Mountains and islands make up 30 percent of the earth's surface area and are home to approximately 1.3 billion people. Mountain and island communities are among the worst hit by climate change, suffering from high rates of poverty and hunger and struggling to cope with natural disasters.

The Mountain Partnership Secretariat (MPS) at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), together with the Global Environment Facility Small Grants Programme (GEF SGP), implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), are launching a new grant programme to increase mountain and island communities’ resilience by supporting innovative entrepreneurship in agricultural and textile value chains through the provision of grants, technical assistance and capacity development.

About the grant programme

Titled “Business Incubator and Accelerator (BIA) for Mountains and Islands”, the grant programme will be implemented in the Dominican Republic, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Fiji, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, Nepal, Peru, the Philippines and Uganda. 

The BIA for Mountains and Islands has a total budget of USD 150 000 to be granted in each participating country. Grants will range from USD 15 000 to USD 50 000 per project. Additional funding has been allocated for technical assistance and capacity development.

How to apply

This is the online application portal to submit project proposals to receive grants through the BIA for Mountain and Islands. Applicants will be required to present documentation to prove that they meet the eligibility criteria (see below).

Before submitting a project proposal, applicants should carefully review the Applicant Information Booklet, available in English and Spanish.

For questions and clarification, please contact the BIA Team at Any request for clarifications or questions submitted after the application deadline will not be considered.

Eligibility criteria

To be considered eligible to receive a grant through the BIA for Mountains and Islands, a project proposal must meet all of the following criteria:

  • The lead applicant is either a non-governmental organization that is at least one year old, OR a Producer Organization (i.e. cooperative, community-based organization, association) that is at least one year old and has at least five members; 
  • The lead applicant is formally registered in the country where the project is based; 
  • The lead applicant submits only one application; 
  • The lead and partner applicants are not bankrupt, liquidated or administered by the courts;  
  • The lead applicant and/or partner applicant operate in a mountainous area1 or on an island in one of the following countries: the Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Fiji, Kyrgyzstan, Ethiopia, Mongolia, Nepal, Peru, the Philippines or Uganda; 
  • The lead applicant provides all the necessary documentation proving that the above criteria are met; 
  • The proposed project includes an applicant's matching contribution of no less than 50 percent of the requested grant; 
  • The lead applicant provides evidence of ability (i.e. physical and legal) to use capital and/or other assets that are involved in their investment plan (i.e. agricultural land, building, machinery, labour, skills, etc.); 
  • The lead applicant is a member of the Mountain Partnership (MP). If not, the lead applicant shall join the MP before the establishment of the grant agreement; and
  • The proposed project targets one of the following areas of work:  
    • Biodiversity; 
    • Sustainable forest management; 
    • Climate change mitigation and community-based adaptation;  
    • Natural resources management; and/or 
    • Strengthening of local economies.



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