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FY 2011 PRM Funding Opportunity Announcement for NGO Programs Benefiting Colombian Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs)


Funding Opportunity Announcement
Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration
May 9, 2011

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Funding Opportunity Number: PRM-ECA-11-CA-WHA-05092011

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance number: 19.518

Announcement issuance date: Monday, May 9, 2011

Proposal submission Deadline: Thursday, June 9, 2011, at 12:00 p .m. (noon) (EDT). Proposals submitted after this deadline will not be considered.

ADVISORY: Grants.gov is expected to experience continued high volume of activity in the near future. PRM strongly recommends submitting your proposal early to allow time to address difficulties that may arise due to system delays.

Proposed Program Start Dates: July 1, 2011 – September 30, 2011

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. See guidance below.

In order to facilitate transition of PRM-funded activities to locally available services, early recovery and/or development programs, or to self-reliance, applicants may submit proposals that include multi-year strategies with projected activities and notional budgets in 12-month cycles for a period not to exceed 36 months from the proposed start date. The expected conclusion of the longer strategy, which should be detailed in proposals, would be successful transition and cessation of PRM funding for the activities in the program.

Multi-year proposals selected for funding by PRM will be funded in 12-month increments and must include results-based indictors within the first 12 months. Agreements may be renewable for up to two additional 12-month periods contingent upon available funding, strong performance, and continuing need. Continued funding after the initial 12-month award requires the submission of a noncompeting continuation application as detailed in the “Noncompeting Application Requirements” section of this announcement and will be contingent upon available funding, strong performance, and continuing need. Please see the “Proposal Content, Formatting, and Templates” section of this announcement for additional guidance.

Strategies that propose funding beyond 12 months could include the following elements for the second and third 12-month periods:

  • Program evaluations to determine impact of program activities conducted during the initial 12 months
  • Additional time to build on foundations developed during the initial 12-month phase (i.e. job placement for vocational skills programs; behavior change/modification in gender-based violence programs)
  • Ongoing activities that will transition to other funding sources in an imminent budget cycle (i.e. education that will be incorporated into government budgets the following school year)
  • Activities that complete amalgamation of PRM-funded activities into other funding sources but which could not reasonably be accomplished in the initial 12-month cycle

In funding a project for 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 sources.

Current Funding Priorities for Displaced Colombians in South and Central America: PRM funding priorities for 2011 include filling gaps in the provision of emergency humanitarian assistance for particularly vulnerable internally displaced persons (IDPs) and refugees, including Afro-Colombian and indigenous populations; improving the response capacity of the government of Colombia to provide protection and assistance at the national and local levels; channeling program beneficiaries into government programs where they exist, and expanding support for refugee populations. Priority countries in the region are Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Panama, and Venezuela. PRM provides assistance to IDPs in Colombia during the emergency phase of assistance -- approximately the first 15-90 days following displacement.

In Colombia, PRM seeks proposals offering comprehensive programs addressing the priority thematic and geographic sectors defined below during the immediate and emergency phases of displacement.

1. Immediate and Emergency Humanitarian Assistance:

  • Provide food and non-food assistance for 15-90 days, depending on needs assessment
  • Supply basic health screening (including referrals) and psychosocial assistance
  • Offer emergency shelter assistance
  • Channel beneficiaries into government programs through registration of displacement claims

2. Capacity Building and Institutional Strengthening:

  • Local level: Provide support to bridge gap in immediate humanitarian assistance depending on needs assessment

a. Work with local authorities to plan and budget for providing humanitarian assistance themselves (e.g., local integrated plans and budgets)

b. Strengthen activities of IDP associations and social organizations (Municipal and Departmental displacement response committees)

c. Identify emergency projects that will improve the local authorities capacity to prevent and to response to displacement (e.g., community centers/shelters and support to the government’s local IDP integrated assistance centers).

  • National level: Coordinate with relevant entities at the national level such as Acción Social, Interior and Justice Ministry, and Public Ministry in the identification and support of impact initiatives/projects that will help improve the government’s IDP policy and program response.

3. Protection Mechanisms and Cross-Cutting Issues:

  • Prevention of and response to gender-based violence
  • Support effective mechanisms to link beneficiaries with government assistance programs and services to promote the effective enjoyment of rights, including community strengthening activities
  • Address discrimination in IDP host communities
  • Coordinate with other international organizations and NGOs efforts, including links with USAID-supported partners and programs.

4. Geographic Coverage: Areas of focus should include zones with high levels of displacement and weak institutional capacity (selection of geographic locations should take into consideration presence of government services, ICRC humanitarian assistance, and other emergency assistance programs supported by international donors -- e.g., WFP, ECHO, etc), with particular consideration given to the following departments.

  • Nariño, Putumayo, and Caqueta
  • Cauca, Valle de Cauca, and Choco
  • Antioquia and Cordoba
  • Arauca and Norte de Santander.

In Ecuador, Panama, Venezuela and Costa Rica, PRM seeks proposals that fill critical gaps in humanitarian assistance and integration support for refugee populations, including in the priority sectors listed below.

1. Emergency Humanitarian Assistance:

  • Provide food and non-food items
  • Support access to health services and psychosocial assistance
  • Offer emergency shelter assistance.

2. Support livelihoods and Integration Activities:

  • Provide income generation and productive projects (including micro-finance programs) as well as employment counseling, vocational training, and maintaining job banks
  • Support access to primary education and activities with at risk youth
  • Promote socio-cultural integration activities, seeking to build bridges and foster participation with host communities.

3. Protection Mechanisms and Cross-Cutting Issues:

  • Improve access to and provide information on refugee reception, orientation, registration, and documentation processes
  • Address xenophobia and discrimination against refugee and asylum seekers
  • Prevention of and response to gender-based violence
  • Include activities to prevent and/or respond to risks for trafficking in persons, labor and sexual exploitation, and unaccompanied minors in refugee and host communities.

4. Capacity Building and Institutional Strengthening:

  • Provide assistance and support to host government entities responsible for registration, documentation, and integration of refugees and other persons of concern
  • Offer relevant training on respect for refugee and asylum seeker rights to local and national government authorities, including members of migration, police, military, and social service agencies.

5. Infrastructure Projects: Support refugee and host communities with small infrastructure projects, including water and sanitation projects, improvement to school facilities hosting refugee children, upgrade and maintenance of shelters for refugees, SGBV victims, and unaccompanied minors.

6. Geographic Coverage: Areas with significant populations of refugees and asylum seekers, weak institutional capacity, including in both rural and urban settings.

  • Ecuador: Sucumbíos, Imbabura, Carchi, Esmeraldas, Pichincha, Guayas, Santo Domingo, and Azuay
  • Panama: Darien, Panama City, and Colón
  • Venezuela: Zulia, Tachira, Apure, Merida, and Caracas
  • Costa Rica: San Jose, Desamparados, and Alajuela.

PRM will consider proposals focused on other thematic priorities and/or geographic areas based on a well-documented justification. PRM will accept proposals from any qualified international organization (IO) or non-governmental organization (NGO); however, 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;
  • 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;
  • A budget that is appropriate for meeting the objectives and demonstrates co-funding by non-US government sources;
  • Appropriate targeting of beneficiaries in coordination with UNHCR and other relevant organizations;
  • Because of PRM's mandate to provide protection, assistance, and sustainable solutions for refugees and victims of conflict, PRM considers funding only those projects that include a target beneficiary base of at least 50% refugees/displaced persons;
  • Adherence to relevant international standards for humanitarian assistance. See PRM's General NGO Guidelines for a complete list of sector-specific standards.

Other Requirements and Information:

  • Prioritization of budget: Proposed budgets should be prioritized and broken down by sector in the event that not all aspects of a proposal can be fully funded with PRM resources. If you propose to carry out a regional program in more than one country, please break the budget down by country and by sector. This is particularly important if you propose to work in Colombia and another country in the region.
  • Other sources of funding: Proposals must list other sources from which you are seeking or have already obtained funding, such as the UNHCR, the host government, other US government agencies, and international donors, including funding and in-kind contributions from your own organization.
  • Security plan: Work in Colombia and neighboring countries presents particular security challenges. Proposals should include information on security measures and plans to protect the safety of the organization’s personnel as well as to prevent the diversion and/or misuse of assistance.

International Organizations (IOs) that are engaged in programs relevant to the assistance addressed by this PRM funding announcement should ensure that these programs are made known to PRM on or before the closing date of this funding announcement so that PRM can evaluate all IO and NGO programs for funding consideration.

Funding Limits:

PRM anticipates funding 2 to 3 programs in Colombia for emergency humanitarian assistance for IDPs and 3 to 4 programs outside of Colombia for humanitarian and integration assistance for refugees. PRM anticipates that approximately 60% of its overall NGO resources for the Andean region will be dedicated to programs benefiting Colombian refugees; approximately 40% of its overall NGO resources will be dedicated to Colombian IDPs.

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.

Proposal Submission Requirements:

See “How to Apply” (http://www.grants.gov/applicants/applicant_faqs.jsp#applying) on Grants.gov for complete details on requirements, and note the following highlights:

  • Proposals must be submitted via 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 Central Contract Registry (CCR) which can take weeks and sometimes months. See the “Applicant FAQs” section on Grants.gov (http://www.grants.gov/help/applicant_faqs.jsp#applying) for complete details on registering.
  • Do not wait until the last minute to submit your application on Grants.gov. Applicants who have done so in the past and experienced technical difficulties were not able to meet the deadline. Please note: PRM strongly recommends submitting your proposal early to avoid submission delays. 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.
  • 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(s) to the Grants.gov help desk, received a case number, and had a service request opened to research the problem(s), should contact PRM Program Officer Beth Bailey at (202) 453-9279 or BaileyEM@state.gov to determine whether an alternative method of submission is appropriate.
  • 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.
  • Pursuant to U.S. Code, Title 218, Section 1001, stated on OMB Standard Form 424 (SF-424), 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: http://fa.statebuy.state.gov/content.asp?content_id=161&menu_id=68
  • 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) non-profit tax status under IRS 501 (c)(3), 3) a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number, and 4) an Employer ID (EIN)/Federal Tax Identification number.

Proposal Content, Formatting and Template:

Please refer to the “Proposal Submission and Review Process” section in PRM's General NGO Guidelines. PRM strongly encourages organizations applying for PRM funding to use the PRM recommended proposal and budget templates. Templates can be requested by sending an email to PRM's NGO Coordinator. You must type “PRM NGO Templates” in the subject line to receive an automated reply containing the template.

In addition to referencing the General NGO Guidelines, 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 the first 12-months of activities. PRM expects all multi-year program plans to broadly outline out-year activities. Multi-year strategies should include notional budgets (budget summaries only) for out-year activities. Objectives and indicators for out-year 12-month program cycles are not required as part of the initial proposal and will be submitted with continuation applications.

Applicants should note that they may use PRM’s recommended proposal and budget templates for multi-year proposals. Multi-year proposals using the templates must be no more than 30 pages in length. 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.

PLEASE TAKE SPECIAL NOTE OF THE FOLLOWING REQUIREMENTS OUTLINED IN PRM’s FY2011 NGO GUIDELINES:

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

  • 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.
  • 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. Any project involving the building or maintenance of physical infrastructure must include coordinates of site locations (place name, P-Code, latitude and longitude coordinates).
  • Budget must include a specific breakdown of funds being provided by UNHCR, other USG agencies, other donors, and your own organization (where applicable). PRM strongly encourages multi-lateral support for humanitarian programs.
  • Organizations that received PRM funding in FY 2010 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.

Noncompeting Application Requirements

Multi-year applications selected for funding by PRM will be funded in 12 month increments based on the proposals submitted in the competing application and as approved by PRM. Continued funding after the initial 12 month award requires the submission of a noncompeting continuation application as follows:

  • Continuation applications must be submitted not later than 90 days than the proposed start date of the award (e.g., if funding the next budget period is to begin on September 1, submit your application by June 1). Late applications will jeopardize continued funding.
  • Applications must be signed by the Authorized Organization Representative (AOR) at the applicant organization on the submitted SF-424.
  • Pursuant to U.S. Code, Title 218, Section 1001, stated on OMB Standard Form 424 (SF-424), 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: http://fa.statebuy.state.gov/content.asp?content_id=161&menu_id=68 )
  • Proposal Content, Formatting and Templates: Please refer to the guidance contained in PRM’s General NGO Guidelines. The total budget should not exceed the amount which is listed on the current Federal Assistance Award. You must submit a complete application including:
    • Signed completed SF-424.
    • Proposal reflecting objectives and indicators for the continuation period.
    • Budget for the continuation period.
    • Budget narrative.
    • Most recent Negotiated Indirect Cost Rate Agreement (NICRA), if applicable.
    • Information on the amount of unexpended funds to include a statement of the estimated cumulative total dollar amount taking into consideration the actual expenditures shown on the Financial Status Report. Note that funds are available for expenditure only during the period in which they are awarded.

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 (PRMNGOCoordinator@state.gov).

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 PRM’s 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.

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. (Note: Responses to technical questions from PRM do not indicate a commitment to fund the program discussed.):

PRM Program Officer Beth Bailey (BaileyEM@state.gov; 202-453-9279), Washington, D.C.



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