Interagency Community Outreach and Communications Fund on Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (PSEA)

Interagency Community Outreach and Communications Fund on

Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (PSEA)


April 2020

Raising community-awareness on the risks of sexual exploitation and abuse (SEA)[1] and available reporting channels is critical to preventing of SEA, as well as to ensuring that victims know where and how to safely report SEA when it does take place. Local stakeholders have noted the need for effective, updated information, education and communication (IEC) materials on PSEA that are tailored to local cultural contexts, operational realities, the groups that are most at risk, and which take into account among others of literacy, languages, age and capacity. To support NGOs in meeting these needs, UNHCR and ICVA have jointly launched the PSEA Outreach and Communications Fund. This Fund will provide rapid, targeted financial support to NGOs to develop and disseminate PSEA outreach and communications materials, and to make available to all IASC members and the wider sector the materials developed through the Fund for their further use or adaptation.

The Fund is an initiative of the UNHCR High Commissioner’s IASC Championship on Protection from Sexual Exploitation and Abuse and Sexual Harassment. You can read more about the Fund here.


Who can apply?

NGOs, particularly those that may have limited financial capacity to develop outreach and communications materials on protection from sexual exploitation and abuse (PSEA). NGOs contributing to humanitarian responses are encouraged to apply.

NGO fora or networks can apply as well, or one of their members can apply on their behalf.

What can the funds be used for?

The funds can be used to develop or adapt context-specific PSEA outreach and communication materials targeting communities, such as:

  • Awareness-raising materials (including print, video or audio) that explain core concepts, such as what can constitute “sexual exploitation and abuse’; the obligations of all actors to prevent and address such acts; protect witnesses, victims and survivors and clarify that protection, assistance and access to solutions are never conditional on sexual favours or relationships;
  • Materials (including print, video or audio) that share information on where to safely report and seek help, in line with established complaints and feedback mechanisms (CFMs) and referral pathways;
  • Community engagement tools, such as outlines and facilitators guides to lead community dialogues, role plays or focus group discussions that increase awareness on SEA risks, and the rights of communities and people affected by crises to receive protection and assistance free from sexual exploitation and abuse; and
  • Other appropriate PSEA information, education and communication (IEC) materials, tools and approaches, as relevant to the local operational and cultural context.

 The grants can also be used to adapt or translate existing PSEA outreach materials that are currently not appropriate to target communities where the applicant is working or not available in local languages.

All materials developed under the grants will be “open source” and publicly available for the benefit of other humanitarian actors and communities.

Selected grantees will receive technical support during the design process, if requested.


Size of allocation and timeframe for completion

  • Grants of USD $15,000 to $20,00 will be awarded to NGO applicants.
  • The timeframe for program implementation can be up to 4 months from the time the funds are received.



Applications should include a budget outlining project expenditure, accompanied by a narrative project proposal which includes the following elements:

  • Problem statement, including a description of the risk factors for SEA in the operational setting where the project will be implemented.
  • Description of deliverables and how these will mitigate or address the problem(s) identified.
  • Timeline for implementation of activities, including the finalisation of deliverables.
  • Description of the community that the communication materials are designed to reach and how the materials are appropriate to this community.
  • Measures to ensure community involvement and consultation in project design, implementation and assessment, if relevant. Please describe how the community has been consulted in the drafting of the proposal and how it will be engaged in its implementation and assessment
  • If the methodology of the project includes community engagement, please provide a risk analysis and describe how you plan to mitigate the identified risks.
  • If your project aims to increase community awareness of SEA reporting channels, please include a description of these channels and how they are meeting the needs of the target community in your current operational context.



Applications would be scored on the basis of an agreed scoring sheet that prioritises the criteria proposed below,

  • The project outlines a clear need to strengthen communication with communities on PSEA, and the proposed activities, timeframe and approach are sound in meeting the need identified and contribute to improving PSEA.
  • The applicant shows that the proposed materials are not duplicating existing materials. If a local PSEA network exists, it is preferred that the applicant coordinates with the network or is willing to do so. Projects that involve inter-agency messages or are welcome.
  • The project aims to involve the community throughout the process of developing key messages, communication materials and approaches.
  • The project acknowledges that different groups within the same community will have different communication needs and capacities.
  • Activities are planned to ensure that the products and approaches developed are appropriate for communicating with women, men, girls, and boys of diverse backgrounds, through means that are appropriate and accessible to all groups in a community.
  • Projects may also target a particular group that has not been adequately engaged through existing materials and approaches, such as persons with disabilities, amongst others.
  • The application contains a clear and detailed budget of the costs to implement the project and the budget is appropriate to the scope of work proposed.
  • The project is practical and achievable in terms of the scope of work proposed, and the time and resources required as well as the skills and capacities of the organisation applying.

The initiative will aim to achieve geographic diversity, with particular attention to projects in MENA, Africa, the Americas and Asia.



Applications will be accepted until 15 May 2020.

The applications will be reviewed by a Steering Group comprising experts from both NGOs, NGO networks and UN agencies with decisions being sent in June 2020 and grants disbursed shortly after.


Please send completed applications and questions to:

[email protected]


[1] According to the UN, ““sexual exploitation” means any actual or attempted abuse of a position of vulnerability, differential power, or trust, for sexual purposes, including, but not limited to, profiting monetarily, socially or politically from the sexual exploitation of another. Similarly, the term “sexual abuse” means the actual or threatened physical intrusion of a sexual nature, whether by force or under unequal or coercive conditions.” We understand SEA as acts perpetrated by aid workers or people associated with aid organisation against the people that they are supposed to protect or provide aid to.