The Kiwa Initiative



The Pacific is one of the most vulnerable regions to climate change. It has exceptional terrestrial and marine biodiversity that provides invaluable services to communities. Yet the Pacific countries and territories lack resources to address this challenge, whereas their traditional ways of life depend on it.

The Kiwa Initiative aims to strengthen the resilience of Pacific countries and territories’ ecosystems, economies and communities through a dedicated one-stop shop for funding projects that promote Nature-based Solutions (NbS).

Nature-based Solutions are defined by the IUCN as “actions to protect, sustainably manage and restore natural or modified ecosystems that address societal challenges effectively and adaptively.”

NbS IUCN visual.jpg.png

The Initiative helps build both local and national capacity, promotes approaches that are sensitive to social vulnerability and gender inequality and foster dialogue amongst donors, regional organisations and countries and territories to improve development aid coordination.

SPC and the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) recently joined forces with the Kiwa Initiative to launch a technical assistance program aiming at: 

  • Identifying and developing large projects addressing climate change adaptation through nature-based solutions 
  • Assisting relevant stakeholders from beneficiary PICTs in project development to be submitted to the Secretariat of the Kiwa Initiative 
  • Promoting joint funding opportunities from the Kiwa Initiative and other climate action donors 

Three windows of opportunity are available for three different types of support: 

Kiwa Initiative 3 windows of opportunity

  • Calls for project proposals for grants ranging from EUR 25,000 to EUR 400,000. This component is managed by the IUCN


  • Calls for regional project proposals of over 1.5 million euros. This component is managed by the Secretariat of the Kiwa Initiative


  • Technical assistance provided by SPC and SPREP to assist project leaders in the design of proposals for regional projects

The Initiative promotes strengthened cooperation between Pacific Island countries and French territories. 
As of today, the Kiwa Initiative covers 19 PICTs, including 16 Pacific Island countries and 3 French territories: 

  • Cook Islands
  • Federated States of Micronesia
  • Fiji
  • French Polynesia
  • Kiribati
  • Marshall Islands
  • Nauru
  • New Caledonia
  • Niue
  • Palau
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Solomon Islands
  • Samoa
  • Timor Leste
  • Tonga
  • Tokelau
  • Tuvalu
  • Vanuatu
  • Wallis and Futuna

Applicants wishing to take part in calls for proposals must be legal entities of public or private not-for-profit organizations, natural persons are not eligible.

Applicants eligible to apply for small and medium grants are:

  • Local or national authorities and public institutions
  • Civil society organizations at local level
  • Organizations linked to local communities
  • International NGOs

Applicants eligible to apply for regional projects are:

  • Local or national authorities and public institutions
  • Regional organizations (Council of Regional Organizations of the Pacific, CROP) recognized by Pacific Island States and territories such as SPC or SPREP);
  • International NGOs

Each project proposal submitted must comply with the following biodiversity protection and climate change adaptation eligibility criteria:

The biodiversity sub-criterion, which covers the type of nature-based solutions to be developed, implies project proposals to meet the following objectives:

  • Preservation of functional and healthy ecosystems
  • Improvement of ecosystem management through sustainable human activities
  • Restoration of degraded ecosystems or the creation of ecosystems/ecological engineering

The climate change adaptation sub-criterion implies that project leaders must:

  • Determine the context of the risks, vulnerabilities and impacts associated with climate change
  • Indicate their intention to address the risks, vulnerabilities and impacts identified in the project proposal documentation
  • Demonstrate a direct link between the identified risks, vulnerabilities and impacts and the proposed activities

Particular attention will be paid to:

  • The inclusion of proposed projects in existing regional, national or local public policy frameworks
  • Projects that are part of a regional cooperation process between French territories and Pacific island countries
  • The diversity of project leaders, in particular the participation of new players for which this would be the first opportunity to directly access funding dedicated to climate change adaptation and the protection of biodiversity

SPC will assist eligible Pacific Islands Countries and Territories in:

  • Building capacities to access Kiwa Initiative funding through the organization of informative sessions and the provision of technical advice and assistance
  • Assisting in project identification, development, implementation, monitoring and reporting

The IUCN will launch its first call for projects during the first semester of 2021. Information will be directly published on the IUCN website.


A first call for project proposals was launched in 2020 and closed on the 7th December 2020. A second call will be launched by April 2021.


For more information, please contact SPC Project development Coordinator for the Kiwa Initiative: Ludovic Branlant


The Kiwa Initiative is funded by

The Kiwa Initiative is funded by AFD, European Union, Canada, Australia Aid, MFAT

In partnership with

In partnership with SPC, SPREP and IUCN