SCCF Capacity Development Grants

Small Charities Challenge Fund Project Grants (SCCF)

Rolling funding opportunity for small UK-registered charities and not-for-profits. Read more.

Update from 17:00pm (GMT) 28 November 2019: applications for a Capacity Development grant have now closed.

The Department for International Development (DFID) is offering new grants of up to £100,000 for organisations with the ability to build the capacity of small British charities working in international development.

Up to six Small Charities Challenge Fund (SCCF) Capacity Development Grants will be awarded to organisations with the ability to build the capacity of small British charities working in international development.

DFID is looking for innovative, evidence-based and ambitious proposals from organisations with a track record of supporting small, grassroots organisations to achieve their ambitions.

A guidance webinar presented by Fund Director Karen Stephenson, was held on Wednesday 11 September and a recording of the presentation can be accessed on YouTube for those who missed the event or want to listen to the guidance again. A summary of the FAQs discussed at the event is also available to download.

The closing date for submitting your SCCF Capacity Development Grant application is Thursday 28 November 2019 at 17:00pm (GMT).


The SCCF Capacity Development Grants are open to:

  • UK-registered, not-for-profit organisations or
  • Groups of UK registered not-for-profit organisations
  • With an annual income of less than £10 million.

Applicant organisations will need to demonstrate experience of working with small UK-based civil society organisations (CSOs) as part of the application process.

Project countries

Applicant organisations must be UK-registered and provide capacity building support to UK-based, civil society organisations who are working in one or more of the SCCF project countries.

Grant size and duration

Grants of up to £100,000 for projects lasting up to two years will be considered by an independent review panel.

Application process

The application process will be one-stage and applications will need to be completed and submitted via the online portal.

Applicants will be required to outline their existing networks and ability to reach and engage both current Small Charities Challenge Fund grant holders and potential future applicants to provide capacity building support.

Applicants will be asked to clearly demonstrate need and demand from the sector, for any support proposed and will be required to demonstrate their ability to deliver capacity building support to small UK international development charities in at least one of the areas listed below:

  • Bidding for funding (fundraising)
  • Value for money
  • Financial management (including sustainable funding models)
  • Human resource management
  • Downstream/local partner management and capacity building
  • Safeguarding
  • Beneficiary Feedback Mechanisms
  • Communications and public engagement
  • Donor reporting
  • Managing risk

Capacity development areas not listed may be considered alongside the above.


Alongside other factors, the Department for International Development (DFID) will consider:

  • The dependency that the applicant organisation has or will have on DFID funding
  • The diversity of organisations able to access DFID funding and market share
  • The financial capacity of an organisation to manage the size of grant applied for.

No match-funding is required for this type of grant. However, it is permissible.


A guidance webinar was held on Wednesday 11 September for potential applicants. If you missed the event, or want to listen to it again, a recording of the presentation can be accessed now on YouTube.

Printable guidance

What we will not fund

We cannot fund certain types of organisations or projects. Learn more on the what will not be funded page.

UK Aid Direct funds cannot be used for poverty alleviation work or awareness raising activities in the UK.