Invitation for Proposals to Boost Paralegals and Village Mediation in Malawi | APPLY NOW

The European Commission (EC) invites proposals to enhance justice accessibility, especially for marginalized communities in Malawi. This initiative seeks to improve legal and mediation services at the grassroots level by supporting paralegals and village mediation.

Invitation for Proposals to Boost Paralegals and Village Mediation in Malawi
Invitation for Proposals to Boost Paralegals and Village Mediation in Malawi

Malawi’s efforts underscore a commitment to justice, community engagement, and alternative dispute resolution.


The application deadline for the call for proposals is February 27, 2024. Ensure timely submission to be considered for this opportunity.


Improving legal services in rural Malawi has been a persistent challenge due to various barriers. From geographical distance to financial constraints, communities encounter difficulties accessing justice. The current call for proposals seeks to address this by empowering paralegals and strengthening village mediation services, aiming for a more accessible and responsive legal system.

Objectives of the Call for Proposals

The objectives of the call may include:

  • Empowering Paralegals: Focus on strengthening paralegals’ roles as community advocates. Proposals should outline plans to provide them with the necessary training and resources for effective legal support.
  • Enhancing Village Mediation Services: Emphasizes community-driven dispute resolution. Successful proposals should present creative methods to improve village mediation services, making them efficient, fair, and accessible.
  • Increasing Legal Awareness: Encourages projects promoting legal literacy within communities through workshops, materials, or digital platforms to educate residents about their legal rights and responsibilities.
  • Building Collaborative Networks: Supports proposals fostering collaboration among local organizations, government agencies, and community leaders. Creating a network ensures a more comprehensive and sustainable approach to enhancing legal services.
  • Measuring Impact: Successful proposals should include ways to monitor and evaluate the initiatives’ impact, such as developing key performance indicators, conducting surveys, or using tools to assess the effectiveness of paralegal and mediation services.


The priorities of this call for proposals are:

  • Prison Paralegal Services: Prioritize providing paralegal services in major prisons (Zomba Central, Maula, Lilongwe, Mzuzu, and Chichiri, Blantyre). Extend services to other detention centers across the country as outlined in the proposed strategy.
  • Village Mediation Expansion: Focus on expanding village mediation services by training and deploying mediators to additional districts, including Rumphi, Dedza, Machinga, Mwanza, Neno, Chikwawa, and Nsanje. Offer minimal support to existing mediation structures for sustainability.
  • Legal Awareness Programs: Develop and deliver legal awareness and education programs, with a focus on those in vulnerable situations.
  • Advocacy for Access to Justice: Engage in advocacy with policymakers and key stakeholders to address and remove barriers to accessing justice within the justice system.

Grant Amount and Benefits

A total of EUR 4,000,000 is available under this call for proposals, and the contracting authority may choose not to award all funds. Grant requests must be within the range of EUR 3,500,000 to EUR 4,000,000. The planned duration of an action should be between 36 and 48 months.


The Activities should include:

  • Provision of Paralegal Services in the Formal Justice System: Focus on delivering legal aid services in various detention locations, including police cells, Magistrate Courts, and major prisons like Zomba Central, Maula, Lilongwe, Mzuzu Prison, Chichiri, Blantyre Prison, following existing laws. Paralegals should also enhance legal awareness in these places.
  • Provision of Village Mediation Services: Establish mediation services in the mentioned districts or more, including creating training materials, training village mediators, and monitoring their activities throughout the project.
  • Provision of Referral Services: Train village mediators to refer cases to relevant justice institutions like the Malawi Police Service, Office of the Ombudsman, Malawi Human Rights Commission, and Legal Aid Bureau. Explore synergies with other initiatives addressing SGBV and child protection.
  • Advocacy and Coordination: Advocate for improved access to justice for vulnerable individuals and enhance coordination among criminal justice institutions to improve service delivery.


All actions must take place in Malawi, with nationwide paralegal services, and village mediation services in specified districts, such as Rumphi, Dedza, Machinga, Mwanza, Neno, Chikwawa, and Nsanje (expandable list).

Eligibility Criteria

The eligibility criteria are as follows:

Lead Applicant:

  • To qualify for a grant, the lead applicant must be a legal, non-profit civil society organization or an Association of CSOs established in an EU Member State or eligible non-EU Member State, as specified in Regulation (EU) N° 2021/947 for the Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument – Global Europe (NDICI). International organizations are exempt from this requirement and should not act as intermediaries.
  • Co-applicants:

The lead applicant must collaborate with a minimum of one co-applicant. If the lead applicant is an international organization, at least one local co-applicant is mandatory. Co-applicants play a role in designing and implementing the action, with their incurred costs considered eligible. They must meet the same eligibility criteria as the lead applicant and sign the mandate form.

Application Process

To apply for the Invitation for Proposals to Boost Paralegals and Village Mediation in Malawi, please follow the steps outlined below:

  • Review the Call for Proposals: Carefully read through the official Call for Proposals document, which provides detailed information on the objectives, priorities, and eligibility criteria for the funding opportunity.
  • Prepare Your Proposal: Develop a comprehensive proposal addressing the priorities outlined in the Call. Ensure that your proposal clearly outlines how you intend to support paralegals, enhance village mediation services, increase legal awareness, and advocate for improved access to justice.
  • Verify Eligibility: Confirm that your organization meets the eligibility criteria specified in the Call for Proposals. Pay attention to requirements for lead and co-applicants.
  • Collaborate: If required, establish collaborations with local partners or organizations to strengthen your proposal. Follow the guidelines for lead and co-applicants as outlined in the eligibility criteria.
  • Submission: Prepare all necessary documentation and submit your proposal by the specified deadline. Note the deadline mentioned in the Call for Proposals and ensure timely submission.
  • Monitoring and Evaluation: If your proposal is successful, be prepared to implement the proposed activities, and include mechanisms for monitoring and evaluating the impact of your initiatives.

For further details, please visit the official website of the funding institution or organization overseeing the Call for Proposals (

Documentation and Requirements

For the “Paralegals and Village Mediation in Malawi” proposal, the key requirements are:

  • Project Proposal: Craft a detailed proposal outlining project objectives, methods, expected outcomes, and plans for supporting paralegals and village mediation services.
  • Budget: Present a comprehensive budget, breaking down grant fund utilization for a transparent financial view of your project.
  • Timeline: Provide a project timeline outlining key milestones, demonstrating project feasibility and expected progress.
  • Organizational Details: Include information about your organization, its mission, previous projects, and relevant experience in paralegal support and village mediation.
  • Partnership Agreements: If applicable, submit partnership agreements or letters of support from stakeholders, community leaders, or involved organizations.
  • Monitoring and Evaluation Plan: Outline a plan for monitoring and evaluating project progress, including measurable indicators, reporting mechanisms, and feedback loops.
  • Legal Compliance: Ensure your proposal adheres to legal and ethical standards, highlighting regulatory compliance as needed.
  • Sustainability Plan: Describe how the project will continue beyond the grant period, considering community involvement, leader training, or long-term partnerships.
  • Submission Requirements: Adhere to specific submission guidelines mentioned in the proposal call, covering format specifications, deadlines, and submission channels.

Impact and Future Implications

The successful implementation of the projects resulting from this call for proposals is anticipated to have a profound impact on access to justice in Malawi. By strengthening the role of paralegals and improving village mediation services, communities will be better equipped to address legal issues promptly and effectively. This initiative also sets a precedent for future collaborative efforts to enhance legal services at the grassroots level, fostering a culture of justice and community engagement.


The Call for Proposals in Malawi aims to make legal services accessible to everyone, no matter where they live. By promoting creative and community-driven approaches, Malawi seeks to build a fair and equitable legal system, setting an example for similar initiatives in Africa and beyond.



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