Call for Proposals: Mongolia Water Compact Public Outreach Program

The U.S. Embassy in Mongolia invites your organization to submit a cooperative agreement proposal not to exceed $20,000.  To apply for consideration for these funds, please submit a proposal, using the format and application materials described below, outlining the activities that your organization would conduct in order to meet the program objectives below.

The due date for receipt of this proposal is September 20, 2020.  Before submitting the proposal, your organization should review all the terms and conditions and required certifications and assurances to ensure that your organization will be able to comply.

Issuance of this solicitation does not constitute an award commitment by the U.S. Department of State.  A final award cannot be made until the proposal has been reviewed and approved, and an award agreement is drawn up and signed by the Grants Officer.  The Embassy reserves the right to decide not to issue an award after receipt of the proposal.  The Embassy also reserves the right to reduce, revise, and/or increase proposal budget in accordance with the needs of the program and availability of funds.


Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) is a U.S. Government agency that assists developing countries committed to good governance, economic freedom, and investment in their people. The Mongolia Water Compact was signed between the United States of America, acting through the Millennium Challenge Corporation, and the Government of Mongolia, acting through its Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in July 2018. The Mongolia Water Compact will address one of the most binding constraints to economic growth of Ulaanbaatar city: costly access to water and sanitation. The Compact will assist the Government in alleviating an imminent water shortage and meeting the projected demand for water in the capital city of Ulaanbaatar for residential consumers and commercial and industrial users through three closely related investment activities.

The U.S. Embassy is accepting applications from local civil society organizations, coalitions/networks, and academic institutions to implement a small grant-funded program to design and conduct outreach activities publicizing the potential benefits of the MCC’s water compact in Mongolia.

The purpose of this program is to amplify the MCC and the Embassy’s communication strategies and activities regarding the Compact in order to achieve more positive exposure for the program and garner further support from the Mongolian public.

As envisioned by the Embassy, the program will include the following:

1. A SPEAKER PROJECT: work with the Embassy and the MCC office in Mongolia to identify one to two U.S. expert speakers for a one-week visiting program on water issues to engage and build ties with water specialists, administrators, academics, policy makers, engineers, students, film makers, citizen’s organizations, civil society, and other relevant stakeholders for a series of meetings and public outreach activities. The selected organization will plan, organize, implement, and manage travel and outreach events targeting key stakeholders, program beneficiaries, and the general public.

2. SHORT DOCUMENTARY FILMS: Work with the MCC and the Embassy public affairs section to develop and produce a high production value short video for social media and a 35-45 second video for broadcast television highlighting the public benefits of the Mongolia Water Compact operations and the reasons why the United States is providing a grant to help provide access to clean water essential for Ulaanbaatar’s public health and economic growth. These videos are to be used on various media platforms and events throughout the duration of the Compact in Mongolia.

3. VIDEO COMPETITION:  A short film competition for films focused on the importance of access to water for families, communities, and businesses in Ulaanbaatar.  This project will be associated with the U.S. Embassy American Film Showcase (AFS) program in 2021.  The AFS component will include moderated film screenings, discussions, and exchanges with U.S. film makers and subject matter experts on the theme of water management.

Participants and Audiences: All programs should be designed to engage with the Mongolian public.  The participants should consist of MCC Mongolia, the U.S. Embassy, national and local government officials, administrators, policy makers, opinion leaders, water specialists, researchers, academics, scientists, students, film makers, media, social media influencers, civil society, and community organizations.


Length of performance period: up to 12 months
Anticipated award amount: $15,000 to $20,0000
Type of Funding:  FY20 Millennium Challenge Corporation Funds
Anticipated program start date:  October 01, 2020

Funding Instrument Type:   Cooperative agreement. Cooperative agreements are different from grants in that Embassy staff are more actively involved in the implementation process. The MCC and U.S. Embassy are to be actively and substantially involved in:

  • Active participation or collaboration with the recipient in the implementation of the award
  • Review and approval of one stage of work before another can begin
  • Joint preparation and/or presentation of results with the recipient
  • Review and approval of substantive provisions of proposed subawards or contracts beyond existing Federal policy
  • Involvement where the Embassy’s program office requires specific programmatic oversight over the award beyond normal monitoring

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


1. Cost Sharing or Matching: is not required but proposals that include substantial cost sharing are preferred.

2. Other Eligibility Requirements: in order to be eligible to receive an award, all organizations must have a unique entity identifier (Data Universal Numbering System/DUNS number from Dun & Bradstreet), as well as a valid registration on Please see Section D.6 for information on how to obtain these registrations.

The Embassy encourages applications from U.S. and Mongolia:

  • Not-for-profit organizations, including think tanks and civil society organizations
  • Non-governmental organizations with speaker and film programming experience
  • Non-profit or governmental educational institutions


Application should be submitted via email to by 23:59 Sep 20, 2020.  

Content of Application
Please ensure:

  • The proposal 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

1. Mandatory application forms

2. Summary Page: Cover sheet stating the applicant name and organization, proposal date, program title, program period proposed start and end date, and brief purpose of the program.

3. Proposal (5 pages maximum): The proposal should contain sufficient information that anyone not familiar with it would understand exactly what the applicant wants to do. You may use your own proposal format, or the “Suggested Grant Application Form available here that include all the items below.

  • Proposal Summary: Short narrative that outlines the proposed program, including program objectives and anticipated impact.
  • Introduction to the Organization applying: A description of past and present operations, showing ability to carry out the speaker specific and video content related program, including information on all previous grants from the U.S. Embassy and other entities.
  • Program Activities and Timeline: Describe the program activities and how they will help achieve the Program Objectives stated in Section A. For the proposed timeline, include the dates, times, and locations of planned activities and events.
  • Key Personnel: Names, titles, roles and experience/qualifications of key personnel involved in the program.  What proportion of their time will be used in support of this program?
  • Program Partners:  List the names and type of involvement of key partner organizations and sub-awardees.
  • Program Monitoring and Evaluation Plan: This is an important part of successful application. Throughout the time-frame, how will the 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 program?
  • Funding or Sustainability: Applicant’s plan for continuing the program beyond the performance period, or the availability of other resources, if applicable.

4. Budget Justification Narrative:  After filling out the SF-424A Budget (above), use a separate sheet of paper to describe each of the budget expenses in detail.  See section H. Other Information: Guidelines for Budget Submissions below for further information.

5. Attachments:

  • 1-page CV or resume of key personnel who are proposed for the program
  • Letters of support from program partners describing the roles and responsibilities of each partner
  • If your organization has a NICRA and includes NICRA charges in the budget, your latest NICRA should be included as a PDF file.
  • Official permission letters, if required for program activities

6. Required Registrations: All organizations applying for grants/cooperative agreements must obtain these registrations.  All are free of charge:

  1. Unique entity identifier from Dun & Bradstreet (DUNS number)
  2. NCAGE/CAGE code
  3. registration

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

NCAGE application: Application page here:
Instructions for the NCAGE application process:

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 for any problems in getting an NCAGE code.

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


The proposal will be compared against limited number of other proposals. It will be reviewed to ensure that it is sufficiently strong in the following areas to merit funding:

  • Quality and Feasibility of the Program Idea
  • Organizational Capacity and Record on Previous Grants
  • Program Planning/Ability to Achieve Objectives
  • Budget
  • Monitoring and evaluation plan
  • Sustainability


The 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 award document signed by the Grants Officer.

If a proposal is selected for funding, payments will be made in at least two installments, as needed to carry out the program activities. The Department of State and the Embassy 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 solicitation letter 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 proposal received.

Terms and Conditions: Before submitting an application, 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, and the Department of State Standard Terms and Conditions which are available at: Note the U.S Flag branding and marking requirements in the Standard Terms and Conditions.

Reporting Requirements: Recipients will be required to submit financial reports and program reports.  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.

If you have any questions about the application process, please contact:

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.

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.