2020 Public Diplomacy Grants Program
Funding Opportunity Title: U.S. Embassy Maseru PAS Annual Program Statement
Funding Opportunity Number
CFDA Number: 19.040 – Public Diplomacy Programs for Lesotho
Date Opened: February 21, 2020
Federal Agency Contact: Madingane Maliehe
- Funding Opportunity Description
The Public Affairs Section (PAS) of the U.S. Embassy in Lesotho is pleased to request proposals for funding under the Embassy’s Public Diplomacy Grants program that includes:
- Proposals for Programming at the American Corner & YALI Leadership Innovation Hub, including networking events at the American Corner during October 2020 – February 2021
- Proposals for programming in the Districts outside Maseru as part of American Corner on the road.
- USG Exchange Alumni Grants
All awards under this Notice of Funding Opportunity are subject to availability of funds. If you are interested in one of these funding opportunities, please view the specific proposal guidelines on our website https://ls.usembassy.gov/education-culture/grant-programs/public-diplomacy-grants/.
Purpose of Grant: Public Diplomacy grants are intended for individuals, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), think tanks, and academic institutions. They support projects that:
- Promote opportunity and development in relation to Basotho youth and women and in areas related to HIV/AIDS prevention and awareness;
- Bring USG exchange alumni together with like-minded individuals, particularly youth and women, to share ideas, best practices, and build sustainable professional networks
- Strengthen democratic processes and institutions, especially civil society and the media;
- Reinforce the bridge of mutual understanding and shared vision between the U.S. and Lesotho.
Public Diplomacy grant proposals must have a connection to American culture and values or should be directed to increasing understanding in Lesotho of American culture and society. Proposals should also be related to one or more of the following U.S. Embassy priorities:
- Promote opportunity and development: (in relation to youth and women) promote professional skills and leadership development; encourage innovation and entrepreneurship; create networking, mentorship and internship opportunities,
- Strengthen Democratic Institutions: encourage active citizen participation in government; promote increased voter participation in democratic processes at all levels; encourage professional media coverage; and increase attention to minority and disadvantaged populations.
- Help Lesotho reach epidemic control by 2020, with prevention and healthy lifestyles; present accurate information on transmission, prevention, care, and treatment; reduce stigma; support awareness and dialogue about related issues like LGBTI rights and ending gender-based violence.
All projects must:
- Reinforce Mutual Understanding between the United States and Lesotho: present accurate information on the U.S.-Lesotho partnership; build connections with Basotho at all levels; support the promotion of Basotho and American cross-cultural heritage, traditional and modern art forms, and other forms of creative expression; and, foster English language proficiency.
- Build Capacity and Awareness across the Country: Include plans to share information publicly via social or traditional media, hold a public dialogue or networking event at the American Corner in Maseru (located at the State Library), and at a minimum of one location outside of Maseru district to ensure more Basotho have access to public diplomacy programming and grant information.
Note: For proposals focused on American Corner on the road, a minimum of 50% of the activities should take place outside of Maseru district.
Activities that are typically funded include, but are not limited to:
- proposals to expand or build on U.S.-Lesotho exchange programs;
- programs that strengthen government and civil society capabilities;
- youth community service projects that encourage volunteerism and support the outlined priorities;
- civic education projects that promote democratic processes and human rights;
- youth recreation, leadership, professional development, entrepreneurship, and education programs;
- arts and cultural programs;
- new media concepts aimed at reaching wider audiences;
- media training projects;
- radio and television programming in support of the outlined priorities.
Activities that are not typically funded include, but are not limited to:
- projects that do not have a business plan for sustaining the activity or monitoring results;
- social welfare projects;
- paying to complete activities begun with other funds;
- projects that contain the appearance of partisanship/support for a single political party;
- international travel, unless specifically justified within the project;
- U.S. citizen exchange programs with foreign countries;
- projects that include substantial fees for radio or TV broadcast; and,
- projects that are mainly designed to pay organizational salaries or to cover only logistical costs (e.g., room/chair rental, coffee breaks, etc.).
Background Information: The U.S. Embassy in Lesotho Public Affairs Section is soliciting proposals for local public diplomacy grants that fall into one of the three areas specified above from individuals, non-governmental organizations, and academic institutions. More information about the Public Affairs Section and its Grants Programs can be found at: https://ls.usembassy.gov/.
- Award Information
Funding Instrument Type: Grant
Floor of Individual Award Amounts: $500
Ceiling of Individual Award Amounts: $10,000
Note: Typical Award Amount: Between $2000-3000
The U.S. Embassy Maseru Public Affairs Section reserves the right to award less or more than the funds described in the absence of worthy applications or under such other circumstances as it may deem to be in the best interest of the U.S. government.
Project and Budget Periods: Local public diplomacy grants projects must be completed in one year or less. The Public Affairs Section will entertain applications for continuation grants funded under these awards, beyond the initial budget period, on a noncompetitive basis, subject to availability of funds, satisfactory progress of the applicants, and a determination that continued funding would be in the best interest of the U.S. Government.
III. Eligibility Information:
Applicants must be Basotho currently residing in Lesotho. The programs must take place and be focused on Lesotho. Applications are encouraged from all sectors: committed and organized civil-society organizations, local representatives of civil society, non-governmental organizations, academic institutions, and individuals. Applicants are encouraged to provide cost-sharing from additional sources in support of proposed projects; applications should explain clearly other likely sources of funding or in-kind participation.
- Application Submission and Deadline
Proposals should be submitted via email to the U.S. Embassy in Maseru Public Affairs Section at the following email address: GrantsMaseru@state.gov (with the subject title: Public Diplomacy Grant: Your name) Proposals will also be accepted in hard copy and should be delivered to: Public Affairs Section at the U.S. Embassy or at the American Corner (2nd Floor, State Library).
Applications are accepted in English. Please note that we cannot guarantee the return of original documents; copies should be provided, if appropriate.
Applicants must complete and submit a detailed budget.
Applications will be accepted until March 27, 2020
- Review and Selection Process
Each application submitted under this announcement will be evaluated and rated on the basis of the criteria outlined below. The criteria are designed to assess the quality of the proposed project and to determine the likelihood of its success. The criteria are closely related and are considered as a whole in judging the overall quality of an application. Applications will be reviewed on the basis of their completeness, coherence, clarity, and attention to detail.
Applicants must submit a full project description, including a detailed narrative that outlines the plan of action, describing the scope of the proposed work and how it will be accomplished. The narrative should be accompanied by a detailed budget that includes all program costs and clearly indicates the proposing organization’s cost-share and/or in-kind participation.
Application Evaluation Criteria:
- Goals and Objectives – The project is likely to provide maximum impact in achieving the proposed results and the organization. The project addresses one or more of the U.S. Embassy Lesotho Public Affairs Section priorities outlined previously.
- Strengths and Innovation – Applicant clearly describes how their proposal will address the requested program within the proposed time frame and articulates an innovative strategy or plan. The project builds leadership and capacity, and demonstrates sustainable capacity building.
- Organizational Capacity – The organization has expertise in one or more of U.S. Embassy Lesotho Public Affairs Section priorities and demonstrates the ability to perform the proposed activities.
- Sustainability – The organization demonstrates a clear plan for sustainable activity or impact of the activity after the grant period of performance.
- Budget and Budget Justification – The budget and narrative justification are reasonable in relation to the proposed activities and anticipated results and the plan for services is realistic.
- Award Administration
Award Notices: The grant award shall be written, signed, awarded, and administered by the Grants Officer (GO). The Grants Officer (GO) is the U.S. government official delegated the authority by the U.S. Department of State Procurement Executive to write, award, and administer grants. The assistance award agreement is the authorizing document and it will be provided to the recipient.
Anticipated Time to Award: Proposals will be accepted until March 31, 2020. Shortlisted applicants should expect to be notified of the decision within 30 days after this date.
Reporting Requirements: All awards issued under this announcement will require both program and financial reports on a frequency specified in the award agreement. The disbursement of funds may be tied to submission of these reports in a timely manner. All other details related to award administration will be specified in the award agreement.