U.S. Embassy Bangkok FY24 Notice of Funding Opportunity

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
Public Diplomacy Section, U.S. Embassy Bangkok

Notice of Funding Opportunity: Statement of Interest

Funding Opportunity Title:  U.S. Embassy Bangkok FY24 Notice of Funding Opportunity

Funding Opportunity Number:  BKK-2024-NOFO-01

Deadline for Applications:

1st Round – February 7, 2024

2nd Round – May 1, 2024

3rd Round – July 3, 2024

CFDA Number:  19.040 – Public Diplomacy Programs

Maximum for Each Award: $75,000

A. PROGRAM DESCRIPTION
The U.S. Embassy Bangkok Public Diplomacy Section of the U.S. Department of State announces an open competition for organizations or individuals to submit a statement of interest (SOI) or concept note to carry out program(s) funded by the U.S. Embassy Bangkok.  Please carefully follow all instructions below.

The submission of the SOI is the first step in a two-step process.  Applicants must first submit a concise statement of interest through the Google application form (https://forms.gle/3DSzBvf1u72UwuzY8).  The SOI is designed for applicants to clearly communicate program ideas and objectives and is not a full proposal.  The purpose of the SOI process is to allow applicants to submit program ideas for evaluation prior to requiring the development of a full proposal application.  Upon a merit review of eligible SOIs, selected applicants will be invited to expand on their program ideas by submitting a full proposal application.  Full proposals will go through a second merit review before final funding decisions are made.

Priority Program Areas

  1. Democracy, Governance, and Human Rights
  • Activities that strengthen democratic values, accountability, public participation, transparency, and rule of law in governance and political institutions.
  • Innovative projects that educate Thais about the U.S. experience in meaningful participation in democratic processes and civic life.
  • Activities that promote universally recognized human rights and fundamental freedoms.
  • Activities that promote connection between the United States and the rising leaders in the Indo-Pacific region.
  • Activities that focus on enhancing critical thinking skills and promoting civic engagement to counter disinformation and improve media/digital literacy. 
  1. Technology, Innovation, Entrepreneurship, and Renewable Energy
  • Activities that support and build capability for, and promote economic inclusivity among micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) and underrepresented entrepreneurs.
  • Activities that build digital skills and improve business practices of MSMEs and underrepresented entrepreneurs for different stages of business development.
  • Activities that increase awareness of environmental protection, climate change, climate-smart agriculture, transboundary water challenges, renewable energy, and other key regional issues.
  • Activities that promote the use of science, technology, and innovation in tackling regional or transboundary challenges and strengthening competitiveness of SMEs and underrepresented entrepreneurs
  1. Education
  • Activities that build, increase, support, and strengthen partnerships and the exchange of people, ideas, and resources between U.S. and Thai education institutions.
  • Activities that increase access to education and understanding of science, technology, engineering, arts, and math (STEM/STEAM).
  • Innovative and educational activities that strengthen sustainable development in the Mekong subregion.

B. FEDERAL AWARD INFORMATION

Length of performance period: Up to 12 months

Number of awards anticipated: Multiple

Award amounts: Awards may range from a minimum of $10,000 to a maximum of $75,000

Type of Funding: Fiscal Year 2024 Public Diplomacy Funding

Anticipated program start date: Flexible

This notice is subject to availability of funding.

Funding Instrument Type:

Grant, Fixed Amount Award (FAA), or Cooperative agreement.  Cooperative agreements and some FAAs are different from grants in that U.S. Embassy staff are more actively involved in the grant implementation.

  

Program Performance Period:

Proposed programs should be completed within 12 months of issuance. U.S. Embassy Bangkok retains the right to execute non-competitive continuation amendments on a case-by-case basis.  Any amendments are based on performance, pending availability of funds, and are not guaranteed.

C. ELIGILIBITY INFORMATION

  1. Eligible Applicants

The Public Diplomacy Section encourages applications from the United States and Thailand: 

  • Registered not-for-profit organizations, including think tanks and civil society/non-governmental organizations
  • Educational institutions
  • Individuals
  • Public international organizations and governmental institutions
  1. Cost Sharing or Matching

Cost sharing or matching is not required for this funding opportunity, but it is encouraged.  Any cost sharing must be clearly laid out in the submission.

  1. Other Eligibility Requirements

In order to be eligible to receive an award, all organizations must have a Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) number issued via www.SAM.gov as well as a valid registration on www.SAM.gov. Please see Section E.4 for more information.  Individuals are not required to have a UEI or be registered in SAM.gov.

D. APPLICATION AND SUBMISSION INFORMATION

  1. Content and Form of Application Submission

Please follow all instructions below carefully. SOIs that do not meet the requirements of this announcement or fail to comply with the stated requirements will be ineligible and will not be considered for funding.

Content of SOI must include:

  • Project summary and description, objectives, expected outcomes, proposed timeline, target audience, and evaluation plan
  • All documents fully completed in English
    • The anticipated total budget amount (in U.S. dollars) and a line-item breakdown of expenses.
  1. Submission Timeline

1st Round

2nd Round

3rd Round

Deadline to submit SOIs

February 7, 2024

May 1, 2024

July 3, 2024

Selected SOIs are notified by email

February 23, 2024

May 17, 2024

July 19, 2024

Deadline for selected applicants to submit full proposals

March 31, 2024

June 14, 2024

August 16, 2024

  1. Funding Restrictions

Award funds cannot be used for alcoholic beverages. Award fund also cannot be used for other food items not directly related to achieving program objectives.

  1. Other Submission Requirements

All application materials must be ONLY submitted electronically through Google application form at https://forms.gle/3DSzBvf1u72UwuzY8.

E. APPLICATION REVIEW INFORMATION

  1. Criteria

Each SOI will be evaluated and rated on the basis of the evaluation criteria outlined below.

  

Quality of Program Idea (50 points): All programs must include a substantive connection to American culture, policy, and/or practices. Program objectives are closely aligned with U.S. Embassy Bangkok priorities outlined in Section A. Project Description.  The idea is communicated well and is feasible.  SOI’s that promote creative approaches to address program objectives are highly encouraged. The proposed timeline is reasonable.   

Program Planning/Ability to Achieve Objectives (20 points):  The SOI should clearly articulate proposed program activities and expected results towards achieving program objectives and goal(s).

Engagement of Target Audiences (20 points):  The SOI should identify the target audience outlined in the program description.

Organizational Capacity and Record on Previous Grants (10 points):  The SOI should demonstrate the organization’s expertise, capacity and/or previous experience in administering similar programs.  If a local partner is identified, the SOI should briefly describe the partner’s role and experience.

  1. Review and Selection Process

A Grants Review Committee will evaluate all eligible SOIs against the criteria listed above.  For a fair review, all panelists will only review the information provided through the Google application form, no additional information will be reviewed.  The panel may provide conditions and/or recommendations on SOIs to enhance the proposed program.  Conditions must be addressed, and recommendations should be addressed, in the full proposal application.

  1. Following the review, any successful SOI applicants will be contacted and instructed to submit full applications. A full application will include:

or SF-424-I (Application for Federal Assistance – individuals) at https://apply07.grants.gov/apply/forms/sample/SF424_Individual_2_0-V2.0.pdf

or SF-424B (Assurances for Non-Construction programs – individuals) at https://apply07.grants.gov/apply/forms/sample/Individual_SF424B-V1.1.pdf

  1. Unique Entity Identifier and System for Award Management (SAM.gov)

Required Registrations – Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) on SAM.GOV

All organizations, whether based in the United States or in another country, must have a Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) and an active registration with the SAM.gov. 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.

The 2 CFR 200 requires that sub-grantees obtain a UEI number.  Please note the UEI for sub-grantees is not required at the time of application but will be required before an award is processed and/or directed to a sub-grantee.

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

  • Organizations based in the United States or that pay employees within the United States will need an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and a UEI number prior to registering in SAM.gov.
  • Organizations based outside of the United States and that do not pay employees within the United States do not need an EIN from the IRS but do need a UEI number prior to registering in SAM.gov.

Exemptions

An exemption from the UEI and sam.gov registration 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.
  • For an applicant, if the Federal awarding agency makes a determination that there are exigent circumstances that prohibit the applicant from receiving a unique entity identifier and completing SAM registration prior to receiving a federal award. In these instances, federal awarding agencies must require the recipient to obtain a unique entity identifier and complete SAM registration within 30 days of the federal award date.

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 Grants Officer before the application can be deemed eligible for review.

F. FEDERAL AWARD ADMINISTRATION INFORMATION

Administrative and National Policy Requirements

Terms and Conditions: Before submitting the SOI, applicants should review all the terms and conditions and required certifications which will apply if a full proposal application is requested and awarded, to ensure that they will be able to comply.  These include:

2 CFR 200, 2 CFR 600, and the Department of State Standard Terms and Conditions which are available at:  https://www.state.gov/about-us-office-of-the-procurement-executive/.

G.  FEDERAL AWARDING AGENCY CONTACTS

If you have any questions about the application process, please contact BangkokPD@state.gov.

NOTE: A follow-up solicitation (typically sent as or via an email by U.S. Embassy Bangkok) will be issued directly to those organizations or individuals who submitted successful SOIs.  It is not reposted on Grant.gov or a public website.  The follow-up solicitation must follow the full NOFO template, as well as provide any specific recommendations or conditions articulated by the review panel.  No limited or sole source waiver is required specifically for the full proposal stage as any such waiver approved prior to SOI issuance covers the entire competition process. If the SOI step was a full and open competition, the overall process counts as a full and open competition.

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