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Grant Opportunities

Annual Program Statement: FY 16 - Request for Proposals

Funding Opportunity Title: U.S. Embassy in Ireland, Annual Program Statement
Program Office: U.S. Embassy in Ireland
Announcement Type: Grant or Cooperative Agreement
Amount of Award: Variable, average grant $2,000 USD
Deadline for Applications: Rolling deadlines of: January 1, 2016; May 1, 2016; and August 1, 2016
Contact Information: Chris Visosky, Grants Officer Representative. Email: DublinGrants@state.gov


I.          Funding Opportunity Description

The U.S. Embassy in Ireland is pleased to announce an open competition for awards through the Mission’s Public Diplomacy Small Grants Program. This initiative provides support for projects proposed by Irish non-profit, cultural, educational and civil society organizations that aim to promote mutual understanding and shared values; strengthen U.S.-Ireland ties, and foster people-to-people exchange between the United States and Ireland.  

We invite Irish non-profit organizations to submit innovative educational and cultural programming proposals. The Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy in Ireland is particularly interested in projects that engage and empower youth and diverse Irish audiences, safeguard the democratic ideals of freedom of expression and tolerance, strengthen social entrepreneurship, address environmental sustainability, and support people-to-people exchange between Ireland and the United States. All programs must have an American element to be considered for funding.  Programming outside of Dublin will be considered favorably.

In deciding which projects to support, the Embassy will give consideration to the full range and diversity of Irish organizations. The Public Affairs Section encourages geographically and demographically diverse audiences in Ireland. Preference will be given to Irish individuals and institutions with a proven track record of executing high quality educational events and programs. New grantees will be generally given priority over previous grantees. Preference will be given to proposals that demonstrate the long-term sustainability of the project and that include some form of cost-sharing with the partner institution(s).

Particular areas of interest for programming include:

  • Promoting tolerance, diversity and multiculturalism;
  • Investing in young leaders and youth initiatives;
  • Supporting peace, reconciliation and cross-border dialogue;
  • Promoting economic opportunity through social entrepreneurship;
  • Responding to the challenge of global climate change and sustainable development;
  • Promoting gender equality and empowering women and girls globally;
  • Supporting the human rights of LGBT persons.

The U.S. Embassy will award multiple grants through the year with a rolling review of proposals.  The U.S. Embassy seeks to give as many grants as are feasible. Grants in the 500 - 3,000 USD range will be favored. The total number and amount of awards is dependent on funding.  Applications that demonstrate cost-sharing will be regarded favorably.  Below is a sample list, though not exhaustive, of the types of projects the U.S. Embassy has prioritized in the past (with the bolded project being the most common type of grant):

  • Bringing an American artist, social entrepreneur, educator, scientist, or other innovative expert to Ireland for participation in a conference, festival, school function, seminar or training program.
  • Funding for a conference, festival, or event fitting within the funding priorities.
  • Youth initiative to generate solutions to pressing social challenges.

Activities that are not typically funded include, but are not limited to:

  • Paying to complete activities begun with other funds;
  • Projects that are inherently political in nature or that contain the appearance of partisanship/support to individual or single party electoral campaigns;
  • International travel, unless specifically justified within the project;         
  • Political party activities; and,
  • Projects that support specific religious activities.

 

II.         Award Information

Funding Instrument Type:  Cooperative Agreement or Grant

Floor of Individual Award Amounts:  US$ 500.00

Ceiling of Individual Award Amounts:  US$ 3,000.00

The Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy in Ireland 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: Generally local 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 Department of State.

Eligibility Information:  Unrestricted

The Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy in Ireland encourages applications from all sectors, and for applicants to provide cost-sharing from additional sources in support of this project.  The Public Affairs Section also favors projects that use highly skilled volunteers as an element of cost-sharing.  Applications should explain clearly other likely sources of funding and how the volunteers will be used.


III. Application Submission and Deadline

Proposals should be submitted online via email to the Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Mission in Dubllin at the following email address: DublinGrants@state.gov.  All Proposals should include the following information to be considered. We recommend using the suggested application format (sample provided).

  • Project Narrative: Provide an executive summary of the project description with reference to the amount and duration of the funding request. This should include the specific goals of the project in terms of messages delivered to audiences, desired changes in behavior, etc.
  • Budget Breakdown:  Provide an itemized spreadsheet of costs, including unit costs, quantities and any other relevant information that may impact total cost of project (including cost shares).
  • Project Timeline: This can be basic if the grant is short term, but should include preparation, execution, and evaluation. For projects of longer duration, at least quarterly benchmarks should be included.
  • Monitoring Plan: Outline a plan of action that describes the scope and detail of how the proposed work will be accomplished.

Proposals will be reviewed with rolling deadlines of: January 1, 2016; May 1, 2016; and August 1, 2016.

Proposals can be submitted at any time and will be reviewed with all the submissions received for that cycle of funding. All applicants are typically contacted 6-8 weeks after the deadline for each funding cycle and informed whether or not their proposal was selected. There is no need to contact the Embassy to ask about the status of your proposal once you have received the confirmation e-mail acknowledging receipt of your proposal.


IV.
Review and Selection Process

Each application submitted under this announcement will be evaluated and rated on the basis of the following evaluation criteria.  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 fullness, coherence, clarity, and attention to detail.  Points are awarded only to applications that are responsive within the context of this program announcement.

Application Evaluation Criteria:

Goals and Objectives – The project is likely to provide maximum impact in achieving the proposed results and the organization. Applicant demonstrates it is able to measure program success against key indicators and provide milestones to indicate progress toward Public Affairs Section goals. 

Strengths and Innovation – Applicant clearly describes how its proposal will address the requested program within the proposed time frame and articulates an innovative strategy or plan.  The project builds civil society leadership and capacity, and demonstrates sustainable capacity building. 

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. 


VI.        Award Administration

Award Notices:  The grant award or cooperative agreement shall be written, signed, awarded, and administered by the Grants Officer.  The Grants Officer is the U.S. government official delegated the authority by the U.S. Department of State Procurement Executive to write, award, and administer grants and cooperative agreements.  The assistance award agreement is the authorizing document and it will be provided to the recipient.  Organizations whose applications will not be funded will also be notified in writing.

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 award agreement as well.

Branding Policy: A standard U.S. flag in conjunction with the U.S. Embassy seal must be used for all program and event publicity materials toward which the U.S. Embassy in Ireland has contributed funding. The objective is for audiences overseas to understand that a program has been produced or made possible by U.S. government support. You can download the flag and seal logo from here

Please click here for a Sample Proposal.

Please click here for full details of the Competition for Assistance Awards.

Please click here for full explanation of U.S. Department of State assistance awards.

Please click here for the Department of State Standard Terms and Conditions for Overseas Federal Assistance Awards