BASE launched its first call in February 2023 to offer a one-year grant of $40,000.00 USD for the development of eight climate solutions led by local communities or organizations, focused on tropical forest management in the Global South.  

Landing page 

For this inaugural call, more than 70 local organizations referred by our partners and aligned initiatives applied.  

This map showcases some of the projects that applied to BASE’s first call of grants-

An innovative approach was designed to expedite and simplify the development of the climate rationale for the proposal and enhance the engagement of both the grantee and the local communities. The main elements that can be highlighted are the following:  

During the application stage, applicants were given the freedom to choose from three different options to explain the climate rationale -video, essay or template. This flexibility ensured that diverse voices and creative expressions were accommodated. Secondly, applicants were requested to provide information on their understanding of existing climate-related risks, impacts, vulnerabilities, and coping strategies; this information helped to infer the climate rationale behind their proposals. All the process was held in four languages (Spanish, Portuguese, French and English) and continuous support was provided from BASE’s team throughout the application process to assist applicants navigate climate finance and project development. Once grantees were selected, a dedicated researcher would be hired by BASE to work closely with them to advance the transformation of their territories while generating evidence of how the proposed intervention contributes to climate mitigation and/or adaptation. As a result, they will refine the climate rationale of their project, furthering the understanding of effective, community-led climate action. 

The selection process was undertaken in close collaboration with BASE’s members and other like-minded organizations and resulted in the selection of eight initiatives led by local organizations. 

From the projects selected, three are being implemented in Latin America (Costa Rica, Ecuador and Brazil), three in Africa (Ghana, Democratic Republic of Congo and Cameroon) and two in Asia (Indonesia).   

PDF brochure: Find out more about the process and selected initiatives in the brochure  

Once the implementation stage started, a selection process to hire the researcher was conducted in close collaboration with the grantee to ensure that the chosen candidate possessed both a robust academic background and a deep familiarity with the local context. The objective is to strike a harmonious balance between climate science data, mainly derived from secondary sources like IPCC, and local and traditional knowledge, primarily acquired through qualitative firsthand information gathered directly from the communities. The latter is key as this research process hopes to deeply understand how local level actors and communities relate to perceive their climate risks in relation to their development priorities, and livelihoods.  

Besides the climate rationale challenge, BASE’s approach will also uplift some of the burden of what grantees are usually expected to do on their own, mainly: (1) simplifying the process of preparing a proposal (simpler and flexible formats, different languages, guidance on how to complete them), sharing advances and accepting flexible ways for providing evidence of the implementation of activities, by focusing on trust relationships; (2) offering support every step of the way with the main aim of addressing language barriers and lack of familiarity with technical terms, promptly addressing inquiries, providing multiple rounds of feedback, thereby preventing discouragement by the process.  

PDF Researchers: Find out more about the researchers  

As the implementation of the projects unfolds and the research process offers the initial results, BASE’s first track will implement concrete actions to combat the climate crisis and unravel a new approach to develop the climate rationale of projects. The latter will include the following actions: 

  • STRENGTHENING CAPACITIES: We acknowledged the necessity of establishing an “Academy” aimed at enabling researchers to deepen their understanding of climate rationale and integrated analytical methods. Throughout the research process, the coordination team of researchers will offer support to streamline research activities and enable shared learning experiences. 
  • EMBRACING FLEXIBILITY: The sessions held at the Academy will be recorded, posted on YouTube with subtitles, and additional individual sessions will be available if needed to overcome language barriers. 
  • FOSTERING A SOUTH-SOUTH LEARNING COMMUNITY: We aim for researchers to learn from one another across different countries and regions. 

Tracking the climate rationale of climate funding is a way to ensure accountability in addressing this urgent global challenge and with this and the new grant schemes to be implemented in the future. BASE intends to provide a concrete input to the climate finance landscape to the need to streamline the development of a solid climate rationale that can help distinguish a climate project from environmental or development initiatives. This differentiation can serve as evidence of the funding’s impact in combatting the climate crisis.