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Global Financing Facility announces CFPs for Sustainable Scale-Up of Innovations for Saving Mothers and Newborns at Birth

The Global Financing Facility (GFF), in partnership with Laerdal Global Health and the Government of Norway, has announced a Call for Proposals from organizations which can accelerate uptake of proven innovations to reduce maternal and newborn mortality around the time of birth and in the immediate postnatal period.

This call supports countries with high maternal and newborn mortality to scale up proven innovations to reduce maternal and newborn mortality around and just after birth. This responds to increasing demand from countries to expand and sustain innovations that support their health and nutrition priorities by tackling critical bottlenecks to improved outcomes at scale.

In collaboration with national governments, the goal is to demonstrate and document how accelerated and sustainable delivery of such innovations will help countries achieve the life-saving impacts required to meet ambitious maternal and newborn mortality targets and, through this, facilitate further implementation across relevant GFF countries.


The goal of the Innovation-to-Scale initiative is to show significant population-level impact on maternal and neonatal mortality around the time of birth and in the immediate postnatal period. Impact requires effective implementation at sufficient scale, and is the product of “three D’s” – Discovery, i.e. proving that an innovation is efficacious in reducing mortality; Development, i.e. having the tools to deliver such an innovation in actual field conditions, such as training materials for health workers; and Delivery, i.e. being able to actually achieve a quality outcome at scale.

The emphasis in this call is on Delivery and Impact, which includes both improved quality dimensions and significantly accelerated uptake within a three-year timeframe, compared to current uptake. Proposals that are focused on Discovery will not be funded under this Call and only limited resources should be devoted to further Development, i.e. the tools required to achieve quality scale-up should already be available. The intent is to document the country-level impact achieved, and through this create a global public good, with new knowledge, in terms of both technologies and implementation, that is available to all.

Funding Information

Five grants are expected to be awarded through this Call, each with an expected implementation period of three years from inception of activities. Each grant is expected to be up to $5 million, and funding may be provided in multiple tranches.

Eligible applicants and Broad Criteria for Proposals

  • Proposals are preferred from local in-country implementing organizations or, possibly, implementing organizations that operate at country-level in one or more GFF countries; they can be submitted in collaboration and/or in consortium with international and/or other local partners, such as professional associations or private sector service delivery organizations, as dictated by the requirements of the proposal objectives. It is critical that the proposal addresses a critical bottleneck to achieving impact on maternal and newborn mortality, as identified in national health development plans/strategies or in GFF investment cases. While not required, to facilitate coordination with related country activities, representation in the GFF country platform by the applicant is desirable.
  • Applications must include documentation that shows engagement and involvement of the ministries of health and any other relevant ministries, demonstrating local ownership of the proposed program of work and the potential commitment for uptake beyond the three-year grant.
  • Proposals may either focus on achieving impact in a single country or multiple countries, whichever approach lends itself to being most truly catalytic in achieving rapid impact, including acceleration of programs already underway.

Proposal Format and Detailed Criteria

  • In addition to conforming to the objectives and eligibility criteria outlined above, submitted proposals must:
    • Be conducted in current GFF countries, which included 27 countries as of March 2019, in those countries that have prioritized maternal and neonatal mortality reduction.
    • Include documentation that the proposed interventions are already past proof-of-concept and are scalable including, as appropriate, reference to relevant studies/publications as well as prior experience in the country/countries proposed.
    • Include an estimate of lifesaving impact on maternal and newborn mortality, in terms of both outcome-level changes as well as mortality impact.
    • Include a description of plans for integration with national health strategies or GFF investment cases, including demonstrated local ownership, pathway to full-scale deployment and financial sustainability.
  • The initial submission of the proposal should be a maximum of three pages (minimum 11-point font), and include:
    • Title,
    • Objective Statement, including specific issue to be addressed,
    • Description of intervention and methodology, including evidence of lifesaving impact,
    • Geographic scope,
    • Description of results to be measured and anticipated impact,
    • Plan for sustainability, including financial sustainability through integration with national plans and/or GFF Investment Cases,
    • Budget, minimally including Personnel, Equipment and Commodities, Other Direct Costs (including travel), and Indirect Costs (e.g. overhead, fees).
  • Supplemental material in annexes should include up to six one-page c.v.’s for key members of the project team, commitment letters of either in-kind or financial resources from named collaborating partners (if applicable), a graphical presentation (maximum of six substantive slides), and (optionally) a multimedia presentation (e.g. up to a five-minute video) that helps describe fully the intent of the proposal.

How to Apply

Deadline: 30 April 2019

Proposals should be submitted at the address given on the website with the subject line “Innovation-to-Scale query” or “Innovation-to-Scale proposal”, as appropriate.

Eligible Countries: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Congo DR, Cote d Ivoire, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Guinea, Haiti, Indonesia, Kenya, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali Mozambique, Myanmar, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Uganda, Vietnam

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