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Open Call for Expressions of Interest Round II: GFCR Programme Convening Agents

The GFCR is the only global blended finance instrument dedicated to coral reefs and the first UN fund dedicated to SDG 14, ‘Life Below Water’. The Fund is driven by a coalition of private philanthropies, Member States, UN agencies, and impact investors with the aim to mobilise $625 million for coral reefs over the next 10 years. The GFCR leverages grant funding to unlock reef-positive private sector investments in blue economy that address drivers of reef degradation and facilitate blue recovery for communities. This blended finance approach seeks to foster an enabling environment where coral reef conservation initiatives are sustainably financed to reduce dependence on short-term grant funding. 

Convening Agents are designated country or regional programme leads that convene a consortium of local and international partners to implement activities under the Global Fund for Coral Reefs Theory of Change. The GFCR identifies Convening Agents with the capacity to deploy funds, monitor impact, identify co-implementers and scale reef-positive business models in each priority seascape. These Agents lead in identifying a range of local and specialist actors in the field through which investable projects can be incubated and financed. Convening Agents’ role in identifying and coordinating implementing partners to accelerate implementation and impact is a fundamental element of the GFCR approach to building resilience of priority coral reef ecosystems.  

Whilst maintaining a focus on achieving reef-positive impacts, the convening organization and consortium partners will be responsible for identifying and implementing programme activities and business models, delivering outputs, reporting narrative and financial achievements, as well as developing an annual workplan and budgets in close collaboration with the GFCR Global Team.


 Open Call 

The Call for Expressions of Interest for prospective Convening Agents is now open! The Global Fund for Coral Reefs is pleased to invite organisations to submit an Expression of Interest for the role of Convening Agent on regional programmes from the following listing: 

  • Gulf of Aqaba (Egypt, Jordan) 
  • Micronesia (Palau, Federated States of Micronesia, Marshal Islands) 
  • Eastern Melanesia and Polynesia (*country scope to be confirmed). 

The open call has also been extended to include two additional countries: 

  • Dominican Republic 
  • Viet Nam  

Please note that Fiji, Papua New Guinea, and Solomon Islands will not be included in the regional programme for Eastern Melanesia and Polynesia as GFCR programmes are already underway for these countries. Overseas territories are not eligible for this region are not eligble.  

Local organizations working in the above-listed geographies are encouraged to apply. If an applicant wishes to apply for more than one region, they must submit an additional application. Eligible applicants must be a non-profit, non-governmental organization or inter-governmental organization. 


Principles, Roles & Responsibilities 

Convening Agent roles and responsibilities include:  

  • Developing the vision and strategy to implement a blended finance approach to build resilience that includes “quick-wins” and a longer-term vision for generating sustainable revenue streams to address local drivers of coral reef degradation;
  • Responsible for the strategic guidance, management oversight and coordination;
  • Facilitates collaboration between recipient organizations, implementing partners, the host government and the local partners for programme implementation; 
  • Hosts the Management Unit responsible for operational and programmatic coordination;
  • Oversees day-to-day programme coordination, including coordination of all programme consortium partners,
  • Coordinates and compiles annual work plans and narrative reports, coordinates monitoring of annual targets; 
  • Conducts monitoring and evaluation or enlists a 3rd party to do so; 
  • Coordinates and compiles annual work plans and narrative reports, coordinates monitoring of annual targets; 
  • Facilitates the programme audits by a third party.  

Applicable programme principles include:  

  1. The Convening Agents are identified based on their mission, capacity to lead and implement (incl. geographical presence, past experience, results, knowledge and technical expertise, capacity to scale up innovative models and enable transformative actions), cost effectiveness (capacity for direct implementation and deploy innovative financial products) and other relevant variables.
  2. To avoid cascade of management fees, the GFCR recommends the selection of partners that have proven fiduciary records and the capacity to directly implement their foreseen interventions. For impact investment in private entities, one of the organizations must demonstrate that it has a system in place to manage such a modality or engage with UNCDF, a GFCR partner, who has in-house capacity to grant in this area. To note, UNCDF can support incubation of a blue economy pipeline through concessional loans, guarantees, repayable grants and other financial instruments.
  3. Establishment of strong impact groups/coordination mechanisms which could include a multi-stakeholder programme steering committee or reinforcement of existing groups.
  4. Inclusion of all stakeholders including governmental and civil society organisations (in particular, women’s organisations), networks ready to provide adequate support (resources, time and willingness to work together) framed with a clear definition of distinct roles and responsibilities.
  5. Development of financing strategies which promote innovative and sustainable blended solutions. To note, UNCDF – a core partner of the GFCR – can support incubation of a blue economy pipeline through concessional loans, guarantees, repayable grants and other financial instruments.  

Submission Process 

To submit an Expression of Interest for the role of Programme Convening Agent for one of the above listed geographies, please complete the form through the following link: 

Submission Portal Link

Submission Deadline: 5 November 2021  

Selected organisations will be contacted by the GFCR Secretariat by 12 November 2021 with requests for additional information and/or a request for the applicant to develop a programme concept note by mid-November 2021 for the GFCR Executive Board consideration. 

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