Annual Program Statement 2019
Embassy Ulaanbaatar – Public Affairs Section
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
U.S. EMBASSY ULAANBAATAR, PUBLIC AFFAIRS SECTION
Funding Opportunity Title: UPDATED: Embassy Ulaanbaatar Annual Program Statement FY2019
Posted Date: December 1, 2018
Schedule: October 1-September 30 (U.S. federal fiscal year)
Ceiling of Award Amounts: $24,999
Average Award Level: $3,500-$5,000
* NOTE: Cost-share may be required for programs exceeding $10,000.
CFDA Number: 19.040 – Public Diplomacy Programs
Statutory Authority: Fulbright-Hays Act
References: Standard Department Terms & Conditions (English)
I. FUNDING OPPORTUNITY DESCRIPTION
The Public Affairs Section (PAS) of U.S. Embassy Ulaanbaatar, U.S. Department of State, is pleased to announce that funding is available through its Public Diplomacy Local Grants Program. This Annual Program Statement outlines funding priorities and the procedures for submitting funding requests. Please carefully follow all instructions below.
Purpose of Local Grants: PAS awards a limited number of grants to individuals, non-governmental organizations, think tanks, and academic institutions to support cultural, artistic, educational, and other exchanges and projects to improve mutual understanding between the United States and Mongolia and build people-to-people ties. PAS will only consider grant proposals that include a clear American component or element and that include public outreach.
Projects may include but are not limited to:
- Foreign policy, academic and professional lectures, seminars, and speaker programs;
- artistic and cultural workshops, joint performances, and exhibitions;
- professional and academic exchanges and projects; and
- professional development workshops and training.
Categories of Funding Activity:
- Promotion of the U.S.-Mongolian Year of Youth 2019
The governments of the United States and Mongolia have declared 2019 to be “the U.S.-Mongolia Year of Youth,” and will conduct programs and activities designed to deepen cultural and social understanding between young people from our two nations, develop future leadership skills, promote civic engagement, strengthen democracy, human rights, and good governance, and foster economic diversification and opportunities for the next generation through innovation, entrepreneurship, digital commerce, social enterprises, and education.
- Trade & Economic Partnership
Improve the investment climate and expand free, fair, and reciprocal bilateral trade and investment to facilitate strong, sustainable, inclusive economic growth for our mutual and regional benefit through programs that promote increased transparency, reduced corruption, and adherence to international-standard regulatory, environmental, and business best practices.
Support a free, fair, professional, and accurate media sector in Mongolia as well as public media literacy to strengthen democracy, good governance, sustainable economic development, public and private sector accountability, human rights, transparency, and to counter disinformation.
- Good Governance, Human Rights, and the Rule of Law Civil Society
Support good governance, human rights, rule of law, the commitment to democracy, and a deeper understanding of U.S. values and policies through programs that expand bilateral people-to-people ties among decision makers, think tanks, educators, and civil society leaders.
- Improving Urban Air and Water Quality
Air and water quality issues can affect public health, deter investment, and constrain economic growth. Promote research, public awareness, technical assistance, stakeholder cooperation, and innovative sustainable solutions to air and water quality and waste management issues.
Cost Sharing or Matching Requirement: Projects that offer significant cost sharing will be given extra consideration. Applicants must provide the amount and type of cost sharing stipulated in the proposal when implementing the project. PAS encourages – but does not mandate – that applicants include cost-sharing elements from additional sources in their proposals.
The following types of projects are not eligible for funding:
- Requests by organizations and individuals who are neither Mongolian nor American;
- requests from commercial entities;
- partisan political activity;
- charitable activities;
- construction projects;
- projects that support specific religious activities;
- international travel, unless specifically justified within the project;
- commercial activities;
- fund-raising campaigns;
- projects aiming only at primary institutional development of the organization.
II. AWARD INFORMATION
Funding Instrument Type: Funding is offered through grants, fixed amount awards, or cooperative agreements. Cooperative agreements are different from grants in that PAS staff are more actively involved in the proposal and anticipate having moderate to substantial involvement once the award has been made.
Project and Budget Periods: Projects generally should be completed in one year or less. PAS will consider applications for the continuation of awards beyond the initial budget period on a non-competitive basis subject to availability of funds, satisfactory progress of the project, and a determination that continued funding would be in the best interest of the U.S. Department of State.
Applicants should consider their budgets carefully and submit a budget commensurate with their project goals. While PAS will consider proposals up to $24,999, projects that are smaller in scope are more likely to be considered.
This notice is subject to funds available.
III. ELIGIBILITY INFORMATION
PAS encourages applications from non-commercial organizations located in Mongolia or U.S. organizations that have branch offices located in Mongolia:
- registered public or private non-profit organizations, such as think tanks and civil society/non-governmental organizations with programming experience;
- educational institutions; and/or
- government institutions such as libraries, parks, schools, and museums.
IV. APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS
PAS will accept proposals throughout the year. Please ensure the following:
- All documents are in English;
- all budgets are in U.S. dollars;
- all pages are numbered;
- all documents are formatted to 8½ x 11 paper; and
- all Microsoft Word documents are single spaced, use 12 point Times New Roman font, and have a minimum of 1-inch margins.
The following documents are required:
- Cover Letter (optional): Applicants are encouraged to submit a cover letter on the organization’s letterhead containing the proposal’s submission date, project title, project period (including actual start date and completion; applicants may include a preparation/closeout period, provided they address the specific timeline), and project purpose.
- Proposal: The proposal should contain enough information to ensure anyone not familiar with it would understand exactly what the applicant wants to do. An award template is also available on the U.S. Embassy’s website.
Applicants must submit a complete proposal (not exceeding 15 pages) that includes the items listed below:
- Proposal Summary: This is a brief narrative that outlines the proposed project, including the project objectives and its anticipated outcomes.
- Introduction to the Organization: This is a description of past and present operations. Please include information on all previous grants from the U.S. Embassy and/or U.S. government agencies.
- Problem Statement: This is a clear, concise, and well-supported statement of the problem to be addressed and why the proposed project is needed.
- Project Goals and Objectives: Goals describe what the project is intended to have achieved by its completion. How will it further the relationship between the United States and Mongolia? Objectives refer to the intermediate accomplishments on the way to achieving the project goals. Objectives should be achievable and measurable.
- Program Methods and Design: This is a description of how the project is expected to work and solve or address the stated problem.
- Project Activities: This is a description of specific activities related to the objectives that must be reached and the methods used to achieve the stated objectives.
- Proposed Project Schedule: This is the proposed timeline for undertaking and completing the specific project activities. Dates, times, and locations of planned activities and events should be included.
- Key Personnel: This is a description of the names, titles, roles, and experience/background for the key personnel to be involved in the project (resumes are required for the main key personnel). Please include the information below:
- Who will work on the project?
- What responsibilities will they have?
- What qualifications do they have?
- What proportion of their time will be used in support of this project (e.g., total monthly/yearly salary at 5%)?
- Project Monitoring and Evaluation: This is an important part of successful grants. Throughout the time-frame of the grant, how will activities be monitored to ensure they are happening in a timely manner, and how will the program be evaluated to make sure it is meeting the goals of the grant?
- Future Funding or Sustainability: This is a plan for continuation beyond the grant period or the availability of other resources, if applicable.
- Proposed Budget: This is a line-item listing of all project expenses, consistent with the proposal narrative, project activities, and U.S. government-wide budget categories. The types and amounts of funding the applicant has received for the current project from other partners should be included. Please see section VII. Guidelines for Budget Submissions below for further information.
How to Apply: All application materials must be submitted to Grants@usembassy.mn with “PAS FY19 Local Grants” and the applicant organization’s name in the subject line of the email.
Proposals that do not meet the requirements above will not be considered.
V. REVIEW AND SELECTION PROCESS
Each application submitted under this announcement will be evaluated and rated on the basis of the criteria outlined below. Submissions are generally reviewed once per quarter: generally mid-September, mid-December, mid-March, and mid-June, subject to funding availability. * Please note that due to existing constraints it is unlikely that there will be a mid-December PD local rants review. The criteria are designed to assess the quality of the proposed project and determine the likelihood of its success. The criteria are closely related and are considered as a whole in judging the overall quality of an application. Applications will be reviewed on the basis of their completeness, coherence, clarity, and attention to detail.
- Organizational Capacity: The organization has expertise in its stated field, and PAS is confident of its technical capacity to undertake the project. This includes a financial management system and a bank account.
- Goals and Objectives: Goals and objectives are clearly stated, and the project approach is likely to provide maximum impact in achieving the proposed results.
- Embassy Priorities: The applicant has clearly described how the stated goals are related to and support U.S. Embassy Ulaanbaatar’s priority areas.
- Sustainability: Project activities will continue to have a positive impact after the end of the project.
- Feasibility: This is an analysis of the project’s economic, organizational, and technical feasibility. This is related to the project approach, budget items requested, and technical/human resource capacity of the organization.
- Budget: The budget justification is both reasonable and realistic in relation to the proposed activities and anticipated results. Grants will be awarded to projects with the highest impact per dollar spent.
- Monitoring and Evaluation Plan: The applicant demonstrates that it is able to measure program success against key indicators and to provide milestones that indicate progress toward goals outlined in the proposal. The project includes a systematic recording and periodic analysis of selected information on the project activities.
VI. AWARD ADMINISTRATION
Award Notices: The grant, fixed amount award, or cooperative agreement shall be written, signed, awarded, and administered by the PAS Grants Officer. The assistance award agreement is the authorizing document and will be provided to the recipient. Organizations whose applications will not be funded will be notified in writing.
If a proposal is selected for funding, the Department of State has no obligation to provide any additional future funding in connection with the award. Renewal of an award to increase funding or extend the period of performance is at the total discretion of the Department of State.
Payment Method: The standard form SF-270 Request for Advance or Reimbursement Payments may be submitted in the amounts required by the recipient to carry out the purpose of this award. In most cases, payments will be made in at least two installments, and the initial installment may not exceed 80 percent of the total award unless the total award is at or under $3,000.
Reporting Requirements: All awards issued under this announcement will require both program and financial reports on a frequency specified in the award agreement. The disbursement of funds may be tied to the submission of these reports in a timely manner. All other details related to award administration will be specified in the award agreement. Final programmatic and financial reports are due 90 days after the close of the project period. Progress reports at minimum should be submitted via email to an address to be provided in the award.
VII. Guidelines for Budget Submissions
- Personnel: Use this budget category for wages, salaries, and benefits for temporary or permanent staff who will be working directly for the applicant on the project.
- Travel: Use this budget category for the estimated costs of travel and per diem for the project. If the project involves international travel, include a brief statement of justification for that travel either in the Project Activities section or as an attachment.
- Equipment: Use this budget category for all tangible, non-expendable (non-disposable) machinery, furniture, and other personal property having a useful life of more than one year (or a life longer than the duration of the project) and a cost of $5,000 or more per unit.
- Supplies: Use this category for building, conservation, and other materials that will be consumed (used up) during the course of the project. If an item costs more than $5,000 per unit, then put it in the budget under “Equipment.”
- Contractual: Use this budget category for goods and services that the applicant intends to acquire through a contract with a vendor, such as masonry repair and re-pointing services that include the costs of materials as part of a contract or professional photographic services that include photographic prints as part of the contract.
- Other Direct Costs: Use this budget category for other costs directly associated with the project that do not fit any of the other categories. Examples include shipping costs for materials and equipment and the costs of utilities (water, electricity, Internet) required for the project.
- Other or Miscellaneous Expenses: These must be itemized and explained.
- Cost Sharing: Use this budget category for contributions other than a U.S. Embassy grant. It should include in-kind contributions such as volunteers’ time, donated venues, administrative support, etc. “Counterpart contributions” by partner organizations are encouraged, and funds or in-kind contributions, such as staff time, space, etc., should be mentioned in the budget.
- Entertainment and Alcoholic Beverages Not Funded: Please note that the U.S. Embassy does not provide funding for entertainment or alcoholic beverages in its grants. If applicants feel these are important to the project, they may want to consider such expenses as part of their cost-share.
Questions about the grants application process may be sent to PAS at Grants@usembassy.mn.
Note: We do not provide pre-consultation for application-related questions regarding a certain funding opportunity. Once an application has been submitted, Embassy/Department of State officials and staff may not discuss this competition with applicants until the entire proposal review process is completed.