Estonian CSOs can apply for funding for their activities from different support funds. When choosing a fund and applying for financial support, it is recommended to learn about the fund’s support allocation principles and general purposes beforehand.

  • Cultural Endowment of Estonia
    supporting the arts, national culture, physical fitness and sports through purposeful collection and specific allocation of financial resources
  • Integration Foundation
    to see that people living in Estonia share common values and actively take part in civil society, so that ethnic groups living in Estonia would have the opportunity to maintain their native language and culture
  • Local Initiative Programme (LIP)
    Purpose: to support regional development and increase the competitiveness of regions through the involvement and strengthening of the community.
  • Estonian Folk Culture Centre
    Purpose: the Estonian Folk Culture Centre operates under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Culture in the name of preserving and developing Estonia’s national identity and a viable folk culture space. The Folk Culture Centre manages the state’s support programmes in the field of folk culture.
  • European Union funding, grants and subsidies
    The EU provides funding for a range of projects and programmes. It applies strict rules, for tight control over how funds are used and to ensure money is spent in a transparent, accountable manner.
  • Asylum, Migration, and Integration Fund (AMIF)
    Purpose: The Fund aims to further boost national capacities and improve procedures for migration management, as well as to enhance solidarity and responsibility sharing between Member States, in particular through emergency assistance and the relocation mechanism.


Gambling tax resources

  • Ministry of Culture
    Cultural funds are distributed by the Estonian Folk Culture Centre that processes the applications submitted for the call for proposals ‘Regional cultural activities’. The aim of providing support for regional cultural activities is to create and preserve the opportunities to partake in culture across Estonia by facilitating the sustainability and development of cultural life, the latter being focused mainly on communal activities for children and young people.
  • Financing sports – the state supports recreational sports, competitive sports, and youth sports and is interested in the improvement of the physical activeness of Estonian people. For this purpose, the state supports different sports organisations and invests in the construction of sports facilities and places for athletic activities as well as the modernisation of existing facilities. The financing is organised by the Olympic Committee and the Ministry of Culture
  • Ministry of Social Affairs
    Call for proposals for small projects – projects related to medicine, welfare services, families, the elderly and disabled people, and people with gambling addiction will be processed by the State Shared Service Centre. The call for proposals for small projects is organised four times per year and the call for proposals for strategic partnerships at least once per year.
    The procedure for selecting the recipients of the support of the disabled people and selecting strategic partners is being developed.
  • Ministry of Education and Research
    There will be no continuous calls at the Ministry of Education and Research; the ministry has selected strategic partners for three years and has distributed activity supports for the period of one year.
  • Ministry of Finance
    The current regional investment supports will be granted for the execution of county development planYou can also read about the top 20 international support options for NGOs on the website


International grant option

  • Baltic-American Freedom Foundation (BAFF)
    The Baltic-American Freedom Programme is meant for Estonian, Latvian, and Lithuanian organisations and aims to stimulate international exchange of ideas and cooperation between the Baltic states and U.S. organisations. The programme awaits applicants who wish to invite U.S. specialists to Estonia (or Latvia, Lithuania) to speak on topics of interest and significance.
  • Grants of the European Commission
    The European Commission offers direct financial allocations in the form of grants to projects and organisations that further EU’s interests or facilitate the implementation of an EU’s programme or policy. Organisations interested in financing can respond to invitations to tender.
    The existing cooperation programmes ‘Lifelong Learning Programme’, ‘European Youth’ and the European Commission’s international programmes for higher education have been united under one umbrella and joined with the sports programme. The new programme is called Erasmus+and its period is 2014–2020.

    • Youth
      The Youth programme supports young people in acquiring skills and competences through active participation, the improvement of the quality of youth work, and the shaping of policies within the field of youth.
    • Education
      This sub-programme supports new opportunities for modernising teaching and learning, new cooperation projects in school and work life, and greater attention to skills necessary for performing one’s duties.
    • Sport
      The sport sub-programme supports activities with international dimensions which support the anti-doping combat, tackle manipulation with sports results, and prevent violence and unequal treatment in sport. Initiatives related to the furthering of good management practices and double careers of athletes as well as public sport initiatives are also supported
  • Citizens, equality, rights and values programme 
    This programme aims to protect and promote Union rights and values as enshrined in the EU Treaties and the Charter of Fundamental Rights. It will contribute to sustain and further develop open, rights-based, democratic, equal and inclusive societies based on the rule of law. The program offers funding for projects that promote non-discrimination, gender equality, children’s rights, European remembrance, civic participation, or the fight against racism and gender-based violence. Depending on the call for proposal, both national and international projects will be funded.


Other options

In addition to project applications, NGOs can also get help (financial as well as non-financial) from outside the public sector. Here are some examples on how to find support:

The Hooandja website includes a crowdfunding platform for NGOs that was created with the support of the National Foundation of Civil Society. It is a platform where NGOs as well as active citizens who simply want to show initiative to do something for the community can collect money from other helpful people in the form of donations in different amounts. In addition to financial support, it is also possible to ask assistance through volunteering or donation of different material resources.

The Estonian Employers’ Confederation and Swedbank invite employers across Estonia to join the charity initiative ‘Let’s donate time’ and give their employees one paid day off per year, so that the employees could use it for doing good. This is a simple and flexible model for starting a charity in an enterprise or for adding to the already existing responsible actions.

If you have any questions regarding grant options for non-profit associations, please feel free to contact us.