Questions to and Answers from the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons (TIP Office) about its 2021 Programming Solicitation: Request for Statements of Interest (SOI)
Q. Who is eligible to apply for funding?
A. U.S.-based and foreign non-profits, nongovernmental organizations (including faith-based organizations), for-profit organizations, institutions of higher education, and public international organizations (PIOs) are eligible to apply for funding under this solicitation.
For-profit organizations are not permitted to generate profits from grant-funded activities.
The Department of State’s Office of the Procurement Executive must provide additional approval for grants awarded to for-profit entities.
Foreign governments are not eligible to apply, although 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.
Q. How much funding does the TIP Office have for 2021?
A. All awards under this announcement are pending the availability of funds.
Q. How much money will be allocated to each region or country?
A. The TIP Office does not have specific regional or country budgets. The final amount allocated for each country and region will depend on many factors, including the quality of applications received and the nature of the proposed activities.
Q. What is the maximum number of awards?
A. The number of awards depends on the availability of funds and the quality of applications received.
Q. Where can I find the Notice of Funding Opportunity?
Q. From the solicitation it is unclear whether the full SF-424 package is required by the deadline at this SOI stage.
A. Only the SF-424 form is required with the SOI submission. Instructions on how to complete the SF-424 form can be found in the Guidelines for Submitting Statements of Interest (SOI).
If you are unable to attach a document once the forms are completed, please contact the ILMS Support Desk at 1 (888) 313-4567 or submitting a ticket through the ILMS Self Service Portal (https://afsitsm.service-now.com/grants).
Q. What has changed in this notice of funding opportunity compared to previous solicitations for Statements of Interest?
A. Please note applicants are required to submit only the project narrative and online SF-424 form for the SOI submission. Any additional document will result in the failure of the technical review. Applicants are required to use the project narrative template on SAMS Domestic and must type within the template’s grey box. The project narrative has a 6,000-character limit (not longer than 2 pages). Applicants should carefully read the Funding Opportunity and Guidelines (Guidelines for Submitting TIP Office Statements of Interest) when preparing their proposal.
Q. May an applicant include footnotes in the project narrative?
A. Yes, an applicant may include footnotes within the project narrative. However, the footnotes will be included within the character count limit.
Q. May applicants propose projects in countries not listed in the funding opportunity?
A. No. The TIP Office will only accept applications for the priority countries listed in the funding opportunity.
Q. Do we need to address all programming objectives listed under a country in our SOI or may we select one or two? Is there a limit to the number of applications we may submit? Is it possible to apply jointly with another organization?
A. Applicants must carefully read the programming priorities included in the Notice of Funding Opportunity. Each country priority states if an applicant must address one or more programming priorities. SOIs are required to address a minimum of one programming priority under each heading.
Organizations are permitted to submit multiple applications. Applicants must submit separate SOI applications for each country or regional programming priority identified in the funding opportunity if pursuing multiple awards.
While applicants may designate one or more partner organizations as sub-grantees, there can only be one prime award recipient. When applying to the funding opportunity, there must be a single or primary applicant.
Q. May an organization submit one proposal as the prime applicant and submit another proposal as a sub-grantee?
Q. For regional objectives, do we need to propose a project for all of the countries listed in the funding opportunity or can we select only a few?
A. An applicant may propose a regional project either for a select number of countries listed or for all of the countries listed in the funding opportunity. The priorities listed in the Notice of Funding Opportunity include more instructions on what we are specifically looking for.
Q. Kindly inform whether a project proposal to combat trafficking in persons for the removal of organs would be considered or if this fund will not include this form of trafficking in persons.
A. Statements of interest must address at least one of the programming priorities identified in the Notice of Funding Opportunity as a TIP Office priority. Trafficking for the purposes of organ removal is not a stated priority for FY 2021 and is not a form of trafficking recognized under the U.S. Trafficking in Victims Protection Act (TVPA) of 2000.
Q. Does the TIP Office allow for local providers whose parent agency is headquartered outside said country to apply? For example, XX is headquartered in the U.S., however it has a regional Africa headquarters/office where it is registered as an agency.
A. Organizations with a parent agency headquartered outside of the country are welcome to apply to the solicitation.
Q. When can applicants expect a decision from the TIP Office on its SOI?
A. Applicants should receive a status update within about 60 days from the submission deadline. If an applicant is invited to submit a full proposal, the applicant will have approximately 45 days to complete the full proposal.
Q. Is there any restriction with regard to the cost share (e.g., max. amount)?
A. No, there is no cap on cost share, but applicants must be able to clearly justify the quantity of funding they plan to allocate to a sub-grantee and explain why that funding is being allocated.
Q. May we submit additional attachments in our application?
A. No. An applicant may only submit the documents requested: project narrative and the online form SF-424. Any additional attachments will result in a failure of the technical review.
Q. How do I unlock my SAMS-Domestic account or change my SAMS-Domestic password? What should I do if I encounter difficulty using the SAMS-Domestic website?
A. The TIP Office is unable to unlock SAMS-Domestic account or reset passwords. For assistance with SAMS-Domestic (https://mygrants.service-now.com/grants) contact the ILMS Support Desk at 1-888-313-4567 (toll free for international callers) or submit a ticket using the ILMS Self Service Portal (https://afsitsm.service-now.com/ilms/home). Please let us know if you have any questions by emailing JTIPGrants@state.gov.
Q. How will the TIP Office decide which SOIs to fund?
A. All SOIs received will first undergo a technical review to ensure they meet the technical requirements. SOIs which pass the technical review are reviewed by TIP Office colleagues and are forwarded to the relevant U.S. embassy and regional bureau colleagues for review and comment. Recommendations are compiled and reviewed by the TIP Office staff, which then recommends selected SOIs for full proposals to TIP Office leadership.
Q. Where may I find additional advice about preparing the SOI or full application?
A. The TIP Office must ensure a fair, transparent, competitive grants process.
No one from the Office or other Department of State personnel, including Embassy personnel, is permitted to advise you on the content of your application.
Persons with additional questions about the requirements of the solicitation may contact JTIPGrants@state.gov.