BEARR’s 2023 Small Grants Scheme webinar: Report and FAQs

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The deadline for submitting applications to BEARR’s 2023 Small Grants Scheme has now passed. Each submission will be reviewed carefully and the chosen projects announced in May 2023. Keep an eye on our website and social media pages for any updates.

Since 2006, The BEARR Trust has run an annual Small Grants Scheme, providing seed-corn funding to small civil society organisations (CSOs) in Eastern Europe and Central Asia working in partnership in health and social welfare.  

The 2023 Small Grants Scheme launched to applicants in January, with a closing date of 15 February 2023. To introduce this year’s round, BEARR Trustee Ross Gill presented at a webinar for potential applicants to ‘Strand A’ of this year’s scheme, which is focused on projects that propose long-term co-operation between two or more civil society organisations supporting vulnerable people in any area of health and social welfare.  Strand A was open to CSOs in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan, with a maximum grant of £4,000.

We are open to a wide range of different types of activities and beneficiaries, based on the needs and partnerships that applicants have identified. Each application to The BEARR Trust is considered by a group of trustees: Ross explained that when we review applications, we are especially looking for:  

  • Applications that genuinely and clearly support vulnerable people in the area of health and social welfare
  • Clarity about what you are going to do, who is going to benefit, and why you’re doing it 
  • Evidence that you are working together as two or more CSOs, and that this will support longer-term collaboration 
  • Evidence that BEARR’s contribution will make a real difference. We especially want to support smaller and newer CSOs that may not have access to larger sources of funding 
  • Projects that are trying to do something new or imaginative 
  • Evidence of some other funding alongside BEARR: we want to ensure that projects are sustainable, so we limit BEARR’s contribution to 50% of total project costs 
  • Evidence that the project is deliverable (we usually expect projects to be delivered in six months)  

We usually receive more applications than we are able to approve, so it’s important that applicants read the guidance and ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ carefully, and that they make sure that their proposals genuinely meet the criteria. But we are more interested in the quality of the project – what you want to do and who you are working with – than perfect bid-writing, and we read every application carefully.  

Although we can’t fund every application, we will fund as many good projects as we can afford. And even if you’re not successful this time (or if you don’t have the time or resources to apply), we will be running another Small Grants Scheme next year. 

Good luck! 


  • What language should the application be submitted in?

    Applications must be submitted in English.
  • Can one of the partners for Project A be from the private sector?

    The organisations submitting a joint application for a Project A grant must all be a civil society organisations (CSOs). However, matched funding can come from private or state sources.
  • How long should the project last?

    Projects should aim to be completed within six months of receiving the grant.
  • How many CSOs can be involved in a Project A application?

    There must be at least 2 CSOs on a Project A application, however there is no upper limit. Please note that the maximum grant given will still be £4,000 regardless of the number of CSOs on the application.
  • What currency should the budget be in?

    GBP – British £ Sterling
  • What type of project expenses can BEARR funding cover? Can an applicant only apply for funding for direct expenses, or can service payments for trainers and experts be included?

    You can apply to BEARR’s Small Grants Scheme for both direct expenses and service payments, as well as minor technical costs. However, we will not accept applications where technical costs are more than 20% of the budget. Please see Section 4 of the Project A guidelines for a sample budget template.
  • How are projects monitored?

    All grantees have to complete a short Monitoring and Evaluation Form on completion of their project, as well provide BEARR with a brief narrative report. We warmly welcome regular updates and photos of your project during its implementation, too. You can find examples of our previous grantees’ project reports here.
  • What if my question isn’t answered here?

    For further information, you can watch our 2023 Small Grants Scheme Webinar on how to prepare a Project A application here. You can also find a recording of our 2022 Small Grants Scheme webinar in English here, and in Russian here.

    If you still have questions, please feel free to contact our Small Grants Officer, Anna Lukanina-Morgan at You can email Anna in English, Russian or Ukrainian. 

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