Grant Opportunities

American Center Dhaka Grants

 

Funding Opportunity Announcement

 

Awarding Agency: Department of State, U.S. Embassy Dhaka
Funding Opportunity Title:  The American Center Annual Program Statement
Funding Opportunity Number:  FY2017-APS-001
Funding Opportunity Type:  Initial Announcement
CFDA Number:  19.040 – Public Diplomacy Programs

Key Dates: Applications may be submitted between January 15, 2017 and August 31, 2017
Date Opened:  January 09, 2017

The American Center of U.S. Embassy Dhaka is pleased to announce that funding is available through its Public Diplomacy grants program, and is seeking proposals for projects throughout the fiscal year (from October to September) that promote U.S.-Bangladesh ties, strengthen democratic and inclusive societies, increase educational and economic opportunity for citizens, and improve access to accurate information.

This is an Annual Program Statement, outlining our funding priorities, strategic themes, and procedures for submitting requests for funding.

A.  PROGRAM DESCRIPTION:

Federal Assistance Awards, hereafter referred to as grants, under this notice are intended for local representatives of civil society, including U.S. or overseas-based non-profit/non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and private institutions of post-secondary and higher education.

Grant proposals submitted should meet one or more of the following U.S. Embassy Dhaka, Public Diplomacy priorities:

1.      Promote democratic values, good governance, civil society engagement, and peaceful political processes:
The American Center solicits proposals for:

  • Programs that aim to strengthen the capacity of civil society organizations to influence the government, and promote good governance.
  • Programs that initiate dialogue and create greater accountability and transparency in public institutions.
  • Projects that build partnerships and coordination among civil society organizations, and develop public-awareness and advocacy campaigns.

2.      Strengthen respect for human rights and inclusive societies (promote tolerance and pluralism):
Proposals are solicited that aim to:

  • Strengthen the work of human rights organizations.
  • Teach increased respect for differences and diversity.
  • Increase fairness, equal opportunity and access across all spectrum of society.

3.  Counter violent extremism:
Proposals are solicited that aim to counter violent extremism through:

  • Engaging community leaders of all ages to promote non-violent activism and build community resilience.
  • Strengthening youth engagement in the public arena to create awareness of vulnerability towards radicalization.
  • Building capacity for prevention and resolution of conflict through non-violent approaches and action frameworks.

4. Pursue gender equality and women empowerment, and combat gender based violence:
Proposals will be considered that advocate for and promote gender equality, woman empowerment and combat gender based violence through projects that:

  • Minimize gender disparities in access to resources and opportunities in the economic, social, political and cultural context.
  • Involve awareness campaigns that reduce gender based violence and mitigate its harmful effects on individuals and communities.
  • Focus on increasing awareness of rights and building the capacity of young girls and women to realize their rights that in due course will influence decision making in households, communities, and societies.

5. Increase U.S.-Bangladesh educational linkages, English language learning, higher education administration:
The American Center will consider project proposals that:

  • Support and expand linkages between Bangladesh and U.S. academic/educational institutions; promote and enable academic cooperation, curriculum development, and resource exchange.
  • Promote education sector reform and strengthen relationships between the respective stakeholders in the education sector.
  • Implement academic programs that provide increased and improved English language learning for marginalized groups.

6. Cultural and artistic approaches to address any of the above priorities.

B.  FEDERAL AWARD INFORMATION:

Funding Instrument Type:  Cooperative Agreement or Federal Assistance Award (Grant)
Individual Award Floor:  $5,000
Individual Award Ceiling:  $25,000
Anticipated project start date: September 1, 2017 or earlier

The American Center reserves the right to award less or more than the amounts described in the absence of worthy applications or under such other circumstances as it may deem to be in the best interest of the U.S. Government.

Project and Budget Periods:  Grant projects generally should be completed in one year or less.  The American Center may entertain applications for an extension of the grant period for grants funded under these awards subject to the availability of funds, satisfactory progress of the project activities, and a determination that continued funding would be in the best interest of the Department of State.

C.  ELIGIBILITY INFORMATION:

The American Center encourages applications from non-governmental organizations, non-profit organizations, foundations, trusts, community-based organizations and educational institutions that have legal standing in Bangladesh and the appropriate registrations as per the local regulatory requirements.  Commercial firms and for-profit entities are not eligible to apply for this funding opportunity.

The applicant may propose to share the cost of the project but these costs must reflect the realistic capacity of the applicant’s contribution.  If the applicant proposes cost sharing in their proposal, the recipient must provide the minimum amount of cost sharing as stipulated in the recipient’s budget approved by the Grants Officer.  Cost share is not mandatory and will not be considered as a factor during merit review of applications.

In addition, applicant organizations must have an organizational bank account for financial transactions and all transactions pertaining to an award granted will happen through Electronic Fund Transfer.

D.  APPLICATION AND SUBMISSION INFORMATION:

Proposals should be submitted via email to the American Center, U.S.  Embassy Dhaka at the following email address:  dhakagrants@state.gov.  Applications are accepted in English only, and final grant agreements and grant documentation will be in English.

Each application submitted under this announcement will be evaluated and rated on the basis of its coherence, clarity, attention to detail, and completeness.

The application package must include:

1.      Filled out Local Grants Application Form

2.      Filled out Organizational Information Form

3.      Project Narrative:  Outline a plan of action that describes the scope and detail of how the proposed work will be accomplished.  Account for all functions or activities identified in the application.  Cite factors that might accelerate or decelerate the work and state reasons for taking the proposed approach rather alternatives.  Describe any unusual features of the project, such as design or technological innovations, reductions in cost or time, or extraordinary social and community involvement.  Describe the outcome (s) sought for the proposal under consideration and the benefits to society or to the participants that the proposal seeks to bring about/achieve.

4.      Project Budget: Provide quantitative monthly or quarterly projections of the accomplishments to be achieved for each function or activity in such terms as the number of people to be served and the number of activities accomplished.  When accomplishments cannot be quantified by activity or function, list them in chronological order to show the schedule of a accomplishments and their target dates.  List those organizations, cooperating entities, consultants, or other key individuals who will work on the project, along with a short description of the nature of their effort or contribution.

5.      Standard Forms 424 – Application for Federal Assistance, 424A- Budget Information – Non-Construction Programs and 424B – Assurances for Non-construction Programs (2 separate forms), which are available, along with guidance for completing these forms, at:  http://www.grants.gov/web/grants/forms.html under the heading, “SF-424 Family.”

Please note:

Other items NOT required/requested for submission, but which may be requested if your application is approved for funding include:

1.      Copies of an organization or program audit within the last two (2) years
2.      Copies of relevant human resources, financial, or procurement policies
3.      Copies of other relevant organizational policies or documentation that would help the Department determine your organization’s capacity to manage a federal grant award overseas.
4.      The Embassy reserves the right to request any additional programmatic and/or financial information regarding the proposal.

Regulatory Requirements

In order to receive a grant, the applicant is required to register and obtain the following:

Thorough instructions on the application process are available at: https://eportal.nspa.nato.int/AC135Public/Docs/US%20Instructions%20for%20NSPA%20NCAGE.pdf  

For questions relating to Grants.gov, please call the Grants.gov Contact Center at 1-800-518-4726.
Please note: Only www.grants.gov, DUNS, NCAGE, and SAM can assist with technical questions or problems applicants may experience during the registration process.  Please refer to the contact information for these organizations listed on the organization registration page of www.grants.gov.

Application submission time-frame

Applications may be submitted for consideration at any time between: January 15, 2017 till the close of business on August 31, 2017.

This time-frame is firm.  If organizations fail to submit applications during time-frame noted above, their applications will not be considered for funding and will be considered ineligible.

E.  APPLICATION REVIEW INFORMATION:

Each eligible proposal submitted under this announcement will be evaluated and rated on the basis of the criteria detailed below. The criteria are designed to assess the quality of the proposed project, and to determine the likelihood of its success.

Goals and Objectives – The project is expected to provide maximum impact in achieving the proposed results. The project must address one or more of the U.S. Embassy Dhaka’s Public Diplomacy priorities outlined above. Applicant organizations/entities must demonstrate the ability to measure program success against key indicators. Objectives must be specific, achievable and time bound.

Strengths and Innovation – The applicant should describe how the proposal will address the requested program within the proposed time frame and articulate an innovative strategy or plan.  The project must build on civil society leadership and capacity, and demonstrate sustainable capacity building.

Organizational Capacity –The applicant organization must demonstrate the ability to successfully carry out the proposed activities, and have previously designed and implemented similar initiatives.  The organization must also have been established for a minimum of six months prior to applying for a grant.

Budget and Budget Justification – Budget and narrative justifications must be provided and should be reasonable in relation to the proposed activities and anticipated results, and provide a realistic plan for services.

Other Priority Considerations – Priority will be given to projects that are not located in remote areas that are difficult to monitor and evaluate.

Public Affairs Section of U.S. Embassy, Dhaka will have a Grants Review Committee to review all proposals for eligibility.  Eligible proposals will be further reviewed for compliance of Federal regulations and guidelines and may also be reviewed by the Office of the Legal Adviser or by other Department elements if deemed necessary.  Proposals will be approved based on an evaluation of how the proposal meets the review criteria as stated in the announcement, U.S. foreign policy objectives, priority needs of PAS Dhaka, and availability of funding.  Final authority for assistance awards resides with the Public Affairs Officer.

F.  FEDERAL AWARD ADMINISTRATION INFORMATION:

Successful applicants will be notified via email if a proposal has been selected to move forward in the review process.  Please note that this email IS NOT an authorization to begin performance.  The notice of Federal award signed by the grants officer (or equivalent) is the authorizing document.  The Grants Officer is the government official delegated the authority by the U.S. Department of State Procurement Executive to write, award, and administer grants and cooperative agreements.  The recipient may only incur obligations against the award beginning on the start date outlined in the DS-1909 award document that has been signed by the Grants Officer.  Organizations whose applications will not be funded will also be notified via email.

Recipients will be held to the applicable terms and conditions found at: state.gov/m/a/ope/index.htm

It is the Recipient’s responsibility to ensure they are in compliance with all applicable terms, conditions, and OMB guidance and requirements.  Those organizations found to be in non-compliance may be found ineligible for funding or designated high risk.

Recipients will be expected to provide periodic program progress and financial reports as specified in the Notice of Award throughout the project period.

G. FEDERAL AWARDING AGENCY CONTACTS:

For More Information: Please send inquiries to: dhakagrants@state.gov

 

 

EMK Center Grants

Our Edward M. Kennedy Center for Public Service and the Arts (EMK Center) awards small grants of Taka 100,000-800,000 every year to individuals/groups active in volunteerism, women’s empowerment, education, community development, youth engagement, and the arts, as well as entrepreneurship related projects in Bangladesh. Take a look at the small grants we have awarded here. Stay tuned for next year’s grants.