NORDBUK grant programme

The program supports children and young people’s own projects and wants to strengthen their organizing skills, influence and participation in political, cultural and social activities. The programme target group is children and young people up to the age of 30.

The Nordic Committee for Children and Young People is the Nordic Council of Ministers’ advisory and coordinating body for issues relating to children and young people. The Nordic Culture Point administers the NORDBUK grant programme on behalf of the Committee.

Which activities are funded?

You can apply for support for projects or networks that consist of cultural, political or social activities where children and young people are actively engaged in the process and are able to have a say in the planning, implementation and evaluation of the project. Project partners should always encourage democratic participation and ensure that the children and young people involved in the project gain greater influence on the project.

For example, a project may entail:

  • Networks. Either individual or a series of network activities, such as meetings, conferences, workshops, camps, courses or other activities designed to further develop and strengthen partnerships, provide opportunities to exchange experiences and to share resources for advocacy efforts.
  • Production. This can be e.g. processes, campaign or information material, methodology material, reports, digital storytelling or works of art designed to make children and young people more aware of their right to participate and influence.

Funding cannot be granted:

  • organisations or networks that neither consist of, nor have experience of, inclusive work with children and young people
  • individuals
  • sports organisations
  • commercial projects or commercial activities that aim to generate a financial profit
  • normal operating procedures, such as the purchase of equipment, furniture or to pay salaries not directly linked to the project.
  • activities that have already been completed. At the earliest, activities supported by the programme may begin 8 weeks after the application deadline.


You can apply for grants from € 7 500 – 25 000 €.

In addition to the sum applied for, at least 15% of the funding must come from another source and may consist of in-kind financing.

The total amount applied from NORDBUK and other similar Nordic institutions may not exceed 85% of your total project costs. Other Nordic organisations include for example the Nordic Culture Fund and NordPlus.

In-kind financing means that providing goods or services rather than money can count towards project financing. For instance, voluntary work can be included in the budget. The calculations should be specified in the application budget, and the total must be considered reasonable for the completion of the project. For an example of how to write a detailed budget appendix – please see here.

Extra funding for Agenda 2030 projects
In 2018 – 2020 the Nordic Committee for Children and Young People is collaborating with the Generation 2030 programme. The results are that NORDBUK Grant programme will be providing extra funds for the next three years.
The extra funds are available to apply if the project already meets the basic criteria for the NORDBUK grant programme along with one of the following requirements:
  • the project focuses on the entire Agenda 2030. The purpose is for children and young people to work with the agenda and the 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs) as a whole. The agenda becomes a useful and known tool. Children and young people in the Nordic Regions must be the project’s main target.
  • the project focuses on Goal 12: Responsible consumption and production. The purpose is for children and young people to engage actively in the theme. Goal 12 becomes a useful and known tool. Children and young people in the Nordic Regions must be the project’s main target.
The application should be submitted along with a clearly defined communication plan describing how the project’s audience and targets are met. For an example of how to write a detailed communication appendix – please see here.
Funding cannot be granted:
  • projects that solely focus on reaching individual sustainable development goals (SDGs) that are not obviously related to the theme, responsible consumption and production, or the agenda as a whole.
  • projects that do not live up to the usual criteria of the NORDBUK grant programme

Who can apply?

Grants are awarded to

  • organisations, groups, municipalities, institutions, associations and networks.

The project must consist of a cooperation between at least three (3) Nordic countries. I.e. three or more of the following countries must be represented in the project group: Denmark, Finland, the Faroe Islands, Greenland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden and/or the Åland Islands.

The project applicant must reside in one of the Nordic countries stated above.

The applicant does not have to be young, but must represent a partner that either consists of, or has experience of, involving children and young people.

It is also considered particularly important if the project involves cooperation with parties from Greenland, the Faroe Islands, Åland or the North Calotte. In this context, the North Calotte means: the counties of Finnmark, Nordland and Troms in Norway, Norrbotten County in Sweden and the Lappi Region in Finland.

In addition to the above, cooperation with Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia and northwest Russia can be included in the application. In this context, northwest Russia means: Archangel Oblast, Kaliningrad Oblast, Leningrad Oblast, Murmansk Oblast, Pskov Oblast, Republic of Karelia and the city of St. Petersburg.

How is an application assessed?

An assessment is based on the above criteria and how well the project manages to communicate the following.

It is considered mandatory:   

Involvement and influence of children and young people
The project involves children and young people to the greatest extent possible in all parts of the project, from concept development to evaluation. The assessment will consider how much children and young people are involved in the project, and how the project has already responded with the target group.

Nordic added benefits
The project seeks to promote outstanding Nordic meetings and collaborations. It is considered a benefit if the project contributes to new partnerships, long-term results or a greater interaction between youths in the Nordic countries, which they themselves consider relevant and which makes a positive impact on their role in Nordic culture, politics or society.

It is an advantage if the application includes:          

Inclusion and increased representation of at-risk groups
The project has a special focus on including children or young people who experience vulnerability and are considered underrepresented either in the project own operations or in project leadership at large. Which children and young people the project has as its primary target depends on the project. An assessment is made on the chosen method and on how well the cooperative parties are expected to fulfill the project’s objectives.

Greater inclusion can for example concern minorities, immigrants, refugees or those that have or are at risk of physical or mental disabilities, those that neither work nor study, that lack access to culture, or experience online abuse. When it comes to working to include very young children and/or vulnerable or at-risk groups, their capacity for participation is taken into consideration.

Equality and sustainable development
The project has a clear goal of promoting greater equality between the genders and/or sustainable development, such as achieving the UN global sustainability goals in the Nordic counties.

Agenda 2030
Projects wanting to apply for the extra funding indicate this in the application. As usual, it is assessed how children and young people decide in the project and then how the project motivates the chosen approach that aims to increase the usability and knowledge of either Goal 12 or the 17 goals as a whole.


To view an FAQ about our programmes, please click here.


Please note that the application deadline is 15:59, Finnish time. Granted projects may begin 5 weeks after the application deadline within NORDBUK grant programme.

Application rounds:
02.01.2020 – 03.02.2020 15:59
03.04.2020 – 04.05.2020 15:59
03.09.2020 – 02.10.2020 15:59

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