Saving Lives at Birth Releases its Second Request for Applications

Saving Lives at Birth Releases Second Request for Applications

February 22, 2012
Public Information: 202-712-4810

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, Saving Lives at Birth: A Grand Challenge for Development launched its second call for innovative prevention and treatment approaches for pregnant women and newborns in poor, hard-to-reach communities around the world.

With the launch of this second round, the Saving Lives at Birth partnership - U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the Government of Norway, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Grand Challenges Canada - welcomes a new partner, the United Kingdom's Department for International Development (DFID).

"The days immediately before and after a mother gives birth are an especially dangerous and vulnerable time," said USAID Administrator Rajiv Shah. "With DFID's support, we can expand the reach of our efforts, investing in new technologies and approaches that save the lives of mothers and newborns across the developing world."

Over the course of the program, the partners aim to invest at least $50 million in groundbreaking and sustainable projects with the potential to accelerate substantial progress against maternal and newborn deaths and stillbirths at the community level.

"Canada has demonstrated leadership in Maternal and Child Health through the Muskoka G-8 Initiative and the Accountability Commission for Women's and Children's Health," said Dr. Peter A. Singer, CEO of Grand Challenges Canada. "Grand Challenges Canada, which is funded by the Government of Canada, is pleased to reinforce this leadership by working with its partners and welcoming our new partner, DFID, to catalyze bold ideas to save lives of women and newborns."

Launched on March 9, 2011, Saving Lives at Birth issued its first global call for innovative ideas. The partners received over 600 submissions from the global community and, through a competitive process, selected 24 innovators for award that demonstrated the most potential to tackle this Grand Challenge.

In the second round, the Saving Lives at Birth partners anticipate funding even more transformative approaches that cut across three main domains: (1) science & technology; (2) service delivery; and (3) demand-side innovation.

The partners anticipate awarding 25 seed grants and 5 transition-to-scale grants. The actual number of awards in each category may vary.

A copy of the RFA can be found at and at Applications are due no later than April 2, 2012 at 2:00 pm EST. Any questions on the RFA can be sent to by February 29, 2012 at 5:00 pm EST.

Download a PDF of the Press Release.

Press contacts:

Government of Norway: Lars Grønseth:
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation:
Grand Challenges Canada: Lyn Whitham:
The World Bank: Melanie Mayhew:
DFID: Rob Kelly: