SI Young Voices Initiative

2021 is the centenary of both women and men winning the right to vote in parliamentary elections in Sweden. To mark this historic occasion, SI launched a pilot programme to promote democracy - the SI Young Voices Initiative. The call was open in September 2021 and we received many excellent applications. The funding decision is now available, read more below.
Two girls looking at post-its

Application closed


Projects granted funding 2021

The funding decision for SI Young Voices Initiative 2021 is now available. You can take part of the decision here: list with applications granted funding.

Contact us at if you find it difficult to read the information in the document. Thank you to all of you who sent in an application.

What is the SI Young Voices Initiative?

It is a funding initiative for international projects. It is open to Swedish organisations and their partners in our target countries who work with youth participation to strengthen democracy and human rights. It offers grants for collaborative projects which last up to 18 months. You can apply for a grant of between SEK 100,000 and SEK 700,000.

Who can apply?

  • Any type of organisation which is registered in Sweden.
  • Your organisation must have been registered for at least one year.
  • You must write your application jointly with a partner organisation in one (or more) of the target countries (see below).

Which countries are included?

Africa: Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Somalia, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Asia: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Thailand, Sri Lanka, Vietnam
MENA: Algeria, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, Palestine, Syria, Tunisia, Yemen


SI-funded projects should normally take place entirely in the target country or partly in Sweden and partly in the target country. However, the Covid-19 pandemic has radically changed our opportunities to travel and meet physically, for the moment at least. It is important that you take this into account when designing your project.

Project criteria

  • Your project must seek to strengthen democracy and human rights in the programme countries.
  • In particular, your project must seek to enhance active youth participation in civil society and active citizenship. This should in the long run lead to a positive change in at least one of the following dimensions of a democratic society: participatory engagement, representative government, fundamental rights, checks on government, impartial administration.
  • Your project must have a strong gender equality perspective and, if possible, target young women in high or middle management positions.
  • Your project must have a strong local connection in the partner country.
  • Your project must target agents of change and engage civil society and/or grassroots organisations and networks in the target countries.
  • Your project must contribute to building or enhancing at least one of the following:
    – networks
    – platforms
    – skills and methods
    – innovative products and tools
  • Your project must contribute to Sustainable Development Goal 16 in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
  • Your project’s achievements must be sustainable. They will continue to spread and have an impact after the project has finished.
  • Your project should, if possible, involve an exchange of knowledge or best practice between partners.
  • Your project should, if possible, include decision makers at local or municipal level.

Target groups

The target group of your project should be agents of change, opinion or decision makers and voices of democracy in the target country. These should work with youth and young adults (aged 18-35) to enhance their agency and active participation in civil society.

Examples of the target groups are youth organisations, activists, journalists and other representatives of media organisations, human rights defenders and women’s rights groups, influencers in democratic settings and cultural workers.

Final beneficiaries

Final beneficiaries are groups and/or individuals in the target countries who are directly and positively affected by the project.

Examples of final beneficiaries are youth/young adults and women. They can also be those who benefit from greater youth participation and women’s empowerment, for example children or minority groups in especially vulnerable positions such as LGBTQIA+ individuals or people with disabilities.

Project examples

The funding can be granted to various types of initiatives that contribute to empowering young people’s agency and meaningful participation in civil society and the democratic process generally. Examples of this might be:

  • Organising conferences, workshop series, training courses or residencies
  • Producing apps, podcasts, documentaries and other audio-visual material
  • Creating on- and offline platforms and networks
  • Research projects and pilot studies

How to apply


The FAQs below will answer most of your questions about the grant initiative.

Have you already been awarded a grant? Do you have a question about your ongoing project? Have a look at the FAQs at the bottom of the page.

If you cannot find the answer to your question, send an e-mail to si(a)

Applying for funding

If you are granted funding