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FY 2013 Funding Opportunity Announcement for NGO programs benefiting Colombian Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in FY 2013


Funding Opportunity Announcement
Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration
April 15, 2013

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Funding Opportunity Number: PRM-PRMOAPWH-13-001-017853

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) number:

19.518 - Overseas Refugee Assistance Programs for Western Hemisphere

Announcement issuance date: Friday, April 12, 2013

Proposal submission deadline: Thursday, May 16, 2013 at 12:00 p.m. noon

Proposals submitted after this deadline will not be considered.

**ADVISORY: PRM strongly recommends submitting your proposal early to allow time to address any difficulties that may arise.**

Proposed Program Start Dates: July 1 through September 30, 2013

Eligible Applicants: (1) Nonprofits having a 501(c)(3) status with IRS, other than institutions of higher education; (2) Nonprofits without 501(c)(3) status with IRS, other than institutions of higher education; and (3) International Organizations. International Organizations (IOs) should not submit proposals through Grants.gov in response to this Funding Opportunity Announcement. Rather IOs such as UN agencies and other Public International Organizations (PIOs) that are seeking funding for programs relevant to this announcement should contact the relevant PRM Program Officer (as listed below) on or before the closing date of the funding announcement.

Duration of Activity: Up to 36 months.

Program plans from 12 to 36 months in duration 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 and activities and budgets submitted in year one can be revised/updated each year. Continued funding after the initial twelve12- month award requires the submission of a noncompeting continuation application and will be contingent upon available funding, strong performance, and continuing need. 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. Please see Multi-Year Funding section below for additional information.

Current Funding Priorities for Colombian Refugees and IDPs:

PRM will prioritize funding for proposed NGO activities that best meet the Bureau’s priorities for Colombian refugees and IDPs, as identified below. Proposals should use the Sphere Minimum Standards in Disaster Response as the basis for design, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation in emergency settings, including proposed objectives and indicators, as detailed in the General NGO Guidelines. Because of PRM's mandate to provide protection, assistance, and sustainable solutions for refugees and victims of conflict, PRM will consider funding only those projects that include a target beneficiary base of at least 50% refugees/IDPs/other persons of concern.

(a) Ecuador, Panama, and Venezuela: PRM seeks proposals that fill critical gaps in humanitarian assistance and local integration support for particularly vulnerable asylum seekers and refugees, including women, Afro-Colombians, and indigenous populations. Proposals should aim to improve beneficiaries’ self-reliance and increase the capacity of government institutions to provide basic services to address refugees’ needs. While programs in Ecuador, Panama, and Venezuela must include a target beneficiary base of at least 50% asylum seekers and refugees, programs in Ecuador should allocate at least 30% of assistance to vulnerable populations in host communities in an effort to combat discrimination and xenophobia against Colombian refugees. PRM partners should coordinate with international organizations and NGOs in program areas. Proposals should address three or more of the priority sectors listed below. All proposals must address capacity building and institution strengthening as one of the three priority sectors.

Emergency Humanitarian Assistance: Provide food and non-food items. Support access to health services, including reproductive health services. Provide mental health and psychosocial assistance per IASC guidelines on Mental Health and Psychosocial Support in Emergency Settings. Offer emergency shelter assistance.

Livelihoods: Provide income generation activities and micro-finance programs in marketable skills. Programs should include basic market and income surveys before initiating training and livelihoods activities to identify marketable skills and establish baseline household incomes. Programs should also conduct a risk assessment of proposed activities, including an assessment of labor exploitation, to ensure that activities do not negatively impact the protection needs of the beneficiary population. If appropriate, programs should plan for risk mitigation techniques, including transportation allowances and childcare. Vocational training in partnership with private enterprises that have identified the need to hire workers with specific skill sets is encouraged. Offer employment counseling and maintain job banks. Proposals from PRM partners who implemented PRM-funded livelihoods programs in FY 2012 must include information on previous program beneficiaries’ income and employment status.

Integration Activities: Promote socio-cultural integration activities to build relations and foster cooperation with host communities. Organize integration activities for vulnerable youth, especially those who risk forced recruitment into criminal groups.

Protection Mechanisms: Improve protection for vulnerable asylum seekers and refugees through: a) improved access to and awareness of asylum regimes, refugee reception, orientation, registration, and documentation; b) improved access to housing, financial services, and living conditions; c) the promotion of durable solutions, including safe employment; d) the prevention and response to xenophobia and discrimination against asylum seekers and refugees, including through public outreach; e) the prevention and response to gender-based violence, including sexual exploitation and abuse; f) and assistance to children and unaccompanied vulnerable minors through access to primary education, youth integration, family reunification, and child protective resources.

Capacity Building and Institution Strengthening: Coordinate with national and local government agencies in the delivery of emergency assistance and channel beneficiaries into government programs where they exist. Increase access to existing services by linking beneficiary communities to available services through advocacy with providers. Help build government response capacity at the local and central levels to take on emergency response functions. 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 the migration police, military, and social service agencies. Strengthen activities of refugee associations and social organizations to protect and promote the rights of refugees.

Infrastructure Projects: Support refugee and host communities with small infrastructure projects, including water, sanitation, and hygiene (WASH) projects, improvement to school facilities hosting refugee children, and the upgrade and maintenance of shelters for refugees, gender-based violence victims, and unaccompanied minors. Proposals in this sector must demonstrate how infrastructure projects will be maintained by the community beyond the 12-month project timeline.

Geographic Coverage within Program Countries: Programs should focus on areas with significant populations of refugees and asylum seekers and weak institutional capacity, including both rural and urban settings. Priority areas include:

Ecuador: Azuay, Carchi, Esmeraldas, Guayas, Imbabura, Pichincha, Santo Domingo de los Tsachilas, and Sucumbios

Panama: Colon, the Darien, and Panama City (In the Darien, programs must be responsive to Temporary Protective Humanitarian status holders and should be conducted in coordination with the Government of Panama and UNHCR-led processes.)

Venezuela: Apure, Caracas, Merida, Tachira, and Zulia

(b) Colombia: PRM seeks proposals from organizations with a proven track record working in humanitarian assistance in Colombia in the past twenty-four months. Proposals must present comprehensive programs addressing the priority thematic and geographic sectors listed below during the immediate and emergency phases of displacement. Proposals should address gaps in the provision of immediate and emergency humanitarian assistance for vulnerable internally displaced persons (IDPs), including women, Afro-Colombians, and indigenous populations. PRM provides assistance to IDPs in Colombia during the immediate and emergency phases (approximately the first 90 days following displacement). Funding priorities also include improving the response capacity of the Colombian government at the local and national levels to provide protection and assistance to IDPs in an effort to implement the Victims and Land Restitution Law (Victims Law), which seeks to restore land and provide reparations to victims of the conflict, the majority of whom are IDPs. According to the Victims Law, Colombia’s municipalities are responsible for delivering the immediate phase of assistance to newly displaced, which may last up to 60 days and includes food, non-food items, and shelter. IDPs who have made a formal declaration to the government, but have not received an official response, may receive this phase of assistance. Partners proposing to work in the immediate phase of assistance (during which beneficiaries will not have been formally included in the government’s Unique Victims Registry) must explicitly state in their proposal how beneficiaries will be identified, as well as what standards the program will apply in evaluating whether a person qualifies as conflict-displaced. Partners operating in areas where USAID programs are present are required to coordinate and share information with those programs. Partners should also coordinate with other international organizations and NGOs in program areas. Proposals should address all of the priority sectors listed below.

Immediate and Emergency Humanitarian Assistance: Based on a needs assessment, provide food and non-food assistance to newly displaced for up to 90 days. Supply basic health screening, including reproductive health, mental health, and psychosocial support per IASC Guidelines. Offer emergency shelter assistance.

Capacity Building and Institution Strengthening:

--Local Level: Coordinate with municipalities in the delivery of immediate assistance to IDPs and work with municipalities on Victims Action Plans to plan and budget for providing humanitarian assistance. Channel beneficiaries into government programs through registration of displacement claims and work with the government to ensure that IDPs receiving assistance are registered in the Unique Victims Registry. Improve the government’s response capability to provide the first phase of assistance through support and training for mayors, municipalities, local victims’ centers, and IDP integrated assistance centers. Host information-sharing sessions between municipalities in order for mayors and local authorities to exchange best practices regarding the delivery of immediate assistance to IDPs. Consider including IDP associations in these exchanges. Involve municipal governments in the hand-off of mid- to long-term assistance to the Department of Social Prosperity’s Victims Unit. Identify emergency projects that will improve local authorities’ capacity to prevent and respond to displacement, such as community centers and shelters.

National Level: Coordinate with relevant entities at the national level such as the Victims Unit, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Agriculture, and Public Ministry in the identification and support of initiatives and projects that will help improve the government’s IDP policy and program response. Proposals should explicitly address how the proposed program fits in with the priorities of the Victims Unit, and particularly the Sub Directorates for Prevention and Emergency Response and for Humanitarian Assistance and Attention, preferably via consultation with personnel of these sub directorates.

Civil Society: Strengthen the organization and activities of IDP associations and social organizations, including Transitional Justice Committees and networks of host community residents, to protect and promote the rights of IDPs. Support cooperation between municipalities and IDP associations and encourage the participation of IDPs in government decision-making entities. Support IDPs’ participation in community activities and in government policies and programs designed for IDPs’ benefit.

Protection Mechanisms: Improve protection for IDPs through access to IDP registration and assistance that will improve living conditions and promote durable solutions. Support effective mechanisms to link beneficiaries with government assistance programs and services in order to promote the effective enjoyment of rights, including community strengthening activities. Address discrimination in IDP host communities by developing educational campaigns in cooperation with host communities. Prevent and respond to gender-based violence.

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

--Antioquia, Arauca, Caqueta, Cauca, Choco, Cordoba, Narino, Norte de Santander, Putumayo, and Valle del Cauca

(c) PRM will accept proposals from any qualified NGO working in the above mentioned sectors although, given budgetary constraints, priority will be given to proposals from organizations that can demonstrate:

• 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 or displaced persons.

• 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). Organizations are encouraged to develop an ongoing relationship with UNHCR, and not to wait until the last minute to request a letter of support.

• A proven track record in providing proposed assistance both in the sector and specified location. Provide date and year organization began its operations in the location for which it is applying for PRM funding.

• 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; objectives should be clearly linked to the sectors in the RFP.

• All proposals for Colombia must include strong transition plans that detail specific benchmarks and/or a timeline for transitioning activities/services to government entities, local NGOs, development organizations, or to the community by the end of the project period.

• A budget that is appropriate for meeting the objectives and demonstrates co-funding by non-U.S. Government sources.

• Proposals must adhere to relevant international standards for humanitarian assistance. See PRM’s General NGO Guidelines for a complete list of sector-specific standards.

(d) PRM will consider proposals focused on other geographic areas based on a well-documented justification.

(e) Proposed budgets should be prioritized and broken down by objective 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 objective. This is particularly important if you propose to work in Colombia and another country in the region.

(f) Proposals must list other sources from which you have already obtained funding, such as the UNHCR, the host government, other U.S. government agencies, and international donors, including funding and in-kind contributions from your own organization.

(g) 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.

(h) Proposals should include information on how the organization provides oversight of its resources to prevent the diversion and/or misuse of assistance and to ensure that USG funds do not support terrorist organizations.

(i) 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: Via this request for proposals, PRM anticipates funding one program in Colombia for emergency humanitarian assistance for IDPs and three to four programs outside of Colombia for humanitarian and integration assistance for refugees. PRM anticipates that approximately 65% of its overall NGO resources for Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, and Venezuela will be dedicated to programs benefiting Colombian refugees; approximately 35% of its overall NGO resources will be dedicated to Colombian IDPs.

Project proposals should not be less than $500,000 and not more than $4.5 million. The size of past awards (if any) and the organization’s performance will be considered in the funding process. As stated in the 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: Proposals must be submitted viaGrants.gov . See “Applicant Resources” page on Grants.gov for complete details on requirements (http://www.grants.gov/applicants/app_help_reso.jsp). Please also note the following highlights:

Do not wait until the last minute to submit your application on 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 System for Award Management (SAM) which can take weeks and sometimes months. 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. PRM partners must maintain an active SAM registration with current information at all times during which they have an active federal award or an application under consideration by PRM or any federal agency.

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.

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 to the Grants.gov help desk, received a case number, and had a service request opened to research the problem, should contact the relevant PRM Program Officer to determine whether an alternative method of submission is appropriate.

International Organizations (IOs) should not submit proposals through Grants.gov in response to this Funding Opportunity Announcement. Rather, IOs such as UN agencies and other Public International Organizations (PIOs) that are seeking funding for programs relevant to this announcement should contact the relevant PRM Program Officer (as stated below) on or before the closing date of the funding announcement.

• Pursuant to U.S. Code, Title 218, Section 1001, stated on OMB Standard Form 424 (SF-424), the 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 Template: This announcement is designed to accompany PRM’s General NGO Guidelines, which contain additional administrative information on proposal content and formatting, and explain in detail PRM’s NGO funding strategy and priorities. Please use both the General NGO Guidelines and this announcement to ensure that your proposal submission is in full compliance with PRM requirements and that the proposed activities are in line with PRM’s priorities. Proposal submissions that do not meet all of the requirements outlined in these guidelines will not be considered.

PRM strongly 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. Single-year proposals using PRM’s templates must be no more than 20 pages in length (Times New Roman 12 point font, one inch margins on all sides). If the applicant does not use PRM’s recommended templates, proposals must not exceed 15 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.

To be considered for PRM funding, organizations must submit a complete application package including:

• Proposal reflecting objectives and indicators for each year of the program period.

• Budget and budget narrative for each year of the program period.

• Signed completed SF-424.

In addition, proposal submissions to PRM should include the following information:

• 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 (GPS coordinates if possible).

• 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.

• The budget should include a specific breakdown of funds being provided by UNHCR, other USG agencies, other donors, and your own organization. PRM strongly encourages multilateral support for humanitarian programs.

• Proposals and budgets should include details of any sub-agreements associated with the program.

• Copy of the organization’s Code of Conduct (required before an award can be made).

• Copy of the organization’s Security Plan (required before an award can be made).

• 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.

• 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) proof of non-profit tax status including under IRS 501 (c)(3), as applicable, 3) a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number, and 4) an Employer ID (EIN)/Federal Tax Identification number.

• Organizations that received PRM funding in FY 2012 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.

Multi-Year Funding: 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 [24 or 36] months from the proposed start date. Fully developed programs with detailed budgets, objectives and indicators are required for each year of activities. These can be updated yearly upon submission of continuation applications. Applicants should note that they may use PRM’s recommended multi-year proposal template for this application, which is different from the single year template. Multi-year funding applicants may also use PRM’s standard budget template and should submit a separate budget sheet for each project year. Multi-year proposals using PRM’s templates must be no more than 30 pages in length (Times New Roman 12 point font, one inch margins on all sides). 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.

Multi-year applications selected for funding by PRM will be funded in 12- month increments based on the proposal submitted in the initial application as approved by PRM. Continued funding after the initial 12- month award requires the submission of a noncompeting continuation application and will be contingent upon available funding, strong performance, and continuing need. Continuation applications must be submitted by the organization no later than 90 days before the proposed start date of the new award (e.g., if the next project period is to begin on September 1, submit your application by June 1). Continuation applications are submitted in lieu of responding to PRM’s published call for proposals for those activities. Late continuation applications will jeopardize continued funding.

Organizations can request multi-year funding and continuation application templates by emailing PRM's NGO Coordinator with the phrase “PRM NGO Templates” in the subject line.

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.

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 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.

Branding and Marking Strategy: Unless exceptions have been approved by the designated bureau Authorizing Official as described in the proposal templates that are available upon email request from PRM's NGO Coordinator, at a minimum, the following provision will be included whenever assistance is awarded:

• As a condition of receipt of this assistance award, all materials produced pursuant to the award, including training materials, materials for recipients or materials to communicate or promote with foreign audiences a program, event, project, or some other activity under this agreement, including but not limited to invitations to events, press materials, event backdrops, podium signs, etc. must be marked appropriately with the standard U.S. flag in a size and prominence equal to (or greater than) any other logo or identity. Subrecipients and subsequent tier sub-award agreements are subject to the marking requirements and the recipient shall include a provision in the subrecipient agreement indicating that the standard, rectangular U.S. flag is a requirement. In the event the recipient does not comply with the marking requirements as established in the approved assistance agreement, the Grants Officer Representative and the Grants Officer must initiate corrective action.

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. Please note that responses to technical questions from PRM do not indicate a commitment to fund the program discussed.

PRM Program Officer, Patricia Allen at 202-453-9279, or Etta Toure at 202-453-9386, or email PRM-ECAWHA@state.gov in Washington, D.C.

Andes Regional Refugee Coordinator Elizabeth Bailey (BaileyEM@state.gov), U.S. Embassy, Bogota, Colombia, 57-1-275-2722




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