USAID Announces $15.5M in Thirteen New Grants to Programs Under The Development Innovation Ventures (DIV)
On December 16, 2019, the Development Innovation Ventures (DIV) program of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) announced 13 new grants totaling over $15.5 million to test and scale promising solutions to global development challenges. DIV is the Agency's open innovation program that selects, through a detailed process of applications and co-creation, breakthrough solutions that demonstrate rigorous evidence of impact, cost-effectiveness, and viable pathways to scale and sustainability.
In addition to improving students' learning and the retention of teachers in the Republic of Uganda, across Africa, Asia, and Latin America new awardees are working to test and scale innovations to solve development challenges, monitoring and evaluating large-scale government reforms, and testing new policy incentives to conserve power and water.
Lively Minds, one of three new USAID partners to receive a DIV grant, was awarded $1.25 million to scale a low-cost, locally driven approach to train and equip mothers to run educational playgroups with children and improve parenting at home. The playgroups are designed to encourage children, ages three to six, to think creatively and solve problems to help students prepare for school. With support from USAID, Lively Minds will further test their project across the Mayuge District before scaling the model in additional regions.
The International Rescue Committee (IRC) was also awarded approximately $500,000 to implement and scale a suite of low-cost social-emotional learning interventions into the classrooms of children living in conflict-affected areas of Nigeria. The social-emotional learning interventions called “kernels” are quick teaching aids, such as color coded flashcards with prompts for deep breathing or play-based games, that teachers integrate into classrooms. The exercises can help both students and teachers effectively and positively manage daily responsibilities and challenges as well as potentially improve learning for millions of children in Nigeria as well as other conflict areas around the world.
Innovators can apply to DIV to receive tiered funding of up to $5 million for a product, technology, service, or application of a business or delivery model. In addition to tiered funding, DIV offers separate evidence grants, which provide up to $1.5 million for research and evaluation that generate rigorous evidence of a solution's impact, cost-effectiveness, and potential to scale. USAID accepts applications to DIV on a rolling basis. For more information, visit www.usaid.gov/div.