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The rapid
response fund

The Rapid Response Fund is our flagship fund supporting marginalised communities to tackle HIV-related human rights challenges.

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The Rapid Response Fund helps organisations and individuals to tackle HIV-related human rights challenges, including stigma, discrimination and threats of violence.

Emergency response grants of up to $15,000 USD are available to organisations across 24 countries, led by or working closely with marginalised groups affected by HIV: lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBT+) people; sex workers; and people who use drugs.


The fund helps in three ways:

  1. Providing emergency financial grants to organisations
  2. Supporting organisations to strengthen their capacity for emergency human rights response work
  3. Documenting and sharing best practice, to help influence decisions by governments and donors.

Established in 2016, the Rapid Response Fund has so far granted $5.1 million USD through more than 600 grants directly to community-led organisations working across 45 countries. This emergency support has helped tens of thousands of people who are marginalised and affected by HIV.

To find out more about the impact we’ve had through the Rapid Response Fund, read our stories and watch our video.


Eligibility criteria

Please check the eligibility criteria before you submit an application using the online form. Your proposal is triggered by a new and unforeseen situation. The situation either:

  • Threatens to significantly disrupt your organisation’s existing human rights work or;
  • Your organisation identifies a specific moment or opportunity to advance HIV-related human rights
  • You have a realistic plan for meaningful change within 1-6 months
  • Your organisation is based in an eligible country
  • Your organisation is led by, or working very closely with, one or more marginalised communities affected by HIV: lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBT+) people; sex workers; and people who use drugs.
  • Your organisation has an annual income of less than $1 million USD.
  • Your organisation has implemented HIV-related human rights projects focused on marginalised communities in the last 12 months.

The following situations and activities are not eligible for funding through an emergency response grant:

  • Humanitarian relief or direct aid for individuals such as housing, food or medication
  • Income-generation activities
  • HIV testing and treatment services
  • Foreseeable funding gaps
  • Activities that have already happened
  • Starting strategic litigation
  • Fees for conference or event attendance
  • Activities relating to women and girls, where there is no intersection with LGBT+ people, sex workers, or people who use drugs

Eligible countries

  • Caribbean: Haiti; Jamaica; Dominican Republic; Guyana; St Vincent and the Grenadines; Trinidad and Tobago
  • East Africa: Ethiopia; Rwanda; South Sudan; Tanzania South
  • East Asia: Cambodia; Vietnam
  • Southern Africa: Angola
  • West and Central Africa: Benin; Cameroon; Chad; Côte d’Ivoire; Gabon; Gambia; Ghana; Mali; Senegal; Sierra Leone; Togo

Frequently asked questions