With the goal of strengthening the Rapid Fund program and its impact, Community Resources is in the process of updating the program for the next fiscal year. Our goal is to ensure that the grantmaking process is responsive to the needs of grantees, lightweight, and timely. We want to ensure that funding is invested in impactful projects with efforts geared towards contributing to the mission of Wikimedia Movement. We will also be looking to support the regional funding committees and community members' participation in the decision-making process. Our hope is to catalyze coordinated and collaborative efforts in communities.
The changes include a review of the:
- grant application form,
- proposal review process,
- eligibility criteria,
- open grant limit,
- timelines, and
These changes are based on feedback, observations, and conversations with grantee partners, Program Officers, and the learnings from the implementation of the fund thus far. We also considered the need to respond and serve the increased interest and uptake of the program across all regions. We will host office hours to support grantees who wish to learn more about the changes and address any questions or concerns they may have.
The Wikimedia Foundation Grantee Portal (Fluxx) and Meta-Wiki pages application button, are deactivated while we update the forms to reflect the new process. The goal of re-activating the application process starting June 7, 2023. The deadline for the first cycle of applications will be July 1, 2023.
Please see further details of the changes below.
Changes to specific eligibility criteria Edit
Experience and team:
- Applicants need to demonstrate current editing history and experience on the target Wikimedia project(s) mentioned in their grant application. They also need to have organizing experience or training experience. For example, if the applicant is planning to train people on creation or improvement of Wikidata items, the applicant should demonstrate editing and training history on Wikidata.
- Team members involved in the grant application need to be aware of their involvement in the project. It is the applicant's responsibility to inform team members about the project and application.
Individuals and groups:
- Board members, leaders (contacts submitted to AffCom), presidents, executive directors, and other paid staff or contractors of Wikimedia affiliates/groups/organizations with existing Wikimedia Foundation Fund awards are not eligible for individual grant requests.
- Individuals cannot apply and receive funding on behalf of two different groups or organizations.
- Staff and contractors of the Wikimedia Foundation are not eligible for the Rapid Fund program.
General Support Fund recipients:
- General Support Fund grantee partners are not eligible for the Rapid Fund program. Grantee partners needing additional funding need to share the request with the Regional Program Officer as an amendment to the current General Support Fund.
Funding travel and equipment:
- No funding for travel scholarships or conference participation. Rapid Funds are project-based resources and only fund travel related to the direct implementation of the project.
- Equipment purchase is allowed for groups, organizations and affiliates. Equipment-based grants need to clearly demonstrate how the equipment will be shared with other community members. An equipment log or list must be publicly available for community members and included in the application. Examples of equipment funded with Rapid Funds are: laptops, cameras and projector, routers, external drives.
Grant amounts and limits:
- Individual Rapid Fund limit is 10,000 USD per fiscal year of Wikimedia Foundation (e.g. July 1, 2023 - June 30, 2024)
- Groups (formal and informal), organizations, and affiliates Rapid Fund limit is 10,000 USD per fiscal year of Wikimedia Foundation (e.g. July 1, 2023 - June 30, 2024). Groups will be encouraged to have access to a joint account.
- All grant applications will be distributed in the applicant’s local currency unless advised otherwise. In some cases when it is not possible, we will send the amount in USD.
- Individuals can have up to one (1) open project funded through Rapid Funds. Before applying for a new rapid grant you will need to complete the currently funded project and submit the report. In some cases, the Program Officer may request to review the report before applicant is able to submit a new grant request.
- Affiliates and other organizations can have two (2) open projects through Rapid Funds.
- We recommend applying for micro-funding programs and other similar opportunities in local communities where they are available. Where you can coordinate and work with other groups in your geography.
- Applicants with requests for equipment hire to support their activities - will be requested to share information on how those involved as participants will be supported beyond the training to enable continued learning and engagement with the target Wikimedia projects.
- Application form was reviewed and simplified only to the most useful and meaningful for the applicant and reviewing process. The reporting form will be reviewed and simplified as well.
- New applicants will need to submit a copy of their identification document during the first steps of the application process.
- Reporting will be linked to the application process to support learning. This means that before applying for a new grant, applicants should submit their report for previous grants on time. Wherever possible, grantee partners and Program Officers can have learning conversations. We will encourage learning spaces between Rapid Fund partners across the regions to support exchange of learnings, ideas and explore collaboration opportunities.
We have increased the timeline of the rapid fund by 10 days to support timely application, reviewing and processing of grants while taking into account the increased interest in the program against available capacity . Here is what a typical the timeline of each round and that of cycle 1:
|Submission deadline of applications for Cycle 1|
||Right after the previous step.|
||1 week after the decision day|
||Around one week|
Cycle 1 - July 1 - August 28, 2023 Edit
|July 1, 2023||Submission deadline of applications for Cycle 1|
|July 3 - July 10, 2023||
|July 10 - August 7, 2023||
|August 7 - August 10, 2023||
|August 14 - August 28, 2023||
|August 28, 2023||
|September 1, 2023||
||1 week after the decision day|
*The full timeline will be published on June 1, 2023.
We would like to thank the grantee partners and community members for sharing their feedback on how they continue to experience the Rapid Fund program, and we hope the changes result in an improved program that supports the resourcing needs of efforts advancing the mission of the Wikimedia Movement.
Conversation hours on Rapid Fund changes Edit
- See conversation hours at: Rapid#Conversation_hours.