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World Heritage sites are conserved and protected with the help of financial resources to meet World Heritage needs. The World Heritage Fund is an avenue for funding the programme. The income received by this financial fund is from the compulsory contributions from countries, sales of World Heritage publications, funds-in-trust and voluntary donations from individuals or organizations.

The World Heritage Fund provides about an annual amount of $4 million to support activities requested by State Parties in need of international assistance.

Funds are allocated to the recipient sites according to the urgency of the requests, priorities being given to the most threatened sites.

The donations given by countries to support specific projects with defined goals and objectives are called Funds-in-trust.

There is a small grants programme jointly operated by the World Heritage Centre, the United Nations Foundation and Fauna & Flora International. The grant is called the Rapid Response Facility which is aimed at protecting the natural World Heritage sites in times of crisis. The response is quick, flexible and in real-time, the reason it is called the Rapid Response Facility (RRF).

The RRF grants are used for various specific emergency situations like:

  1. Mobilizing funds quickly for responding to emergency situations;
  2. Providing bridging funds in areas that require longer terms of funding; and
  3. Catalyzing innovative financing mechanisms as an aspect of the longer-term agenda.

UNESCO Programmes and Scholarships for Developing Countries

UNESCO / People’s Republic of China (The Great Wall) Co-Sponsored Fellowships Programme

The government of the People’s Republic of China has handed to UNESCO up to 75 fellowships for advanced studies at both the undergraduate and postgraduate levels.

Eligibility Criteria

  • The majority of the study programmes will be conducted in English.
  • Qualified students will take their studies in the host universities as visiting scholars.
  • Candidates may be required to take the Chinese language before taking up the research or course of interest.
  • 25 of the fellowships are intended for candidates from the Teacher Training Institutions supported by the UNESCO-CFIT Project in the 10 African countries to pursue an Advanced Training Programme for Education Administrators and Teacher Educators at East China Normal University.
  • Candidates must be in good health.

How to Apply

Applicants should:

  • Contact the National Commission for UNESCO of their country to understand the application procedure at the national level.
  • Contact in advance, the target Chinese university and apply for the pre-admission.
  • Prepare their application documents in English or Chinese according to the requirements.
  • Submit the application to the National Commission for UNESCO of their respective countries.
  • Fill the Online Application Form.

UNESCO Arts and Crafts Scholarships

The UNESCO Arts and Crafts Scholarship is a scholarship for artists that enable arts and crafts students from developing countries to complete a study tour at home or abroad. It also helps students to launch their professional careers by helping them to work in a professional environment, acquire new skills and experiences, design and create innovative products, develop a professional network and participate and present their work at International Fair.

The Benefit of the Scholarship

Monthly financial support, all-round free ticket, and logistic support.

Eligibility Criteria

  • The programme is available for short courses.
  • It could be taken in France and developing countries.
  • International students and students who are French citizens are eligible to apply.
  • Applicants must be enrolled in an art school or university.
  • He/she must be at least two years in an Arts and Crafts Diploma.
  • The applicant must be able to speak French and English.

The UNESCO / Poland Co-Sponsored Fellowship Progamme in Engineering

The UNESCO Chair for Science, Technology and Engineering Education at the AGH University of Science and Technology in Krakow have placed 20 fellowships of six months’ duration each in Poland in the fields of Science, Technology and Engineering.

Benefits of the Fellowship

  • Free tuition and access to the university facilities.
  • Monthly allowance of 1,600 PLN to cover the living expenses.
  • A one-time special allowance of 1,600 PLN.
  • International travel expenses.
  • Health insurance coverage.

Application requirements

  • Completed UNESCO fellowship application form filled in English.
  • Two photographs.
  • Copies of bachelor’s or master’s degree or PhD obtained.
  • UNESCO certificate of language knowledge.
  • Two letters of endorsement.
  • Candidates should register online

Only the selected candidates will be contacted.

UNESCO / Republic of Korea Co-Sponsored Fellowship Programme

The government of Korea is offering 25 fellowships of no more than two months’ duration aimed at enhancing human resources and capacity building in the least Developed Countries (LDCs) in Africa and Asia-Pacific. The programme will enable students to participate in a training course or conduct research work in the Republic of Korea.

Benefits of the Programme

Tuition fee waiver, monthly stipends, travel expenses and health insurance coverage.

Eligibility Criteria

Candidates must:

  • Hold at least a bachelor’s degree.
  • Be proficient in English
  • Be between 28 and 50 years.
  • Must be in good physical and mental health.
  • Must have a minimum of five years’ career in education.
  • Must be endorsed by the National Commission for UNESCO.

Required Documents

  • Photocopies of diplomas and transcripts.
  • Certificate of English language proficiency.
  • One photograph.

Other UNESCO programmes include:

  • UNESCO / Japan Young Researchers Fellowships Programme.
  • UNESCO / Keiz Obuchi Research Fellowships Programme.
  • UNESCO Poland Co-Sponsored Fellowships Programme in Archeology and Conservation.
  • UNESCO/ISEDC Russian Federation Co-Sponsored Fellowships Programme.


Apply for UNESCO scholarship and internship programs for African students, graduates and professionals. Details on how to apply