What will not be funded

UK Aid Direct will not consider applications from any organisation that:

  • Encourages activities which may lead to civil unrest
  • Is linked to any terrorist organisations
  • Discriminates against any groups on the basis of gender, sexual orientation, disability, race, colour, ethnicity, religion etc.
  • Is a governmental and/or inter-governmental organisation (or any other organisation which reports directly to government).

UK Aid Direct will not fund the following:

Areas covered by other UK Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO) funding schemes

Applicants should be aware of all FCDO funding schemes available in the Gov.uk website (opens in a new window) to assess what is most applicable to their organisation before applying for a UK Aid Direct grant.

For example, UK Aid Direct does not consider funding research or humanitarian projects, as these are areas supported by other FCDO funding schemes.

If an organisation submits a proposal to more than one FCDO funding scheme, then this should be clearly stated in the application.

Poverty alleviation work or awareness raising activities in the UK

Capital expenditure

Major capital expenditure, such as construction or purchase of buildings and purchase of land, cannot be supported as a primary focus of the proposed project.

Any aspect of capital expenditure that you include in your proposal needs to be fully justified as directly contributing to a clearly sustainable outcome linked to the reduction of poverty.


UK Aid Direct will not consider projects that discriminate between individuals or groups of people on any grounds including race, sex, sexual orientation, religion, disability or age.

Orphanages and children’s institutions

Applications for the funding of orphanages or other residential children’s institutions are not accepted under UK Aid Direct. Children’s prospects are generally best served by family-based care – be it with their own families, extended families or qualified foster families. Consideration may be given to projects that support the reintegration into families/family-based care of children from institutions.

Speaking at the Global Disability Summit, Penny Mordaunt, former Secretary of State for International Development*, said:

“Orphanages are harmful to children and it is often those with disabilities who are placed in them the most. This needs to end, which is why I’m committed to the long-term plan to ensure all children grow up with a family of their own.”


UK Aid Direct does not fund educational scholarships.

Stand-alone activities

UK Aid Direct does not fund stand-alone initiatives which are not part of a wider project. These include:

  • One-off conferences
  • Seminars
  • Training events
  • Exchanges
  • Costs associated with participants attending events.

UK Aid Direct will not support projects dealing solely with the overseas transportation of goods and supplies.

Core support

UK Aid Direct is designed to supply project funding, not institutional support. All requested funds, including administration budget lines, must be clearly related to the project.

Civil disobedience

UK Aid Direct does not provide support to projects which actively encourage civil disobedience.

Partisan political stance

UK Aid Direct does not fund activities which take a partisan political stance.

Proselytising recognises that faith-based organisations (FBOs) play an important role in international development. However, applications from organisations that include proselytising in their organisational objectives must be able to provide assurances that their promotion of religion would not influence the implementation of the proposed project, or lead to any form of exclusivity or conditionality.