SEED Awards:Call for Applications

2014-04-05 - 2014-04-05

Are you a start-up entrepreneur? Are you a women-led enterprise? Does your business or business idea integrate social and environmental benefits, solving pressing local issues? Do you need support to help to establish and grow your enterprise?
If you meet SEED’s eligibility criteria, you could apply now for the 2011 SEED Awards for entrepreneurship in sustainable development and the SEED Gender Equality Award
Partners in the SEED Initiative are pleased today to announce the opening of the call for applications. This year, in addition to partnering with the European Union on the Awards, SEED has entered into a partnership with UN Women, the newly established UN body that is dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women.
For the 2011 cycle, SEED intends to make up to:  14 awards for initiatives in South Africa·  20 awards for initiatives in Burkina Faso, Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Rwanda, Senegal·  and 5 awards, including the 2011 Gender Equality Award, for initiatives in other countries (except countries that are OECD members).·
Each SEED Award Winner will receive a package of tailored support services consisting of:  assistance and advice on developing and improving the initiative’s business and financial plan·
 a two-day in-country business-oriented workshop, involving all partners of the initiative, and covering the key elements and factors which help to build a successful social and environmental enterprise·
 participation in a high-level international awards ceremony with senior government and UN officials, development institutions and businesses·
 profiling of the initiative nationally, regionally and internationally·
 a marketing flyer and banner for the initiative·
 assistance with access to relevant organisations, businesses, and to other SEED winners and SEED alumni, and SEED Partners, Supporters and Associates·
 a financial contribution of USD5000 to cover the initiative’s most pressing needs, as agreed between the winner and SEED.·
The deadline for applications is August 22nd 2011, 23:59 Central European Time (CET). Please apply online or download the application form from the SEED Initiative website at
Who should apply?
Detailed eligibility criteria are available at together with details of previous Award Winners. In summary, you are eligible to apply for a 2011 SEED Award if your initiative: a) demonstrates entrepreneurship and innovation
b) delivers economic, social and environmental benefits
c) has the intention and potential to become financially sustainable
d) is a partnership between different stakeholder groups
e) is locally driven or locally led
f) has potential for scale up or significant replication
g) is in the early stages of implementation
h) is in a country with a developing or emerging economy
If you want to apply for the SEED Gender Equality Award, your initiative, in addition to the above eight criteria, also needs to: i) be women-led or owned and prioritise gender equality and/or women’s empowerment as a core objective(s)
SEED Award Winners in 2010 included, among others, an initiative in Kenya that turns waste into fencing posts; a bamboo bike producer, and a producer of baskets made from plastic and clothes scrap in Ghana; an initiative in Sri Lanka that links small-scale farmers to the market via a unified brand; a partnership in China producing solar concentrators that harnesses the sun's energy to provide portable heat; an initiative that provides small landholders with a set of agricultural tools collected in a canvas backpack and a business initiative in Colombia headed by a local NGO that uses fruit and pulp as ingredients for the local cosmetics and food industries.
How to Apply
You can apply online at the SEED Initiative website or you can download an application form and email it to [email protected] If you are unable to submit your application electronically, please contact the SEED Initiative by email or phone (+49 30 89 00 068 99).
Submissions will be accepted up till 22nd August 2011, 23:59 CET. Late submissions will not be considered. Proposals that are shortlisted will be offered feedback and invited to submit additional information in September 2011.
About the SEED Initiative
SEED was founded by UNEP, UNDP, and IUCN at the 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg. Partners in the SEED Initiative in addition to the founding partners are the governments of Germany, India, the Netherlands, South Africa, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States of America; the European Union; Conservation International; and SEED’s corporate partner, Hisense.
The SEED Initiative identifies and supports promising small scale start-up social and environmental entrepreneurs around the globe, entrepreneurs that while working towards a greener economy also tackle poverty, marginalisation and social exclusion. SEED provides these social entrepreneurs with know-how and networks, taking the lessons learnt at local level up to decision-makers to promote evidence-based policy making.