[Federal Register: February 7, 2002 (Volume 67, Number 26)]
From the Federal Register Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
DEPARTMENT OF STATE
[Public Notice 3904]
Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Request for Grant
Proposals: Small Grants Competition for Women's Political Leadership,
Girls' Education, Disability Issues, and Women-Led Small Business
Development, for Afghanistan, North Africa, the Arabian Peninsula
States of the Middle East, and Latin America and the Caribbean
SUMMARY: The Office of Citizen Exchanges of the Bureau of Educational
and Cultural Affairs announces a Small GrantsCompetition designed to
promote Women's PoliticalLeadership, Girls' Education, Disability
Issues, and Women-Led Small Business Development. Public and private
non-profit organizations meeting the provisions described in Internal
Revenue Code section 26 USC 501(c)(3) may submit proposals to conduct
exchanges for a single country from the following: Afghanistan, North
Africa, the ArabianPeninsula States of the Middle East, and Latin
America & the
Caribbean. The goal of this initiative is to provide support for
grassroots organizations or local chapters of national groups to expand
the scope of their overseas work and build or strengthen linkages with
partner organizations in other countries. Approximately $500,000 has
been allotted for this competition, with at least $250,000 projected
for Afghanistan and countries in North Africa and the Arabian Peninsula
States. ``(Afghanistan is included in this solicitation, contingent on
security and feasibility of programming.)'' Grant awards will not
exceed $60,000, with most grants ranging from $25,000 to $50,000.
The Office of Citizen Exchanges, Bureau of Educational and Cultural
Affairs (ECA) announces a small grants competition for U.S. nonprofit,
nongovernmental organizations and institutions to implement
international exchange programs, in partnership with one or more local
organization(s) in one of the countries listed below. Each Small Grant
award is meant to fund a single-country project, with the exception of
projects for Afghanistan*. The following are this year's priority
themes: (1) Political Leadership for Women, (2) Girls' Education, (3)
Disability Issues, or (4) Women-Led Small Business Development. Project
activities may take place in the partner's country overseas, or in both
the U.S. and the partner country.
* Two-country projects with Afghanistan and one other MiddleEastern
or North African country are eligible. These projects should recruit an
equal number of participants from each country. Alternatively, single-
country projects for Afghanistan may take place in the U.S.,
Afghanistan and/or a third country.
With the exception of Women-Led Small Business Development,
eligible countries for each theme are:
Afghanistan (included in this solicitation, contingent on security
and feasibility of programming.)
Latin America: Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador,Paraguay, Peru,
Uruguay, Venezuela, Belize, Costa Rica, ElSalvador, Guatemala,
Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Mexico; Caribbean: The Bahamas, Barbados,
Dominican Republic,Haiti, Jamaica, Trinidad.
North Africa: Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia.
Arabian Peninsula States of the Middle East: Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman,
Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates,Yemen.
Proposals for Women-Led Small Business Development may include
Afghanistan, and the countries listed under NorthAfrica and the Arabian
Peninsula States of the Middle East.
ECA seeks organizations that are interested in expanding or
developing grassroots training programs and international exchanges in
Afghanistan, North Africa, Latin America & the Caribbean, and the
Arabian Peninsula States of the Middle East. Eligibility: U.S.
nonprofit 501(c)3 organizations that have not received prior funding
directly from ECA; and organizations that have received prior ECA
funding, but only under previous Small Grants competitions, are
eligible to apply. All proposals will receive equal consideration.
Foreign organizations may submit a joint proposal with the U.S. partner
as the principal applicant.
Organizations planning to submit a proposal are strongly encouraged
to contact the program office for a consultation. Before calling,
applicants should be ready to discuss a concrete concept specific to
the guidelines supplied in this request for grant proposals (RFGP).
For Latin America & the Caribbean: Laverne Johnson,
firstname.lastname@example.org, Tel: (202) 619-5337.
For North Africa, the Arabian Peninsula States of the Middle East
and Afghanistan: Susan Krause, email@example.com, Tel: (202) 619-
To be considered for a grant award in this competition, the
proposed project must address one of the themes described in this RFGP
for a single country from the above list (except as noted above for
Applicants should describe a clear and convincing plan for carrying
out project components that will fulfill the expected outcomes stated
in the proposal narrative. Proposals should address the REVIEW CRITERIA
Projects funded under this competition should enhance partnerships
among American and foreign organizations, reach the widest possible
audiences, provide hands-on activities and training sessions with
practical materials in the local language for use during the project
and after the grant period is over, and achieve permanent and
This program is not academic in nature; proposals should be
creative and innovative, combining elements of skill enrichment,
experiential learning and exposure to American life and culture. The
activities should also provideAmericans an opportunity to experience
the culture of the partner country. Cultural programming may include
activities or events hosted by local institutions and home stays with
community members. Orientation sessions must be included for all
foreign and American program participants.
The majority of funding should be directed toward participant
Unless otherwise specified below, project components may include,
but are not limited to, training of trainers(TOT), internships & job
shadowing, workshops, site visits, consultations, and short-term
training. Distance learning techniques using appropriate technology and
activities meant to bridge the digital divide are also encouraged.
Partner organizations should be identified in the proposal, with
project plans developed collaboratively by both the American and
foreign organization(s). Applicants that have not yet identified local
partners, but whose proposals show significant regional and thematic
expertise, are also eligible to apply.
The proposal narrative (excluding resumes, sample materials, the
budget & budget notes) should be 3-5 pages and double-spaced. The
budget should be presented on one page. Budget notes should be
included. The proposed start date should not commence before June 1,
2002, and may be subject to change.
Women's Political Leadership
Proposals should focus on promoting women's political leadership by
(1) strengthening the capacity of grassroots women's organizations in
developing the skills of current and future women political leaders,
and (2) compiling a repertoire of practical materials in the local
language for use in workshops, mock elections and campaigns,
educational sessions, or other activities. Proposals must indicate a
practical knowledge of the political and legislative environment in the
partner country. Projects may include, but are not limited to,
components listed above and may also include the following: ``Workshops
for PoliticalLeaders,'' ``Women's Political Awareness Campaigns'' and
``NGO Management,'' as described below.
Workshops for Political Leaders might include such topics as public
speaking, message development, leadership, campaign management,
accountability and constituencies, consensus building, lobbying,
surveying, polling, advocacy, voter outreach, networking, working with
the media, and fundraising. Mock campaigns and elections are
Women's Political Awareness Campaigns should educate women on the
political process and get them actively involved in the political
arena. Awareness campaigns should be jointly conducted with partner
organizations, and should reach the widest possible audience in large
and small cities, towns and villages.
NGO Management Part of the program design may also include
workshops on NGO management and capacity building, for NGOs whose work
is linked to emerging or enhanced women's political leadership. NGO
workshop topics might include: strategic planning, managing volunteers,
coalition building, public relations, facilitation training, peer
education & outreach, public-private partners, information management,
and website development.
The proposal should focus on exchanges and training for grassroots
educational and community leaders who are actively involved in girls'
education. Emphasis should be on providing essential tools and support
to educators for classes and leadership activities. Potential topics
for activities include, but are not limited to, creating &
reconstructing educational opportunities, methodology & practice, the
role of women & girls in society, leadership, civic responsibility,
mentoring, women in history, conflict resolution, health education, and
social issues. Only adult professionals or grassroots practitioners may
be selected to travel internationally for exchange activities. Girls
may take part as students in pilot sessions and other in-country
Projects should focus on engaging disability NGOs and institutions,
individuals with disabilities, leaders in the disability community, as
well as the community at-large, to improve opportunities and expand
services for the disabled. Projects should seek to involve victims of
civil wars and acts of terrorism. Possible themes for exchanges and
training include: professional & occupational training, accessibility,
entrepreneurship, community involvement, educational & extra-curricular
issues, association building, leadership, dealing with mental &
emotional scars, public relations, and NGO management. Projects may be
designed to cover a range of topics and/or methods, or may focus more
intensively on a specific area.
Women-Led Small Business Development
Projects should foster the development of local women-led
businesses in the partner country and create ongoing international
partnerships. Project components in the U.S. or overseas, with examples
of possible topics, include: seminars for women considering micro-
enterprise (e.g. entrepreneurship, management, finance and registration
issues); workshops (start-up, loan packages, marketing, staff training,
appropriate technology); site visits(chamber of commerce, local
government, women's business association, small business resource
centers); mentoring; consultancies; internships; job-shadowing; or
Grant funds may be used to establish or enhance overseas Women's
Business Resource Centers, Women's Business Associations, and regularly
published not-for-profit Women's Business Newsletters in the local
language, or other sustainable elements. For women's business
centers,ECA funding may be used on resources and development of
services, but may not be used to furnish new centers. No more than
$5,000 may be used to purchase computer and/or office equipment. No
funds may be used for micro-credit or re-lending activities.
Foreign participants should be linked with U.S. mentors or
counterparts with similar work responsibilities, in order to ensure
ongoing professional interaction. In addition to activities for
businesswomen, proposals should include components targeting potential
entrepreneurs, single mothers and low-income working or non-working
women, particularly in countries with critical social and economic
Countries eligible for Women-Led Small Business Development grants
are Afghanistan, and those listed above under NorthAfrica and the
Arabian Peninsula States of the Middle East.
Selection of Participants
The proposal narrative should include a description of an open,
merit-based selection process for all international exchange components
and/or any other component requiring participant selection. A draft
application and a sample announcement used for recruitment advertising
should be included. ECA and the U.S. embassies retain the right to
nominate participants and approve or reject participants recommended by
the grantee institution. For exchanges to the U.S., priority must be
given to foreign participants who have not previously traveled to the
Foreign participants on programs sponsored by ECA are granted J-1
Exchange Visitor visas by the U.S. Embassy in the sending country. All
programs must comply with J-1 visa regulations.
Funding available for the FY 2002 Small Grants Competition will be
disbursed through grants to several organizations. Priority will be
given to grant proposals with budgets ranging from $25,000 to $50,000,
with funding limited at $60,000. Applicants should not submit a budget
that exceeds $60,000 in costs to be paid by ECA, however the overall
budget may exceed $60,000 through cost sharing by the U.S. and foreign
partner organization(s), and/or other sources. Approximately $500,000
has been allotted for this competition, but may be subject to change.
At least $250,000 is projected for Afghanistan, and the countries of
North Africa and the Arabian Peninsula States of the Middle East. ECA
expects to announce the small grants awards recipients around late May
To assist applicants in preparing project budgets, listed below are
selected sample allowable costs. Applicants should refer to the
Proposal Submission Instructions for specific formatting instructions
and sample line items.
(1) General Program Expenses (i.e. orientation & program-related
supplies, educational materials, traveling campaigns, consultants,
interpreters, room rental, etc.)
(2) Participant Program Expenses (i.e. domestic and international
travel, per diem)
(3) Administrative Expenses (i.e. salaries, telephone/fax, and
other direct administrative costs)
In support of first-time applicants, the grant proposal, budget and
review process has been modified for this competition. Proposals will
be reviewed in two tiers. First, all proposals will be reviewed by a
team of qualified staff from the Office of Citizen Exchanges and the
respective Department of State regional bureaus per the established
review criteria outlined in this RFGP. Second, the most competitive
proposals will be forwarded to embassies overseas and to ECA panels for
formal advisory review. Non-finalists will be advised at
this point in the process. Please follow the instructions in this RFGP
and the Proposal Submission Instructions (PSI) for guidelines. ECA will
acknowledge receipt of all proposals and will review them for technical
eligibility. Proposals will be deemed ineligible if they do not fully
adhere to the guidelines stated herein and in the Solicitation Package.
Eligible proposals will be subject to compliance with Federal and
Bureau regulations and guidelines. Proposals may also be reviewed by
the Office of the Legal Adviser or by other Department elements. Final
funding decisions are at the discretion of the Department of State's
Assistant Secretary for Educational and Cultural Affairs. Final
technical authority for assistance awards (grants or cooperative
agreements) resides with the ECA GrantsOfficer.
Technically eligible applications will be competitively reviewed
according to the criteria stated below. Proposals should adequately
address each area of review. The criteria are not rank ordered and all
carry equal weight.
1. Quality of Program Idea and Ability to Achieve Objectives:
Program objectives should be clearly and precisely stated and respond
to the priority topics in this announcement. The proposal should
articulate the organization's ability to carry out the planned
objectives, and should include an outline of the U.S. and foreign staff
responsibilities, staff resumes, the organizations' mission statements,
a monthly timetable, and sample schedules for program components.
2. Cost Effectiveness and Cost Sharing: Administrative costs should
be kept to a minimum. Proposals should maximize cost sharing through
support and in-kind contributions from the U.S. and partner
3. Program Evaluation: Proposals must include a plan and
methodology to evaluate the program's successes and challenges. The
evaluation plan should show a clear link between program objectives and
expected outcomes, and should include a brief description of
performance indicators and measurement tools. A draft questionnaire for
evaluation purposes may be attached to support the proposal.
4. Support of Diversity: Proposals should demonstrate substantive
support of ECA's policy on diversity. Program content (orientation,
evaluation, program sessions, resource materials, follow-on activities)
and program administration (selection process, orientation, evaluation)
should address diversity in a comprehensive and innovative manner.
Applicants should refer to ECA's Diversity, Freedom and Democracy
Guidelines on page four of the Proposal Submission Instructions (PSI).
Announcement Title and Number
All communications with ECA concerning this Request for Grant
Proposals should refer to the announcement title FY02 Small Grants and
reference number ECA/PE/C-02-37.
Diversity, Freedom and Democracy Guidelines
Pursuant to ECA's authorizing legislation, programs must maintain a
non-political character and should be balanced and representative of
the diversity of American political, social, and cultural life.
``Diversity'' should be interpreted in the broadest sense and encompass
differences including, but not limited to ethnicity, race, gender,
religion, geographic location, socio-economic status, and physical
challenges. Applicants are strongly encouraged to adhere to the
advancement of this principle both in program administration and in
program content. Please refer to the review criteria under the
``Support for Diversity'' section for specific suggestions on
incorporating diversity into the total proposal. Public Law 104-319
provides that ``in carrying out programs of educational and cultural
exchange in countries whose people do not fully enjoy freedom and
democracy,'' ECA ``shall take appropriate steps to provide
opportunities for participation in such programs to human rights and
democracy leaders of such countries.'' Public Law 106-113 requires that
the governments of the countries described above do not have
inappropriate influence in the selection process. Proposals should
reflect advancement of these goals in their program contents, to the
full extent deemed feasible.
Deadline for Proposals
The U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural
Affairs must receive all copies by 5 p.m. Washington, DC time on
Friday, March 29, 2002. Faxed documents will not be accepted at any
time. The mailroom closes at 5:00 p.m.; no late submissions will be
accepted. Documents postmarked by March 29, 2002, but received at a
later date, will not be accepted. Each applicant must ensure that the
proposals are received by the above deadline.
To Download an Application Package Via the Internet
The entire Application Package may be downloaded from ECA's Web
site at http://exchanges.state.gov/education/rfgps/.
Applicants must follow all instructions given in the Application
Package. The applicant's original proposal and ten (10) copies should
be sent to: U.S. Department of State, Ref.: ECA/PE/C-02-37, Program
Management, ECA/EX/PM, Room 534, 301 4th Street, SW, Washington, DC
Applicants must also submit the ``Executive Summary,'' ``Proposal
Narrative'' and ``Budget'' sections of the proposal on a 3.5" diskette.
ECA will transmit these files electronically to the Public Affairs
Sections of the U.S. Embassies for review. Once the RFGP deadline has
passed, Bureau staff may not discuss this competition in any way with
applicants until the proposal review process has been completed.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION, CONTACT By mail: United States Department
of State, SA-44, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Office of
Citizen Exchanges (ECA/PE/C), Room 220, Washington, DC 20547, Attn:
FY02 Small Grants, By phone: (202) 619-5334; By fax: (202) 619-4350, By
Interested applicants may request a copy of the Application
Package, which includes the RFGP and the Proposal Submission
Instructions (PSI). Please specify ``FY02 Small Grants'' on all
inquiries and correspondence. All potential applicants should read the
complete announcement before sending inquiries or submitting proposals.
The terms and conditions published in this RFGP are binding and may
not be modified by any Bureau representative. Explanatory information
provided by the Bureau or program officers that contradicts published
language will not be binding. Issuance of the RFGP does not constitute
an award commitment on the part of the U.S. Government. The Bureau
reserves the right to reduce, revise, or increase proposal budgets in
accordance with the needs of the program and the availability of funds.
Awards made will be subject to periodic reporting and evaluation
requirements. Organizations will be expected to cooperate with the
Bureau in evaluating their programs under the principles of the
Government Performance and Results Act (GPRA) of
1993, which requires federal agencies to measure and report on the
results of their programs and activities.
Final awards cannot be made until funds have been appropriated by
Congress, allocated and committed through internal Bureau procedures.
Dated: January 28, 2002.
Patricia S. Harrison,
Assistant Secretary for Educational and Cultural Affairs, U.S.
Department of State.
[FR Doc. 02-3005 Filed 2-6-02; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4710-05-P
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