Funding Opportunities

The U.S. Embassy is pleased to request proposals for funding for its Grants program.

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
U.S. EMBASSY DAKAR

Notice of Funding Opportunity

Funding Opportunity Title:  Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation 2021

Funding Opportunity Number:  DKR-NOFO-FY21-03

Deadlines for Applications: Round 1 – December 10, 2021; 5:30PM GMT

Round 2 – April 8, 2022; 5:30PM GMT

CFDA Number:  19.025

Total Amount Available: $10,000-$500,000

A. PROGRAM DESCRIPTION
The U.S. Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP) supports a wide range of projects around the world, including in Senegal and Guinea-Bissau, to preserve cultural heritage.  The U.S. Government created the fund in 2000 to assist developing countries efforts to preserve their cultural patrimony.  To ease the administrative work, the Center in Washington, has divided the application process into two rounds and reduced the amount of information required up front. The first streamlined round will collect project ideas from applicants in the form of concept notes (2 pages), due December 10, 2021. In Round 2, the Embassy will invite applicants with promising ideas to submit full project applications, due March 5, 2021.Generally, no more than one project per country is selected.  Preservation projects should take place over a period of 12 months; financing is non-renewable.

Please carefully follow all instructions below.

Priority Region: 

Senegal or Guinea-Bissau.

Program Objectives: 

The U.S. Embassy in Dakar works with partner organizations on several projects to advance shared values, such as tolerance and respect for cultural diversity in Senegal and Guinea-Bissau. Projects that seek to preserve cultural sites, objects, collections, and intangible forms of expression under threat from the mining industry are encouraged.

The AFCP Grant Competition supports the preservation of cultural sites, cultural objects and collections, and forms of intangible traditional cultural expression.  Appropriate project activities may include:

  • Cultural sites: conservation of an ancient or historic building, preservation of an archeological site or documentation of cultural sites in a region for preservation purposes;
  • Cultural objects and collections: conservation treatment for an object or collection of objects from a museum, site, or similar institution-that include, but not limited to, archaeological and ethnographic objects, paintings, sculpture, manuscripts, and general museum conservation  needs; needs assessment of a collection with respect to its condition and strategies for improving its state of conservation; inventory of a collection for conservation and protection purposes; the creation of safe environments for storage or display of collections; or specialized training in the care and preservation of collections;
  • Forms of traditional cultural expression: documentation and audiovisual recording of traditional music, indigenous languages and dance forms for broad dissemination as the means of teaching and further preserving them, or support for training in the preservation of traditional applied arts or crafts in danger of extinction.

Special Note Regarding Sites and Objects that have a Religious Connection:  The establishment clause of the U.S. Constitution permits the government to include religious objects and sites within an aid program under certain conditions.  For example, an item with a religious connection (including a place of worship) may be the subject of a cultural preservation grant if the item derives its primary significance and is nominated solely on the basis of architectural, artistic, historical, or other cultural (not religious) criteria.

Ineligible Activities and Unallowable Costs: 

AFCP does NOT support the following activities or costs, and applications involving any of these activities or costs will be deemed ineligible:

a) Preservation or purchase of privately or commercially owned cultural objects, collections, or real property, including those whose transfer from private or commercial to public ownership is envisioned, planned, or in process but not complete at the time of application.

b) Preservation of natural heritage (physical, biological, and geological formations, paleontological collections, habitats of threatened species of animals and plants, fossils, etc.);

c) Preservation of hominid or human remains;

d) Preservation of news media (newspapers, newsreels, radio and TV programs, etc.);

e) Preservation of published materials available elsewhere (books, periodicals, etc.);

f) Development of curricula or educational materials for classroom use;

g) Archaeological excavations or exploratory surveys for research purposes;

h) Historical research, except in cases where the research is justifiable and integral to the success of the proposed project;

i) Acquisition or creation of new exhibits, objects, or collections for new or existing museums;

j) Construction of new buildings, building additions, or permanent coverings (over archaeological sites, for example);

k) Commissions of new works of art or architecture for commemorative or economic development purposes;

l) Creation of new or the modern adaptation of existing traditional dances, songs, chants, musical compositions, plays, or other performances;

m) Creation of replicas or conjectural reconstructions of cultural objects or sites that no longer exist;

n) Relocation of cultural sites from one physical location to another;

o) Removal of cultural objects or elements of cultural sites from the country for any reason;

p) Digitization of cultural objects or collections, unless part of a larger, clearly defined conservation, documentation, or public diplomacy effort;

q) Conservation plans or other studies, unless they are one component of a larger project to implement the results of those studies;

r) Cash reserves, endowments, or revolving funds (funds must be expended within the award period [up to five years] and may not be used to create an endowment or revolving fund);

s) Costs of fund-raising campaigns;

t) Contingency, unforeseen, or miscellaneous costs or fees;

u) Costs of work performed prior to announcement of the award unless allowable per 2 CFR 200.458 and approved by the Grants Officer;

v) International travel, except in cases where travel is justifiable and integral to the success of the proposed project or to provide project leaders with learning and exchange opportunities with cultural heritage experts;

w) Individual projects costing less than US $10,000 or more than $500,000;

x) Independent U.S. projects overseas.

Participants and Audiences:

Projects should include outreach activities that spread awareness to, inform, and involve public groups.

B. FEDERAL AWARD INFORMATION

Length of performance period: Twelve months 

Number of awards anticipated: One

Award amounts: Awards may range from a minimum of $10,000 to a maximum of $500,000

Total available funding: $500,000

Type of Funding:  Fulbright Hays

Anticipated program start date: September 30, 2022

This notice is subject to availability of funding.

Funding Instrument Type:  Grant

Program Performance Period: Proposed programs should be completed in 12 months or less.

C. ELIGILIBITY INFORMATION

  1. Eligible Applicants

Including but not limited to; reputable and accountable non-commercial entities, such as non-governmental organizations, museums, ministries of culture, institution of higher education or similar institutions and organizations, including U.S.-based organizations subject to Section 501(c)(3) of the tax code, that are registered and active in SAM.gov and able to demonstrate that they have the requisite experience and capacity to manage projects to preserve cultural heritage.

AFCP does not award grants to individuals, commercial entities, or past award recipients that have not fulfilled the objectives or reporting requirements of previous AFCP awards.

  1. Cost Sharing or Forms of Cost Participation

There is no minimum or maximum percentage of cost participation required for this competition.  When an applicant offers cost sharing, it is understood and agreed that the applicant must provide the amount of cost sharing as stipulated in its application and later included in an approved agreement.  The applicant will be responsible for tracking and reporting on any cost share or outside funding, which is subject to audit per 2 CFR 200.  Cost sharing may be in the form of allowable direct or indirect costs.

  1. Other Eligibility Requirements

In order to be eligible to receive an award, all organizations must have (see Section D Required Registrations for more information):

  • A unique entity identifier (Data Universal Numbering System/DUNS number from Dun & Bradstreet). Register at: http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform
  • An NCAGE Code. Register at: https://eportal.nspa.nato.int/AC135Public/scage/CageList.as
  • SAM User Account. Register at: https://www.sam.gov

All organizations must have a bank account, a physical address, and an accounting system.

D. APPLICATION AND SUBMISSION INFORMATION

  1. Address to Request Application Package

Application forms required below are available at https://sn.usembassy.gov/education-culture/funding-opportunities/

  1. Content and Form of Application Submission

Please follow all instructions below carefully. Proposals that do not meet the requirements of this announcement or fail to comply with the stated requirements will be ineligible.

Content of Application

Required documents. For document templates, please see the “Templates” section on https://sn.usembassy.gov/education-culture/funding-opportunities/

  • Form SF-424—Application for Federal Assistance;
  • Form SF-424A—Budget Information for Non-Construction Programs;
  • Form SF-424B—Assurances for Non-Construction Programs;
  • Project Proposal Form
  • Line item budget
  • One-page CV or resume of key personnel who are proposed for the

project

Please ensure:

  • The proposal clearly addresses the goals and objectives of this funding opportunity
  • The proposal has a concrete implementation plan with well-conceived objectives, a clear audience, and indicators that are specific, measurable, and achievable
  • All documents are in English
  • All budgets are in U.S. dollars
  • The proposal form is returned as a Word document
  • The line item budget form is returned as an Excel document
  • The SF-424, 424A, and 424B are returned as Adobe Acrobat documents
  • Successful registration and identification numbers for DUNS, NCAGE, and SAM.

Required Registrations:

Any applicant listed on the Excluded Parties List System (EPLS) in the System for Award Management (SAM) is not eligible to apply for an assistance award in accordance with the OMB guidelines at 2 CFR 180 that implement Executive Orders 12549 (3 CFR, 1986 Comp., p. 189) and 12689 (3 CFR, 1989 Comp., p. 235), “Debarment and Suspension.” Additionally, no entity listed on the EPLS can participate in any activities under an award.  All applicants are strongly encouraged to review the EPLS in SAM to ensure that no ineligible entity is included.

All organizations applying for grants must obtain these registrations.  All are free of charge:

  • Unique entity identifier from Dun & Bradstreet (DUNS number): http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform
  • NCAGE/CAGE code: https://eportal.nspa.nato.int/AC135Public/scage/CageList.as
  • SAM registration: www.SAM.gov

Step 1: Apply for a DUNS number and an NCAGE number (these can be completed simultaneously)

DUNS application: Organizations must have a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number from Dun & Bradstreet. If your organization does not have one already, you may obtain one by calling 1-866-705-5711 or visiting http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform

NCAGE application: Application page here: https://eportal.nspa.nato.int/AC135Public/scage/CageList.aspx

Instructions for the NCAGE application process:

https://eportal.nspa.nato.int/AC135Public/Docs/US%20Instructions%20for%20NSPA%20NCAGE.pdf

For NCAGE help from within the U.S., call 1-888-227-2423

For NCAGE help from outside the U.S., call 1-269-961-7766

Email NCAGE@dlis.dla.mil for any problems in getting an NCAGE code.

Step 2: After receiving the NCAGE Code, proceed to register in SAM.gov by logging onto: https://www.sam.gov.  SAM registration must be renewed annually.

  1. Submission Dates and Times

December 10, 2021; 5:30PM GMT

Due to the high volume of applications, we cannot offer feedback on individual applications.

  1. Funding Restrictions
  • Funds cannot be used for any military or paramilitary purpose
  • Funds are subject to a restriction on assistance to police, prisons, other law enforcement forces, and programs of internal intelligence or surveillance
  • All programming must be implemented in a manner consistent with the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.  Federally-funded programs and activities must both a secular purpose and a secular effect (i.e. not a principal or primary effect of advancing religion)
  • Funds cannot be used for projects that are focused on development assistance
  • Funds cannot be used for donations
  • Individual projects costing less than US $10,000 or more than $500,000
  • Funds can only be given to an organization, not to an individual
  1. Other Submission Requirements

All application materials must be submitted by email to DakarAFCP@state.gov 

E. APPLICATION REVIEW INFORMATION

  1. Criteria

Round 1

In consultation with the regional bureaus, ECA and the Center will determine which project ideas advance to the Round 2 application stage based on the following criteria:

i. anticipated preservation and public diplomacy impacts;

ii. potential contributions to U.S. foreign policy;

iii. potential contributions to host-country or community objectives and aims.

The deadline for Round 1 is December 10, 2021.

Once Embassy gets result of the 1st Round, on or around January 15, 2022 recipients will be notified, and invited to submit full project proposals to Round 2.

Round 2

Full application review and selection: The Center will review and rate the full project proposals to confirm the feasibility of the projects. Each application will be evaluated and rated based on the evaluation criteria outlined below.

Purpose, Description, and Importance (20 points max)

ii. Rationale for U.S. Support (20 points max)

iii. Embassy Media and Applicant Outreach Plans (15 points max)

iv. Support for wider host country or community objectives (5 points max)

v. Maintenance Plan (15 points max)

vi. Budget and Budget Narrative (15 points max)

vii. Supporting Materials (resumes, images, etc.; 10 points max)

viii. Innovative integration, collaboration, or coordination with other ECA and public diplomacy programs (additional 10 points max)

  1. Review and Selection Process

A Grants Review Committee will evaluate all eligible applications and recommend select proposals for further review by the U.S. Department of State. The deadline for Round 2 is April 8, 2022.

3. Federal Awardee Performance & Integrity Information System (FAPIIS)

For any Federal award under a notice of funding opportunity, if the Federal awarding agency anticipates that the total Federal share will be greater than the simplified acquisition threshold on any Federal award under a notice of funding opportunity may include, over the period of performance (see §200.88 Simplified Acquisition Threshold), this section must also inform applicants:

i. That the Federal awarding agency, prior to making a Federal award with a total amount of Federal share greater than the simplified acquisition threshold, is required to review and consider any information about the applicant that is in the designated integrity and performance system accessible through SAM (currently FAPIIS) (see 41 U.S.C. 2313);

ii. That an applicant, at its option, may review information in the designated integrity and performance systems accessible through SAM and comment on any information about itself that a Federal awarding agency previously entered and is currently in the designated integrity and performance system accessible through SAM;

iii. That the Federal awarding agency will consider any comments by the applicant, in addition to the other information in the designated integrity and performance system, in making a judgment about the applicant’s integrity, business ethics, and record of performance under Federal awards when completing the review of risk posed by applicants as described in §200.205 Federal awarding agency review of risk posed by applicants.

F. FEDERAL AWARD ADMINISTRATION INFORMATION

    1. Federal Award Notices

The grant award or cooperative agreement will be written, signed, awarded, and administered by the Grants Officer. The assistance award agreement is the authorizing document and it will be provided to the recipient for review and signature by email. The recipient may only start incurring program expenses beginning on the start date shown on the grant award document signed by the Grants Officer.

If a proposal is selected for funding, the Department of State has no obligation to provide any additional future funding. Renewal of an award to increase funding or extend the period of performance is at the discretion of the Department of State.

Issuance of this NOFO does not constitute an award commitment on the part of the U.S. government, nor does it commit the U.S. government to pay for costs incurred in the preparation and submission of proposals. Further, the U.S. government reserves the right to reject any or all proposals received.

Payment Method: Bank transfer in at least two tranches (depends on the total budget and timeline of the grant).

    1. Administrative and National Policy Requirements

Terms and Conditions: Before applying, applicants should review all the terms and conditions and required certifications which will apply to this award, to ensure that they will be able to comply.  These include: 2 CFR 200, 2 CFR 600, Certifications and Assurances, and the Department of State Standard Terms and Conditions, all of which are available at:  https://www.statebuy.state.gov/fa/pages/home.aspx

Note the U.S Flag branding and marking requirements in the Standard Terms and Conditions.

    1. Reporting

Reporting Requirements: Recipients will be required to submit financial reports (in U.S. dollars) and program reports (in English).  The award document will specify how often these reports must be submitted.

Applicants should be aware of the post award reporting requirements reflected in 2 CFR 200 Appendix XII—Award Term and Condition for Recipient Integrity and Performance Matters.

G.  FEDERAL AWARDING AGENCY CONTACTS

If you have any questions about the grant application process, please contact:  DakarAFCPstate.gov.

H.  OTHER INFORMATION 

Guidelines for Budget Justification

Personnel and Fringe Benefits: Describe the wages, salaries, and benefits of temporary or permanent staff who will be working directly for the applicant on the program, and the percentage of their time that will be spent on the program.

Travel: Estimate the costs of travel and per diem for this program, for program staff, consultants or speakers, and participants/beneficiaries. If the program involves international travel, include a brief statement of justification for that travel. (Note: international travel to or from the United States cannot be funded).

Equipment: Describe any machinery, furniture, or other personal property that is required for the program, which has a useful life of more than one year (or a life longer than the duration of the program), and costs at least $5,000 per unit.

Supplies: List and describe all the items and materials, including any computer devices, that are needed for the program. If an item costs more than $5,000 per unit, then put it in the budget under Equipment.

Contractual: Describe goods and services that the applicant plans to acquire through a contract with a vendor.  Also describe any sub-awards to non-profit partners that will help carry out the program activities.

Other Direct Costs: Describe other costs directly associated with the program, which do not fit in the other categories. For example, shipping costs for materials and equipment or applicable taxes. All “Other” or “Miscellaneous” expenses must be itemized and explained.

Indirect Costs:  These are costs that cannot be linked directly to the program activities, such as overhead costs needed to help keep the organization operating.  If your organization has a Negotiated Indirect Cost Rate (NICRA) and includes NICRA charges in the budget, attach a copy of your latest NICRA. Organizations that have never had a NICRA may request indirect costs of 10% of the modified total direct costs as defined in 2 CFR 200.68.

“Cost Sharing” refers to contributions from the organization or other entities other than the U.S. Embassy.   It also includes in-kind contributions such as volunteers’ time and donated venues.

Alcoholic Beverages:  Please note that award funds cannot be used for alcoholic beverages.

I. DISCLAIMER

Issuance of this funding opportunity does not constitute an award commitment on the part of the

AFCP program or the U.S. government. The Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs

reserves the right to waive program formalities and to reduce, revise, or increase application

budgets and award amounts in accordance with the needs of the AFCP program and the

availability of FY 2022 funds.

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
U.S. EMBASSY DAKAR, PUBLIC AFFAIRS SECTION
Statement of Interest

Funding Opportunity Title: U.S. Embassy Dakar Public Affairs Section Request for Statements of Interest

Funding Opportunity Number: PAS-DKR-RSOI-FY22-01

Deadline for Applications:  Applications will be accepted on rolling basis but must be submitted before May 15, 2022.

CFDA Numbers:   19.040 – Public Diplomacy Programs

19.441 – American Spaces

19.022 and 19.450 – RELO Programs

Total Amount Available: $250,000

Maximum for Each Award:  $50,000

*Exceptional proposals above $50,000 may be granted funds pending availability of funding*

  1. PROGRAM DESCRIPTION
    The U.S. Embassy Dakar Public Affairs Section (PAS) of the U.S. Department of State announces a Request for Statements of Interest (RSOI) from organizations interested in applying for funding for program proposals that strengthen cultural ties between the United States and Senegal or between the United States and Guinea-Bissau through cultural, educational, capacity building and exchange programming that highlights shared values and promotes bilateral cooperation. PAS invites organizations interested in potential funding to submit SOI applications outlining program concepts that reflect this goal. Please carefully follow all instructions below.

 

The submission of a Statement of Interest (SOI) is the first step in a two-part process. Applicants must first submit a SOI, which is a concise concept note (maximum two-pages) designed to clearly communicate a program idea and its objectives before the development of a full proposal application. The purpose of the SOI process is to allow applicants the opportunity to submit program ideas for PAS to evaluate prior to requiring the development of full proposal applications. Upon review of eligible SOIs, PAS will invite selected applicants to expand their ideas into full proposal applications.

 

Purpose: PAS Dakar invites SOIs for programs that strengthen cultural, educational, or professional ties between the people of Senegal and the United States or between the United States and Guinea-Bissau. Programs must highlight shared values and promote bilateral cooperation. All programs must include an American cultural element, or connection with American expert/s, organization/s, or institution/s in a specific field that will promote increased understanding of U.S. policy and perspectives.  This can also include the involvement of Senegalese or Bissau-Guinean alumni of U.S. government exchange programs.

 

Examples of PAS-funded programs include, but are not limited to:

  • Academic and professional lectures, seminars, and speaker programs;
  • Capacity-building workshops and programs;
  • Artistic and cultural workshops, joint performances, and exhibitions;
  • Professional and academic exchanges, partnerships, and programs;
  • Existing American Spaces and those partner institutions that are seeking to establish an American Space.
  • English language programs

 

Priority program areas include, but are not limited to:

  • Advancing democratic values through the promotion of human rights, civil society, and good governance;
  • Promoting inclusive economic growth through innovation and entrepreneurship: Promote shared economic growth through proposals that reinforce shared values of entrepreneurship and innovation, promote economic opportunities and empowerment of underserved communities and youth, and explore the benefits of expanded trading opportunities between the United States and Senegal and/or the United States and Guinea Bissau.
  • Advancing the study of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM); promote critical learning through workshops, demonstrations, and hands-on activities aimed at youth ranging between elementary to university level of studies.
  • Increasing opportunities for youth;
  • Promoting awareness of the global climate crisis; including amplifying strong U.S. leadership to increase global climate ambition, and combatting climate change using U.S. models.
  • Promoting women’s empowerment and economic inclusion;
  • Celebrating 60 years of U.S.-Senegalese diplomatic relations: Reinforce U.S. – Senegal shared values through proposals that explore, expand, and reflect on historical and contemporary connections between U.S. and Senegalese cultural and educational institutions and groups

 

Participants and audiences include, but are not limited to:

  • Youth and Emerging Voices (university and entry-level working professionals)
  • Civil society actors;
  • Local leaders;
  • Journalists;
  • Business leaders and entrepreneurs;
  • Established opinion leaders, including cultural and/or academic institution leadership
  • Residents of underserved communities and regions outside of Dakar.
  • New media professionals including bloggers and social media personalities

 

The following types of programs are NOT eligible for funding:

  • Programs relating to partisan political activity;
  • Charitable or development activities;
  • Construction programs;
  • Programs that support specific religious activities;
  • Fund-raising campaigns;
  • Lobbying for specific legislation or programs
  • Scientific research;
  • Programs intended primarily for the growth or institutional development of the organization; or
  • Programs that duplicate existing programs;
  • Travel of non-U.S. citizens from the U.S. to Senegal or to Guinea-Bissau;
  • Projects consisting of a single meeting or brief conference;
  • Projects or events that require participants pay for entrance or participation;
  • Projects or events benefitting a for-profit enterprise

 

**If your project is ineligible, please visit our website to view other U.S. Embassy funding opportunities that may be better suited for your project.

Authorizing legislation, type and year of funding:

The Statutory Authorities for this program are the Smith-Mundt Act and Hays-Fulbright Act. The source of funding is FY2022 Department of State Public Diplomacy Funding.

 B. FEDERAL AWARD INFORMATION

Length of performance period: 3 to 12 months

Number of awards anticipated: Number of awards will depend on project proposal amounts and available funding.

Award amounts: awards may range from a minimum of $5,000 to a maximum of $50,000

Total expected available funding: $250,000.00

Type of Funding:  Fiscal Year 2022 Public Diplomacy Funding

Anticipated program start date:  Any date between May 31, 2022, and December 31, 2022

This notice is subject to availability of funding.  All awards must be finalized prior to Sept 30, 2022.

 Funding Instrument Type:  Grant, Cooperative Agreement, Fixed Amount Award, or Individual Grant

 

  1. ELIGIBILITYINFORMATION
  1. Eligible Applicants

The Public Affairs Section accepts applications from only U.S., Senegalese and Bissau Guinean:

  • Registered not-for-profit organizations, including think tanks and civil society/non-governmental organizations with programming experience
  • Individuals
  • Non-profit or governmental educational institutions

 

*For-profit or commercial entities are not eligible to apply.  

 

  1. Cost Sharing or Matching

Cost sharing is not required. When cost sharing is offered, it is understood and agreed that the applicant must provide the amount of cost sharing as stipulated in its proposal.

  1. Other Eligibility Requirements

Applicants are only allowed to submit one proposal per organization. If more than one proposal is submitted from an organization, all proposals from that institution will be considered ineligible for funding.

  1. APPLICATION AND SUBMISSION INFORMATION

The U.S. Embassy Dakar Public Affairs Section will accept Statements of Interest (SOI) on a rolling basis through May 15, 2022.  A sample SOI form can be found on our website in the “Templates” box on the right-hand side (https://sn.usembassy.gov/education-culture/funding-opportunities/).   A grants committee including U.S. Embassy employees will review eligible applications after March 15 and May 15, 2021.  The review and selection process may take up to four months from submission of the proposal. All application materials, the SOI form, and any other supporting documentation must be submitted in English by email to PASmallgrant@state.gov.

 

All SOIs should ensure that the following requirements are met:

Please follow all instructions below carefully. SOIs that do not meet the requirements of this announcement or fail to comply with the stated requirements will be ineligible.

 

Content of Application

Please ensure:

  • The SOI clearly addresses the goals and objectives of this funding opportunity
  • All documents are in English
  • All budgets are in U.S. dollars
  • All pages are numbered
  • All documents are formatted to 8 ½ x 11 paper, and
  • All Microsoft Word documents are single-spaced, 12-point Times New Roman font, with a minimum of 1-inch margins.

 

The following documentation is required:

  • Program Statement (not to exceed two pages in Microsoft Word) that includes:
  • A table listing:
  • Name of the organization;
  • The target country/countries;
  • The total amount of funding requested from PAS, total amount of cost-share (if any), and total program amount (PAS funds + cost-share); and,
  • Program length;
  • A synopsis of the program, including a brief statement on how the program will have a demonstrated impact and engage relevant stakeholders;
  • A concise breakdown explicitly identifying the program’s objectives and the activities and expected results that contribute to each objective; and,
  • A brief description of the applicant(s) that demonstrates the applicant(s) expertise and capacity to implement the program and manage a U.S. government award.
  • COVID-19 Mitigation Plan: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and its current impact on travel and operations, it is unclear when existing travel restrictions and health advisories will allow for in-person program activities to take place. As such, proposals should include language that demonstrates maximum flexibility, creativity, and rapid response capability for program planning and administration. Applicants should also ensure continuity of services should the current situation continue for an extended period of time. The applicant should present innovative options for virtual activities to augment, and/or substitute for, in-person engagement with all program stakeholders, if travel is not possible.

An organization or individual may submit no more than one SOI per year.

 

  1. APPLICATION REVIEW INFORMATION
  2. Criteria

Each SOI will be evaluated and rated on the basis of the evaluation criteria outlined below.

Quality of Program Idea – 50 points: The SOI is responsive to program framework. The idea is communicated well and is feasible. SOI’s that promote creative approaches to address program objectives are highly encouraged. The proposed timeline is reasonable.

Organizational Capacity and Record on Previous Grants –15 points: The SOI should demonstrate the organization’s expertise and previous experience in administering programs. If a local partner is identified the SOI should briefly describe the partner’s role and experience.

Program Planning/Ability to Achieve Objectives – 15 points: The SOI should clearly articulate proposed program activities and expected results towards achieving program objectives and goal(s).

American Content – 20 points: The SOI should clearly articulate how the project will promote a better understanding of the United States.

 

  1. Review and Selection Process

A Grants Review Committee will evaluate all eligible SOIs.  All eligible SOIs will be reviewed against the criteria listed above. SOIs are reviewed individually against the criteria and not against competing SOIs. For a balanced review all panelists will review the first page of the SOI up to the page limit and no further. The panel may provide conditions and/or recommendations on SOIs to enhance the proposed program. Conditions must be addressed, and recommendations should be addressed in a full proposal application.

  1. Following the review, any successful SOI applicants will be contacted and instructed to submit full applications. A full application will include:
  • SF-424 (Application for Federal Assistance – organizations) or SF-424-I (Application for Federal Assistance –individuals)
  • SF424A (Budget Information for Non-Construction programs)
  • SF424B (Assurances for Non-Construction programs) for individual or organization exempted from registering in SAM.
  1. Unique Entity Identifier and System for Award Management (SAM.gov) (NOTE: This section is required and not optional, except for NOFOs targeting applications only from individuals.)

Required Registrations: Any applicant listed on the Excluded Parties List System (EPLS) in the System for Award Management (SAM) is not eligible to apply for an assistance award in accordance with the OMB guidelines at 2 CFR 180 that implement Executive Orders 12549 (3 CFR, 1986 Comp., p. 189) and 12689 (3 CFR, 1989 Comp., p. 235), “Debarment and Suspension.” Additionally, no entity listed on the EPLS can participate in any activities under an award. All applicants are strongly encouraged to review the EPLS in SAM to ensure that no ineligible entity is included.

Organizations are not required to have a valid Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) number –formally referred to as DUNS (Data Universal Numbering System) number- nor active SAM.gov registration to apply at this stage of the solicitation. However, if a SOI is accepted for a full proposal application, the organization must obtain a UEI and have an active SAM.gov registration before submitting its full proposal application. Therefore, we recommend starting the process of obtaining a SAM.gov registration as soon as possible. The process can take several weeks. Please note there is no cost associated with UEI or SAM.gov registration.

 

  1. FEDERAL AWARD ADMINISTRATION INFORMATION
  2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements

Terms and Conditions: Before submitting the SOI, applicants should review all the terms and conditions and required certifications which will apply if a full proposal application is requested and awarded, to ensure that they will be able to comply. These include:

2 CFR 200, 2 CFR 600, and the Department of State Standard Terms and Conditions which are available at: https://www.state.gov/about-us-office-of-the-procurement-executive/

  1. FEDERAL AWARDING AGENCY CONTACTS:

If you have any questions about the SOI application process, please contact: PASmallgrant@state.gov

*Please note, an invitation to present a full submission does not guarantee funding.*