Request for Proposals
Democracy, Human Rights & Law in Colombia
Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor Request for Proposals: Democracy, Human Rights and Rule of Law for countries in Africa, the Near East, East Asia Pacific, South Asia, and the Western Hemisphere.
The Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor (DRL) announces a Request for Proposals from NGOs interested in submitting proposals for projects that promote the strengthening of civil society and labor rights in the following regions and countries: Africa (Democratic Republic of Congo); the Near East (Jordan); East Asia Pacific (Indonesia; Philippines), South Asia (Maldives; Pakistan); and the Western Hemisphere (Colombia).
REQUESTED PROPOSAL PROGRAM OBJECTIVES
DRL invites organizations to submit proposals outlining program concepts and capacity to manage projects targeting the following issues:
Colombia (approximately $900,000): DRL seeks to fund one or more projects to promote the worker rights of traditionally marginalized groups with a particular focus on indigenous, Afro-Colombian, and women workers. Specific activities may include strengthening efforts to combat workplace discrimination, encouraging equal opportunities, raising awareness about worker rights, and/or providing support to civil society organizations, including unions, to organize and assist these workers. Activities may also include initiatives to improve livelihoods through training and linkages to alternative employment opportunities. Successful proposals will coordinate effectively with ongoing projects in Colombia to improve working and living conditions for vulnerable workers.
Proposals should conform to DRL’s posted Proposal Submission Instructions (PSI), available at http://www.state.gov/g/drl/p/c12302.htm. (For this solicitation, applicants must use the Revised PSI dated October 2010.)
An NGO may submit no more than five (5) proposals. Proposals that do not meet the requirements of the announcement and PSI may not be considered. Proposals that combine target countries and/or themes may be deemed technically ineligible. Proposals that request less than the award floor or more than the award ceiling will be deemed technically ineligible.
For all application documents, please ensure:
1) All pages are numbered, including budgets and attachments,
2) All documents are formatted to 8 ½ x 11 paper, and
3) All Microsoft Word documents are single-spaced, 12 point Times New Roman font, with a minimum of 1-inch margins.
Complete applications should include the following for proposal submission:
1) Completed and signed SF-424, SF-424a (Budget Summary) and SF424b (Assurances), most recent A-133 Audit, and Certifications Regarding Lobbying forms as directed on www.grants.gov.
2) Table of Contents (not to exceed one  page in Microsoft Word) that includes a page-numbered contents page, including any attachments.
3) Executive Summary (not to exceed one  page in Microsoft Word) that includes:
a) Name and contact information for the project’s main point of contact,
b) A one-paragraph “statement of work” or synopsis of the program and its expected results,
c) A concise breakdown of the project’s objectives and activities,
d) The total amount of funding requested and program length, and
e) A brief statement on how the project is innovative, sustainable, and will have a demonstrated impact.
4) Proposal Narrative (not to exceed ten  pages in Microsoft Word). Please note the ten page limit does not include the Table of Contents, Executive Summary, Attachments, Detailed Budget, Budget Narrative or NICRA. Applicants may submit multiple documents in one Microsoft Word file, i.e., Table of Contents, Executive Summary, Proposal Narrative, and Budget Narrative in one file or as separate, individually submitted files. Submissions should address four specific criteria (Quality of Program, Program Planning/Ability to Achieve Objectives, Multiplier Effect/Sustainability, and Institution’s Record and Capacity). Details about these criteria are described in the Review Process section below.
5) Budget Narrative (preferably in Microsoft Word) that includes an explanation/justification for each line item in the detailed budget spreadsheet, as well as the source and description of all cost-share offered. For ease of review, it is recommended that applicants order the budget narrative as presented in the detailed budget. Primarily Headquarters- and Field-based personnel costs should include a clarification on the roles and responsibilities of key staff and percentage of time devoted to the project. In addition, cost-effectiveness is one of the key criteria for rating the competitiveness of a program proposal. Applicants that include cost share in their budget should note that cost share is considered a commitment and that the grantee will be held responsible for meeting the amount of cost share included. It is recommended that budget narratives address the overall cost-effectiveness of the proposal, including any cost-share offered (see the PSI for more information on cost-sharing and cost-effectiveness).
6) Detailed Line-item Budget (in Microsoft Excel or similar spreadsheet format) that contains three  columns including DRL request, any cost sharing contribution, and total budget. A summary budget should also be included using the OMB approved budget categories (see SF-424 as a sample). See the PSI for more information on budget format. Costs must be in U.S. Dollars.
7) Attachments (not to exceed seven  pages total, preferably in Microsoft Word) that include the following in order:
a) Pages 1-2: Monitoring and Evaluation Plan (see PSI for more information on this section).
b) Page 3: Roles and responsibilities of key program personnel with short bios that highlight relevant professional experience. Given the limited space, CVs are not recommended for submission.
c) Page 4: Timeline of the overall proposal. Components should include activities, evaluation efforts, and program closeout.
d) Page 5-7: Additional optional attachments. Attachments may include additional timeline information, letters of support, memorandums of understanding/agreement, etc. For applicants with a large number of letters/MOUs, it may be useful to provide a list of the organizations/government agencies that support the program rather than the actual documentation.
8) If your NGO has a negotiated indirect cost rate agreement (NICRA) and includes NICRA charges in the budget, your latest NICRA should be sent as a pdf file. This document will not be reviewed by the panelists, but rather used by program and grant staff if the submission is recommended for funding. Hence, this document does not count against the submission page limitations. If your organization does not have a NICRA agreement with a cognizant agency, the proposal budget should not have a line item for indirect cost charges. Rather, any costs that may be considered as indirect costs should be included in specific budget line items as direct costs. Furthermore, if your proposal involves sub-grants to organizations charging indirect costs, and those organizations also have a NICRA, please submit the applicable NICRA as a pdf file (see the PSI for more information on indirect cost rate).
Note: To ensure all applications receive a balanced evaluation, the DRL Review Committee will review the first page of the requested section up to the page limit and no further. DRL encourages organizations to use the given space effectively.
APPLICANT/ NGO CRITERIA
Organizations submitting proposals must meet the following criteria:
* Be a U.S. non-profit organization meeting the provisions described in Internal Revenue Code section 26 USC 501(c) (3) or a comparable organization headquartered internationally, or an international organization.
* Have demonstrated experience administering successful and preferably similar projects. DRL reserves the right to request additional background information on organizations that do not have previous experience administering federal grant awards. These applicants may be subject to limited funding on a pilot basis.
*Be a registered user of grants.gov.
* Have existing, or the capacity to develop, active partnerships with in-country entities and relevant stakeholders including industry and non-governmental organizations.
* Organizations may form consortia and submit a combined proposal. However, one organization should be designated as the lead applicant.
* An OMB policy directive published in the Federal Register on Friday, June 27, 2003, requires that all organizations applying for Federal grants or cooperative agreements must provide a Dun and Bradstreet (D&B) Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number when applying for all Federal grants or cooperative agreements in or after October 1, 2003. Please reference: http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/fedreg/062703_grant_identifier.pdf for the complete OMB policy directive.
Applicants must submit proposals using www.grants.gov by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST) on April 1, 2011.
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