In line with the decision of the GEF Council in November 2008, the accreditation system for Civil Society organizations operated by the GEF Secretariat is replaced by a membership system operated by the Network.  The membership admission/accreditation process and maintenance of the membership database is thus the responsibility of the Network. Organisations which are admitted as members of the Network will be eligible to attend GEF Consultations and Assembly meetings in a similar manner to formerly accredited organizations.

Main criteria for membership

  • The organization must be a non-profit organization;
  • The organization shall be registered or recognised in its country of origin,
  • The organization must have a proven track record of addressing environmental management issues relevant to one or more focal areas of the GEF for three or more years.
  • Willingness and ability to contribute to the work of the Network.

Membership benefits

  • Receive updates on the activities of the policy making and activities of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) as well as the GEF-CSO Network;
  • Be notified from time-to-time of funding and capacity building opportunities as well as upcoming GEF meetings and events;
  • Have the opportunity to contribute to the policy making of GEF and raise any concerns on GEF processes or implementation
  • Be able to participate in GEF-CSO Consultation meetings and GEF Assembly Meetings
  • Be eligible for consideration to attend GEF Council meetings as observers.

Membership obligations

  • Members are expected to contribute to the development and implementation of GEF policies and programmes
  • Share their expertise and experience with other members of the Network and the GEF family.
  • Participate as appropriate in activities organized by the Network
  • Maintain their non-profit status and a level of activity and involvement in activities related to the GEF focal areas.

Membership opportunities

The GEF remains committed to further enhancing its engagement with CSOs to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of operations. Civil society stakeholders are encouraged to engage with the GEF by:

  1. Commenting on project proposals: Since GEF Agencies are required to consult CSOs for project approval, these may comment on project proposals, or be involved in project consultations, by contacting the GEF Agency project officer for a particular project and/or the operational focal point at the government level. The GEF Project Identification Form (PIF) for each project also indicates the project contact person, and are available in the GEF project database.
  2. Commenting on policies: GEF policy proposals are published in advance of GEF Council meetings on the Council documents webpage. Stakeholders can contribute by providing inputs, feedback, suggestions and recommendations through their regional CSO representative in the GEF CSO Network, through GEF Council Members, or by directly sending their comments on the GEF website ongoing consultations tab.
  3. Supporting project implementation, monitoring and evaluation: Civil society organizations play an important role in monitoring project and program activities along with GEF Agencies and GEF Focal Points, as well as in providing feedback as beneficiaries or as representatives of community groups, including through the GEF Independent Evaluation Office.
  4. Participating in GEF events: GEF Council meetings are webcasted live and their recordings uploaded onto the GEF YouTube channel. Civil society stakeholders may also apply and be selected to attend these Council meetings, as indicated in the Updated Vision. Also, the GEF Country Support Programme (CSP) provides opportunities for stakeholder engagement and learning about the GEF’s work and activities, including through Expanded Constituency Workshops (ECWs).
  5. Making a formal complaint or grievance relating to GEF projects and operations, including concerns about possible corruption or fraud: The GEF Conflict Resolution system provides stakeholders with an avenue to submit complaints or concerns about GEF-supported projects and operations.  These may be submitted to the responsible GEF Agencies and/or the GEF Conflict Resolution Commissioner.  In addition to the above, the World Bank staff rules on matters of ethics, integrity, fraud and corruption apply to staff of the GEF Secretariat, while the GEF’s Policy on Ethics and Conflict of Interest for Council Members, Alternates, and Advisers applies for these individuals. Any concerns on these matters may be raised through the World Bank hotline.