FY 2014 Funding Opportunity Announcement For NGO Programs Benefiting Refugees, And Internally Displaced Persons In The South Caucasus And Central Asia



Published on 17 April 2014


by Office of the Spokesperson

(WireNews+Co)

Washington, D.C.

U.S. Department of State
U.S. Department of State

Funding Opportunity Number: PRM-PRMOAPEU-14-001-049352

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) number: 19.520 - Overseas Refugee Assistance Programs for Europe

Announcement issuance date: Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Proposal submission deadline: Friday, May 16, 2014 at 12:00 noon EDT. Proposals submitted after this deadline will not be considered.

**ADVISORY: All applicants must submit proposals through the website Grants.gov. PRM strongly recommends submitting your proposal early to allow time to address any difficulties that may arise.**

If you are new to PRM funding, the Grants.gov registration process can be complicated. We urge you to refer to PRM’s General NGO Guidelines “New to PRM Funding” section for information and resources to help ensure that the application process runs smoothly. PRM also strongly encourages organizations that have received funding from PRM in the past to read this section as a refresher.

Proposed program start dates: July – September 2014

Eligible Applicants: (1) Nonprofits having a 501(c)(3) status with IRS, other than institutions of higher education; (2) Nonprofits without 501(c)(3) status with IRS, other than institutions of higher education; and (3) International Organizations. International multilateral organizations, such as United Nations agencies, should not submit proposals through Grants.gov in response to this Funding Opportunity Announcement. Multilateral organizations that are seeking funding for programs relevant to this announcement should contact the PRM Program Officer (as listed below) on or before the closing date of the funding announcement.

Duration of Activity: Program plans from 12 to 36 months will be considered. Applicants may submit multi-year proposals with activities and budgets that do not exceed 36 months from the proposed start date. Actual awards will not exceed 12 months in duration and activities and budgets submitted in year one can be revised/updated each year. Continued funding after the initial 12-month award requires the submission of a noncompeting continuation application and will be contingent upon available funding, strong performance, and continuing need. In funding a project one year, PRM makes no representations that it will continue to fund the project in successive years and encourages applicants to seek a wide array of donors to ensure long-term funding possibilities. Please see Multi-Year Funding section below for additional information.

Current Funding Priorities: PRM will prioritize funding for proposed NGO activities that best meet the Bureau’s priorities for refugees, asylum seekers, internally displaced persons (IDPs), and other persons of concern in the South Caucasus and Central Asia. Proposals should address needs and regions that are not covered by or are complementary to UNHCR and other international organization (IO) activities. As appropriate, proposals should identify a gap that, if filled, will result in increased self-sufficiency of beneficiaries and increased incorporation of beneficiaries’ needs into planning by government service providers and development actors. PRM will prioritize projects that complement existing humanitarian, development, government, or private investment programs. To that end, proposals must include a brief discussion about how proposed project activities will fit into and complement UNHCR’s country strategy and government strategy, if applicable. Proposals should include partnerships with local community leaders, government authorities, and UNHCR.

(a) Proposed activities should primarily target vulnerable refugees, asylum seekers, refugee returnees, IDPs, and stateless persons in the South Caucasus and Central Asia. Because of PRM's mandate to provide protection, assistance, and sustainable solutions for refugees and victims of conflict, PRM will consider funding only those projects that include a target beneficiary base of at least 50% refugees/IDPs.

(b) Proposals must focus on:

Armenia or Azerbaijan:

  • Protection: PRM will consider projects that seek to address at least one or more of the following sectors:
    • Legal Assistance: Assist refugees and/or IDPs to resolve legal cases related to displacement, e.g. housing, property damage, or pension claims; and/or access to services;
    • Community Empowerment: Train select members of beneficiary populations and/or local NGOs to advocate on behalf of their communities. Projects should aim to increase awareness of available government, civil society, and private sector resources and develop community referral mechanisms. Projects should strengthen beneficiaries’ technical knowledge and skills in the field of human rights and the international humanitarian frameworks, and provide skills and tools for communities to engage in constructive discussions and negotiations with various actors;
    • Gender-based Violence (GBV) Prevention and Response: Prevent and respond to GBV among UNHCR populations of concern. PRM encourages proposals that address the particular needs of/responses for extremely vulnerable survivors of GBV, including children, adolescents, the elderly, persons with disabilities and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, and intersex (LGBTI) individuals. Strong proposals will incorporate men and boys in GBV prevention and response programs;
  • Livelihoods: Provide income generation activities, which may include micro-finance and vocational training (including literacy training) in marketable skills and provision of professional tool sets, with a focus on women and youth. Livelihoods programs should include basic market and income surveys or should demonstrate use of relevant baseline data attained through a survey recently conducted by another entity before initiating livelihoods activities. Programs should also conduct a risk assessment of proposed activities, including an assessment of labor exploitation, to ensure that activities do not negatively impact the protection needs of the beneficiary population. If appropriate, programs should plan for risk mitigation techniques, including transportation allowances and childcare. Stand-alone vocational training not linked to market assessment/analysis, job-placement services and/or income-generating activities will not be considered for funding.

Georgia:

  • Protection: PRM will consider projects that seek to address at least one or more of the following sectors:
    • Legal Assistance: Assist refugees and/or IDPs to resolve legal cases related to displacement, e.g. housing, property damage, or pension claims; and/or access to services;
    • Community Empowerment: Train select members of beneficiary populations to advocate on behalf of their communities. Increase awareness of available government, civil society, and private sector resources and develop community referral mechanisms. Strengthen beneficiaries’ technical knowledge and skills in the field of human rights and the international humanitarian frameworks, and provide skills and tools for communities to engage in constructive discussions and negotiations with various actors;
    • Gender-based Violence Prevention and Response: Prevent and respond to GBV among UNHCR populations of concern. PRM encourages proposals that address the particular needs of/responses for extremely vulnerable survivors of GBV, including children, adolescents, the elderly, persons with disabilities and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, and intersex (LGBTI) individuals. Strong proposals will incorporate men and boys in GBV prevention and response programs;
  • Livelihoods: Provide income generation activities, which may include micro-finance and vocational training (including literacy training) in marketable skills and provision of professional tool sets, with a focus on women and youth. Livelihoods programs should include basic market and income surveys or should demonstrate use of relevant baseline data attained through a survey recently conducted by another entity before initiating livelihoods activities. Programs should also conduct a risk assessment of proposed activities, including an assessment of labor exploitation, to ensure that activities do not negatively impact the protection needs of the beneficiary population. If appropriate, programs should plan for risk mitigation techniques, including transportation allowances and childcare. Stand-alone vocational training not linked to market assessment/analysis, job-placement and/or activities will not be considered for funding;
  • Confidence Building: Proposals should aim to foster relationships and build confidence through joint involvement of individuals from Tbilisi-administered-undisputed Georgian territory and from the areas controlled by the de facto authorities of the South Ossetia and Abkhazia regions. Proposals should support interaction and discussion between civil society actors on both sides of the Administrative Boundary Lines in order to identify and implement solutions that could improve access to services, service delivery or economic opportunity for conflict-affected communities.

Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, or Uzbekistan:

  • Protection: PRM will consider projects that seek to increase access of refugees and/or IDPs to basic services and legal assistance. Stateless persons may comprise up to 50% of the beneficiary population. PRM will prioritize activities to enhance protection of women, children, and extremely vulnerable individuals.

(c) PRM Standardized Indicator Initiative:

Livelihoods: Proposals focusing on livelihoods in urban settings must include a minimum of one of the eight following indicators and should try to include as many of the other indicators as are relevant:

  • Number of project beneficiaries, disaggregated by gender and population (refugee, national) receiving training on appropriate skills as determined by market and livelihood assessments. This may include language and skills training, entrepreneurship building, financial literacy, business support services, job placement and apprenticeship schemes, and/or legal aid.
  • Number and percentage of program participants, disaggregated by gender and population (refugee, national) reporting higher household income level by end of project period as compared to the pre-project baseline assessment.
  • Number and percentage of program participants, disaggregated by gender and population (refugee, national) in urban settings who are placed in jobs by completion of the project period. Note: A chart should be provided reflecting the length of employment for program participants.
  • (Temporary Employment) Number of beneficiaries, disaggregated by gender and population (refugee, national) participating in cash or food for work programs.
  • The percentage of sampled host community employers who are able to identify at least two skill-sets (e.g., carpentry, embroidery) among program beneficiaries living in their municipality.
  • The percentage of sampled host community employers who are able to describe accurately the procedures for hiring program beneficiaries.
  • The percentage of sampled urban program beneficiaries who:
    • Are able to describe accurately the procedures for receiving permits to conduct business.
    • Apply for and receive for business permits.
  • The percentage of sampled urban program beneficiaries who are economically self-reliant, as measured by self-reporting of household consumption and income sources.

Proposals should include custom livelihoods indicators in addition to the relevant standardized indicator(s).

Key Resources – Livelihoods

(d) Proposals must have a concrete implementation plan with well-conceived objectives and indicators that are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and reliable, time-bound, and trackable (SMART), have established baselines, and include at least one outcome or impact indicator per objective; objectives should be clearly linked to the sectors.

(e) Proposals must adhere to relevant international standards for humanitarian assistance. See PRM’s General NGO Guidelines for a complete list of sector-specific standards including new guidance on proposals for projects in urban areas.

(f) PRM strongly encourages programs that target the needs of potentially vulnerable and underserved groups among the beneficiary population (women; children; lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or intersex (LGBTI) individuals; older persons; the sick; persons with disabilities; and other minorities) and can demonstrate what steps have been taken to meet the specific and unique protection and assistance needs of these vulnerable groups effectively. NOTE: PRM partners must now complete a gender analysis (see PRM proposal template, section 3a) that briefly analyzes (1) gender dynamics within the target population (i.e., roles, power dynamics, and different needs of men and women, girls and boys); (2) associated risks and implementation challenges for the project posed by those dynamics; and (3) how program activities will mitigate these protection risks and be made accessible to vulnerable groups (particularly women and girls). A gender analysis is a requirement prior to PRM making a final funding award.

(g) PRM will accept proposals from any NGO working in the above mentioned sectors although, given budgetary constraints, priority will be given to proposals from organizations that can demonstrate:

  • a working relationship with UNHCR, current UNHCR funding, and/or a letter of support from UNHCR for the proposed activities and/or overall country program (this letter should highlight the gap in services the proposed program is designed to address);
  • a proven track record in providing proposed assistance both in the sector and specified location;
  • evidence of coordination with international organizations (IOs) and other NGOs working in the same area or sector as well as – where possible – local authorities;
  • evidence of involvement of beneficiary communities in determining needs and designing project activities;
  • a strong transition plan involving local capacity-building;
  • where applicable, adherence to PRM’s Principles for Refugee Protection in Urban Areas available online at http://www.state.gov/documents/organization/187237.pdf.
  • a budget that demonstrates co-funding by non-U.S. government sources.

Funding Limits: As stated in PRM’s General NGO Guidelines, PRM looks favorably on cost-sharing efforts and seeks to support projects with a diverse donor base and/or resources from the submitting organization.

Armenia
PRM anticipates funding one NGO project in Armenia. Individual proposals for activities in Armenia may not exceed $200,000 in PRM-requested funding.

Azerbaijan
PRM anticipates funding one NGO project in Azerbaijan. Individual proposals for this project may not exceed $200,000 in PRM-requested funding.

Georgia
PRM anticipates funding two projects for activities in undisputed Georgian territory and/or the Abkhazia region. Individual proposals for this project may not exceed $125,000 in PRM-requested funding.

Central Asia
PRM anticipates funding up to two projects for legal assistance programming in Central Asia. Individual proposals for projects may not exceed $100,000 in PRM-requested funding.

Proposal Submission Requirements: Proposals must be submitted via Grants.gov. If you are new to PRM funding, the Grants.gov registration process can be complicated. We urge you to refer to PRM’s General NGO Guidelines “New to PRM Funding” section for information and resources to help ensure that the application process runs smoothly. PRM also strongly encourages organizations that have received funding from PRM in the past to read this section as a refresher. Applicants may also refer to the “Applicant Resources” page on Grants.gov for complete details on requirements (http://test.grants.gov/web/grants/applicants/applicant-resources.html).

Please note the following highlights:

  • Do not wait until the last minute to submit your application on Grants.gov. Organizations not registered with Grants.gov should register well in advance of the deadline as it can take up to two weeks to finalize registration (sometimes longer for non-U.S. based NGOs to get the required registration numbers). To register with Grants.gov, organizations must first receive a DUNS number and register with the System for Award Management (SAM) at www.sam.gov which can take weeks and sometimes months. We recommend that organizations, particularly first-time applicants, submit applications via Grants.gov no later than one week before the deadline to avoid last-minute technical difficulties that could result in an application not being considered. PRM partners must maintain an active SAM registration with current information at all times during which they have an active federal award or an application under consideration by PRM or any federal agency.
  • Applications must be submitted under the authority of the Authorized Organization Representative (AOR) at the applicant organization. Having proposals submitted by agency headquarters helps to avoid possible technical problems.
  • If you encounter technical difficulties with Grants.gov please contact the Grants.gov Help Desk at support@grants.gov or by calling 1-800-518-4726. Applicants who are unable to submit applications via Grants.gov due to Grants.gov technical difficulties and who have reported the problem to the Grants.gov help desk, received a case number, and had a service request opened to research the problem, should contact the relevant PRM Program Officer to determine whether an alternative method of submission is appropriate.
  • Pursuant to U.S. Code, Title 218, Section 1001, stated on OMB Standard Form 424 (SF-424), the Department of State is authorized to consolidate the certifications and assurances required by Federal law or regulations for its federal assistance programs. The list of certifications and assurances can be found at: https://www.statebuy.state.gov/fa/Documents/Listofoverseascertsandassurances.pdf.

Proposal Content, Formatting and Template: This announcement is designed to accompany PRM’s General NGO Guidelines, which contain additional administrative information on proposal content and formatting, and explain in detail PRM’s NGO funding strategy and priorities. Please use both the General NGO Guidelines and this announcement to ensure that your proposal submission is in full compliance with PRM requirements and that the proposed activities are in line with PRM’s priorities. Proposal submissions that do not meet all of the requirements outlined in these guidelines will not be considered.

PRM strongly recommends using the proposal and budget templates that are available upon email request from PRM's NGO Coordinator. Please send an email, with the phrase “PRM NGO Templates” in the subject line, to PRM's NGO Coordinator. Single-year proposals using PRM’s templates must be no more than 20 pages in length (Times New Roman 12 point font, one inch margins on all sides). If the applicant does not use PRM’s recommended templates, proposals must not exceed 15 pages in length. Organizations may choose to attach work plans, activity calendars, and/or logical frameworks as addendums/appendices to the proposal. These attachments do not count toward the page limit total however annexes cannot be relied upon as a key source of program information. The proposal narrative must be able to stand on its own in the application process.

To be considered for PRM funding, organizations must submit a complete application package including:

  • Proposal reflecting objectives and indicators for each year of the program period.
  • Budget and budget narrative for each year of the program period.
  • Signed completed SF-424.

In addition, proposal submissions to PRM should include the following information:

  • Focus on outcome or impact indicators as much as possible. At a minimum, each objective should have one outcome or impact indicator. Wherever possible, baselines should be established before the start of the project.
  • To increase PRM’s ability to track the impact of PRM funding, include specific information on locations of projects and beneficiaries (GPS coordinates if possible).
  • Proposals should outline how the NGO will acknowledge PRM funding. If an organization believes that publicly acknowledging the receipt of USG funding for a particular PRM-funded project could potentially endanger the lives of the beneficiaries and/or the organization staff, invite suspicion about the organization's motives, or alienate the organization from the population it is trying to help, it must provide a brief explanation in its proposal as to why it should be exempted from this requirement.
  • The budget should include a specific breakdown of funds being provided by UNHCR, other USG agencies, other donors, and your own organization. PRM strongly encourages multilateral support for humanitarian programs.
  • In FY 2014, PRM is asking applicants whose proposals address gender-based violence (GBV) through their projects to estimate the total cost of these activities as a separate line item in their proposed budgets. PRM’s budget template document has been updated to reflect this new requirement.
  • Gender analysis (see above; required before an award can be made).
  • Copy of the organization’s Code of Conduct (required before an award can be made).
  • Copy of the organization’s Security Plan (required before an award can be made).
  • Proposals and budgets should include details of any sub-agreements associated with the program.
  • Most recent Negotiated Indirect Cost Rate Agreement (NICRA), if applicable.
  • NGOs that have not received PRM funding since the U.S. government fiscal year ending September 30, 2004 must be prepared to demonstrate that they meet the financial and accounting requirements of the U.S. government by submitting copies of 1) the most recent external financial audit, 2) proof of non-profit tax status including under IRS 501 (c)(3), as applicable, 3) a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number, and 4) an Employer ID (EIN)/Federal Tax Identification number.
  • Organizations that received PRM funding in FY 2013 for activities that are being proposed for funding under this announcement must include the most recent quarterly progress report against indicators outlined in the cooperative agreement. If an organization’s last quarterly report was submitted more than six weeks prior to the submission of a proposal in response to this funding announcement, the organization must include, with its most recent quarterly report, updates that show any significant progress made on objectives since the last report.

Multi-Year Funding: Applicants proposing multi-year programs should adhere to the following guidance:

Applicants may submit proposals that include multi-year strategies presented in 12-month cycles for a period not to exceed 36 months from the proposed start date. Fully developed programs with detailed budgets, objectives and indicators are required for each year of activities. These can be updated yearly upon submission of continuation applications. Applicants should note that they may use PRM’s recommended multi-year proposal template for this application, which is different from the single year template. Multi-year funding applicants may also use PRM’s standard budget template and should submit a separate budget sheet for each project year. Multi-year proposals using PRM’s templates must be no more than 30 pages in length (Times New Roman 12 point font, one inch margins on all sides). If the applicant does not use PRM’s recommended templates, proposals must not exceed 25 pages in length. Organizations may choose to attach work plans, activity calendars, and/or logical frameworks as addendums/appendices to the proposal. These attachments do not count toward the page limit total.

Multi-year applications selected for funding by PRM will be funded in 12-month increments based on the proposal submitted in the initial application as approved by PRM. Continued funding after the initial 12-month award requires the submission of a noncompeting continuation application and will be contingent upon available funding, strong performance, and continuing need. Continuation applications must be submitted by the organization no later than 90 days before the proposed start date of the new award (e.g., if the next project period is to begin on September 1, submit your application by June 1). Continuation applications are submitted in lieu of responding to PRM’s published call for proposals for those activities. Late continuation applications will jeopardize continued funding.

Organizations can request multi-year funding and continuation application templates by emailing PRM's NGO Coordinator with the phrase “PRM NGO Templates” in the subject line.

Reports and Reporting Requirements:

Program reporting: PRM requires quarterly and final program reports describing and analyzing the results of activities undertaken during the validity period of the agreement. It is highly suggested that NGOs receiving PRM funding use the PRM recommended program report template. To request this template, send an email with the phrase “PRM NGO Templates” in the subject line to PRM's NGO Coordinator.

Financial Reports: Financial reports are required within thirty (30) days following the end of each calendar year quarter during the validity period of the agreement; a final financial report covering the entire period of the agreement is required within ninety (90) days after the expiration date of the agreement.

For more details regarding reporting requirements please see PRM’s General NGO Guidelines.

Proposal Review Process: PRM will conduct a formal competitive review of all proposals submitted in response to this funding announcement. A review panel will evaluate submissions based on the above-referenced proposal evaluation criteria and PRM priorities in the context of available funding.

PRM may request revised proposals and/or budgets based on feedback from the panel. PRM will provide formal notifications to NGOs of final decisions taken by Bureau management.

Branding and Marking Strategy: Unless exceptions have been approved by the designated bureau Authorizing Official as described in the proposal templates that are available upon email request from PRM's NGO Coordinator, at a minimum, the following provision will be included whenever assistance is awarded:

  • As a condition of receipt of this assistance award, all materials produced pursuant to the award, including training materials, materials for recipients or materials to communicate or promote with foreign audiences a program, event, project, or some other activity under this agreement, including but not limited to invitations to events, press materials, event backdrops, podium signs, etc. must be marked appropriately with the standard U.S. flag in a size and prominence equal to (or greater than) any other logo or identity. Subrecipients and subsequent tier sub-award agreements are subject to the marking requirements and the recipient shall include a provision in the subrecipient agreement indicating that the standard, rectangular U.S. flag is a requirement. In the event the recipient does not comply with the marking requirements as established in the approved assistance agreement, the Grants Officer Representative and the Grants Officer must initiate corrective action.

PRM Points of Contact: Should NGOs have technical questions related to this announcement, they should contact the PRM staff listed below prior to proposal submission. Please note that responses to technical questions from PRM do not indicate a commitment to fund the program discussed.

PRM Program Officer: Andrea Samuelson, SamuelsonAL@state.gov, (202)453-9280, Washington, D.C.

Regional Refugee Coordinator: Joshua Fischel, FischelJS@state.gov, + 995 32 227-7914, U.S. Embassy, Tbilisi, Georgia.



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Posted 2014-04-17 16:36:00