The Open Technology Fund (OTF) is currently accepting applications for the Rapid Response Fund to facilitate the digital emergency response community to resolve threats in a timely and comprehensive manner for individuals, communities, and organisations whose free expression has recently been repressed.
OTF offers both direct financial support as well as technical services from trusted partners to high-risk people and organisations, such as bloggers, cyber activists, journalists, and human rights defenders.
The Rapid Response Fund offers two types of support to organisations, activists, journalists, and other human rights defenders facing digital attacks and emergencies of various kinds:
technological services from trusted service partners and
direct financial support for the many needs that cannot be fulfilled by available service partners.
The Rapid Response Fund does not provide support for projects that are more long-term in nature or that aim to build digital security capacity among groups or organisations.
The total value of support cannot exceed 50,000 USD. Average support amounts are between 5,000 and 25,000 USD.
Individuals should meet the following criteria in order to be eligible for funding:
Individuals of all ages irrespective of nationality, creed or sex;
Individuals who demonstrate skill and ability to conduct rapid response work;
Individuals who have intimate knowledge of the communities they are working with, and the digital threats they experience.
They are not able to support applicants within countries that the United States has trade restrictions or export sanctions as determined by the U.S. Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).
Quality of project idea: When applying for direct funding, applications should exhibit originality, substance, precision, and relevance to the mission of promoting freedoms of expression, assembly, and association online. Ability to achieve objectives: A relevant work plan should demonstrate substantive undertakings and logistical capacity of the organisation. The work plan should adhere to the program overview and guidelines described above. Objectives should be ambitious, yet specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound. For complete scopes of work, applicants will have to provide a monthly timeline of project activities.
Multiplier effect/sustainability: Proposed programs should address how the expected results will contribute to improving Internet freedom goals.
Applicant’s record and capacity OTF will consider the past performance of prior recipients and the demonstrated potential of new applicants.