Participation Programme (PP)

The Participation Programme is a complement to UNESCO’s regular activities which facilitates the implementation of national, sub-regional, inter-regional and regional projects submitted by Member States and NGOs directly related to the activities of the Organization.

The Participation Programme is a complement to UNESCO’s regular activities which facilitates the implementation of national, sub-regional, inter-regional and regional projects submitted by Member States and NGOs directly related to the activities of the Organization.

  •          Principles

The Participation Programme is one of the means employed by the Organization to achieve its objectives, through participation in activities carried out by Member States or Associate Members, or by territories, organization or institutions, in its fields of competence. This participation is designed to strengthen the partnership between UNESCO and its Member States and make that partnership more effective through a sharing of contributions.


Requests shall be submitted to the DirectorGeneral by the Member States through the National Commissions for UNESCO. The projects or action plans submitted by the beneficiaries under the Participation Programme must relate to the priorities of the Organization, in particular to the major programmes interdisciplinary projects, and activities to benefit Africa, youth and gender equality, as well as activities of the National Commissions for UNESCO. It is understood that no financing will be provided for supplies and equipment which are not directly linked to operational works within the framework of these projects or for the recurrent costs of the beneficiary organizations.


Each Member State may submit seven (7) requests or projects, which must be numbered in an indicative order of priority from one to seven. Requests or projects from national non-governmental organizations will be included in the quota submitted by each Member State.


Member States must include at least one Gender equality project among their first four priorities.

International non-governmental organizations in an official partnership with UNESCO, of which the list is established by the Executive Board, may submit up to two (2) requests under the Participation Programme for projects with subregional, regional or interregional impact,provided that their request is supported by at least the Member State where the project is to be implemented and another Member State concerned by the request. In the absence of supporting letters, no such requests may be considered.

  •          Submissions:

Requests should be submitted as soon as possible after UNESCO General Conference session and no later than the following deadlines: 28 February for Africa, small island developing States (SIDS) and least developed countries (LDCs), and 31 August for all other eligible countries, except for requests for emergency assistance or a regional project, which may be submitted at any time in the biennium (equivalent deadlines will apply for the following financial cycle);

For activities of a regional character, requests are limited to three per region and must be submitted by one Member State or a group of Member States. Such requests must be supported by at least three Member States (or Associate Members) concerned, and will not come within the quota of seven requests submitted by each Member State; they will be evaluated and screened by the UNESCO HQ Secretariat in accordance with the procedure established for the processing of requests submitted under the Participation Programme.

  •          Forms of assistance

The applicant chooses the form of assistance, and may request either:

(a) A financial contribution; or(b) implementation by UNESCO at Headquarters or in the field. In both cases, assistance may take the following forms:

(i)The services of specialists and consultants, not including staff costs and administrative support;

(ii) Fellowships and study grants;

(iii) Publications, periodicals and documentation;

(iv)Equipment(for operational programme purposes in accordance with the list of benchmarks annexed to the Participation Programme circular letter of the Director-General sent at the beginning of each biennial budget cycle);

(v)Conferences, meetings, seminars and training courses: translation and interpretation services (Participants’ travel costs, the services of consultants, and other services deemed necessary by all concerned (not including those of UNESCO staff members).

  •          Total amount of assistance

Whichever of the above forms of assistance is requested, the total value of the assistance provided for each request shall not be in excess of $26,000 for a national project or activity, $35,000 for a subregional or interregional project or activity, and $46,000 for a regional project or activity. The financial provision made by the applicant must be sufficient to implement the activity satisfactorily. The activity must be executed and all funds disbursed in accordance with the Financial Regulations of the Organization.

  • PP Grants to Rwanda micro-projects submitted to PP through CNRU(1995-2015)

Since 1995 up to 2015, through Rwanda National Commission for UNESCO (CNRU), Rwandan micro-projects submitted to UNESCO PP every biennium (2 years) by, different institutions(public & private)  including schools, young and women associations, local NGOs, and few individuals have been approved and received  about  1,447,404 USD (grant) . Thus a lot of activities have been carried out (ICT equipment, solar energy, consultant services, workshops and conferences, fellowships, publications, trainings, etc.).

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