Micro-Grants Program and Eligibility
The WMI Micro-Grants Program is open exclusively to all WMI Graduate Scholars. Preference is given to Graduates who are actively involved in Fellowship groups if present within their nation and participation in WMI’s Scholar Journey opportunities. Only applications from WMI Graduate Scholars will be reviewed and funded.
The WMI Micro-Grants Program will provide a one-time grant or matching grant of $100 to $1000 USD to help start, or significantly expand, a business, community-based organization (CBO), non-governmental organization (NGO), community service project or community event.
While we do not expect grantees to pay back any of the funds received from the WMI Micro-Grants Program, we do need and require the submission of reports to WMI on activities undertaken and funds spent.
In order to enhance the positive learning experience for our Graduate Scholars and create the largest sustainable benefit for those who engage with projects, WMI has lengthened the application period and will provide direct coaching for program planning.
In almost all cases, an application will need to go through several drafts. Because of this, the Micro-Grant program application schedule has changed so that initial applications will be accepted once a year on October 15.
During October and November applicants will be given extensive feedback on their application and the design of their program. They will be expected to provide revisions of their application and communicate regularly with WMI Staff, Nicole Schmitz, Graduate Scholar Coordinator. The final application submission will be due on December 1, with review of the final application, and an award of grants to be determined and announced by January 1.
- Initial MG Application Submission: October 15
- Review & Revision Coaching: October & November
- Final Revised MG Application Due: December 1
- Award Announcement: January 1
- MG Funds Sent: First week of February
Application and Supporting Resources
Step 2: Download the WMI MG Planning Timeline and WMI MG Budget & Six-Month Expense & Revenue Budget
Step 3: Prepare answers for the WMI MG Program Application, write your formal project proposal, complete the Planning Timeline and Budget(s) before the application form (online GoogleForm).
Step 4: Complete the WMI MG Program Application, attach the Formal Project Proposal, WMI MG Planning Timeline, the WMI MG Budget & Six-Month Expense & Revenue Budget (if applicable) and submit!
Step 5: Receive a confirmation email from WMI Staff confirming that your application submission is complete and all file formats are accessible.
Note: All applications and supporting documents must be completed in English.
Strategies for Successful Applications
DETAILED PLANNING: Successful programs are ones that are extremely well planned in advance, thus we will not be funding programs without evidence of careful planning. Careful planning must be applied to all stages of the application; needs assessment, implementation planning, developing a support team, budgetary needs, financial projections, partner/other funding sources, and the measurement of results.
Application Tip: WMI provides application coaching for all applicants.
LOCAL COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT: The most successful projects are those that are also supported by the local community. We want to see partners and contributions made on behalf of others who support your idea. WMI Micro-Grant funding can make up a significant part of the project budget, but not all of the funds necessary to implement a program.
Application Tip: WMI requires and looks for detailed community interest and contributions within project proposals. This may be in the form of financial donations or in-kind donations. WMI will also provide awards that are aligned with the “matching funds” model.
MEASURING OUTCOMES: We believe that monitoring and evaluation are extremely important aspects for all projects (even our own!).
Application Tip: All projects will need to have a method for showcasing or measuring impact. For some projects this may be a pre-and-post knowledge survey, for other projects it might relate to financial reports and activities undertaken to raise sales, etc. WMI staff will be assisting with this element of program planning during the revision stage in October and November.
ENCOURAGING SUSTAINABILITY: Except in a rare “one-off” program, the Graduate Scholar should be looking for ways to make the program sustainable so that it can continue in the future.
Application Tip: Sustainability of your project will need to be detailed within the application. WMF staff will be assisting with this element of program planning during the revision stage in October and November.
GRADUATE SCHOLAR’S DIRECT INVOLVEMENT: Although we are enthusiastic about the many good programs that our Graduate Scholars may know of, Micro-Grants are not a vehicle for simply passing a donation along to a favorite charity or group of individuals in need of funding. There must be substantial direct involvement by the Graduate Scholar in all aspects of the project.
Application Tip: The Graduate Scholar’s role in implementing the project must be clearly defined with responsibilities and tasks.