You're viewing our new website - find out more

Capacity-strengthening initiatives

Strengthening capacity is the second funding stream of our International Development Fund (IDF), and provides funding to a number of partnered institutions from Scotland and our partner countries. Our current capacity-strengthening projects are summarised below.

View end of project reports for all projects.


Kasisi Agricultural Training Centre: Sustainable Organic Agriculture Support Project

We are providing £240,000 over three years (2017 to 2020) to the Kasisi Agricultural Training Centre (KATC) in Zambia, via the Scottish Catholic International Aid Fund (SCIAF). This project provides capacity-building funding to KATC to build on the earlier Scottish Government-funded Kulima project (2012 to 2017) in order to promote and provide training in sustainable organic agriculture (SOA).
Scottish Government funding is split between the International Development Fund and the Climate Justice Fund, and is matched by SCIAF.  The project will also draw on the expertise of Scotland’s Rural College.  There are two main strands to the project: 1) to develop and deliver training courses in SOA, and 2) to increase the capacity of KATC to become more self-sustaining through commercial SOA production.

Police Scotland in Africa

We are providing Police Scotland with £500,000 per year until 2019 to support the specialist training they are carrying out with police forces in Malawi, Zambia and Rwanda for tackling gender-based violence and improving child protection.

This builds upon work that Police Scotland has been doing with the Malawian Police Service since 2016, supported by funding from our IDF, in response to and as part of the Government of Malawi's Food Insecurity response plan.

Read more about Police Scotland's work in Africa on the International blog.

Blantyre-Blantyre Clinical Research Project

We are providing the University of Glasgow with £1 million over five years, which will be match funded, to fund a collaborative clinical research project with the College of Medicine in Blantyre, Malawi, and the Malawi Liverpool Wellcome Trust.

The project will set up three fully-equipped laboratories at the College of Medicine in Blantyre, enabling scientists there to conduct research into increasingly prevalent non-communicable diseases in Malawi. This will create a comparison between the populations of Blantyre in West Central Scotland and Blantyre in Malawi, and is believed to be a unique study between two such countries.

The project will aim to establish the key markers of certain non-communicable diseases among the local population, and to compare these results with research into the Glasgow Effect and the prevalence of similar conditions in the population of West Central Scotland. The new facilities will also enable the College of Medicine to host clinical trials of the drugs associated with these conditions, and provide a future platform for clinical trials in other areas.

Read the news story: Funding for international clinical research

Scotland Malawi Psychiatry Capacity Development Project

We are providing up to £300,000 over four years to the Scotland Malawi Mental Health Education Project (SMMHEP) to deliver the Scotland Malawi Psychiatry Capacity Development Project. This project aims to address the chronic lack of mental healthcare provision in Malawi.

Building on two previous Scottish Government grants that established Malawi's first ever M.Med Psychiatry, it will provide funding for four trainees to become clinically qualified psychiatrists at Malawi's College of Medicine. Trainees will undertake two years' training at the College of Medicine and two years' specialist tuition at the University of Cape Town. The trainees will be supported by e-learning materials previously created under a University of Edinburgh project funded by the Scottish Government.

Read the news story: Medical help for Malawi

Community Energy Malawi Organisation

We are providing up to £100,000 over four years, via Strathclyde University, to continue to support the small Malawi-based Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) Community Energy Malawi. Community Energy Malawi was originally established under our £2.3 million Malawi Renewable Energy Acceleration Programme (MREAP). Read about MREAP from 2012 to 2015 in our archive.

This further funding, along with business and technical support, will continue to support and build capacity in rural communities in accessing clean energy, improving health, education and economic development.

Visit the Community Energy Malawi website.

Education Scotland

Education Scotland, our national body for supporting quality and improvement in learning and teaching, has also signed a formal agreement with the Malawi Government, to support the sharing of knowledge and skills to support improvements in education.

Read Education Scotland's International Engagement Strategy