African Leaders of Tomorrow Scholarships Fund: Call for Proposals


This call is closed. The deadline for submissions was July 8, 2014.

The Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development (DFATD), in partnership with The MasterCard Foundation, is launching a call for proposals to solicit proposals from eligible Canadian organizations to implement, manage and promote the African Leaders of Tomorrow Scholarships Fund (the initiative). DFATD and The MasterCard Foundation will each contribute $5 million to the initiative over five years. A Canadian organization or a consortium will be selected with this process to implement the initiative in its entirety.

The initiative, created in honour of the late Nelson Mandela, aims to provide promising, young professionals from sub-Saharan Africa with scholarships at a master's degree level to access high-quality academic and professional training in Canada in order to prepare them to advance economic prosperity, social justice and equity in Africa.

The initiative is intended to:

  • enrich the academic and professional experience of promising young African professionals by allowing them to undertake graduate level education in Canada;
  • prepare the next generation of innovative leaders in Africa to actively contribute to their local and global communities;
  • enhance knowledge and experience of future African leaders working in governance, public policy and administration; and
  • strengthen the relationship between Canada and Africa.

Only Canadian organizations that are qualified donees as defined by Canada's Income Tax Act will be eligible for this call for proposals. For additional information regarding qualified donees, consult Canada Revenue Agency's Charities and giving glossary. Organizations must meet all eligibility criteria and every requirement indicated in the application form  to be considered for the African Leaders of Tomorrow Scholarships Fund call for proposals either on their own or as the lead organization in a consortium. Canadian organizations that do not meet the eligibility requirements may form a consortium with another organization meeting all required eligibility criteria.

Canadian organizations may submit only one application to the African Leaders of Tomorrow Scholarships Fund call for proposals either on their own or as the lead in a consortium.

Preference will be given to initiatives that include innovative elements. Innovation is defined as improved solutions to international development challenges. For example, this could include the development or implementation of new or improved tools, approaches, technologies, services, practices or processes. Innovation could also seek to improve the systems that already exist to make them more efficient and effective (i.e. better, cheaper, faster).

Scholarships parameters

The following parameters for scholarships under this initiative have been defined:

  • master's degree program (up to two years) in public administration or public policy;
  • placement in select Canadian universities (English/French) across Canada with recognized public administration/policy programs or equivalent, with consideration to be given to those universities having prior connections with institutions in sub-Saharan Africa;
  • engagement of scholars with a local community/district/government; and
  • exposure to Canadian government institutions.

For more information, please download the application form (PDF, 2.1 MB, 24 pages).

If you are experiencing issues downloading the application form, please visit the Important Note section on the main Calls for Proposals page.

Application assessment

DFATD and The MasterCard Foundation will jointly review and assess only completed proposals. Failure to meet the eligibility criteria or to provide all requested information will result in a rejection of the proposal.

DFATD and The MasterCard Foundation will assess all proposals on a comparative basis against the nine assessment criteria below, which are explained further on DFATD's website:

  1. rationale for the initiative
  2. managing for results and responding to risks
  3. initiative plan
  4. environmental sustainability
  5. gender equality
  6. governance
  7. sustainability of results
  8. financial information
  9. organizational ability relevant to the initiative

DFATD and The MasterCard Foundation will also assess the following additional criterion, which is further explained in the application form:

  1. innovation

Application process

  • Please read and review the African Leaders of Tomorrow Scholarships Fund call for proposals application form thoroughly.
  • Create or update your organization profile through Partners@Development.
  • Upload the completed application form and all of the mandatory documents listed in the Eligibility Requirements section of the application form to your organization's profile to Partners@Development. Documents that are not available in an electronic format must be scanned and uploaded to Partners@Development. DFATD will not accept applications or supporting documentation by mail, email or fax.
  • Submit your proposal before the deadline.

If a Canadian organization does not click on Submit after uploading their application form and supporting documents, the proposal will be deemed a draft and will not be assessed.

To ensure transparency and fairness, DFATD and The MasterCard Foundation will not discuss applications with applicants until all organizations have been notified of decisions about their applications. However, applicants can submit questions about the application process by email to

DFATD will acknowledge the receipt of questions within one business day, and will post all questions and answers concerning the call for proposals on its public website. Information posted on DFATD's website, including frequently asked questions about applying for funding and the frequently asked questions for this call, represent the only official interpretation of the application process.

Applicants will be advised of the results once a decision has been made. The successful applicant will be contacted by both DFATD and The MasterCard Foundation to discuss the details of the funding agreements. DFATD will also send a letter to all unsuccessful candidates to inform them of the decision.

Software for using fillable forms

To download, view, and complete forms, you need Adobe Acrobat Reader® version 9.1 or later.


Proposals received after the deadline, July 8, 2014, at 3 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time (UTC-4), will not be accepted.

After submission, you will receive an email confirming that your proposal has been received. If you have not received a confirmation email, your proposal will not be considered received.