2024 Open Call

Apply for our new Open Call

Innovation & high impact in addressing some of the most burning issues in online child safety.
Deadline for applications: 15 September, 2024

Safe Online is excited to announce a new USD 5 Million Global Open Call for Proposals.

This will expand Safe Online’s globally important role as an accelerator for new solutions to protect children and ensure they can harness the full wealth of knowledge and creativity available online.

With this new Open Call, Safe Online will continue to invest in a ‘whole system’ approach for maximum impact by supporting the work across multiple sectors in a coordinated manner to advance solutions to address online child sexual exploitation and abuse (CSEA) and related forms of harms to children. The investment approach builds on the vast amount of knowledge generated through Safe Online’s investments, as well as the latest data and evidence in the field and wider digital harms ecosystem.

To invest most effectively in the most burning issues in the online CSEA ecosystem, the 2024 Open Call is focused on innovation and high impact  

The new open call grows and diversifies the Safe Online Portfolio – currently at:

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Find out:

What we are looking to fund

Build the foundations of the ecosystem. Projects under this pillar strengthen systems, infrastructures and services to enable effective action to prevent and respond to online CSEA and related harms to children. They also aim to create incentives for action through norms change, policies and advanced regulation. 

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already invested across seven years (2017-2024) via four open calls and one tailored funding modality for over 50 grants.

Generate new evidence and data. Projects under this pillar generate action-oriented research and data insights on children’s and young people’s experiences online, emerging threats and trends in the technology space and on what works to tackle these issues. They also create and promote a global evidence base to support the ecosystem, increase alignments of efforts, improve investment targeting and maximise impact.  

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million (USD)

already invested via nearly 40 grants (2019-2024) to support evaluation, Disrupting Harm in 25 countries across six regions, and the Tech Coalition Safe Online Research Fund

Design, test and develop technology solutions. Projects under this pillar design, test and develop technology solutions that can feed into the wider ecosystem and support the whole system approach. They also reduce barriers to access to cutting-edge technologies in the online safety space and promote tools that are shareable, adaptable and create efficiencies in online CSEA prevention and response efforts at all levels

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million (USD)

already invested via four open calls for a total of nearly 40 grants awarded across four years (20202024)

Want to know more?

Read our full Call for Proposals document to dive deeper into our 2024 funding round

Find out:

How we select our grantees

Our principles

Seek synergies and complementarities across the priority areas of investment (Networks and Systems, Research and Data, and Technology Tools) and the Safe Online portfolio.

Add value and/or address gaps in the existing online CSEA ecosystem, does not duplicate, and/or builds upon and/or interacts with existing programmes/intervention, including strategic partnerships with Safe Online grantees and partners across levels and/or alignment with other relevant initiatives.

Seek applications with active involvement and leadership of local partners and authorities in the design and delivery of activities, with explicit and formal buy-in from necessary entities and communities.

Apply an innovative, holistic and evidence-based approach, and address interlinkages between in global digital agendas including cybersecurity, gender-based violence online, image based sexual abuse, violent extremism online, etc. Components are child rights-centred, recognising and reflecting the full spectrum of human rights, including but not limited to privacy and safety.

Ensure transparency with accountability mechanisms to ensure governing principles are adhered to and communicated clearly. Projects create open-source outputs and engage in open working techniques to the extent possible.

Seek applications that are representative and inclusive, including countries of applicants and key partners, team profile, and population focus, and include clear consideration of downstream implications with nuanced understanding of contextual factors and differential user-experiences.

Require and support child safeguarding policy development, and must be compliant with the relevant/applicable legislative, regulatory and enforcement frameworks, including data protection policy in alignment with relevant laws/guidance.

Require alignment of project activities with team capacity and budget allocation for most effective and impactful use of resources.

Seek applications with availability to match the funding, and a strong evaluation and impact assessment.

Selection criteria

All proposals received through Call for Proposals must comply with the following minimum mandatory criteria to be further considered for award:

Legal registration

All the entities shall be registered as a legal entity (nonprofit or for-profit organisation) in the country or countries of implementation.

Alignment with priority objectives

Safe Online will seek balance across all three priority areas of investment, selecting for review and awarding proposals that are most aligned with and make the most significant contribution to the Safe Online 2023–2025 strategy.

Safeguarding

Entities must have a safeguarding policy or similar in place (including data privacy) or will be willing to develop a policy. Entities shall also pass a PSEA assessment and other due diligence assessments run by UNICEF.

Organisational capacity and references

Entities shall be able to provide auditing records of the last two financial years (or justify why this is not possible).

Find out:

What we have to offer

Learn more about the Networks and Systems Pillar

Total offering: $2.5 million

Maximum funding: $250,000 for private companies; $500,000 for not-for-profit entities

Grant duration: 2 years

Build the foundations of the ecosystem at the national, regional and global levels to enable effective action to prevent and respond to online CSEA and related harms to children. This pillar aims to strengthen systems, key infrastructure and services as well as create incentives for action though changing norms, policies and advanced regulation.

Learn more about the Research and Data Pillar

Total offering: $1 million  

Maximum funding: $250,000

Grant duration: 2 years​

In light of this Open Call’s focus on innovation and high impact, proposed research and data projects should utilise new and novel methodologies, processes, tools and/or ways of working that aim to address a specific need or gap. We are keen to see proposals that build on and push the boundaries beyond what currently exists. 

Learn more about the Technology Tools Pillar

Total offering: $1.5 million

Maximum funding: $250,000

Grant duration: 2 years​

Proposed projects should focus on solutions that apply technology in novel, ground-breaking ways that are scalable and globally applicable, enhancing the capacity of all stakeholders to address online CSEA and interrelated digital harms in order to make the internet safe for children.  Solutions should be applied specifically to exact or related use cases for the Safe Online Open Call.

Read more about the requirements for all applications

The full Call for Proposals document is applicable to all applications submitted. The full list of annexes required for each pillar is clarified in the Call for Proposals document. All materials can be downloaded at the links below. All final applications and required documentation must be submitted via online JotForm application. 

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Our purpose in detail

We are here to ensure every child and young person grows in to the digital world feeling safe, and is protected from harm.

We support, champion, and invest in innovative partners from the public, private, and third sectors working towards the same objective.

We believe in equipping guardians and young people with the skills to understand and see danger themselves once accessing digital experiences without supervision.

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