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Partner with us

We’re always on the look-out to start partnerships with African-based social innovators, working for people living below the poverty line on solutions on income opportunities, food security & climate, or education. 

Why? As iMPACT direct it is our principal goal to support African NGOs to leverage impact in the aid sector. 

What does iMPACT direct offer to partnering NGOs?

  1. Visibility of your NGO and projects through our website and promotional activities (incl. socials, media and events).
  2. Access to donors, supporters and grants.
  3. Training and mentoring to build a stronger organisation. We have great expertise and a wide network in Europe and Africa.

What kind of NGOs can apply for a partnership with iMPACT direct?

  • NGOs located in Africa, especially those in Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Tanzania or Uganda, with founders and leadership based in Africa.
  • NGOs that are officially registered and have a bank account.
  • NGOs with an annual income less than €100,000 and that report per financial annual reports.
  • NGOs with running activities for people living below the poverty level on No Poverty (SDG1), Zero Hunger (SDG2) or Quality Education (SDG4) other than primary education.

Please check full criteria and exclusions in Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) below, before you start the application.

We’re always open for applications

Please, do read the criteria first to see if your NGO is eligible for a partnership.

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How we work

When your NGO gets selected, it is with the intention to start a partnership for 3 years. The partnership involves your efforts as much as ours.
We value building partnerships based on trust. For example, being open to discuss plans and adaptions, and how we can complement each other best to achieve most.
Please note that iMPACT direct is a young foundation that is still building the organisation together with a small team of staff and volunteers. It means that we work hard and passionately to make the change we want to see – but also that we are still testing parts of what we do, may fail and adapt again – and that our partnering NGOs shape the initiative with us.

FAQs for NGOs that want to partner with us

What are the selection criteria for NGOs?

We are looking for partnerships with African-based social innovators, that are:

  • NGOs that are officially registered (and thus comply with local regulations).
  • NGOs that have a bank account in the country they work (and thus had a KYC-check).
  • NGOs that can show past annual financial reports.
  • African NGOs that are locally-led, locally-found and locally-based, especially those from Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Tanzania or Uganda. Diaspora organisations can apply, when supporting a locally-led NGO in the country where projects take place.
  • NGOs that work for and with community members living below the poverty line.
  • NGOs that have activities running on one or more of these 3 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs):
      • No Poverty (SDG1)
      • Zero Hunger (in combination with climate-smart solutions) (SDG 2)
      • Quality Education (SDG4) other than primary education
  • NGOs with an annual income less than €100,000 (thus donations through iMPACT direct make a significant difference for the NGO’s budget).
  • NGOs whose initiators started from a great idea for local projects, with own or local resources and can show achieved impact but fail to get (sufficient) resources from granting donors.
  • NGOs that are (or are willing to):
      • Engage project participants in the planning, implementation and evaluation of projects.
      • Show how their work improves lives (facilitated by our application survey, project form and reporting format).
      • Are cost-efficient (i.e. budget/lives improved).
      • Are transparent by sharing project information, stories and reports on our website and socials.
  • NGOs that value partnerships based on equality, trust and transparency, in which we work as a team towards shared objectives and vision, with shared efforts.
What are other advantageous criteria for NGOs?

Apart from the main criteria above:

  • We especially encourage women-led NGOs to apply and become a partner of iMPACT direct (to ensure an even number of male and female-led organisations).
  • We especially encourage NGOs in remote areas to apply.
  • We do see the added-value of diaspora organisations. We love to collaborate in co-promoting and knowledge sharing, while keeping our main focus: supporting locally-led NGO.
  • We love climate-smart projects!
In which countries does iMPACT direct work?

In West Africa we focus on:

  • Ghana
  • Liberia
  • Sierra Leone

In East Africa we focus on:

  • Kenya
  • Tanzania
  • Uganda

However, you can also apply from other countries in Sub Sahara Africa.

Please do know, that the selection process is a bit harder for us, when you’re outside of our focus countries, where our colleagues we can easily travel to, to visit you. And thus, chances might be a bit lower to get selected.

On the other hand, we do love to bring great social innovators who can show great (first) results on board – and so you can apply and then we may decide to support you in the current year, or whenever we are ready for the country you work in.

Please note that our website and team are not yet ready for non-English speaking countries yet. Although we hope to be able to cater for French-speaking countries in the near future. Please, sign up if you want to be kept updated on when we open for French-speaking countries.

Are there NGOs or projects that iMPACT direct doesn’t support?

Yes, we do not collaborate with:

  • NGOs that are located outside Sub-Saharan Africa.
  • NGOs that have their decision-makers abroad (e.g. board members and managers are not based in the country where projects are implemented). 
  • Orphanages. Projects on children’s shelter should comply to local legislation.
  • NGOs that implement religious activities, for example activities that exclude people based on their beliefs, or activities meant to convert people to a certain religion.

And we don’t support:

  • Projects that do not address one of our core themes: No Poverty (SDG1), Zero Hunger (in combination with climate-smart solutions) (SDG 2), or Quality Education (SDG4).
  • When it comes to Quality Education, we mainly focus on vocational and adult education. We do not support projects on primary education, because in the countries we work this is covered by the government.
  • Projects that are only on awareness raising and/or advocacy.
What are tips for making the application?
  • We would like to get to know you: why you started the NGO, the work that you are currently doing and about past results. So, it’s advisable to be genuine about your NGO’s capacities. Since we do not necessarily look for the best NGOs – but we are looking for great social innovators, who can already show great (first) results AND have needs in terms of visibility, funding, and training. What’s more, if you are already the best, there is no need to request for a partnership anyway ;).
  • That also means: Make sure that what you write about your NGO’s work, is reflecting in the two financial annual reports you upload with the application. So the application shows what the NGO is capable doing at the moment of application.
How does the process of application selection look like?

We are 365 days per year open for application:

  • You can start filling in the 7 questions on this page, to check eligibility.
  • If your NGO is eligible, you will receive an email with an invite to fill in further details about your NGO.

We select new partners – at least once a year – in the meantime we can already start updating you on events, training and opportunities for NGOs.

In 2022, we will select new partnering NGOs in September and October:

  • Even if your NGO checks all the boxes of our criteria, it can still mean your NGO won’t be selected, as we have limited space for partnerships on our website.
  • Our colleagues, in the country you work, will make a first selection based on the criteria, and then make an appointment to visit you. As we don’t want to rely on paperwork only. As well: we want to get to know you, to be able to kick-start the (potential) partnership.
  • It will be iMPACT direct’s board – consisting of Africans, Europeans and diaspora – to make a final decision on which NGOs we will start a partnership with.

Once selected:

  • The first step is to join our training programme and apply for a % of your annual plan (including project as well as organisational costs).
  • In a joint discussion we agree on a plan to co-promote your mission and activities for the coming year, recorded in a Partnership Agreement.
  • Final reporting is done with an annual report – showing the contribution of iMPACT direct to everything you did – and an externally audited financial report.

If not selected:

  • We will always update you on our decision – as soon as we can.
  • You can always join our online events, training or new opportunities for NGOs. Please sign up, if you want to be kept updated on those.
What efforts are expected from NGOs when partnering with iMPACT direct?

From partnering NGOs, we request the following:

  • Efforts in text writing and getting the best visuals to create the best promotable NGO and project pages at our website.
  • Your NGO co-promotes your online project with us. We can discuss how you can do that. For example, this includes regular updates on the website (see next bullet), engaging your network in communications about your project (we see that fundraising is more successful when an NGO engages their own network too), and we also provide opportunities to join an online event to meet with potential donors.
  • Project reporting is to inform your supporters on the process and results. We require regular updates (see stories) at our website, at least 4 times a year. Plus, a final project report, following two simple output and outcome report formats.
  • Final reporting is done with your NGO’s annual report – showing the contribution of iMPACT direct to everything you did – and an externally audited financial report.
What efforts can you expect from iMPACT direct in a partnership?

We like to make it as simple as it can get, and so we provide formats and tools for getting great project pages and stories and for measuring impact. And of course, we are ready to help and mentor on that, whenever needed.

What’s more, we facilitate:

  • Visibility of your NGO and projects through our website and promotional activities (incl. socials, media and events). For example, we hear from current partnering NGOs that they will gain visitors on their socials. And we also have examples of NGOs who now are approached for speaking at a conference or to participate in a training.
  • Access to donors, supporters and grants for the current projects online. As a network with roots in several countries in Africa and Europe, we make access to donors and grants easier. For example, see our current supporters, who support a group of NGOs here: www.impactdirect.eu/join). Moreover, we have examples of NGOs that now access grants beyond iMPACT direct, because of our reference or because of increased visibility.
  • Sharing expertise amongst ourselves, training and mentoring to build a stronger organisation. We plan to start with our first capacity strengthening programme as from November 2022 to work as a group towards organisational excellence.

Please note that iMPACT direct is a young foundation that is still building the organisation together with a small team of staff and volunteers. It means that we work hard and passionately to make the change we want to see – but also that we are still testing parts of what we do, may fail and adapt again – and that our partnering NGOs shape the initiative with us. In short, we are not always perfect – and we try to do a lot with just a few hands – so besides our first great successes, some things sometimes need some extra time. 

If you are all in for that, because you are genuinely supporting our mission – and love to join change in the making – we really hope you take the step to apply! 

What can NGOs expect in terms the amount of donations?

It is good to keep in mind that working with iMPACT direct, and thus fundraising and co-promoting your activities together to (potential) donors, takes time and it’s never a 100% certain that we reach the target amount set. Moreover, it can happen that the donations come in later than you planned for.

Of course, each year we set a realistic amount, that we are confident to be able to raise.

In 2022, we aim to collect for around €10,000 per NGO, and we hope we can raise this amount with time. Three times a year – or upon request – iMPACT direct transfers 95% of all donations made to your NGO.

How long does a partnership take?

We plan for partnerships that take at least 3 years. Together we discuss the partnership after each year, to see if it’s beneficial to both parties to indeed extend the partnership.

After 3 years we discuss together with you if your NGO is ready to make sustainable impact and get funds to that on its own, or that we need to extend the partnership for a longer period of time.

It’s also possible to see if there are different ways of having a partnership within or after the 3 years. For example, some NGOs have a specialised expertise that they want to scale to other NGOs and CBOs in their region. iMPACT direct could play a supportive role in scaling, for instance in a different type of partnership.

What does iMPACT direct mean by unconditional donations?

At iMPACT direct, we facilitate direct donations to locally-led NGOs. Although, technically our system doesn’t support actual direct donations from donor to your NGO (yet), we do facilitate transferring 95% of the total donations directly to your NGOs’ project. 

Moreover, it is the NGO to decide how to spend it. That is what we mean by ‘unconditional’. Of course, the donations must be spent to the mission of your NGO. And of course, you inform (potential) donors at our website what you plan to do with the target amount, and then you update and report again on progress, adaptions that occured, and results.

We believe it is important, that local experts and communities decide on how the budget they have is best spent to achieve their mission.

What does iMPACT direct mean by Trust-Based Partnerships?

We believe that actual partnerships in which partners can achieve at their best, needs trust-based relations. For us this includes:

  • Multi-year partnerships to allow for getting to know each other and learning.
  • Being open to discuss plans and adaptions, how we can complement each other best, and being responsive and open to other perspectives.
  • Two-way Transparency & Accountability. For example, we show donations on our website, and are transparent on money flows. And we encourage partnering NGOs to engage project participants in decision-making on project design, monitoring and evolution.
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