Support for organizations of disabled people
ABELIS Foundation is a development fund, founded by Finnish disabled people in 1998. We give financial support to organizations of disabled people in the South.
Our goal is to support activities, which promote
– Equal opportunities
– Independent living
– Human rights
– and Economic self-sufficiency of disabled people.
We give aid to organizations that are run by people with some type of disability: mobility impairment, visual impairment, hearing impairment or any other type of disability. We can also give aid to organizations that are run by parents of children with disabilities.
Special priority is given to human rights and to projects developed and implemented by disabled women.
Our grants are small seed funds ranging from USD 500 to USD 10,000 USD. They are one-time grants for new innovative projects, and we are not able to provide continuous funding.
Our board makes the decisions on which projects to support. The board members are disability activists who have experience in development co-operation. Most of the board members are themselves disabled.
The chairperson of Abilis Foundation is Mr. Kalle Konkkola, former chairperson of Disabled Peoples’ International.
The vice-chair person is Rev. Ari Suutaria. The other members of the board are Ms. Elisa Pelkonen, Mrs. Maija Konkkola, Ms. lrmeli Leinos, Mr. Jorma Kuosmanen and Mr. Pekka Tuoininen. Abilis Foundation has one paid employee, Mrs. Taija Heinonen, who has a physical impairment.
Occasionally, we have the opportunity to send one of our representatives to make a personal visit to some of the projects.
Abilis Foundation seeks funding for its activities from development funds of different governments, private funders and companies.
If you are a disabled person involved in a local organisation or network of disabled persons, we would be pleased to hear from you. This is a unique opportunity to get to work, helping disabled persons to help themselves! Abilis Foundation is looking for grassroots projects in which disabled persons are using their time and efforts on a voluntary basis. We would like to see that you plan well, but you can still make it a simple plan, using a set of guidelines which you can obtain from us. When you are well planned, you are halfway to having a successful project.
How to apply
Applicants must represent an organization, working group or network of disabled persons. Applicants must live in a country, which the United Nations and the OECD have defined as qualifying for Official Development Assistance.
How can we apply for a grant by Abilis?
We welcome applications any time. You can order our guidelines and application forms by contacting us.
Project applications will be judged according to the involvement of persons with disabilities, including their role.
– in coming up with the project idea.
– in committing their own resources to the project (including time).
– in the planning and implementation of the project.
– the numbers of disabled persons who will benefit from the project.
The project must be realistic in its scope and expected results. The application must show how the project will continue to benefit the community once the project’s funding term has been completed.
Abilis Foundation asks that two reference persons be provided that will offer an independent evaluation of the project’s feasibility. The reference persons should have thorough knowledge of the applicant organization, of the project plan and of the general conditions existing in the project area. However, they should not themselves benefit of the project directly. In other words, they should not be members or employees of the applicant organization.
There must be a minimum of 10 % of your own work or money contributing to the total cost of the project. The term of a project cannot exceed two years. There will be a 10 % hold-back on grants provided util the final report is submitted to Abilis Foundation.
The applications are first read by our secretary who may ask the applicant to provide more information if necessary. Then they are discussed in the next meeting of the board. The board may decide to accept a project for funding, to request for more information or to reject a project. In either case, the applicant is informed of the decision.
How are the grants paid?
When a project has been accepted for funding, we make a written agreement with the applicant where the organization agrees to spend the grant to the specific purpose stated in the application. We remit funds to the organization only after we have received this agreement back to us with signatures. The board makes its decisions in euro (a new European currency). The grants are still paid United States Dollars.
The grants are paid in three installments. The first installment is 50 per cent of the total grant, and it is paid right after we receive the agreement. When the first installment has been spent, the applicant should send us an interval report which describes the progress of your project and how you have spent the first installment. The second installment, 40 % of the total grant, will be paid after we receive this report.
When the project is over, the applicant organization drafts a final report on a special form, which we send to the applicant (or the same information can be provided in another format), The last installment, 10 Vo of the total grant, will be paid after we have received the final report and it has been accepted by our board. The report must be accompanied by the receipts, which correspond, to the specification of costs. There must also be a separate statement of a certified auditor attached to the report.
Can we submit another application?
Our funds are one-time grants. We support a given project only once. However, an organization that we have supported may apply for a grant for a new project after one year has elapsed from the date on which the final report on the first project was received and accepted. The second project must be something new and not a continuation of the earlier project, because we do not fund ongoing projects.
Some example of projects sanctioned by AF-
ln India projects have been sanctioned to many NGOs e.g. to AASHA-an alliance for the mental ill for gainful employment for people with psychiatric disability (5000), to EKTHA-Chennai-for consortium of people with cerebral palsy, autism, mental retardation (15852);to Bihar Viklang Kalyan Parishad for sensitization of the disabled about law on disability (8805), to National Centre for Promotion of employment for Disabled People-Delhi for including Disability in World Social Forum 2004(8280) etc.
(In bracket is the amount sanctioned)
Aleksanterinkatu 48 A
Tel.: + 358 9 682 1725
Fax:+358 9 6124 0333
Web site: http://www.abilis.fi/indexenglish.htm