Mexico Civil Society Activity

Country: Mexico    |   Duration: October 2016 to September 2020    |   Funder: USAID    |   Contact: APPLY NOW

Program Description

The Civil Society Activity will help Mexican civil society organizations reach their full potential

The Civil Society Activity is designed to increase the sustainability of Mexican civil society organizations working to prevent crime and violence, reform the criminal justice system and support human rights.

Implemented by Social Impact, World Learning and Appleseed Mexico, and funded by USAID, this program complements the Government of Mexico's ongoing reform efforts and USAID/Mexico's own development objectives. Civil Society Activity applies the Human and Institutional Capacity Development (HICD) methodology to identify and address the root causes of organizational performance gaps. The program design allows for continuous organizational improvement through performance monitoring and management systems.

Engaging with local civil society organizations is key to achieving USAID/Mexico's crime prevention, rule of law and human right objectives. With specialized technical guidance and grantmaking, we are helping civil society organizations both implement their own programs and objectives, as well as increase their ability to contribute to USAID's own development objectives through strategic alliances with both private and public partners, and academia.


CSA has an active opportunity for funding for Mexican civil society organizations!


Program Goals

  • Assist with legal registration and other legal hurdles
  • Provide grants to groups working to reduce and prevent crime and violence, reform the criminal justice system and support human rights
  • Strengthen their human and institutional capacity

Program Activities

  • Conduct an assessment outlining the barriers to obtaining legal registration
  • Develop a landscape map of Mexican civil society organizations
  • Distribute and manage grants to civil society organizations
  • Develop civil society organizations’ capacity to distribute and manage sub-grants
  • Identify opportunities for strategic alliances and public-private partnerships
  • Equip civil society organizations with the skills to establish strategic alliances and public-private partnerships
  • Create platforms for stakeholders to discuss opportunities for collaboration with the government, private sector, and academia
  • Provide tailored human and institutional development assistance to participating organizations


Webinar with Guadalupe Mendoza.


MendozaDirector of Institutional Development, Mexican Institute for Competitiveness

Date: November 21, from 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Ms. Mendoza presented her perspective on the status and context of civil society organizations (CSOs) in Mexico. On November 21, 2017, the USAID-funded Mexico Civil Society Activity hosted a webinar featuring Ms. Guadalupe Mendoza, Director of Institutional Development with the Mexican Institute for Competitiveness, presenting her perspective on the status and context of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) in Mexico. Ms. Mendoza brings years of experience and insight from working as an independent consultant for international foundations and CSOs in Mexico, advising on strategic planning; institutional assessments; monitoring and evaluation; and program design and implementation. Ms. Mendoza highlighted a number of challenges that impede collaboration and effective mutual support between CSOs, local government authorities, and private sector actors in Mexico including the different agendas and objectives of these actors; complex legal and financial regulations and compliance requirements; a lack of capacity to comply with the legal and fiscal frameworks; funds scarcity; knowledge on donor funding processes; and distrust between the different sectors.

During her presentation she recommended that CSOs invest in assessments, evaluation and data findings. She mentioned that is important to know the size, evolution and contribution of the third sector to society; to have quality inputs for advocacy campaigns; to be able to compare Mexico with other countries and the social/third sector with other economic sectors; to have better inputs for research and analysis; to generate communities of practice and discussions on the status of CSOs; share knowledge about local funding sources; and encourage collaboration within sectors.

Ms. Mendoza previously served as an independent consultant for international foundations funding projects in Mexico, and for CSOs where she advised on strategic planning, institutional assessment, monitoring and evaluation, design and implementation of projects.

She was part of the Global Development and Population Program of the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. Ms. Mendoza also worked for the Ford Foundation's Finance and Economic Development Program for the Mexico and Central America Office. She holds a Master in Development Economics from the University of Sophia in Tokyo, Japan, and a BA on International Relations  from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). Currently she is the Director of Institutional Development at the Mexican Institute for Competitiveness (IMCO).

For the ppt:  Download Guadalupe Mendoza’s PowerPoint presentation from the webinar.

For the MP4/YT link: View the full webinar.