Lifeline | Freedom House


Assistance Fund for Embattled Civil Society Organizations

The Lifeline Embattled CSO Assistance Fund provides emergency financial assistance to civil society organizations (CSOs) under threat or attack and advocacy support responding to broader threats to civil society.

Lifeline supports a variety of CSOs that conduct advocacy, promote and protect human rights, and/or act in a watchdog capacity, including human rights organizations, journalist associations, student groups, labor unions, think tanks, and others.

Lifeline is comprised of a consortium of seven INGOs, including:

  • Freedom House 
  • CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation
  • the Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA)
  • Front Line Defenders
  • the International Center for Not-for-Profit Law (ICNL)
  • People in Need (PIN)
  • the Swedish International Liberal Centre (SILC)

Lifeline is supported by a Donor Steering Committee of 18 governments and two foundations, including: Australia, Benin, Canada, Chile, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Mongolia, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Sweden, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Uruguay, as well as the Ford Foundation and the MacArthur Foundation.

“We are highly thankful to the Lifeline team. You are amazing and you have not only saved our lives but also gave us more courage and power to help thousands of girls and women.”

-Representative from a CSO in Pakistan

Emergency Assistance

Through Freedom House and Front Line Defenders, Lifeline provides small, short-term emergency grants to CSOs threatened because of their human rights work. Emergency grants can address security, medical expenses, legal representation, prison visits, trial monitoring, temporary relocation, equipment replacement, and other urgently needed expenses. 

How to apply:

Advocacy Grants

Lifeline rapid response advocacy grants give local CSOs the resources to push back against closures of civic space as they arise. Lifeline advocacy grants are highly flexible, and can support a wide variety of activities, such as community mobilization, policy and legal analysis, civil society coalition building, strategic litigation, awareness raising campaigns, and advocacy capacity building.

How to apply:


For more information, please visit the Lifeline website: