Donor: German Marshall Fund of the United States (GMF)
Application procedure: Letter of Inquiry
Donor base: United States
Reference number: -
Eligible applicants: Non-Profit Organisation
Deadline: ongoing

Financial details

Grant size: Small - up to $100,000
Minimum grant size: 5.000$
Total available budget: -
Funding type: Grants, Other
Maximum grant size: 50.000$
Funding ratio: up to 100%


  • Children & Youth
  • Education
  • Governance & Democracy
  • Human Rights
  • Other
  • Peace & Conflict Resolution
  • Research, Technology & Innovation

Project Locations

  1. Europe

      Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Romania, Serbia


1) Objective

The Balkan Trust for Democracy (BTD) is an initiative that supports democracy, good governance, and Euro-Atlantic integration in Southeastern Europe. This award-winning public-private partnership was created in 2003 by the German Marshall Fund of the United States, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation. BTD’s original ten-year mandate came to an end in May 2013. As of 2013, BTD has six thematic areas within which it focuses its grantmaking efforts. These priority areas are: (1) civic engagement; (2) youth leadership and empowerment; (3) government accountability and transparency; (4) culture of giving; (5) Euro-Atlantic integration; and (6) dialogue and reconciliation.

Supported projects typically achieve their goals through: public debate; leadership development; policy work; civic education; new mechanisms; advocacy; monitoring; implementation and enforcement; shared objectives; best practices; networks; re-granting; and reconciliation. Preferences will be given to those proposals designed to increase citizen engagement with government; measurably impact public policy; strengthen leadership skills of individuals and organizations; facilitate cross-border and/or cross-sector cooperation; and encourage the transfer of experiences and innovative ideas through clear communication and dissemination plans.

2) Eligibility

Applicants must be civic groups, NGOs, media organisations, think tanks, governments, and education institutions indigenous to BTD program countries. Non-indigenous organisations may not apply for direct funding; however, cooperative projects between indigenous and non-indigenous organisations will be considered.

3) Location

BTD’s grantmaking activities focus primarily on six countries: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, and Serbia. BTD also support relevant regional initiatives that include civil society stakeholders from Western and Eastern Europe, and in particular those based in Bulgaria, Croatia and Romania.

4) Budget

BTD grants generally range from $5,000 to $50,000, with most grants falling between $10,000 and $25,000. BTD can support multi-year projects, renewable on an annual basis contingent upon satisfactory interim reports and performance.

5) Application

Organisations that are interested in receiving BTD funding are welcome to send a brief concept note in English (no more than 1 page), outlining the project idea and approximate budget amount to balkantrust(a)gmfus.org. BTD does not recommend that organisations develop full project proposals unless invited to do so by BTD program staff. Proposals will be accepted and determinations of funding made on a rolling basis (there are no application deadlines). Final approval will be made by BTD’s Grant Review Committee and, if over $25,000, final approval will also be determined by GMF’s Board of Trustees. The review process generally takes 2 – 4 months after the receipt of the proposal. Applicants are requested to submit only one proposal at a time.

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