U.S. Embassy Santo Domingo – PAS Annual Program Statement

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE

U.S. EMBASSY SANTO DOMINGO, PUBLIC AFFAIRS SECTION

Notice of Funding Opportunity

 

Funding Opportunity Title:

U.S. Embassy Santo Domingo – Public Diplomacy Annual Program Statement

 

Funding Opportunity No.: PAS- SANTO DOMINGO -FY19-01
Deadline for Applications: August 15th, 2019
CFDA Number: 19.040 – Public Diplomacy Programs
Maximum for Each Award: $250,000.00

 

This notice is subject to availability of funding

A. PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

The U.S. Embassy in Santo Domingo is pleased to announce that funding is available through its Public Diplomacy Small Grants Program. This is an Annual Program Statement, outlining our funding priorities, the strategic themes we focus on, and the procedures for submitting requests for funding. Please carefully follow all instructions below.

a)      Purpose of Grants:

U.S. Embassy Santo Domingo invites proposals for Public Diplomacy (PD) programs that strengthen cultural, educational, professional, and scientific ties between the U.S. and the Dominican Republic through programming that highlights shared values and promotes bilateral cooperation. All PD programs must include an American element, a nexus or connection with American expert/s, organization/s, or institution/s in a specific field that will promote increased understanding of U.S. policy and perspectives. PD programs should promote communication, engagement, and/or dialogue between the United States and the Dominican public, enhancing people-to-people connections to U.S. society and culture to build goodwill and lasting bonds.

Examples of Public Diplomacy Small Grants Program proposals include, but are not limited to:

  • Academic and professional lectures, seminars and speaker programs;
  • Artistic, sports, and cultural workshops, joint performances and exhibitions;
  • Cultural heritage conservation and preservation programs; and
  • Professional and academic exchanges and programs.
b)     Priority Program Areas:

 

Proposals should align with our Mission Goals from these priority areas:

  • Protecting America’s security at home and in the Dominican Republic;
  • Encouraging a democratic Dominican Republic;
  • A Dominican Republic that promotes our shared prosperity;
  • Building support in the Dominican Republic for U.S. leadership and our shared values.

Funding could be available to support projects that:

Reinforce U.S.-Dominican Shared Values – Projects that promote U.S. culture, including music, art, sports, and education, including American Studies, English, and the promotion of study in the United States.  Projects which support human rights, women’s and youth empowerment, diversity and acceptance of minority groups, and other areas of mutual interest that promote freedom and democracy in line with our Mission Goals listed above.

Strengthen Economic Prosperity – Projects that encourage and support entrepreneurship, innovation, and the teaching and learning of English. Projects that support science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) among Dominican youth.

c)      Participants and Audiences:

The intended target audience should be:

  • Underserved and at-risk youth (13-25), including students;
  • Emerging voices, including civil society leaders;
  • Young entrepreneurs;
  • Established opinion leaders, including cultural and/or academic institution leadership;
  • Government officials;
  • Non-state actors, such as academic institutions, tourism entities, the media, and others who communicate with the public; and
  • Residents of provinces outside of Santo Domingo.
d)     Ineligible programs

The following types of programs are not eligible for funding:

  • For-profit activities;
  • Programs related to partisan political activity;
  • Charitable or development activities;
  • Construction programs;
  • Proposals with the principal purpose of publication of books/pamphlets/websites/applications;
  • Exclusively scientific research projects;
  • Projects that require more than two years to implement;
  • Purchase of equipment, vehicles, construction, or construction materials;
  • Programs that support specific religious activities;
  • Fund-raising campaigns;
  • Lobbying for specific legislation or programs;
  • Programs intended primarily for the growth or institutional development of an organization;
  • Programs that duplicate existing programs.
e)      Authorizing legislation, type and year of funding:

Funding authority rests primarily in the Smith-Mundt Act. The source of funding for this Annual Program Statement is fiscal year 2019 .07 Public Diplomacy funds.  We may consider applications for a continuation of existing grants funded under these awards beyond the initial budget period on a non-competitive basis subject to availability of funds, satisfactory progress of the program, and a determination that continued funding would be in the best interest of the U.S. Department of State.

B. FEDERAL AWARD INFORMATION

Length of performance period: 3 to 12 months

Number of awards anticipated: 5 awards (dependent on amounts)

Award amounts: awards may range from a minimum of $1, 000 to a maximum of $250,000

Type of Funding:  Fiscal Year 2019 Public Diplomacy Funding

Anticipated program start date:

This notice is subject to availability of funding.

a)      Funding Instrument Type:  Grant, Fixed Amount Award, or Cooperative agreement. Cooperative agreements are different from grants in that Embassy staff are more directly involved in the grant implementation.

C.  ELIGILIBITY INFORMATION

a)      Eligible Applicants:

We encourage applications from the United States and the Dominican Republic.

  • Registered, not-for-profit organizations, including think tanks and civil society/non- governmental organizations with programming experience
  • Individuals
  • Non-profit or higher education institutions

Note: For-profit or commercial entities are not eligible to apply.

b)      Cost Sharing or Matching

Cost sharing is preferred but not required.

c)      Other Eligibility Requirements

In order to be eligible to receive an award, all organizations must have a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number from Dun & Bradstreet, as well as a valid registration on www.SAM.gov. Please see Section D.3 for information on how to obtain these registrations.

Individuals are not required to have a DUNS number or be registered in SAM.gov.

D. APPLICATION AND SUBMISSION INFORMATION

a)      Address to Request Application Package

Application forms required below are available at www.grants.gov.

b)     Content and Form of Application Submission

 

Please follow all instructions below carefully. Proposals that do not meet the requirements of this announcement or fail to comply with the stated requirements will be ineligible.

Content of Application

Please ensure:

i.  The proposal clearly addresses the goals and objectives of this funding opportunity;

ii.  All documents are in English;

iii.  All budgets are in U.S. dollars;

iv.  All pages are numbered;

v.  All documents are formatted to 8 ½ x 11 paper; and

vi.  All Microsoft Word documents are single-spaced, 12 point Times New Roman font, with a minimum of 1-inch margins.

The following documents are required:

1)  Mandatory Application Forms

  • SF-424 (Application for Federal Assistance – organizations) or SF-424-I (Application for Federal Assistance –individuals)
  • SF424A (Budget Information for Non-Construction programs) and Budget Justification (see below)

Please note applicants can download all of the above forms at https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/forms/sf-424-family.html#sortby=1

2)  Summary Coversheet:

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 (10 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, but it must include all the items below.

  • Proposal Summary: Short narrative that outlines the proposed program, including program objectives and anticipated impact.
  • Introduction to the Organization or Individual Applying: A description of past and present operations, showing ability to carry out the program, including information on all previous grants from the U.S. Embassy and/or U.S. government agencies.
  • Problem Statement: Clear, concise and well-supported statement of the problem to be addressed and why the proposed program is needed
  • Program Goals and Objectives:  The “goals” describe what the program is intended to achieve.  What aspect of the relationship between the U.S. and XXX will be improved? The “objectives” refer to the intermediate accomplishments on the way to the goals. These should be achievable and measurable.
  • Program Activities: Describe the program activities and how they will help achieve the objectives.
  • Program Methods and Design: A description of how the program is expected to work to solve the stated problem and achieve the goal.
  • Proposed Program Schedule:  The proposed timeline for the program activities.  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 any sub-awardees.
  • Program Monitoring and Evaluation Plan: This is an important part of successful grants. Throughout the time-frame of the grant, 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 grant?
  • Future Funding or Sustainability Plan: Applicant’s plan for continuing the program beyond the grant 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.

c)      Attachments (suggested examples):

i. 1-page CV or resume of key personnel who are proposed for the program

ii. If applicable, letters of support from program partners describing the roles and responsibilities of each partner

iii. Official permission letters, if required for program activities

iv. Proof of Unique Entity Identifier and System for Award Management (SAM.gov)

d)     Required Registrations

All organizations applying for grants (except individuals) must obtain these registrations.  All are free of charge:

  • Unique Identifier Number from Dun & Bradstreet (DUNS number)
  • NCAGE/CAGE code
  • www.SAM.gov 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 http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform/displayHomePage.do;jsessionid=81407B1F03F2BDB123DD47D19158B75F . http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform

NCAGE application: Application page here https://eportal.nspa.nato.int/AC135Public/scage/CageList.aspx

Instructions for the NCAGE application process:

https://eportal.nspa.nato.int/AC135Public/Docs/US%20Instructions%20for%20NSPA%20NCAGE.pdf

For help from within the U.S., call 1-888-227-2423

For help from outside the U.S., call 1-269-961-7766

Email NCAGE@dlis.dla.mil for any problems in getting an NCAGE code.

Step 2: After receiving the NCAGE Code, proceed to register in SAM by logging onto: https://www.sam.gov.

PLEASE NOTE:

  • SAM registration must be renewed annually.
  • These databases interface with each other, so the information in DUNS should match exactly with what you put in your NCAGE or SAM application
e)      Submission Dates and Times

Applications may be submitted for consideration at any time before the closing date of August 15, 2019.  No applications will be accepted after that date for this fiscal year.

f)       Funding Restrictions

Award funds cannot be used for construction, vehicle purchases, property rental, etc.

Alcoholic Beverages: Please note that award funds cannot be used for alcoholic beverages.

g)      Other Submission Requirements

All application materials must be submitted by email to SantoDomingoGrants@state.gov.

E. APPLICATION REVIEW INFORMATION AND SELECTION PROCESS

a)      Criteria

Each application will be evaluated and rated based on the evaluation criteria outlined below. The criteria listed are closely related and are considered as a whole in judging the overall quality of an application.

  1. Organizational capacity and record on previous grants: The organization has expertise in its stated field and we are confident of its ability to undertake the program. This includes a financial management system and a bank account.
  2. Quality and Feasibility of the Program Idea: The program idea is well developed, with detail about how program activities will be carried out. The proposal includes a reasonable implementation timeline.
  3. Goals and objectives: Goals and objectives are clearly stated and program approach is likely to provide maximum impact in achieving the proposed results.
  4. Embassy priorities: Applicant has clearly described how stated goals are related to and support U.S. Embassy Santo Domingo’s priority areas or target audiences.
  5. Budget: The budget justification is detailed. Costs are reasonable in relation to the proposed activities and anticipated results. The budget is realistic, accounting for all necessary expenses to achieve proposed activities.
  6. Monitoring and evaluation plan: Applicant demonstrates it is able to measure program success against key indicators and provide milestones to indicate progress toward goals outlined in the proposal. The program includes output and outcome indicators, and shows how and when those will be measured.
  7. Sustainability: Program activities will continue to have positive impact after the end of the program.
b)      Review and Selection Process

A Grants Review Committee will evaluate all eligible applications.

c)      FAPIIS

For any Federal award under a notice of funding opportunity, if the Federal awarding agency anticipates that the total Federal share will be greater than the simplified acquisition threshold on any Federal award under a notice of funding opportunity may include, over the period of performance (see §200.88 Simplified Acquisition Threshold), this section must also inform applicants:

i. That the Federal awarding agency, prior to making a Federal award with a total amount of Federal share greater than the simplified acquisition threshold, is required to review and consider any information about the applicant that is in the designated integrity and performance system accessible through SAM (currently FAPIIS) (see 41 U.S.C. 2313);

ii. That an applicant, at its option, may review information in the designated integrity and performance systems accessible through SAM and comment on any information about itself that a Federal awarding agency previously entered and is currently in the designated integrity and performance system accessible through SAM;

iii. That the Federal awarding agency will consider any comments by the applicant, in addition to the other information in the designated integrity and performance system, in making a judgment about the applicant’s integrity, business ethics, and record of performance under Federal awards when completing the review of risk posed by applicants as described in §200.205 Federal awarding agency review of risk posed by applicants.

 

F. FEDERAL AWARD ADMINISTRATION INFORMATION

a) Federal Award Notices

The grant award or 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 grant award document signed by the Grants Officer.

If a proposal is selected for funding, the Department of State 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 NOFO 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 or all proposals received.

Payment Method: Payments will be made in at least two installments, as needed to carry out the program activities.

Organizations whose applications will not be funded will also be notified via email.

b) Administrative and National Policy Requirements

Terms and Conditions: Before submitting an application, applicants should review all the terms and conditions and required certifications that will apply to this award, to ensure that they will be able to comply. These include:

2 CFR 200, 2 CFR 600, Certifications and Assurances, and the Department of State Standard Terms and Conditions, all of which are available at https://www.state.gov/m/a/ope/index.htm. Note the U.S Flag branding and marking requirements in the Standard Terms and Conditions.

c)  Reporting

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.

G. FEDERAL AWARDING AGENCY CONTACTS

If you have any questions about the grant application process, please contact us at SantoDomingoGrants@state.gov.

Note: We do not provide any pre-consultation for application related questions that are addressed in the APS. Once an application has been submitted Department of State officials and staff — both in the Department and at embassies overseas — may not discuss this competition with applicants until the entire proposal review process is completed.

H. OTHER INFORMATION

a)      Guidelines for Budget Justification

Personnel: 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. 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.