The Table Mountain Fund, an associated trust of WWF-South Africa, has funded the Small Grants Programme since 2013. In the first 3-year grant cycle, 18 small grants of up to R20,000 were awarded.
A new 3-year cycle of funding started in November 2017. The Overberg Small Grants are jointly managed by Whale Coast Conservation and Grootbos Foundation. Between the two organisations 14 different small grants of up to R30,000 will be awarded each year for 3 years, i.e. a total of 42 grants.
Applicationsare adjudicated by a joint committee.
Whale Coast Conservation sought out local entrepreneurs who have a great idea for a small business that will benefit people and the environment. Such projects may qualify for a Small Grant.
A free workshop hosted on 9 November at the Green House helped potential applicants to present their projects and to write a business plan.
The small grant facility utilises the expertise of the Whale Coast Conservation management, board members and extensive network of partners, to identify new entrants, drawn from Cape Whale Coast communities, into active participation in conservation. Specific focus is given to potential entrants interested in marine and coastal conservation opportunities that are relevant and beneficial to local communities.
The aim is to support the growth and development of new entrants to the conservation sector. WCC will facilitate the inclusion and involvement of a wider range of stakeholders in conservation and increase the level of WCC’s already well-established practice of convening and facilitating conservation oriented connections between local communities and the Overstrand Municipality. We will further develop structured project management skills in beneficiaries and support their efforts to remain active in the conservation sector after the completion of WCC / TMF small grant agreement.
A call for potential beneficiaries went out in August 2017 and distributed through our NGO contacts network, social media, posters and newspaper articles. Grootbos Foundation small grants fund manager and WCC combined efforts. Potential grant recipients were invited to a morning session with Emerging Leaders at the WCC offices to prepare the applicant craft their proposal. Approximately 40 applications were received of which about 14 could be developed. Grootbos and WCC board members and staff comprised the selection board. Only three (2 for WCC and 1 for Grootbos) were ready to go to contract at the end of 2017. The rest were given feedback and the opportunity to resubmit their application to better align with what is required.
It took six months (with the summer holiday in between) of negotiation and refinement to get five more contracts for WCC and six more for Grootbos into place.
By end March 2018 six small grant contracts were signed by WCC and a seventh is in the process of being finalised. Four of these recipients were new entrants to the field of conservation, two with a marine/coastal focus.
WCC-administered grants were made to the following projects:
- Market research – cloth sanitary ware
- Hermanus eco-shop
- Overberg Wheelchair Association
- Researching greywater reticulation
- Kleinmond Fisher Women’s Co-op
- Contour Training Academy
The Grootbos Foundation has identified 7 grantees, of which 5 contracts have been signed and two are in the process of being finalised.
- Pearly Beach Conservancy – Recycle Swop Shop
- Art Zoo – Penguin Stories
- Siyanda Alien Clearing – Clearing aliens in Critically Endangered Elim Ferricrete Fynbos
- Stanford Conservation Trust – Basket Weaving
- Antjies Sewing Group – seamstress training to produce wonderbags and cloth sanitary ware
- Insect Surveys
Blinkwaters co-op – Sourfig harvesting and processing