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FY 2010 Funding Opportunity Announcement for NGO programs benefiting returning refugees in Afghanistan - Countrywide Announcement


Funding Opportunity Announcement
Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration
May 4, 2010

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Funding Opportunity Number: PRM-ECA-10-CA-SA-05042010-AFGHAN

 

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) number: 19.519 - Overseas Refugee Assistance Programs for Near East and South Asia

 

Announcement issuance date: Tuesday, May 4, 2010

 

Proposal submission deadline: Wednesday, June 2, 2010 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: June 1 – September 30, 2010.

 

Duration of Activity: No more than 12 months.

Applicants with multi-year programs must continue to re-compete for PRM funding each year. Furthermore, in funding a project 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 possibilities.

 

Current Funding Priorities for Returning Refugees in Afghanistan:

PRM will prioritize currently available funding for proposed non-governmental organization (NGO) activities that best meet the Bureau’s priorities in Afghanistan as identified below:

 

More than 5.6 million Afghans have returned to Afghanistan since 2002. Although returns were lower last year, UNHCR still assisted 54,000 refugees during 2009. Large numbers of refugee returnees have indicated that the lack of economic opportunities prevent them from fully reintegrating upon return to their areas of origin. To respond to these concerns of recent returnees and to assist those contemplating return, the Bureau will focus on supporting the durable resettlement and reintegration of returnees, including through promotion of sustainable livelihoods and economic development in provinces hosting sizeable numbers of returnees. These programs should address needs not covered by UNHCR or other international organizations supporting refugee returns.

 

PRM will accept proposals from any NGO providing humanitarian assistance, although, 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(s) and specified location(s);

 

· evidence of coordination and transition planning to early recovery and/or development activities with international organizations (IOs) and other NGOs working in the same area or sector as well as – where applicable – 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 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.

 

· adherence to relevant international standards for humanitarian assistance. See FY2010 General PRM NGO Guidelines for a complete list of sector-specific standards.

 

Country Specific Instructions:

 

In FY10, PRM’s funding priority is to support communities of significant refugee return and to ensure that humanitarian assistance programming is effectively – and quickly -- transitioned into early recovery and/or development activities that will continue to sustain basic services and livelihoods opportunities for current and future returnees. Within communities of return, consideration will also be given to program elements that address the needs of extremely vulnerable groups, such as widows and female-headed households, including gender-based violence prevention and response, as appropriate. All projects should seek to address the protection and assistance needs of women and girls.

 

The following activities are priority areas for PRM in FY10:

 

a. Income-generating activities targeted to market opportunities and/or micro-finance institutions available in return communities (short-term cash for work programs without linkages to more sustainable income-generating activities will not be considered for funding in FY10);

b. Vocational training in marketable skills and, as necessary, provide the required tool set for the profession (stand alone vocational training not linked to income-generating activities or job placement programs will not be considered for funding in FY10)

c. Provision of or improved access to basic health services, including maternal/child health care and comprehensive reproductive health services, combined with capacity building or sustainability measures such as health care worker training and provision of supplies and equipment;

d. Primary school construction or rehabilitation, combined with capacity building or sustainability measures such as teacher training and provision of materials and equipment;

e. Prevention of and response to gender-based violence (GBV);

f. Water and sanitation systems creation, rehabilitation, and repair, especially if in conjunction with previously mentioned livelihoods and/or education programs.

 


IOs/NGOs are encouraged to propose programs that are multisectoral. PRM will consider a broad range of activities, but priority will be given to programs that include one or more of the elements from the above categories. It is important to have an effective and practicable exit/transition strategy as it is unlikely that follow-on funding will be available. Although PRM anticipates the majority of awards will be provided for Afghan returnee support, submissions may include activities which cover emergency needs of Pakistani refugees in Afghanistan.

 

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.

 

Transition Strategy/Coordination Preferences:

Programs must include a description of how program activities will fit into a phased transition strategy to locally available services, early recovery and/or development programs supported by the international community, or to self-reliance strategies. Programs should also include clear and effective plans for moving from relief to early recovery under local or national structures. PRM will give particular consideration to NGOs that may be able to present projects that either coordinate with, or are already incorporated in the Afghanistan Humanitarian Action Plan (HAP) 2010, the Afghanistan National Development Strategy (ANDS),, the United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF), and/or the National Solidarity Programme (NSP). All projects should seek to address the particular needs of women and children and indicators should disaggregate by gender and age group. Programs specifically targeted to address needs of women should coordinate with the National Action Plan for the Women of Afghanistan (NAWPA) 2008 – 2018.

 

To highlight transition strategies incorporated into the proposals, NGOs must include at least one objective with indicators, including one impact indicator, which highlights how overall activities will be transitioned to locally available services, early recovery and/or development programs supported by the international community, or to self-reliance strategies.

 

To ensure PRM-funded NGO programs are coordinated with UNHCR on refugee return programming, NGOs are encouraged to request comments from UNHCR on planned activities supporting refugee returns in Afghanistan. Applicants may send their draft proposals via e-mail to the following UNHCR Afghanistan Points of Contact: Country Representative Ewen Macleod at Macleod@unhcr.org and Assistant Program Representative Anatoli Poujai at poujai@unhcr.org. Applicants are encouraged to reference these communications with UNHCR either within the narrative or attached as an annex to the proposal so that panel review members are aware of efforts being made on coordination.

 

Funding Limits:

 

PRM will consider projects submitted with budgets in the range of $250,000 to $2,000,000.

 

As stated in the FY 2010 General PRM 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 June 2, 2010 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 “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: Grants.gov is expected to experience continued high volumes of activity in the near future. 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 and received a case number and had a service request opened to research the problem(s), should contact PRM Program Officer Linda Muncy at (202) 663-1019/(202) 453-9387 or MuncyLH@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.

 

· NGOs that have not received PRM funding prior to 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 the FY 2010 General PRM 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.

 


PLEASE TAKE SPECIAL NOTE OF THE FOLLOWING REQUIREMENTS OUTLINED IN THE PRM’s FY2010 NGO GUIDELINES:

 

This announcement is designed to accompany the FY 2010 General PRM NGO Guidelines, which contain additional administrative information and explain in detail PRM’s NGO funding strategy and priorities. Please use both the FY 2010 General PRM 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.

 

· 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. One objective must be devoted to transition of activities with at minimum one outcome or impact indicator tied to this objective.

 

· 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 or no-cost extensions in FY 2009 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.

 


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. PRM’s Afghan refugee programs are subject to a number of reports and audits by Congressional, interagency, and State entities. Organizations awarded funding by PRM should expect to receive onsite monitoring by PRM or outside entities reviewing PRM’s oversight of NGO programs. Project results and data reported in required quarterly and final program reports may be provided by PRM to other USG entities evaluating USG assistance in Afghanistan. PRM will safeguard any information on individual beneficiaries and staff, but NGOs should be aware that their organization’s name, project locations, and other data may be made available to the public as part of these reporting and auditing procedures.

 

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.

 

SPOT: All recipient personnel deploying to areas of combat operations, as designated by the Secretary of Defense (currently Iraq and Afghanistan), under grants over $100,000 or performance over 30 days must register in the Department of Defense maintained synchronized pre-deployment and operational tracker (SPOT) system. Recipients of federal assistance awards shall register in SPOT before deployment, or if already in the designated operational area, register upon becoming an employee under the assistance award, and maintain current data in SPOT. Information on how to register in SPOT is available from your Grants Officer or Grants Officer Representative.

 

For more details regarding PRM’s reporting requirements please see FY 2010 General PRM 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.

 

In order to provide NGOs with timely feedback, PRM will inform applicants of the panel’s decision to recommend or not recommend funding proposed activities, and may request revised proposals and/or budgets based on feedback from the panel. PRM will follow up with 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 Linda Muncy (MuncyLH@state.gov; 202-663-1019; after May 17, please contact at 202-453-9387), Washington, D.C.

Kabul Regional Refugee Coordinator Martha Amlin (AmlinMP@state.gov), U.S. Embassy, Refugee and Migration Affairs, Kabul, Afghanistan.

 




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