[At-Large] Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO): DRL FY18/19 IRF Journalist Training on Religious Freedom

Salanieta T. Tamanikaiwaimaro salanieta.tamanikaiwaimaro at gmail.com
Wed Feb 13 22:19:32 UTC 2019


---------- Forwarded message ---------
From: U.S. Department of State <usstatebpa at public.govdelivery.com>
Date: Thu, Feb 14, 2019 at 9:55 AM
Subject: Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor: Notice of Funding Opportunity
(NOFO): DRL FY18/19 IRF Journalist Training on Religious Freedom
To: <salanieta.tamanikaiwaimaro at gmail.com>

You are subscribed to Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor for U.S.
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Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor: Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO):
DRL FY18/19 IRF Journalist Training on Religious Freedom
02/13/2019 02:55 PM EST

February 13, 2019


*United States Department of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and
Labor (DRL) Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO): DRL FY18/19 IRF **Journalist
Training on Religious Freedom*

This is the announcement of funding opportunity number* SFOP0005593*

*Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number:* 19.345

*Type of Solicitation*: Open

*Application Deadline:* 11:30 PM (EST) on Thursday, April 4, 2019

*Funding Floor (lowest $ value): *$400,000

*Funding Ceiling (highest $ value)*: $600,000

*Anticipated Number of Awards: *4

*Type of Award*: Grant

*Period of Performance: *18-36 months

*Anticipated Time to Award (pending availability of funds)*: 6-7 months

*A. Project Description*

The U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor
(DRL) announces an open competition for organizations interested in
submitting applications for projects that improve the quality, quantity,
and dissemination of reporting on religious freedom issues.

*DRL FY18/19 IRF **Journalist Training on Religious Freedom - NEA, SCA, AF
and EAP REGIONS $1,800,000 Total *

*DRL anticipates making four awards between $400,000-$600,000 in each of
the following four regions: NEA, SCA, AF and EAP. *Each proposal should
focus on *one* region (NEA, SCA, AF, or EAP) and include at least two
countries from the selected region. Countries selected should be where
religious freedom is restricted. *Please specify the region in the cover
page of the proposal. *

DRL's goal is to improve the quality, quantity, and dissemination of
reporting on religious freedom issues through provision of assistance to
journalists and media organizations in countries where religious freedom
and freedom of expression is restricted. “Religious freedom” refers to the
rights contained in Article 18 of the International Covenant on Civil and
Political Rights, including the freedom to adopt a religion or beliefs,
change your beliefs, express your beliefs (including through publications,
public and private speech, and the display of religious attire or symbols),
gather with others who share your beliefs, construct places of worship, and
teach your beliefs to your children. Journalists may engage in reporting
through print, broadcast, or social media including but not limited to
blogs, Facebook, and Twitter. Journalists trained in the project should
demonstrate interest in and commitment to reporting on religious freedom
with previous experience in reporting on religious freedom or related human
rights issues preferred and have a strong understanding of journalistic
ethics and standards. Applicants will be responsible for ensuring program
activities and products are in accordance with the Establishment Clause of
the United States Constitution.

“Religious freedom” refers to the right set out in Article 18 of the
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, including the freedom
to adopt a religion or beliefs, change your beliefs, practice and teach
your beliefs (which may include through publications, public and private
speech, and the display of religious attire or symbols), gather in
community with others to worship and observe your beliefs, and teach your
beliefs to your children.

Proposed programming must be responsive to restrictions on religious
freedom, and must be in line with the U.S. Government’s religious freedom,
democracy, governance, and human rights goals.

Helpful resources for applicants include the annual country-specific
International Religious Freedom Reports https://www.state.gov/j/drl/rls/irf/
and annual country-specific Human Rights Reports

Applicants will be responsible for ensuring program activities and products
are implemented in accordance with the Establishment Clause of the United
States Constitution.

*Program activities may include but are not limited to:*

   - Improve awareness and education for journalists on key religious
   freedom issues in respective countries or regions and causes for
   restrictions on religious freedom including social constraints such as
   hostility or harassment in communities or government constraints such as
   restrictive laws or policies;
   - Provide extensive country and skill-level appropriate technical
   assistance on journalism techniques, ethics and legal requirements, among
   other topics;
   - Provide individual and organizational-level digital security and
   physical safety training for those operating in restrictive environments;
   - Provide training and resources on inclusion strategies for researching
   and reporting on religious freedom issues, which may include the situation
   of religious minorities;
   - Connect journalists with relevant NGOs, religious leaders, and other
   stakeholders to facilitate reporting opportunities;
   - Facilitate production of high-quality long or short form news pieces
   on freedom of religion, potentially through a competitive small grants
   component. Beyond covering costs associated with story development, small
   grants may also provide assistance with multimedia production, data
   visualization, and interactive narration to improve interaction with
   citizens and produce more compelling stories. During the story production
   phase, beneficiaries should receive online or in-person mentorship and
   coaching by experienced editors to facilitate a “training by doing”
   - Develop strategies to increase visibility on religious freedom issues
   through multiple media platforms and sites;
   - Establish and/or utilize media partnerships and dissemination
   agreements to maximize local, national, regional, and global reach of
   stories produced;
   - Facilitate sustainable connections and collaborative relationships
   between like-minded journalists within countries and/or regionally for
   support, professional development, and for national/regional initiatives;
   - Given the risk that journalists may face legal action for their work,
   applicants are encouraged to reserve flexible funding for legal assistance
   or present pro-bono partnerships to assist beneficiaries. Support may also
   be offered to promote psychosocial wellbeing to journalists in high-stress

DRL is uniquely placed to promote democracy, protect human rights and
international religious freedom, and advance labor rights globally through
both policy and programming. Projects should aim to have impact that leads
to democratic reforms, and should have the potential for sustainability
beyond DRL resources. DRL’ s preference is to avoid duplicating past
efforts by supporting new and creative approaches. This does not exclude
from consideration projects that improve upon or expand existing successful
projects in a new and complementary way. DRL provides targeted support
through programs that take an intersectional approach to addressing
barriers created by rising levels of violence, discrimination and
criminalization aimed at individuals based on their religion, gender,
disability, race, ethnicity, and/or sexual orientation and gender identity.
These programs are demand-driven, locally led, and best practices to
prevent, mitigate, and recover from human rights violations.

DRL also requires all of its programming to be inclusive and expects
implementers to include strategies for deliberate analysis, integration,
and investment in at-risk or vulnerable individuals.

Where appropriate, competitive proposals may include:

   - Opportunities for beneficiaries to apply their new knowledge and
   skills in practical efforts.
   - Solicitation of feedback and suggestions from beneficiaries when
   developing activities in order to strengthen the sustainability of programs
   and participant ownership of project outcomes.
   - Input from participants on sustainability plans and systematic review
   of the plans throughout the life of the project with adjustments made as
   - Inclusion of vulnerable populations in needs and/or rapid assessments
   in order to identify challenges, gaps, and opportunities among these groups.
   - Joint identification and definition of key concepts with relevant
   stakeholders and stakeholder input into project activities.
   - Systematic follow up with beneficiaries at specific intervals (3
   months, 6 months, etc.) after the completion of activities to track how
   beneficiaries are retaining new knowledge as well as applying their new

Activities that are *not* typically allowed include, but are not limited

   - The provision of humanitarian assistance;
   - English language instruction;
   - Development of high-tech computer or communications software and/or
   - Purely academic exchanges or fellowships;
   - External exchanges or fellowships lasting longer than six months;
   - Off-shore activities that are not clearly linked to in-country
   initiatives and impact or are not necessary per security concerns;
   - Theoretical explorations of human rights or democracy issues,
   including projects aimed primarily at research and evaluation that do not
   incorporate training or capacity-building for local civil society;
   - Micro-loans or similar small business development initiatives;
   - Initiatives directed towards a diaspora community rather than current
   residents of targeted countries.

*B. Federal Award Information *

Primary organizations can submit one (1) application *per region* in
response to the NOFO for a total of 4 (four) applications.

The U.S. government may (a) reject any or all applications, (b) accept
other than the lowest cost application, (c) accept more than one
application, and (d) waive irregularities in applications received.

The U.S. government may make award(s) on the basis of initial applications
received, without discussions or negotiations. Therefore, each initial
application should contain the applicant's best terms from a cost and
technical standpoint. The U.S. government reserves the right (though it is
under no obligation to do so), however, to enter into discussions with one
or more applicants in order to obtain clarifications, additional detail, or
to suggest refinements in the project description, budget, or other aspects
of an application.

DRL anticipates awarding either a grant or cooperative agreement depending
on the needs and risk factors of the program. The final determination on
award mechanism will be made by the Grants Officer. The distinction between
grants and cooperative agreements revolves around the existence of
“substantial involvement.” Cooperative agreements require greater Federal
government participation in the project. If a cooperative agreement is
awarded, DRL will undertake reasonable and programmatically necessary
substantial involvement. Examples of substantial involvement can include,
but are not limited to:

   1. Active participation or collaboration with the recipient in the
   implementation of the award.
   2. Review and approval of one stage of work before another can begin.
   3. Review and approval of substantive provisions of proposed subawards
   or contracts.
   4. Approval of the recipient’s budget or plan of work prior to the award.

The authority for this funding opportunity is found in the Foreign
Assistance Act of 1961, as amended (FAA).

To maximize the impact and sustainability of the award(s) that result from
this NOFO, DRL retains the right to execute non-competitive continuation
amendment(s). The total duration of any award, including potential
non-competitive continuation amendments, shall not exceed 60 months or five
years. Any non-competitive continuation is contingent on performance
and *pending
availability of funds. *A non-competitive continuation is not guaranteed
and the Department of State reserves the right to exercise or not to
exercise this option.

DRL may require successful applicant(s) to incorporate coordination of an
implementer and stakeholder meeting into the Scope of Work of the final
project. DRL will discuss this possibility with particular applicant(s)
during the proposal negotiation phase and may include, but not limited to
the following:

   - Additional funding to cover cost of the stakeholder meeting;
   - Coordinating all logistics and hosting the meeting;
   - Assisting applicants with visas;
   - Drafting the agenda in coordination with DRL;
   - Preparing all materials for the meeting;
   - Securing outside speakers for the conference; and
   - Hosting a networking event outside of the meeting space.

*C. Eligibility Information*

*For application information, please see the proposal submission
instructions (PSI) on our website.*

*C.1 Eligible Applicants*

DRL welcomes applications from U.S.-based and foreign-based non-profit
organizations/nongovernment organizations (NGO) and public international
organizations; private, public, or state institutions of higher education;
and for-profit organizations or businesses. DRL’s preference is to work
with non-profit entities; however, there may be some occasions when a
for-profit entity is best suited.

Applications submitted by for-profit entities may be subject to additional
review following the panel selection process. Additionally, the Department
of State prohibits profit to for-profit or commercial organizations under
its assistance awards. Profit is defined as any amount in excess of
allowable direct and indirect costs. The allowability of costs incurred by
commercial organizations is determined in accordance with the provisions of
the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) at 48 CFR 30, Cost Accounting
Standards Administration, and 48 CFR 31 Contract Cost Principles and

Please see 2 CFR 200.307 for regulations regarding program income.

*C.2 Cost Sharing or Matching*

Providing cost sharing, matching, or cost participation is not an
eligibility factor or requirement for this NOFO, and providing cost share
will not result in a more favorable competitive ranking.

*C.3 Other*

Applicants should have existing, or the capacity to develop, active
partnerships with thematic or in-country partners, entities, and relevant
stakeholders, including private sector partners and NGOs, and have
demonstrable experience in administering successful and preferably similar
projects. DRL encourages applications from foreign-based NGOs headquartered
in the geographic regions/countries relevant to this NOFO. Applicants may *form
consortia* in order to bring together organizations with varied expertise
to propose a comprehensive program in one proposal. However, one
organization should be designated in the proposal as the lead applicant,
with the other members designated as sub-award partners. DRL reserves the
right to request additional background information on applicants that do
not have previous experience administering federal grant awards, and these
applicants may be subject to limited funding on a pilot basis.

DRL is committed to an anti-discrimination policy in all of its projects
and activities. DRL welcomes applications irrespective of race, ethnicity,
color, creed, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity,
disability, or other status.

Any applicant listed on the Excluded Parties List System in the System for
Award Management (SAM)(www.sam.gov) and/or has a current debt to the United
Stated Government is not eligible to apply for an assistance award in
accordance with the OMB guidelines at 2 CFR 180 that implement Executive
Orders 12549 (3 CFR,1986 Comp., p. 189) and 12689 (3 CFR,1989 Comp., p.
235), “Debarment and Suspension.” Additionally, no entity or person listed
on the Excluded Parties List System in SAM.gov can participate in any
activities under an award. All applicants are strongly encouraged to review
the Excluded Parties List System in SAM.gov to ensure that no ineligible
entity or person is included in their application.

*D. Application and Submission Information*

*D.1 **Address to Request Application Package*

Applicants can find application forms, kits, or other materials needed to
apply on www.grants.gov and SAMS Domestic *(*
under the announcement title “*DRL FY18/19 IRF **Journalist Training on
Religious Freedom,” *funding opportunity number *“SFOP0005593.” *Please
contact the DRL point of contact listed in Section G if requesting
reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities or for security
reasons. Please note that reasonable accommodations do not include deadline

*D.2** Content and Form of Application Submission*

For all application documents, please ensure:

   1. All documents are in English and all costs are in U.S. dollars. If an
   original document within the application is in another language, an English
   translation must be provided (please note the Department of State, as
   indicated in 2 CFR 200.111, requires that English is the official language
   of all award documents. If any document is provided in both English and a
   foreign language, the English language version is the controlling version);
   2. All pages are numbered, including budgets and attachments;
   3. All documents are formatted to 8 ½ x 11 paper; and,
   4. All documents are single-spaced, 12 point Times New Roman font, with
   1-inch margins. Captions and footnotes may be 10-point Times New Roman
   font. Font sizes in charts and tables, including the budget, can be
   reformatted to fit within 1 page width.

*D.2.1 Application Requirements*

Complete applications *must* include the following:

   1. Completed and signed *SF-424*,* SF-424A*, and *SF-424B* forms. Please
   see SF-424 instructions in Section 2B of the PSI.
   2. If your organization engages in lobbying the U.S. government,
   including Congress, or pays another entity to lobby on your behalf, the
   *SF-LLL* “Disclosure of Lobbying Activities” form is also required (only
   if applicable). Please see SF-LLL guidance in Section 2B of the PSI.
   3. *Cover Page* (not to exceed one [1] page, preferably as a Word
   Document) that includes a table with the organization name, project title,
   target country/countries, project synopsis, and name and contact
   information for the application’s main point of contact. Please see *Cover
   Page* section 2C of the PSI for a template and more details.
   4. *Executive Summary* (not to exceed one [1] page, preferably as a Word
   Document) that outlines project goals, objectives, activities, etc.
   5. *Table of Contents* (not to exceed one [1] page, preferably as a Word
   Document) listing all documents and attachments with page numbers.
   6. *Proposal Narrative* (not to exceed ten [10] pages, preferably as a
   Word Document). Please note the ten-page limit *does not *include the
   Cover Page, Executive Summary, Table of Contents, Attachments, Detailed
   Budget, Budget Narrative, Audit, or NICRA. Applicants are encouraged to
   combine multiple documents in a single Word Document or PDF (i.e. Cover
   Page, Table of Contents, Executive Summary, and Proposal Narrative in one
   file). Please see *Proposal Narrative Guidelines *in Section 2E of the
   PSI for more details.
   DRL requests a Proposal Narrative that demonstrates the Applicant’s
   commitment to ensuring the participation of all people as a strategy for
   implementation. Please integrate inclusion strategies in all sections of
   the Proposal Narrative to enhance programmatic impact.
   7. *Budget* (preferably as an Excel workbook) that includes three [3]
   columns containing the request to DRL, any cost sharing contribution, and
   the total budget. A summary budget should also be included using the
   OMB-approved budget categories (see SF-424A as a sample) in a separate tab.
   Costs must be in U.S. dollars. Detailed line-item budgets for subgrantees
   should be included as additional tabs within the Excel workbook (if
   available at the time of submission). Please see *Budget Guidelines*
   Section 2F of the PSI for more information.
   DRL requests a programming approach dedicated to strengthening inclusive
   societies as a necessary pillar of strong democracies. Please include costs
   associated with this commitment in the budget and budget narrative.
   8. *Budget Narrative* (preferably as a Word Document) that includes
   substantive explanations and justifications for each line-item in the
   detailed budget spreadsheet, as well as the source and a description of all
   cost-share offered. Please see *Budget Guidelines* Section 2F of the PSI
   for more information.
   9. Your organization’s most recent *audit*, if applicable. This should
   be a single audit, program-specific audit, or other audit in accordance
   with Generally Accepted Government Auditing Standards (GAGAS). Please see
   *Audit* Section 2G of the PSI for more information.
   10. *Logic Model* (preferably as a Word Document). Please see *Logic
   Model* Section 2H of the PSI for more information.
   11. *Monitoring and Evaluation Narrative* (not to exceed four [4] pages,
   preferably as a Word Document). Please see *Monitoring and Evaluation
   Narrative* Section 2I of the PSI for more information.
   As stated within the DRL Guide to Program Monitoring and Evaluation (p.
   6): DRL strongly encourages applicants to consider whether their monitoring
   and evaluation systems are utilizing human rights-based approaches,
   applying a gender and equity lens, or include the participation of
   sub-grantees and project participants. Within the Monitoring and Evaluation
   Narrative, applicants should demonstrate their commitment to inclusive
   strategies and consider whether evaluation design, data collection,
   analysis, reporting and learning are conducted in an ethical and
   responsible way with all project participants (e.g. direct beneficiaries,
   sub-grantees). Applicants should still make adequate provisions to protect
   the privacy of human subjects when collecting data from individuals. For
   instance, when collecting data from project participants, consider whether
   your organization will have the necessary informed consent forms,
   confidentiality agreements, and data security protocols.
   12. *Monitoring and Evaluation Plan* (preferably as a Word Document or
   Excel Sheet). Please see *Monitoring and Evaluation Plan* Section 2I of
   the PSI for more information.
   13. *Risk Analysis* (preferably as a Word Document). Please see *Risk
   Analysis* Section 2J of the PSI for more information.
   14. *Key Personnel* (not to exceed two [2] pages, preferably as a Word
   Document). Please include short bios that highlight relevant professional
   experience. Given the limited space, CVs are not recommended for submission.
   15. *Timeline* (not to exceed one [1] page, preferably as a Word
   Document or Excel Sheet). The timeline of the overall proposal should
   include activities, evaluation efforts, and program closeout.
   16. *Security Plan *addressing any issues involving in-person events and
   recruitment for said events, and safety for any online programs or
   communications, including independent IT security audits (to include a
   vulnerability assessment) of any proposed web application or platform.
   Organization’s security plan should demonstrate consideration of the risks
   identified in the submitted risk assessment. Costs may also be identified
   within the budget and budget narrative. Applicants are also encouraged to
   include contingency plans for in-person or online activities.

*Applications that do not include the elements listed above will be deemed
technically ineligible. *

*D.2.2 Additional Application Documents*

Strong applications will also contain the following:

   - Individual Letters of Support and/or Memorandum of Understanding.
   Letters of support and MOUs must be specific to the project implementation
   (e.g. from proposed partners or sub-award recipients) and will not count
   towards the page limit.

*Please refer to the Proposal Submission Instructions on DRL’s website for
detailed guidance on the documents above:*
For an application checklist and sample templates please see the Resources
page on DRL’s website: http://www.state.gov/j/drl/p/c72333.htm
The sample templates provided on the DRL website are suggested, but not

DRL reserves the right to request additional documents not included in this
NOFO. Additionally, to ensure that all applications receive a balanced
evaluation, the DRL Review Panel will review from the first page of each
section up to the page limit and no further.

Note: If ultimately provided with a notification of non-binding intent to
make a Federal award, applicants typically have two to three weeks to
provide additional information and documents requested in the notification
of intent. The deadlines may vary in each notification of intent and
applicants must adhere to the stated deadline in the notification of

*D.2.3 Additional Information Requested For Those Receiving Notification of

Successful applicants must submit after notification of intent to make a
Federal award, but prior to issuance of a Federal award:

   - Written responses and revised application documents addressing
   conditions and recommendations from the DRL Review Panel;
   - If your organization has a NICRA and includes NICRA charges in the
   budget, your latest NICRA as a PDF file;
   - Completion of the Department’s Financial Management Survey, if
   receiving DRL funding for the first time;
   - Submission of required documents to register in the Payment Management
   System managed by the Department of Health and Human Services, if receiving
   DRL funding for the first time (unless an exemption is provided); and,
   - Other requested information or documents included in the notification
   of intent to make a Federal award or subsequent communications prior to
   issuance of a Federal award.

*D.3 Unique Entity Identifier and System for Award Management (SAM)*

All prime organizations, whether based in the United States or in another
country, must have a Unique Entity Identifier (UEI), formerly referred to
as DUNS, and an active registration with the SAM.gov *before submitting an
application*. DRL may *not* review applications from or make awards to
applicants that have not completed all applicable UEI and SAM.gov
requirements. A UEI is one of the data elements mandated by Public Law
109-282, the Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act (FFATA),
for all Federal awards.

*Note: The process of obtaining a SAM.gov registration may take anywhere
from 4-8 weeks. Please begin your registration as early as possible.*

   - If you are based* in the United States* or pay employees within the
   United States, prior to registering in SAM.gov you will need an Employer
   Identification Number (EIN) from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and a
   Commercial and Government Entity (CAGE) code.

   - If you are based *outside of the United States* and do not pay
   employees within the United States, you do not need an EIN from the IRS.
   However, you will need a NATO CAGE (NCAGE) code before you can have an
   active registration in SAM.gov.

All prime organizations must also continue to maintain active SAM.gov
registration with current information at all times during which they have
an active Federal award or application under consideration by a Federal
award agency. SAM.gov requires all entities to renew their registration
once a year in order to maintain an active registration status in SAM. It
is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure it has an active
registration in SAM.gov and to maintain that active registration. If an
applicant has not fully complied with the requirements at the time of
application, the applicant may be deemed unqualified to receive an award
and use that determination as a basis for making an award to another

For further guidance on the registration process, please see the SAM.gov
Registration Guide on DRL’s website:
Please refer to 2 CFR 25.200 for additional information. Also, please refer
to Section D.5 - Funding Restriction of the NOFO.

*Note: SAM.gov is not the same as SAMS Domestic. It is free to register in**
both systems**, but the **registration processes are different*.

*In October 2017, new information was added to the www.SAM.gov
<http://www.SAM.gov> website to help international registrations, including
“Quick Start Guide for International Registrations” and “Helpful Hints.”
Navigate to SAM.gov, click HELP in the top navigation bar, then click
International Registrants in the left navigation panel. Please note,
guidance on SAM.gov and the guidance on GSA’s website about requirement for
registering in SAM.gov is subject to change. Applicants should review the
website for the most up-to-date guidance.*

*D.3.1 Exemptions*

An exemption from these requirements may be permitted on a case-by-case
basis if:

   - An applicant’s identity must be protected due to potential
   endangerment of their mission, their organization’s status, their
   employees, or individuals being served by the applicant.

** Organizations requesting exemption from UEI or SAM.gov requirements must
email the point of contact listed in the NOFO at least *two weeks prior to
the deadline in the NOFO providing a justification of their request*.
Approval for a SAM.gov exemption must come from the warranted Grant Officer
before the application can be deemed eligible for review. **

*Note: Foreign organizations will be required to register with the NATO
Support Agency (NSPA) to receive a NCAGE code in order to register in
SAM.gov. NSPA will forward your registration request to the applicable
National Codification Bureau (NCB) if your organization is located in a
NATO or Tier 2 Sponsored Non-NATO Nation. As of March 2016, NATO nations
included Albania, Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic,
Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia,
Lithuania, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania,
Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom, and the United States of
America; and Tier 2 nations included Australia, Austria, Brazil, Finland,
Israel, Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Morocco, New Zealand, Serbia, and
Singapore. *

*NSPA and/or the appropriate NCB forwards all NCAGE code information to all
Allied Committee 135 (AC/135) nations, which as of March 2016 also included
Afghanistan, Argentina, Belarus, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Brunei Darussalam,
Chile, Colombia, Egypt, Georgia, India, Indonesia, Japan, Jordan,
Montenegro, Oman, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Saudi Arabia, South Africa,
Sweden, Thailand, Republic of Macedonia, Ukraine, and the United Arab
Emirates. All organizations are strongly advised to take this into
consideration when assessing whether registration may result in possible

*D.4 Submission Dates and Times *

*Applications are due no later than 11:30 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST),
on Thursday, April 4, 2019 on www.grants.gov <http://www.grants.gov> or *SAMS
Domestic *(*https://mygrants.service-now.com
*under the announcement title “DRL FY18/19 IRF **Journalist Training on
Religious Freedom,”** funding opportunity number “SFOP0005593.”*

Grants.gov and SAMS Domestic automatically log the date and time an
application submission is made, and the Department of State will use this
information to determine whether an application has been submitted on time.
Late applications are neither reviewed nor considered unless the DRL point
of contact listed in Section G is contacted prior to the deadline and is
provided with evidence of system errors caused by www.grants.gov or SAMS
Domestic *(*https://mygrants.service-now.com
that is outside of the applicant’s control and is the sole reason for a
late submission. Applicants should not expect a notification upon DRL
receiving their application.

*D.5 Funding Restrictions*

DRL will not consider applications that reflect any type of support for any
member, affiliate, or representative of a designated terrorist
organization. Please refer the link for Foreign Terrorist Organizations:

Project activities whose direct beneficiaries are foreign militaries or
paramilitary groups or individuals will not be considered for DRL funding
given purpose limitations on funding.

DRL requires U.S. government Risk Analysis Management (RAM) vetting of all
organizations and individuals programming in {Afghanistan, Near East
Democracy (NERD), Pakistan or Syria}, which may include the board of
directors from grantee and sub-award organizations, program staff, and any
program participants receiving direct assistance through grant funds. Prime
recipients may be required to perform vetting through the RAM portal on
subrecipients. The purpose of such vetting is to mitigate the risk that
U.S. government funding is provided to terrorists or their supporters.
Depending on the type of vetting, the required information requested may
include for each individual: full name, date of birth, place of birth,
nationality, a government issued ID number (drivers licenses are not
accepted for any country; if the individual is a U.S. citizen/permanent
residents, a SSN is required), and contact information (phone number, email
address, or Skype account (if Skype is submitted an email must accompany
it)). If the vetting procedure results in the discovery of derogatory
information, the Grants Officer will use this information in making a final
determination of award as part of the risk assessment. *Please keep these
vetting requirements in mind when designing each program.*

The Leahy Law prohibits Department foreign assistance funds from supporting
foreign security force units if the Secretary of State has credible
information that the unit has committed a gross violation of human rights.
Per 22 USC §2378d(a) (2015),
“No assistance shall be furnished under this chapter [FOREIGN ASSISTANCE]
or the Arms Export Control Act [22 USC 2751 et seq.] to any unit of the
security forces of a foreign country if the Secretary of State has credible
information that such unit has committed a gross violation of human
rights.” Restrictions may apply to any proposed assistance to police or
other law enforcement. Among these, pursuant to section 620M of the Foreign
Assistance Act of 1961, as amended (FAA), no assistance provided through
this funding opportunity may be furnished to any unit of the security
forces of a foreign country when there is credible information that such
unit has committed a gross violation of human rights. In accordance with
the requirements of section 620M of the FAA, also known as the Leahy law,
project beneficiaries or participants from a foreign government’s security
forces may need to be vetted by the Department before the provision of any
assistance. If a proposed grant or cooperative agreement will provide
assistance to foreign security forces or personnel, compliance with the
Leahy Law is required.

U.S. foreign assistance for Burma or Burmese beneficiaries is subject to
restrictions. This includes restrictions, pursuant to section 7043(a)(1)(B)
of the Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs
Appropriations Act, 2018 (Div. K, P.L. 115-141)(SFOAA), on funds
appropriated under title III of the act for assistance for Burma. Section
7043(a)(1)(B) provides that such funds “may not be made available to any
individual or organization if the Secretary of State has credible
information that such individual or organization has committed a gross
violation of human rights (GVHR), including against Rohingya and other
minority groups, or that advocates violence against ethnic or religious
groups or individuals in Burma.” It further provides that such funds “may
not be made available to any organization or entity controlled by the armed
forces of Burma.”

Organizations should be cognizant of these restrictions when developing
project proposals as these restrictions will appropriate due diligence of
program beneficiaries and collaboration with DRL to ensure compliance with
these restrictions. Program beneficiaries subject to GVHR due diligence
vetting will include any individuals who are part of or were formerly part
of the government, military, or nongovernmental armed groups. Program
beneficiaries subject to advocating violence due diligence vetting will
include any individuals or entities that are beneficiaries of foreign
assistance funding or support. Due diligence vetting will include a review
of open source materials, as well as U.S. government vetting of all
individuals or entities subject to GVHR due diligence.

Federal awards generally will not allow reimbursement of pre-award costs;
however, the Grants Officer may approve pre-award costs on a case-by-case
basis. Generally, construction costs are not allowed under DRL awards. For
additional information, please see the DRL Proposal Submission Instructions
for Applications Updated October 2018:

*D.6 Application Submission*

All application submissions must be made electronically via www.grants.gov
or SAMS Domestic *(*https://mygrants.service-now.com
Both systems require registration by the applying organization. Please
note: the Grants.gov registration process can take ten [10] business days
or longer, even if all registration steps are completed in a timely manner.

It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that it has an active
registration in SAMS Domestic or Grants.gov. Applicants are required to
document that the application has been received by SAMS Domestic or
Grants.gov in its entirety. DRL bears no responsibility for
disqualification that result from applicants not being registered before
the due date, for system errors in either SAMS Domestic or Grants.gov, or
other errors in the application process. Additionally you *must* save a
screen shot of the checklist showing all documents submitted in case any
document fails to upload successfully.

Faxed, couriered, or emailed documents will *not* be accepted. Reasonable
accommodations may, in appropriate circumstances, be provided to applicants
with disabilities or for security reasons. Applicants must follow all
formatting instructions in the applicable NOFO and these instructions.

DRL encourages organizations to *submit applications during normal business
hours* (Monday – Friday, 9:00AM - 5:00p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST)). If
an applicant experiences technical difficulties and has contacted the
appropriate helpdesk but is not receiving timely assistance (e.g. if you
have not received a response within 48 hours of contacting the helpdesk),
you may contact the DRL point of contact listed in the NOFO in Section G.
The point of contact may assist in contacting the appropriate helpdesk, but
an applicant should also document their efforts in contacting the helpdesk.
Applicants may also contact the DRL point of contact listed in the NOFO if
experiencing technical issues with Grants.gov or SAMS Domestic that may
result in a late submission.

Applicants experiencing technical difficulties should follow these three

   1. Contact the helpdesk for either Grants.gov or SAMS Domestic
   2. Document (including screenshots) technical issues AND efforts to
   contact the helpdesk.
   3. Submit all of the required documents to the DRL point of contact
   listed in the NOFO before the deadline.

*Note: The Procurement Office/Grant Office will determine technical
eligibility of all applications.*

*SAMS Domestic Applications:*

Applicants using SAMS Domestic for the first time should complete their
“New Organization Registration.” To register with SAMS Domestic, click
“Login to https://mygrants.service-now.com
and follow the “create an account” link.

Organizations *must* remember to save a screen shot of the checklist
showing all documents submitted in case any document fails to upload

*SAMS Domestic Help Desk: *
For assistance with SAMS Domestic accounts and technical issues related to
the system, please contact the ILMS help desk by phone at 1-888-313-4567
(toll charges for international callers) or through the Self Service online
portal that can be accessed from https://afsitsm.service-now.com/ilms/home
Customer Support is available 24/7/365.

*Grants.gov Applications*
Applicants who do not submit applications via SAMS Domestic may submit via

Please be advised that completing all the necessary registration steps for
obtaining a username and password from Grants.gov *can take more than two
[2] weeks.*

Please refer to the Grants.gov website for definitions of various
"application statuses" and the difference between a submission receipt and
a submission validation. Applicants will receive a validation e-mail from
Grants.gov upon the successful submission of an application. Validation of
an electronic submission via Grants.gov can take up to two business days.
Additionally you *must *remember to save a screenshot of the checklist
showing all documents submitted in case any document fails to upload

*Grants.gov Helpdesk: *

For assistance with Grants.gov, please call the Contact Center at
1-800-518-4726 or email support at grants.gov. The Contact Center is available
24 hours a day, seven days a week, except federal holidays.

See *https://www.opm.gov/policy-data-oversight/snow-dismissal-procedures/federal-holidays/
for a list of federal holidays.

*E. Application Review Information*

*E.1 Proposal Review Criteria*

The DRL Review Panel will evaluate each application individually against
the following criteria, listed below in order of importance, and not
against competing applications. Please use the below criteria as a
reference, but *do not structure your application according to the

*Quality of Project Idea*

Applications should be responsive to the program framework and policy
objectives identified in the NOFO, appropriate in the country/regional
context, and should exhibit originality, substance, precision, and
relevance to DRL’s mission of promoting human rights and democracy.
Projects should have the potential to have an immediate impact leading to
long-term, sustainable reforms. DRL prefers new approaches that do not
duplicate efforts by other entities. This does not exclude from
consideration projects that improve upon or expand existing successful
projects in a new and complementary way. In countries where similar
activities are already taking place, an explanation should be provided as
to how new activities will not duplicate or merely add to existing
activities and how these efforts will be coordinated. Proposals that
promote creative approaches to recognized ongoing challenges are highly
encouraged. DRL prioritizes project proposals with inclusive approaches for
advancing these rights.

*Project Planning/Ability to Achieve Objectives *

A strong application will include a clear articulation of how the proposed
project activities contribute to the overall project objectives, and each
activity will be clearly developed and detailed. A comprehensive monthly
work plan should demonstrate substantive undertakings and the logistical
capacity of the organization. Objectives should be ambitious yet
measurable, results-focused and achievable in a reasonable time frame. A
complete application must include a logic model to demonstrate how the
project activities will have an impact on its proposed objectives. The
logic model should match the objectives, outcomes, key activities, and
outputs described in the narrative. Applications should address how the
project will engage relevant stakeholders and should identify local
partners as appropriate.

If local partners have been identified, DRL strongly encourages applicants
to submit letters of support from proposed in-country partners.
Additionally, applicants should describe the division of labor among the
direct applicant and any local partners. If applicable, applications should
identify target geographic areas for activities, target participant groups
or selection criteria for participants, and the specific roles of
sub-awardees, among other pertinent details.

DRL recognizes that all programs have some level of risk due to
internal/external variables that have the potential to adversely affect a
program. Risk management should address how the program design incorporates
the identification, assessment, and management of key risk factors. DRL
will review the risk analysis based on the organization’s ability to
identify risks that could have an impact on the overall program as well as
how the organization will manage these risks.

*Institution’s Record and Capacity *

DRL will consider the past performance of prior recipients and the
demonstrated potential of new applicants. Applications should demonstrate
an institutional record of successful democracy and human rights programs,
including responsible fiscal management and full compliance with all
reporting requirements for past grants. Proposed personnel and
institutional resources should be adequate and appropriate to achieve the
project's objectives. Projects should have potential for continued funding
beyond DRL resources.

*Addressing Barriers to Equal Participation*

DRL strives to ensure its projects advance the rights and uphold the
dignity of all persons. As the U.S. government’s lead bureau dedicated to
promoting democratic governance, DRL requests a programming approach
dedicated to strengthening inclusive societies as a necessary pillar of
strong democracies. Violence targeting any members of society undermines
collective security and threatens democracy. DRL prioritizes inclusive and
integrated program models that assess and address the barriers to access
for individuals and groups based on their religion, gender, disabilities,
ethnicity, or sexual orientation and gender identity. Applicants should
describe how programming affects all of its beneficiaries, including
support that specifically target these communities facing discrimination,
and especially which may be under threat of violence. This approach should
be an integral part of both the concept and explicit design of all proposed
project activities, objectives, and monitoring. Strong proposals will
provide specific analysis, measures, and corresponding targets as
appropriate. Stakeholders shall identify the difference between
opportunities and barriers to access and design programs that do not
perpetuate these inequalities, but rather enhance programmatic impact by
including all people in society. The goal of this approach is to bring
communities and those in power together in support of stable and secure

*Cost Effectiveness*

DRL strongly encourages applicants to clearly demonstrate project
cost-effectiveness in their application, including examples of leveraging
institutional and other resources. However, cost-sharing or other examples
of leveraging other resources are not required. Inclusion of cost-sharing
in the budget does not result in additional points awarded during the
review process. Budgets should have low and/or reasonable overhead and
administration costs, and applicants should provide clear explanations and
justifications for these costs in relation to the work involved. All budget
items should be clearly explained and justified to demonstrate necessity,
appropriateness, and connection to the project objectives.

*Please note: If cost-share is included in the budget, the recipient must
maintain written records to support all allowable costs that are claimed as
its contribution to cost-share, as well as costs to be paid by the Federal
government. Such records are subject to audit. In the event the recipient
does not meet the minimum amount of cost-sharing as stipulated in the
recipient’s budget, DRL’s contribution may be reduced in proportion to the
recipient’s contribution.*

*Multiplier Effect/Sustainability *

Applications should clearly delineate how elements of the project will have
a multiplier effect and be sustainable beyond the life of the grant. A good
multiplier effect will have an impact beyond the direct beneficiaries of
the grant (e.g. participants trained under a grant go on to train other
people; workshop participants use skills from a workshop to enhance a
national level election that affects the entire populace). A strong
sustainability plan may include demonstrating continuing impact beyond the
life of a project or garnering other donor support after DRL funding

*Project Monitoring and Evaluation *

Complete applications will include a detailed M&E Narrative and M&E Plan,
which detail how the project’s progress will be monitored and evaluated.
Incorporating well-designed monitoring and evaluation processes into a
project is an efficient method for documenting the change (intended and
unintended) that a project seeks. Applications should demonstrate the
capacity to provide objectives with measurable outputs and outcomes.

The quality of the M&E sections will be judged on the narrative explaining
how both monitoring and evaluation will be carried out and who will be
responsible for those related activities. The M&E Narrative should explain
how an external evaluation will be incorporated into the project
implementation plan or how the project will be systematically assessed in
the absence of one. Please see the section on *Monitoring and Evaluation
Narrative* in the Proposal Submission Instructions (PSI) for more
information on what is required in the narrative.

The output and outcome-based performance indicators should not only be
separated by project objectives but also should match the objectives,
outcomes, and outputs detailed in the logic model and proposal narrative.
Performance indicators should be clearly defined (i.e., explained how the
indicators will be measured and reported) either within the table or with a
separate Performance Indicator Reference Sheet (PIRS). For each performance
indicator, the table should also include baselines and quarterly and
cumulative targets, data collection tools, data sources, types of data
disaggregation, and frequency of monitoring and evaluation. There should
also be metrics to capture how project activities target those
discriminated against or marginalized populations or addresses their
concerns, where applicable. Please see the section on *Monitoring and
Evaluation Plan* in the Proposal Submission Instructions (PSI) for more
information on what is required in the plan.

*E.2 Review and Selection Process*

DRL strives to ensure that each application receives a balanced evaluation
by a DRL Review Panel. The Department’s Office of Acquisitions Management
(AQM) will determine technical eligibility for all applications. All
technically eligible applications for a given NOFO are reviewed against the
same seven criteria, which include quality of project idea, project
planning/ability to achieve objectives, institutional record and capacity,
inclusive programming, cost effectiveness, multiplier
effect/sustainability, and project monitoring and evaluation.

Additionally, the DRL Review Panel will evaluate how the application
addresses the NOFO request, U.S. foreign policy goals, and the priority
needs of DRL overall. DRL may also take into consideration the balance of
the current portfolio of active projects, including geographic or thematic
diversity, if needed.

In most cases, the DRL Review Panel includes representatives from DRL, the
appropriate Department of State regional bureau (to include feedback from
U.S. embassies), and U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) (to
include feedback from USAID missions). In some cases, additional panelists
may participate, including from other Department of State bureaus or
offices; U.S. government departments, agencies, or boards; representatives
from partner governments; or representatives from entities that are in a
public-private partnership with DRL. At the end of the panel’s discussion
about an application, the Panel votes on recommending the application for
approval by the DRL Assistant Secretary. If more applications are
ultimately recommended for approval than DRL can fund, the Panel will rank
the recommended applications in priority order for consideration by the DRL
Assistant Secretary. The Grants Officer Representative (GOR) for the
eventual award does not vote on the panel. All Panelists must sign
non-disclosure agreements and conflicts of interest agreements.

DRL Review Panels may provide conditions and recommendations on
applications to enhance the proposed project, which must be addressed by
the applicant before further consideration of the award. To ensure
effective use of DRL funds, conditions or recommendations may include
requests to increase, decrease, clarify, and/or justify costs and project

*F. Federal Award Administration Information*

*F.1 Federal Award Notices*

DRL will provide a separate notification to applicants on the result of
their applications. Successful applicants will receive a letter
electronically via email requesting that the applicant respond to Panel
conditions and recommendations. This notification is not an authorization
to begin activities and does not constitute formal approval or a funding

Final approval is contingent on the applicant successfully responding to
the Panel’s conditions and recommendations, being registered in required
systems, including the U.S. government’s Payment Management System (PMS),
unless an exemption is provided, and completing and providing any
additional documentation requested by DRL or AQM. Final approval is also
contingent on Congressional notification requirements being met and final
review and approval by the Department’s warranted Grants Officer.

The notice of Federal award signed by the Department’s warranted Grants
Officers is the sole authorizing document. If awarded, the notice of
Federal award will be provided to the applicant’s designated Authorizing
Official via SAMS Domestic to be electronically counter-signed in the

*F.2 Administrative and National Policy and Legal Requirements*

DRL requires all recipients of foreign assistance funding to comply with
all applicable Department and Federal laws and regulations, including but
not limited to the following:

The Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles and Audit
Requirements for Federal Awards set forth in 2 CFR Chapter 200
(Sub-Chapters A through F) shall apply to all non-Federal entities, except
for assistance awards to Individuals and Foreign Public Entities.
Sub-Chapters A through E shall apply to all foreign organizations, and
Sub-Chapters A through D shall apply to all U.S. and foreign for-profit
entities. The applicant/recipient of the award and any sub-recipient under
the award must comply with all applicable terms and conditions, in addition
to the assurance and certifications made part of the Notice of Award. The
Department’s Standard Terms and Conditions can be viewed at

Additionally, DRL supports implementation of the Women Peace and Security
Act of 2017, which highlights the U.S. commitment to the meaningful
participation of women in conflict prevention, management, and resolution.
For additional information, please refer to the link:

Due to the determination made under the Trafficking Victims Protection Act
(TVPA) for FY 2019, certain assistance that benefits the following
countries may be subject to a restriction under the TVPA. Because the TVPA
restriction applies only to assistance to governments, activities proposed
for these countries should not include government beneficiaries.

*Tier 3 List*:

*AF*: Burundi, Comoros, DRC, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Mauritania, South
Sudan, Republic of Congo

*EAP*: Burma, China, Laos, DPRK

*NEA*: Iran, Syria

Additional requirements may be included depending on the content of the

*F.3 Reporting*

Applicants should be aware that DRL awards will require that all reports
(financial and progress) are uploaded to the grant file in SAMS Domestic on
a quarterly basis. The Federal Financial Report (FFR or SF-425) is the
required form for the financial reports and must be submitted in PMS, as
well as a copy from PMS then uploaded to the grant file in SAMS Domestic.
The progress reports uploaded to the grant file in SAMS Domestic must
include a narrative as described below and Project Indicators (or other
mutually agreed upon format approved by the Grants Officer) for the F
Framework indicators. The F Framework indicators will be reviewed and
negotiated during the final stages of issuing an award.

Narrative progress reports should reflect the focus on measuring the
project’s impact on the overarching objectives and should be compiled
according to the objectives, outcomes, and outputs as outlined in the
award’s Scope of Work (SOW) and in the Monitoring & Evaluation Narrative.
An assessment of the overall project’s impact should be included in each
progress report. Where relevant, progress reports should include the
following sections:

   - Relevant contextual information (limited);
   - Explanation and evaluation of significant activities of the reporting
   period and how the activities reflect progress toward achieving objectives,
   including meeting benchmarks/targets as set in the M&E plan. In addition,
   attach the M&E Plan, comparing the target and actual numbers for the
   - Any tangible impact or success stories from the project, when possible;
   - Copy of mid-term and/or final evaluation report(s) conducted by an
   external evaluator; if applicable;
   - Relevant supporting documentation or products related to the project
   activities (such as articles, meeting lists and agendas, participant
   surveys, photos, manuals, etc.) as separate attachments;
   - Description of how the Recipient is pursuing sustainability, including
   looking for sources of follow-on funding;
   - Any problems/challenges in implementing the project and a corrective
   action plan with an updated timeline of activities;
   - Reasons why established goals were not met;
   - Data for the required F Framework indicator(s) for the quarter as well
   as aggregate data by fiscal year: Program Indicators or other mutually
   agreed upon format approved by the Grants Officer;
   - Proposed activities for the next quarter; and,
   - Additional pertinent information, including analysis and explanation
   of cost overruns or high unit costs, if applicable.

A final narrative and financial report must also be submitted within 90
days after the expiration of the award.

Please note: Delays in reporting may result in delays of payment approvals
and failure to provide required reports may jeopardize the recipient's’
ability to receive future U.S. government funds.

DRL reserves the right to request any additional programmatic and/or
financial project information during the award period.

*G. Contact Information *

For technical submission questions related to this NOFO, please contact*
DRLIRFGrants at state.gov <DRLIRFGrants at state.gov>. *

For assistance with SAMS Domestic accounts and technical issues related to
the system, please contact the ILMS help desk by phone at 1-888-313-4567
(toll charges for international callers) or through the Self Service online
portal that can be accessed from https://afsitsm.service-now.com/ilms/home
Customer Support is available 24/7/365.

Please note that establishing an account in SAMS Domestic may require the
use of smartphone for multi-factor authentication (MFA). If an applicant
does not have accessibility to a smartphone during the time of creating an
account, please contact the helpdesk and request instructions on MFA for
Windows PC.

For assistance with Grants.gov accounts and technical issues related to
using the system, please call the Contact Center at 1-800-518-4726 or email
support at grants.gov. The Contact Center is available 24 hours a day, seven
days a week, except federal holidays.

For a list of federal holidays visit:

With the exception of technical submission questions, during the NOFO
period U.S. Department of State staff in Washington and overseas shall not
discuss this competition with applicants until the entire proposal review
process has been completed and rejection and approval letters have been

*H. Other Information *

Applicants should be aware that DRL understands that some information
contained in applications may be considered sensitive or proprietary and
will make appropriate efforts to protect such information. However,
applicants are advised that DRL cannot guarantee that such information will
not be disclosed, including pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act
(FOIA) or other similar statutes.

The information in this NOFO and “DRL’s Proposal Submission Instructions
for Applications Updated October 2018” is binding and may not be modified
by any DRL representative. Explanatory information provided by DRL that
contradicts this language will not be binding. Issuance of the NOFO and
negotiation of applications does not constitute an award commitment on the
part of the U.S. government. DRL reserves the right to reduce, revise, or
increase proposal budgets.

This NOFO will appear on www.grants.gov, SAMS Domestic
and DRL’s website *http://www.state.gov/j/drl/p/c12302.htm

*Background Information on DRL and General DRL Funding*

DRL has the mission of promoting democracy and protecting human rights
globally. DRL supports projects that uphold democratic principles, support
and strengthen democratic institutions, promote human rights, prevent
atrocities, combat and prevent violent extremism, and build civil society
around the world. DRL typically focuses its work in countries with
egregious human rights violations, where democracy and human rights
advocates are under pressure and where governments are undemocratic or in

Additional background information on DRL and its efforts can be found
on *www.state.gov/j/drl

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