Challenge Fund

Piloting Novel Solutions with the DDCF

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The District Delivery Challenge Fund (DDCF) is designed to identify, develop and pilot innovative ideas for improving the delivery of public services at the district level in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Punjab.

DDCF offers limited grants to public and private actors to demonstrate innovative and potentially scalable pilot approaches for improving district-level public services.

The successful DDCF pilots will serve as powerful catalysts of change in the planning and budgeting cycle of the provincial government, building evidence of what works to improve public services for the poor and marginalized groups, including women and girls. The initiatives that produce significant results with potential for scale will be considered for wider adoption by the provincial government, promising long-term impact and sustainability in improving public service delivery in primary healthcare for the local citizens. Two rounds of funding have already taken place with pilot projects in education selected in the first round and pilot projects in health for the second round.

DDCF

Explore our Current Pilots

Want to Apply?

Applications for the DDCF are closed at present.

DDCF is open to any organisation that has an idea and the capacity to pilot it in primary health care and education sectors. Organisations from the public sector, private sector, academic institutions, and civil society, charitable and non-government organizations can apply for the DDCF. Applicants have to satisfy the following eligibility criteria:

  • Be legally registered to operate in Pakistan in compliance with relevant business licensing, taxation, audited accounts, employee and other relevant regulations
  • Be in good standing with the Pakistan tax authority and in satisfactory financial health
  • Have experience of delivering complex projects and programs in Pakistan
  • Have demonstrable capacity to implement the project within the agreed time frame and demonstrate results within a 12-month period
  • Have a monitoring and evaluation plan that measures impact against targets, with an appropriate method for forecasting and setting targets – for example, the number of women reached by the project
  • Be willing to participate in lesson-learning and lesson-sharing activities, monitoring and evaluation activities, and sharing of data with the SNG.

The DDCF application process consists of two stages:

The first stage invites submission of a simple Concept Note that outlines the basic idea and demonstrates the applicant’s eligibility to meet the criteria. Applicants can download the Concept Note Form from the website and email the filled-in application to the DDCF Manager in both provinces. Concept Note applications are judged and shortlisted competitively in an open and transparent manner by a panel of representatives from the provincial governments and the SNG Program based on the eligibility criteria.

The second stage involves the submission of a full application. The shortlisted applicants (whose Concept Notes satisfy the eligibility criteria and approved by the DDCF Working Group) are invited to develop a detailed application setting out the full business case for the proposed project.

The DDCF concept note application process is administered through an open competition and guided by a clear and transparent process for application, evaluation, screening and selection of winning ideas.

The selection panel conducts a screening of potential applicants as due diligence to ensure that they are appropriate recipients for funding.

A distinguishing characteristic of DDCF is that while the selection process is competitive, transparent and open, the grant is only made to those applicants that best meet the objectives of the Fund and fulfill various pre-established eligibility criteria. The ideas that stand out with reliable prospects for success, long-term replication and scale-up are selected for the award of the grant.

Successful applicants are provided with a limited duration grant to pilot new approaches and models for improving public service delivery at the district level.

Eligibility for funding depends on the project meeting the following criteria:

  • Be innovative and have the potential to be scaled-up
  • Clearly identify and define the problem being addressed and explain how the activity supported by the pilot will address the problem(s) identified
  • Work in partnership with government on improving service delivery
  • Result directly in increased and equitable access to services or improved quality of services that benefit poor people, particularly women and girls
  • Should be piloted in SNG target districts
  • No other sources of finances are available to test pilots
  • Begin to demonstrate results within a 12-month period
  • Have a monitoring and evaluation plan that measures impact against targets, with an appropriate method for forecasting and setting targets – for example, the number of women

Additionally, projects must not involve:

  • Infrastructure investments
  • Cash grants or direct hand-outs
  • Funding of existing development schemes or newly approved development schemes
  • Projects that are out of the scope of selected sectoral focus reached by the project

Scoring methodology

 

              ITEM                                                                            SCORE

Relevance of Issue                                                                     15%

Relevance and Practicality of the Pilot                                     25%

Knowledge, Innovation, Scale-ability, Communications         35%

Partnerships                                                                                10%

Target number of beneficiaries during Pilot                             15%

Institutional Criteria met                                                          Yes / No

Endorsement by DCO                                                            Yes / No

Geographical coverage to include pilot district                   Yes / No

1. WHAT IS THE DISTRICT DELIVERY CHALLENGE FUND?

District Delivery Challenge Fund (DDCF) is a mechanism to promote new ideas and innovation in public service delivery (such as health and education) at the district level in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Punjab. DDCF seeks to finance innovative and potentially scalable pilot approaches to build evidence of what works to improve public service delivery that in particular meet the needs of the poor and marginalized people in the target districts in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

DDCF offers a grant through competition among public and private organizations and institutions working in a targeted social sector area, by inviting them to submit project proposals. The DDCF awards grants to those projects that best meet the objectives of the fund and fulfill various per-established eligibility criteria.

2. WHAT IS THE OBJECTIVE OF DDCF?

The objective is to demonstrate unique and effective approaches in public service delivery, which if successful, could be taken up by the local government and replicated or scaled-up to reach more people, meeting the needs of the poor, and especially of women, girls and marginalized people in the SNG target districts in Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

3. WHO MANAGES THE DDCF?

The DDCF is provided by the UK Government’s Department for International Development (DFID) and administered through the Sub-National Governance (SNG) program in partnership with the provincial governments of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Punjab.

4. WHAT SECTORS DOES THE DDCF FOCUS ON?

The DDCF is distributed through four initial rounds. Each round focuses on a selected sector or sectors (e.g. education, health and other). Each sector is further sub-divided into selected themes.

The first round offered funding for innovative pilots in Primary School Education in KP and School Education in Punjab with themes of access, quality and governance.

The second Round will focus on Primary Healthcare Services in KP and Punjab.

5. HOW MUCH MONEY IS AVAILABLE?

The total amount of initial funding is 5.4 million GBP split equally between the two provinces.

6. WHAT IS THE GRANT VALUE FOR EACH PILOT?

For each round, the DDCF applications must be up to GBP 250,000.

7. WHO GETS TO IDENTIFY THE SECTORS AND THEMES?

The provincial government in consultation with SNG and stakeholders makes the choice of sectors and themes.

8. WHAT ARE THE CHOSEN SECTOR AND THEMES FOR THE SECOND ROUND OF FUNDING?

The second round is offered for piloting proposals that focus on Primary Healthcare Services with a focus on maternal and child health in addition to access, coverage and quality of healthcare services in KP and Punjab. For details of themes, please download relevant Terms Sheet available on the SNG website.

9. WHAT ARE THE TARGET DISTRICTS WHERE THE PROJECTS WILL HAVE TO BE PILOTED?

The Fund will only be implemented in the following SNG Pilot districts:

Punjab: Bahawalnagar, Vehari, Sahiwal, Mandi Bahauddin, Hafizabad, and Sheikhupura

Khyber Pakhtunkhwa: Karak, Lakki-Marwat, D.I Khan, Haripur, Nowshera and Buner

10. CAN AN ORGANISATION SUBMIT MULTIPLE PROPOSALS AGAINST EACH ROUND?

An organisation can only submit one concept note as lead applicant, however, it can partner with ‘another organisation’ to submit a different proposal. In this case the ‘other organisation’ will be considered as the lead applicant. Detailed rules and eligibility criteria are to be found in the Terms Sheet.

11. WHEN WILL THE FUND BE LAUNCHED?

The second round is launched in July 2014 in Punjab and September 2014 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

12. WHO CAN APPLY FOR FUNDING TO RUN A PILOT?

Potentially eligible organisations could include but are not limited to: Public sector, private sector, academic institutions, charities and CSOs, NGOs. The DDCF has the right to conduct a due diligence screening of potential applicants to ensure that they are appropriate recipients for funding. To be eligible, lead applicant must have the following characteristics:

  • be legally registered to operate in Pakistan in compliance with relevant business licensing, taxation, audited accounts, employee and other relevant regulations
  • be in satisfactory financial health
  • have experience of delivering complex projects and programs in Pakistan
  • have demonstrable capacity to implement the project within the agreed time frame
  • agree to and have capacity to participate in lesson-learning and lesson-sharing activities, monitoring and evaluation activities, and data sharing with the SNG

NOTE: Collaboration with relevant government department/agency is applicant’s responsibility. However, SNG may help in that process if the idea is considered worth exploring

13. HOW DOES AN ELIGIBLE ORGANISATION GET TO KNOW ABOUT THE LAUNCH?

There will be a formal launch advertised through local media as well as the DDCF website (www.pk-sng.org). All potential stakeholders who have registered an interest will also receive an email notification so that they will be able to find out more and lodge their applications in time. Furthermore, there will be provincial and district-level information sharing seminars in all target districts.

We also encourage interested organizations to follow us on Twitter (@SNGPakistan) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/SNGPakistan) where we will be regularly updating announcements, activities, deadlines and events.

14. HOW DO I APPLY FOR THE GRANT?
  1. All potential applicants should first check whether they meet the eligibility criteria (mentioned above)
  2. Terms Sheet, Concept Note Form can be downloaded from the DDCF website (or obtained in hard copy from the relevant SNG’s District Office or Provincial Office). Only Concept Notes submitted in the approved format will be considered. KP and Punjab have specified Terms Sheets and Concept Note Forms posted on the website.
  3. Filled-in forms will be emailed as attachments or submitted to the DDCF fund office in hard copy, for the attention of the DDCF Fund Manager. For KP, email at ddcf.kp@pk-sng.org and for Punjab, email at ddcf.punjab@pk-sng.org
  4. Concept Notes will then be evaluated by concerned authorities using standard evaluation criteria to be found in the Terms Sheet and also on the SNG website
15. WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO MY CONCEPT NOTE AFTER IT HAS BEEN SUBMITTED?

Applications for funding will be assessed through a two-stage application process:

  • The first stage involves submission of a simple Concept Note, which outlines the project and applicant information, and demonstrates that the applicant meets the eligibility criteria.
  • Fund Manager will review the Concept Notes and those that meet the eligibility criteria will be assessed against the Concept Note appraisal criteria.
  • Applicants whose Concept Note satisfies the eligibility and the appraisal criteria will be invited to participate in stage two to develop a Full Application setting-out the details of the business case for the proposed project.
  • Full applications will be evaluated by the SNG team and processed for approval by relevant forums. The successful applicants will be granted funding.
  • Grants will be disbursed in tranches based on the nature of each selected pilot project and contractual arrangements.

Note: Applications will be limited to one per applying organization in a lead role. (In case an organization has more than one Idea, they may contact the Fund Manager to discuss exemption of this restriction)
A successful Concept Note does not in any way imply that the subsequent Application will be funded.

Applications will be appraised by the DDCF Working Group and approved (or otherwise) for funding by the Program Steering Committee (PSC). The PSC’s decision is final.

16. WHAT CRITERIA MAKE A PROJECT ELIGIBLE FOR FUNDING?

To be eligible for funding, projects must meet the following criteria:

  • Clearly identify and define the problem being addressed
  • Clearly explain how the activity supported by the pilot will address the problem(s) identified
  • Work in partnership with government in improving service delivery
  • Results directly in increased access to services or improved quality of services that benefits the poor, especially women and girls and excluded groups
  • Demonstrate how it will provide equitable access to women and marginalized groups
  • Implemented in the SNG target districts (Karak, Lakki-Marwat, D.I. Khan, Haripur, Nowshera and Buner in KP and Sahiwal, Vehari, Bahawalnagar, Sheikhupura, Mandi Bahauddin and Hafizabad in Punjab) in priority sectors.
  • Have potential for scale-up
  • No other sources of finances are available to test pilots
  • Begin to demonstrate results within a 12-month period
  • Have a monitoring and evaluation plan that measures impact against targets, with an appropriate method for forecasting and setting targets – for example, the number of women reached by the project
  • The DDCF will not fund projects where the primary nature involves:
    1. Infrastructure investments
    2. Cash grants or direct hand-outs
    3. Funding of existing development schemes or new approved development schemes
    4. Projects that are out of the scope of selected sectoral focus
17. HOW ARE APPLICATIONS APPRAISED?

Concept Notes are first screened for eligibility. Only Concept Notes for eligible projects and from eligible applying organisations will be appraised on the extent to which they satisfy the DDCF agreed criteria.
Applications will be appraised by the DDCF Working Group on the extent to which they satisfy the following criteria:

  • The quality of the application and implementation plan including the assessment of risks involved and if it is workable within the current setup or existing framework.
  • The existing internal capability and capacity of the applicant to implement the project in the time frame set out in the application.
  • The extent to which inputs, results and impacts are clearly defined, measurable and achievable.
  • The benefits arising from the project and the likelihood that they will be achieved.
18. CAN AN ORGANISATION THAT DID NOT WIN IN THE FIRST OR EARLIER ROUND, RE-SUBMIT A PROPOSAL IN FUTURE ROUNDS?

Yes, but it needs to make sure that it is eligible for the set criteria of a given funding window of a particular round

19. WHERE DOES A COMPANY OR ORGANISATION HAVE TO BE BASED AND/OR REGISTERED TO APPLY?

Lead applicants must be legally registered to operate in Pakistan in compliance with relevant business licensing, taxation, audited accounts, employee and other relevant regulations.

20. IS AN INDIVIDUAL ELIGIBLE TO APPLY?

An individual can only be considered eligible for entry if she or he associates/partners with a relevant organization willing to work in collaboration with the government. An individual applying in a lead role will not be considered.

21. HOW LONG DO I HAVE TO RUN A PILOT?

A DDCF pilot is to be implemented for a limited duration of one year to up to 18 months with ability to produce direct, tangible and measurable benefits with potential to be scaled up by the government.

22. HOW WILL PAYMENTS BE MADE TO SUCCESSFUL APPLICANTS?

Payments will be made through the completion of agreed criteria and milestones specific to each selected pilot project. Private Sector applicants must contribute their own resources to the project, bearing at 10% of the total project cost. These contributions are to be made in cash. In KP, Civil Society/Non-Government Organizations must also contribute 20% share in cash or kind. Public Sector applicants will be exempt from contributions.

23. HOW WILL A PILOT BE EVALUATED?
  1. All selected pilots will be implemented against a set of targets and milestones to be achieved which will determine the criteria for success
  2. Each pilot will then undergo a fully developed joint monitoring and evaluation framework set between the successful applicant and the relevant provincial administration
  3. On the completion of the pilot a full evaluation will be commissioned by the provincial administration, conducted jointly with the DDCF team and the applicant
24. WHAT ARE THE POSSIBLE PARTNERSHIP ARRANGEMENTS BETWEEN THE PRIVATE AND PUBLIC SECTOR?

Partnership arrangements can be in the form of a consortium whereby partners will have a sub-contract arrangement with the lead organisation. Alternatively a joint venture can also be formed. The lead applicant will be solely responsible to satisfy all the legal agreements required for partnership or a joint venture, copies of which can be requested for scrutiny or submission incase the applicant is selected.

25. WHERE CAN I FIND OTHER CRITICAL INFORMATION AND DOCUMENTS?

The DDCF website provides an overview and copies of all critical documentation and eligibility criteria.

26. WHO SHOULD I CONTACT IN CASE OF A QUERY OR ADDITIONAL QUESTION?

The DDCF Fund Managers for Punjab and KP can be contacted by through the website, by email and by telephone, and will be happy to discuss your ideas and to advise on any aspect of the DDCF.

For additional questions, please email at:

ddcf.kp@pk-sng.org for applicants from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa

ddcf.punjab@pk-sng.org for applicants from Punjab.

We hope to get back to you with a reply at our earliest!