Grants for Enhancing Women Entrepreneurship in Africa


Deadline: 26-May-21
The African Development Bank has invited proposals for Enhancing Women Entrepreneurship Enablers For Stronger Women SMES In Africa.

Affirmative Finance Action for Women in Africa (AFAWA), is a flagship program that specifically focuses on increasing inclusive finance for women entrepreneurs on the continent. AFAWA’s primary objective is to bridge the $42 billion finance gap for women entepreneurs in Africa and to unlock their entrepreneurial capacity and full potential.


The call for proposals will be financed through the Gender Equality Trust Fund (GETF) of the Africa Development Bank Group.

Through the proposed interventions, the enablers must demostrate increased access to finance, skills and mentorship. The Bank seeks proposals that demonstrate the following themes:

  • Track record in supporting women SMEs
  • Innovation and strong development impact;
  • Mobilization of additional funding;
  • Partnership with both public and private sectors;
  • Additionality and value for money;
  • Long term plan and sustainability.
  • Collaboration between two or several applicant enablers.

Submitted proposals will:

  • Demonstrate innovative approaches to build a supportive ecosystem for women’s
  • entrepreneurship aimed at improving access to finance for WSMEs,
  • Develop innovative ways to disseminate advisory services adressing capacity constraints,
  • skills enhancement and digital presences for WSMEs,
  • Enhance visibility and access to mentorship and role models for WSMEs.

Funding Information

  • Funding requests may be for a specific project or for an indicative program of several projects, or over several countries.
  • The minimum threshold for requesting funding from this call for proposal is USD 100,000 and the maximum threshold is USD 250,000.

Geographical Scope
To align with the AFAWA Guarantee for Growth 1st year program roll-out, preference will be given to proposal from the following countries:
Democratic Republique of Congo (DRC),
South Africa,

Funding Principles and Criteria

  • The project duration should not exceed 2 (two) years for national projects and 3 (three) years for regional projects.
  • The Bank invites women business associations, incubators, accelerators, cooperatives, civil society organizations and other entities to share proposals aligned to the objectives and themes of this call for proposals using the attached template.
  • Proposal should strive to wherever possible align with national or regional priorities on access to financial services/financial inclusion for WSMEs.
  • Recipients and project sponsors should be Africa-based or provide evidence of partnership with African entities and show that the proposed activities, operations and projects will be implemented in Africa.
  • While not an eligibility requirement, particular attention will be paid to potential projects which benefit two or more countries and regions as this will strengthen regional integration and maximize the impact of resources. Due account will also be taken of the economic and social development plans of regional member countries.
  • Applicants must be legally constituted institutions that have been in existence for at least three years.

For more information, visit

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