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Request for Statements of Interest: G/TIP FY 2011 International Programs to Combat Trafficking in Persons


Funding Opportunity Announcement
Office To Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons
October 21, 2010

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Program Office: Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, International Programs Section
Opportunity Title: G/TIP FY 2011 International Programs to Combat Trafficking in Persons
Announcement Type: Request for Statements of Interest (RSOI)
Funding Opportunity Number: AT-ATC-11-001
Deadline for Applications: Friday, November 19, 2010 5:00 p.m. EST

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

The Department of State’s Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (the Office) is pleased to announce a two-stage competitive process for fiscal year 2011 funding of projects that will improve the response to trafficking in persons outside the United States. The first stage is submission and competitive panel review of two-page Statements of Interest (SOI) from organizations interested in submitting proposals for projects that combat human trafficking. In the second stage, the Office will invite applicants whose Statements of Interest meet the technical requirements and are reviewed favorably to submit proposals that expand on their SOI. These proposals will also be reviewed by a panel for consideration of funding. This announcement initiates the first stage and the Office is now requesting applicants to submit a Statement of Interest, as described in this solicitation. U.S.-based and foreign non-profit and non-governmental organizations (NGO), public international organizations (PIO), and institutions of higher education are encouraged to apply by submitting a Statement of Interest. Pending fiscal year 2011 appropriations, the Office anticipates awarding grants of up to $750,000 per project. All SOIs must be submitted via www.grantsolutions.gov OR www.grants.gov by 5:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST) on Friday, November 19, 2010.

Background

The Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (P.L. 106-386), as amended (TVPA), authorized the establishment of the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (the Office) in the U.S. Department of State. The Office provides leadership and coordination within the U.S. Government and seeks partnerships with foreign governments, civil society, and multilateral organizations to combat modern slavery utilizing the “3 Ps” strategy: preventing trafficking in persons, protecting and assisting trafficking victims, and prosecuting traffickers.

The TVPA requires that the Department of State submit an annual assessment of “severe forms of trafficking in persons” and governments’ efforts to address them. The State Department’s annual Trafficking in Persons Report (TIP Report), published in June each year, is an important diplomatic tool in the Department’s dialogue with other governments and also serves as the guide for U.S. foreign assistance to governments and NGOs in countries working to eradicate trafficking. The 2010 TIP Report, available at http://www.state.gov/j/tip/rls/tiprpt/2010/, includes Tier rankings and country-specific recommendations for 175 countries and territories and evaluations of two additional countries. The 2010 TIP Report describes the progress that many countries have made; however, much remains to do be done. The number of victims identified and assisted and trafficking cases prosecuted has increased, but these numbers are thought to be a small fraction of the cases in which persons suffer in sexual servitude and forced labor around the world. Too often victim protection programs are not available and/or not integrated with prosecution and prevention efforts, as envisioned in the TVPA.

The Office seeks to fund programs that address human trafficking in all its forms including the activities in which a person obtains or maintains another person in any form of compelled service.

2011 G/TIP grant Competition Overview

The Office allocates foreign assistance aimed at improving the response to trafficking in persons in other countries through an open competitive process. The Office announces a solicitation for applications early each fiscal year and strives to award new grant projects late in the same fiscal year.

The Office is aware of the growing interest globally in anti-trafficking funding. In 2010 the Office received record numbers of applications: 530 applications requesting $288 million in funding. In an effort to manage this process most effectively while maintaining a fair and open competition, the Office will once again use a two-stage competitive process for 2011 funding.

This solicitation announces the first stage of the 2011 grant competition in which the Office requests applicants to submit a Statement of Interest (SOI), a two-page summary of a proposed project that includes the information described below. Following a competitive review panel, selected applicants will be invited to submit a full proposal that expands on their SOI. These proposals will then be reviewed and considered for funding.

Given the limited funding available, the Office has identified 32 countries and two regions as priorities for this solicitation. SOIs that address human trafficking issues in the named countries or regions are especially encouraged. The country-specific recommendations listed in the country narratives of the 2010 TIP Report are used as a diagnostic tool and will guide anti-trafficking programming under this announcement. Applicants are urged to review these recommendations before developing and submitting an application for funding. Projects should be tailored to the qualifications and strengths of applicant organizations and are not required to address all TIP Report recommendations for a target country.

Pending the appropriation of fiscal year 2011 funds, the Office anticipates awarding grants of up to $750,000 for project periods of up to 36 months to organizations which, following the first stage of this competition, are invited to submit full proposals and are successful in the competitive review of full proposals. U.S.-based and foreign non-profit and non-governmental organizations (NGO), public international organizations (PIO), and universities are eligible to submit SOIs. On a limited basis, for-profit organizations are also eligible to submit SOIs; however, they may not take a profit from grant-funded activities.

g/tip funding PRIORITIES AND PROJECT EXAMPLES

Generally, the Office prioritizes foreign assistance in countries ranked as Tier 3, Tier 2 Watch List, and in some cases, Tier 2, where governments have the political will to improve the response to trafficking, but lack the economic resources and trafficking expertise to address the problem.

For this solicitation the Office has designated 32 countries and two regions as priorities for 2011 funding based on a review of the 2010 TIP Report Tier rankings and the rankings over the previous two years, recent anti-trafficking programming, and consultation with other offices in the Department. Given limited funding, not all countries with significant trafficking problems and need for assistance may be named as a priority for fiscal year 2011. Some countries not named may have received extensive programmatic attention in recent years from the Office, other USG agencies, international organizations, and other donor nations.

The Office is most interested in SOIs for projects that are in the priority countries listed below and that are responsive to the country-specific recommendations listed in the 2010 TIP Report. Under limited circumstances, the Office may fund projects in countries that are not listed below. A limited number of global and thematic research projects may also be funded.

The countries selected for priority funding consideration in this solicitation are listed below.

AFRICA REGION
Angola
Cameroon
Democratic Republic of the Congo
Republic of the Congo
Cote d’Ivoire
Gabon
Gambia
Lesotho
Madagascar
Mauritania
Mozambique
Rwanda

EAST ASIA/PACIFIC REGION
Laos
Mongolia
Philippines
Thailand
Vietnam
Regional – Pacific Islands: Projects that focus on any one or more of these countries: Fiji, Kiribati, Federated States of Micronesia, Papua New Guinea, Palau, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga

EUROPEAN REGION
Belarus
Moldova
Russia
Turkey

NEAR EAST REGION
Algeria
Iraq
Lebanon

SOUTH AND CENTRAL ASIAN REGION
Bangladesh
Tajikistan
Turkmenistan
Uzbekistan

WESTERN HEMISPHERE REGION
Belize
Dominican Republic
Guatemala
Guyana
Nicaragua
St. Vincent and the Grenadines
Regional – Caribbean: Projects that focus on three or more Caribbean countries

The country-specific recommendations listed in the country narratives of the 2010 TIP Report will guide anti-trafficking programming under this announcement. The Office is especially interested in proposals that demonstrate strong partnerships with local NGOs and promote sustainable institutional development or ongoing structural impact. Applicants are encouraged to develop proposals that build on their unique strengths and areas of specialization and those of partner organizations. The Office recognizes that projects must be tailored to the qualifications of applicant organizations and that many well designed projects may not address all TIP Report recommendations for a target country.

Project Scope

A Statement of Interest may be bilateral, regional, or global in scope.

  • Bilateral (outlines work in one country);
  • Regional (outlines work in more than one country in a region); or
  • Global (outlines work in countries in more than one region or on global issues in human trafficking).

For a U.S. Department of State listing of countries by region, please see www.state.gov/countries/.

The following serve as examples, though not an exhaustive listing, of the types of projects that the Office seeks to fund through this competitive grant process.

  • Technical support and training of law enforcement, including designated TIP units, prosecutors, and the judiciary in victim-centered investigation and prosecution of human trafficking cases and building cooperative efforts between NGOs and government agencies;
  • Improving policies and practices for immigration agencies to proactively identify and assist victims of trafficking;
  • Development or enhancement of post-rescue aftercare services for trafficking victims, especially those that provide alternatives to detention or deportation-based responses;
  • Consultation to improve anti-trafficking legislation and implementation of laws after enactment;
  • Implementation of activities to combat child sex tourism;
  • Activities of multilateral organizations to promote more effective responses among criminal justice, labor, immigration, and social service agencies;
  • Prevention activities that are designed to meet specific local or national needs or that confront the demand for commercial sex or slavery-tainted goods; and
  • Research and evaluation activities that enable policy makers and practitioners to focus limited anti-TIP resources most effectively, including research to fill data gaps and projects that evaluate the effectiveness and impact of current anti-trafficking programs, policies, and practices.

For information on the USG’s international anti-trafficking efforts (annual Trafficking in Persons Reports and projects previously funded by this Office and other USG agencies) please go to: http://www.state.gov/j/tip/.

APPLICANT/ORGANIZATION CRITERIA

U.S.-based and foreign NGOs, PIOs, institutions of higher education, and for-profit organizations are eligible to apply. Some projects may be accomplished by USG implementers through Interagency Agreement. For-profit organizations, including small and disadvantaged businesses, may apply, but such organizations may not take a profit from G/TIP funded-activities. Foreign governments are not eligible to apply but governments may be beneficiaries of funded programs, provided that funding does not pay salaries of government agency personnel and that such assistance is not restricted by U.S. law or policy.

Organizations are permitted to submit multiple proposals; however, G/TIP intends to provide funding to a wide range of qualified, capable organizations that do well in the competitive review.

G/TIP recognizes the important role of civil society leadership in combating human trafficking and thus encourages U.S.-based NGOs and institutions of higher education to partner with NGOs and academic counterparts abroad that have a significant role in improving the response to human trafficking. Community, women’s, and faith-based NGOs, as well as Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Hispanic Serving Institutions, and Tribal Colleges and Universities are encouraged to apply. Organizations should have demonstrated experience administering successful projects, preferably in the target country and/or region, or in similarly challenging program environments.

TECHNICAL REQUIREMENTS FOR SOI SUBMISSIONS

All SOIs will be screened to determine whether they meet the Technical Requirements listed below. SOIs that do not meet the Technical Requirements will not be read or reviewed for funding.

Technical Requirements: Statements of Interest (SOI) Applications MUST include these two parts. No additional documents will be reviewed.

  1. The SF-424 and SF-424B forms; and
  2. A two-page document written in English in Times New Roman or Arial 12 point font with cost figures in U.S. dollars.

Note: The font size requirement is designed to ensure that all applicants have an equal opportunity to present their ideas in the SOI. Thus, the entire SOI must be in a 12 point font, including charts. Organization logos, headers and other wording in small fonts that do not meet the 12 point font requirement should not be included. Please double check your submission to ensure the font size is correct!

Instructions for completing the SF-424 and SF-424B forms
Complete the SF-424 and SF-424 B forms as described in the instructions provided through www.grantsolutions.gov or www.grants.gov. In addition, the following specific information may be helpful when completing the fields of the SF-424.

1. Type of Submission: Application
2. Type of Application: New
3. Date Received: Leave blank. This will automatically be assigned
4. Applicant Identifier: Leave blank
5a. Federal Entity Identifier: Leave blank
5b. Federal Award Identifier: Leave blank
6. Date Received by State: Leave blank. This will automatically be assigned
7. State Application Identified: Leave blank. This will automatically be assigned
8a. Enter the legal name of the applicant organization.
8b. Employer/Taxpayer ID Number: Non-U.S. organizations enter 44-4444444
8c. Organizational DUNS: Organizations can request a DUNS number at
http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform
8d. Enter the address of the applicant
8e. Enter the name of the primary organizational unit (and department or division, if applicable) that will undertake the assistance activity, if applicable
8f. Enter the name, title, and contact information of person to be contacted on matters involving this application
9. Select an applicant type (type of organization)
10. Enter: Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons
11. Enter: 19.019
12. Enter the Funding Opportunity Number and title. This number will already be entered on electronic applications.
13. Enter the Competition Identification Number and title. This number will already be entered on electronic applications.
14. Areas Affected by Project: List the country or countries where project activities will take place in alphabetical order; for projects that will take place in more than one region enter “Global”
15. Enter the title of the proposed project (if necessary, delete pre-printed wording)
16. Congressional districts of: Applicant; Program: Leave blank
17. Enter a start date of September 30, 2011 and a projected end date
18. Enter the amount requested for the project described in the SOI under “Federal”
(18a); enter any cost-share under “Applicant” (18b). Otherwise, use zeros
19. Enter “c”
20. Select the appropriate box. If you answer “yes” to this question you will be required to provide an explanation.
21. Enter the name, title, and contact information of the individual authorized to sign for the application.

Format and Content for the Statement of Interest:
The two-page document should conform to the following format requirements and include the following information.

1. Brief description of the organization, previous work in the country/region where the work would be performed, and previous work to combat human trafficking. Information should clearly demonstrate the organization’s record and capacity and may include previous grant management experience. Due to the page limitations, a general organizational history is not recommended.
2. Description of how the project meets G/TIP priorities, as described in this announcement.
3. Project description, including goals and objectives, and duration.
4. Project outcomes, deliverables, and performance indicators.
5. A figure that is the total estimated cost of the project in U.S. dollars. If cost sharing is offered, include a figure for the proposed amount of cost share. Budget categories are not requested or required.

THE COMPETITIVE REVIEW PROCESS

This solicitation will enable the Office to identify organizations that are interested in and capable of implementing anti-trafficking projects in the countries or regions identified as priorities or global projects.

SOI submissions first will be screened to determine whether they meet the technical requirements stated in this announcement. Applicants must pay attention to and should abide by the specified technical requirements. SOIs that do not meet the technical review requirements will not be read or considered for funding.

Those SOIs that pass the technical review will be reviewed and rated by a panel comprised of individuals with knowledge and experience in human trafficking programming and regional expertise. The assessment will be based on how well the proposed project meets the priorities outlined in this announcement and addresses the content outlined in the Format and Content section above. Following this panel review, the Office will invite highly rated applicants to submit full proposals that expand on the SOI; this is the second stage of the competitive grant process. Once notified, applicants will have 30 days to submit a full proposal.

Full proposals will be subjected to a competitive review panel. Panel results will be reviewed by the Ambassador-at-Large to Combat Trafficking in Persons, who, before making final recommendations, will consider bilateral, regional, and global factors, as well as any policies, restrictions, or limitations on U.S assistance that may apply to each country or region involved. The Ambassador’s recommendations will be forwarded to the Director of Foreign Assistance; final approval and Congressional Notification must take place before each grant, cooperative agreement, or Interagency Agreement is awarded.

The review panels will use the following criteria when rating full proposals.

-- Quality of Project Idea
The proposal should be responsive to country-based needs identified in the TIP Report, identified regional/global needs, or otherwise represent a unique project that merits funding.

-- Program Goals/Objectives
The proposal should address a key human trafficking issue or issues and should describe appropriate goals, objectives, and activities to address these. The proposal should demonstrate a logical approach and present project objectives that are measurable and achievable during the project period. Proposed projects should address long-term institutional and/or organizational development with an emphasis on moving towards sustainability.

-- Plan for Measuring Program Effectiveness
Output and outcome indicators should be clearly linked to project goals and objectives. The project should demonstrate the capacity for engaging in impact assessment including the potential impact on the TIP response in the target country.

-- Organizational Capability and Record of Performance
G/TIP will consider the past performance of prior recipients and the demonstrated potential of new applicants. Proposed personnel and organizational resources should be adequate and appropriate to achieve the project's goals. Roles and responsibilities of primary staff should be clear. Strong knowledge of TIP issues and the trafficking context in the country where the project would take place must be demonstrated.

-- Budget Detail and Cost Effectiveness
The overhead and administrative components of the proposal should be reasonably low. All costs should be necessary and appropriate to the execution of the project. The presentation of each line-item and corresponding budget narrative should demonstrate that the organization’s efforts will be consistent with sound financial management practices. Cost sharing is considered beneficial. If cost share is offered, it must be shown and discussed in the required budget categories.

-- Partnerships
Applicants should highlight any key partnerships that will be employed to achieve proposed goals and objectives. These may include the development of coalitions among local organizations; formal partnerships between U.S.-based and local NGOs abroad to promote capacity-building, mentoring, and collaboration; collaboration between multilateral organizations and criminal justice, labor, immigration or social service agencies; and/or partnerships between academia and public, private, or NGO entities. Projects that demonstrate strong partnerships and development of local NGOs are strongly encouraged.

DEADLINE AND SUBMISSION INSTRUCTIONS

All SOIs must be submitted via www.grantsolutions.gov OR www.grants.gov by 5:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST) on Friday, November 19, 2010. G/TIP will not accept proposals submitted via email, fax, the postal system, or delivery companies or couriers. Applicants may submit more than one application; however, each application should be submitted only once.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to initiate electronic applications early in the application development process, and to submit early on the due date or before. This will aid in addressing any problems with submissions prior to the application deadline. No exceptions will be made for organizations that have not completed the necessary steps to submit applications on www.grantsolutions.gov or www.grants.gov.

GrantSolutions.gov Applications
Applicants are encouraged to submit applications via www.grantsolutions.gov. This website is available to all applicants, but G/TIP especially encourages foreign NGOs and public international organizations to submit proposals through this web site.

Interested organizations using GrantSolutions for the first time should register on the www.GrantSolutions.gov site to create a new Applicant account as soon as possible because this process must be completed before an application can be submitted. To register with GrantSolutions follow the “First Time Applicants” link and complete the “GrantSolutions New Applicant Sign Up” application form. Organizations that have previously used www.GrantSolutions.gov do not need to register again. If an organization that has previously used www.GrantSolutions is not able to access the system, please contact Customer Support for help in gaining access (see contact information below).

A valid DUNS number IS required for submission of an application on GrantSolutions.gov. Organizations should verify that they have a DUNS number or take the steps needed to obtain one as soon as possible. Instructions for obtaining a DUNS number can be found at http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform.

A CCR (Central Contractor Registration) number IS NOT required prior to submitting an application via GrantSolutions.gov.

Electronic applications submitted via GrantSolutions.gov must contain the two online forms (completed) and the SOI document (Project Narrative) specified by the application kit. No additional documents should be uploaded. The preferred document formats for the uploaded SOI are docx or pdf. Applicants should wait until the upload shows the status as Successful before moving to the next part of the application kit.

Upon completion of a successful electronic application submission, the GrantSolutions system will provide the applicant with a confirmation page indicating the date and time (Eastern Time) of the electronic application submission as well as an official Application Number. This confirmation page will also provide a listing of all items that constitute the final application submission.

For assistance with GrantSolutions.gov please contact Customer Support at help@grantsolutions.gov or call 1-800-577-0771 (toll charges for international callers) or 1-202-401-5282. Customer Support is available 8 AM – 6 PM EST, Monday – Friday. Please note that November 11th is a federal holiday and the help line will be closed.

Grants.gov Applications
Applicants who do not submit applications via GrantSolutions.gov may submit via www.grants.gov.

A valid DUNS number and a CCR (Central Contractor Registration) number ARE BOTH required prior to submitting an application via Grants.gov.

Organizations should verify that they have a DUNS number or take the steps needed to obtain one as soon as possible. Instructions for obtaining a DUNS number can be found at http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform.

Instructions for registering with CCR can be found at https://www.bpn.gov/ccr/default.aspx. An organization must wait approximately 3-5 business days after registering with the CCR before the organization may obtain a username and password for Grants.gov. This may delay the organization’s ability to submit a Statement of Interest through www.grants.gov. In addition, CCR registration must be updated annually to maintain a valid registration.

Electronic applications submitted via the Grants.gov must contain the three parts listed as mandatory forms in the application package, including the SOI document (Project Narrative). Upon completion of a successful electronic application submission on Grants.gov, the applicant will receive an email confirmation that the application has been successfully submitted and is in the process of verification. The applicant will then receive another email confirming that the application has been verified. Both emails are provided by grants.gov to verify that an application was received.

For assistance with Grants.gov, please call the Contact Center at 1-800-518-4726 or email support@grants.gov. The Contact Center is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, except federal holidays. Please note that November 11th is a federal holiday and the help line will be closed.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

This call for Statements of Interest will appear on www.grantsolutions.gov, www.grants.gov, and the Office’s website, www.state.gov/j/tip, as well as websites of U.S. embassies.

Anticipated Time to Award: the Office will work to award grant funds to successful applicants by September 30, 2011.

Reporting and Monitoring Requirements: Applicants selected for an award must meet the following reporting and policy requirements:

  1. Reporting Requirements: Grantees are required to submit semi-annual program progress reports and quarterly financial reports throughout the project period and final reports 90 days after the close of the project period. Access to funds may be suspended if reports are late or incomplete.
  1. Grant Monitoring: The Office places emphasis on monitoring and evaluation of all funded projects. Grantees should expect to have their programs visited and reviewed by a grants and/or programs officer. On-site reviews include assessment of program and administrative effectiveness.

Anti-Prostitution Policy and Requirements: The U.S. Government is opposed to prostitution and related activities, which are inherently harmful and dehumanizing, and contribute to the phenomenon of trafficking in persons. Consistent with the TVPA, grantees are required to agree to the following special conditions prior to a grant being awarded:

1. None of the funds made available herein may be used to promote, support, or advocate the legalization or practice of prostitution. Nothing in the preceding sentence shall be construed to preclude assistance designed to combat trafficking in persons, including programs for prevention, protection of victims, and prosecution of traffickers and others who profit from trafficking in persons, by ameliorating the suffering of, or health risks to, victims while they are being trafficked or after they are out of the situation that resulted from such victims being trafficked. The recipient shall insert this provision in all sub-agreements under this award. TVPA sec. 113(g)(1) (P.L. 108-193).

2. An organization receiving funds for any program targeting victims of severe forms of trafficking must affirmatively state one of the following conditions, and shall also insert one of these provisions in all sub-agreements under an award. TVPA sec. 113(g)(2) (P.L. 108-193). Either:

  • “That it does not promote, support, or advocate the legalization or practice of prostitution and will not promote, support, or advocate the legalization or the practice of prostitution during the term of this grant.”

Or:

  • “That it has no policy on prostitution and will remain neutral during the term of this grant.” See 149 Cong. Rec. H10287 (Daily Ed. November 4, 2003).

TVPA Requirement for Training of Trafficking Victim Assistance Personnel: Any applicant seeking funding under this solicitation must be prepared to make the following certification in its full proposal:

  • Applicant hereby certifies that, to the extent practicable, persons or entities providing legal services, social services, health services, or other assistance have completed, or will complete, training in connection with trafficking in persons. TVPA sec. 107A(b)(1) (P.L. 110-457).

Informational Meeting

The Office will host a meeting on October 26, 2010, at the Department of State in Washington, DC to provide an opportunity for organizations interested in applying for funding to hear about this request for Statements of Interest (SOI). Presentations and questions and answers (Qs and As) from this session will be published on the Office’s website (www.state.gov/j/tip) on October 27, 2010.

Contact Information

A. Please direct questions about the requirements of this Request for Statements of Interest to Mark Forstrom at ForstromMA@state.gov.
B. For assistance with GrantSolutions.gov please contact Customer Support at help@grantsolutions.gov or call 1-800-577-0771 (toll charges for international callers) or 1-202-401-5282. Customer Support is available 8 AM – 6 PM EST, Monday – Friday. Please note that November 11th is a federal holiday and the help line will be closed.
C. For assistance with Grants.gov, please call the Contact Center at 1-800-518-4726 or email support@grants.gov. The Contact Center is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, except federal holidays. Please note that November 11th is a federal holiday and the help line will be closed.



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