Group training scholarships

Group training scholarships are available for accompanying the WCC member churches, national councils and regional conferences of churches, and other related organizations working in an ecumenical context so that they can develop their specific human resource needs relating to diakonia and development-related work. It is intended to provide financial resources for group training initiatives that will develop “multipliers” or “trainers” in a particular field and further empower them to transmit the acquired knowledge and skills to others.

General criteria

All applications for group training scholarships must meet the following general criteria in order to be considered for an award.

  • Applications may be submitted by WCC member churches directly to the scholarships office.
  • Applications submitted by national councils, regional ecumenical organizations or other community-based organizations working in an ecumenical context must be accompanied by a letter of recommendation from a WCC member church printed on its official letterhead detailing the following:
    • Status of the organization in relation to the WCC member church.
    • Description of the ecumenical nature of work conducted by the organization and degree of cooperation/collaboration with WCC member church.
    • Description of the expected outcomes of training for the wider community and specifically for the WCC member church.
  • All applications must be submitted for training in the fields of diakonia and/or development-related ministries. Diakonia and/or development-related ministries are an essential expression of being faithful disciples of Christ in the context of the local community. It is an intrinsic component of the ecumenical vision for promoting just and sustainable communities in which people’s participation is a leading principle. The group training scholarships exist to enhance and further strengthen people’s participation in community development and transformation through the diakonia and/or development-related ministries of the churches and church-related organizations as they bear witness to the gospel of life granted to the world through Jesus Christ by God.
  • Training is for groups made up of women and men, lay and ordained, whose further education and training is required for future service in their church, church-related organization and communities. Equal access to training for female and male candidates must be respected.
  • Participants of the training must currently be involved in the work of the institution/organization submitting the application or in an affiliated/associated institution/organization.
  • Participants of the training should ideally bring in some previous work experience and be committed to act as multipliers in a context where the acquired knowledge and skills can be transmitted to others.
  • Applications must stipulate their intended goals, methodology and related outputs in a specific manner accompanied by a budget reflecting the adequate related costs.
  • The training should take place within a twelve (12) month period upon signing of the partnership agreement with the WCC and the transfer of the first instalment of the scholarships award.
  • All responsibility for providing appropriate follow-up to the training lies with the institution/organization submitting the application.
Limitations and restrictions

Due to the purpose and scope as well as the finite capacity of financial resources the following limitations and restrictions apply to group training accompanied by the WCC through its scholarships programme:

  • Applications must be submitted using the forms provided by the WCC. Forms are available in English, French and Spanish on the WCC website.
  •  All applications must provide full information and include a detailed budget that accurately reflects the estimated cost of the activities described. Applications that are incomplete will not be considered. Applicants are required to provide any additional information related to their application as requested by the WCC scholarships office. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure proper channels of communications are maintained throughout the application process.
  • The maximum amount awarded for a single application shall not normally exceed CHF 20,000. The WCC reserves the right to determine the final amount to be awarded to an applicant.
  • It is recommended that the institution/organization submitting the application include details of its financial or in-kind contribution to the proposed training as part of the application.
  • Applications should provide details of the total financial requirements of the training with indications of other sources of income if applicable.
  • Trainers’ fees and essential teaching resources should normally not exceed 20% of the total budget, respectively.
  • Successful applicants shall be required to sign a contractual partnership agreement with the WCC setting out the various conditions applying to the award.
  • All funds will be remitted only to a bank account held in the name of the institution/organization submitting the application.
  • The disbursement of the scholarships will be carried out in two instalments. The first instalment comprising 80% of the total sum will be sent upon receipt of the signed partnership agreement. The second instalment comprising the remaining 20% will be transferred upon receipt of a final report, narrative and financial (including proof of expenditure) using the format designated by the WCC.
  • Any institution/organization applying for a subsequent award will be considered only on condition that a satisfactory narrative and financial report for any previous training has been submitted.
  • No institution/organization may apply for more than two (2) consecutive scholarships.
  • All institutions/organizations that have been awarded scholarships must submit a narrative and financial report in accordance with the agreed format and timeline specified in the partnership agreement.
  • The WCC may use the report and any accompanying photographs of the training for information, publicity and/or fundraising purposes after consultation with the institution/organization on privacy matters and the protection of personal information.
  • Applications must reach the scholarships office by no later than 30 April of each calendar year and will be considered on their individual merits in the light of available resources.
Application process

All applications for consideration must adhere to the following procedures.

  • The completed application form is to be submitted to the WCC Scholarships Programme Office in Geneva at the following address and arrive no later than 30 April of each calendar year.

    Scholarships Office
    Justice, Diakonia and Responsibility for Creation

    World Council of Churches

    150 Route de Ferney

    P.O. Box 2100
    CH-1211 Geneva 2
    Switzerland 



    The application form can also first be sent electronically to the scholarships office via email. However, the full application form with all accompanying documents must be submitted through regular postal channels at the above address.
  • The application form must be accompanied by the following documents:
    • Recommendation of the WCC member church on official letterhead if submitted by national councils, regional ecumenical organizations or other community-based organizations working in the community in an ecumenical context detailing the following:
      • Status of the organization in relation to the WCC member church.
      • Description of the ecumenical nature of work conducted by the organization and degree of cooperation/collaboration with WCC member church.
      • Description of the expected outcomes of training for the wider community and specifically for the WCC member church.
    • Budget Form (Appendix A of application form) detailing the financial requirements for training.