-somos/

Instituto Ekloos & #8211; https://www.ekloos.org/quemsomos

Instituto Semear & #8211; https://www.isemear.org.br/quem-somos/

Our Cause & #8211; https://nossacausa.com/

Because & #8211; https://because.ag/

Orzil Group & #8211; https://www.orzil.org/quem-somos/

WK Sistemas & #8211; https://wk.com.br

Center for Training and Research in Social Policies CECAPS-UFMG & #8211; Distance Learning Course on Social Projects & #8211; Center for Training and Research in Social Policies CECAPS-UFMG & #8211; https://www.cecaps.org/

Techsoup & #8211; https://www.techsoupbrasil.org.br

Porto Social & #8211; http://www.portosocial.com.br



PUC SP & #8211; Social Project Management in Third Sector Organizationshttps://www.pucsp.br/pos-graduacao/especializacao-e-mba/gestao-de-projetos-sociais-em-organizacoes-do-terceiro-setor

Brazilian Association of Fund Raisers

Lato Sensu Specialization Course in Third Sector & #8211; https://captadores.org.br/2011/02/02/curso-de-especializacao-lato-sensu-em-terceiro-setor/

Center for Social Entrepreneurship and Administration in the Third Sector & #8211; http://ceats.org.br/Paginas/Home.aspx

Open School & #8211; https://www.escolaaberta3setor.org.br/

Amani Institute & #8211; https://amaniinstitute.org/pt/what-we-do/formacao-em-impacto-social-2/

Sense Lab & #8211; https://www.sense-lab.com/quem-somos

EcoSocial & #8211; http://ecosocial.com.br/

Regenerative Organizations Pact & #8211; http://pacto.site/

Adeop & #8211; http://www.adeop.org.br/

Nexucs & #8211; http://www.nexucs.com.br/

Move Social & #8211; http://move.social/

bridgePoint & #8211; https://ponteaponte.com.br/projetos

Lumo & #8211; http://lumo.net.br/

Gera Social & #8211; https://www.gerasocial.org/

Collab & #8211; https://collabimpact.org/

EITA Cooperative & #8211; https://eita.coop.br/

Porto Alegre Digital Culture House & #8211; https://www.facebook.com/ccdpoa/





This call was also published on the CEPF website and can be accessed on here!