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Notice of Funding Opportunity-Public diplomacy small grants program in northern Sonora
July 29, 2020


Notice of Funding Opportunity 

Funding Opportunity Title:  Public diplomacy small grants program – develop community projects on:  STEAM education, youth empowerment, transparency, rule of law, journalism,  entrepreneurship, English language, or preventing and countering violence programs. 

Funding Opportunity Number: PAS-NOG-2020-01
Deadline for Applications: August 29, 2020
CFDA Number: 19.040
Total Amount Available: $24,000 

The Public Affairs Section (PAS) of the United States Consulate General in Nogales of the U.S. Department of State announces an open competition for civil society organizations and educational institutions to submit applications to carry out public diplomacy projects in northern Sonora.  Please carefully follow all instructions below. 

Program Objectives: 
This NOFO seeks to promote opportunities for civil society organizations to develop activities, campaigns, or projects to advance shared priorities of the United States and Mexico through cultural and educational programming that highlights shared values and promotes bilateral cooperation. 

Program Theme/Goal 

The goal of this NOFO is to strengthen community-based organizations in support of activities to empower their community through the following topics: 

  • Promote STEAM education (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) 
  • Youth empowerment 
  • Transparency, rule of law   
  • Journalism 
  • Entrepreneurship 
  • English language 
  • Preventing and countering violence

All proposals should promote increased understanding of U.S. policy and perspectives. 

Participants and Audiences: 

Proposals should focus on engaging Mexican citizen audiences.  A gender balance among participants is preferred as well as engaging underserved populations.  


Successful proposals will clearly address the following points:  

  • The proposal should be submitted in English or Spanish and not to exceed 10 pages. 
  • Description of the activity/project (1-2 paragraphs) and anticipated impact. 
  • Identify specific goals addressed and outcomes to be achieved. 
  • Identify the target audiences/recipients and the total number of participants. 
  • Explain how the project will include or recruit specific audiences. 
  • State the location/s of activities. Project activities must be limited to the U.S. Consulate General in Nogales’s consular district.  https://mx.usembassy.gov/visas/u-s-embassy-mexico-city/u-s-consulate-general-in-nogales/
  • Include a calendar of activities, timeline or milestones. 
  • Include an evaluation and monitoring plan. 
  • Explain how the project will have a multiplier effect or be sustained after the grant period. 
  • Include a “U.S. component” as part of the project. Examples include but are not limited to: a U.S. speaker – in person or virtual; participation of U.S. Consulate officials during the opening, closing, or other activities of the program; collaboration with U.S. institutions; use of materials or publications of the  U.S. Department of State or other U.S. content. 

Additional Information 

  • Proposals must comply with the application process and submit documents solicited in this NOFO. 
  • Proposals must include a branding plan for materials produced and state how the U.S. Consulate General will be recognized. 
  • Site visits or activities including U.S. Consulate General personnel throughout the project are encouraged. 
  • The U.S. Consulate General will promote the project to wider audiences, including the use of its social media platforms. 
  • This NOFO proposal does not require cost sharing.  PAS also encourages projects that use volunteers as an element of cost-sharing.  Applications should explain other sources of funding, in-kind contributions (such as office space and supplies), and how the volunteers will be used. 
  • Attachments may include 1-page CV or resume of key personnel who are proposed for the program. 


Length of performance period: one day to 12 months  

Number of awards anticipated: 4 awards (dependent on amounts) 

Award amounts: awards may range from a minimum of $1,500 USD to a maximum of $10,000 

Total available funding: $24,000 pending availability of funds. 

Type of Funding:  Fulbright/Hays Funds 

Anticipated program start date:  September 2020  

This notice is subject to availability of funding. 

Funding Instrument Type:   Fixed Amount Award 

Program Performance Period: Proposed programs should be completed in 12 months or less. 

PAS reserves the right to award less or more than the funds described in the proposal as it may deem to be in the best interest of the U.S. government. PAS will consider 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. 


  1. Eligible Applicants

The following organizations are eligible to apply:    

Registered Mexican and American Not-for-profit organizations, including think tanks and civil society/non-governmental organizations working in northern Sonora.  Public and private educational institutions 

U.S. or Mexican citizens 

  1. Other Eligibility Requirements 

In order to be eligible to receive an award, all organizations must have a unique entity identifier (Data Universal Numbering System/DUNS number from Dun & Bradstreet), as well as a valid registration on www.SAM.gov. 

It is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure they are in compliance with all applicable terms, conditions, guidance and requirements at the time of application and during the program period, if awarded funding. Those organizations found to be in non-compliance with grant terms and conditions may be found ineligible for funding. 

Some projects that are not eligible for funding include: 

  • Seed capital or funding for start-ups and/or small businesses support 
  • Programs related to partisan political activity. 
  • Projects to support individual research or scientific research. 
  • Purchase of office space or buildings or rental of permanent office space Health devices/supplies or any health related project 
  • Agricultural projects 
  • Purchase of major equipment such as electro domestics appliances, motor-vehicles (requests will be reviewed case by case) 
  • Domestic animal projects 
  • Religious activities 
  • Construction projects 
  • Fundraising campaigns. 


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

Proposal must be submitted via email to: ConcursoConsuladoTJ@state.gov  

Content of Application 

Please ensure: 

  • The proposal clearly addresses the goals and objectives of this funding opportunity 
  • All documents are in English or Spanish 
  • All budgets are in U.S. dollars 
  • All pages are numbered 

The written proposal not over ten (10) pages, excluding appendices 

Mandatory application forms 

The following documents are required:   

  Dun and Bradstreet Universal Numbering System (DUNS) Organizations must have an active Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number from Dun & Bradstreet, if your organization does not have a number or it has expired, please visit: https://www.cialdnb.com/es/numero-duns/numero-d-u-n-s/ 

  SAM registration. Organizations must also have an active SAM registration. If your organization does not have a registration or it has expired, please visit: www.SAM.gov 

  Written Proposal: Applicants must submit a written proposal via email that includes all of the following information in no more than ten pages: 

  • Name of the organization 
  • Title of the project 
  • Contact details (name, address, email, phone number, cell number) of the point of contact for the project and the legal representative of the organization. 
  • Proposal Summary 
  • Description of organization capacity (maximum one page): A description of past and present operations, showing ability to carry out the program. 
  • Previous grants (U.S. government and other sources if any). 
  • Project Justification/Needs Statement: Clear, concise and well-supported statement of the problem to be addressed and why the proposed program is needed. 
  • Project Goals: The “goals” describe what the program is intended to achieve. These should be achievable and measurable. 
  • Project Objectives: The “objectives” refer to the intermediate accomplishments on the way to the goals. These should be achievable and measurable. 
  • Project Activities (including participants): Describe the program activities and how they will help achieve the objectives. 
  • Monitoring Plan and Evaluation Plan: This is an important part of successful grants. Throughout the time-frame of the grant, how will the activities be monitored to ensure they are happening in a timely manner, and how will the program be evaluated to make sure it is meeting the goals of the grant? 
  • Key Personnel – who will work on this project? 
  • Calendar of proposed activities: The proposed timeline for the program activities. Include the dates, times, and locations of planned activities and events. 
  • Will this project continue after the grant period? How? 
  • Report plan. All projects must submit a minimum of one mid-project and one final report, including a Project Narrative Report. 
  • Budget and Budget Narrative/Justification: Applicants must submit via the online registration form a line-by-line budget and budget description, including unit costs, quantities and any other relevant information that may impact total cost of project. 


Criteria: Proposals will be evaluated and rated on the basis of the following criteria. (100 points)  

  1. Completeness (20 Points): The proposal should respond to all parts of this call for proposals found in section Application and Submission Information. 
  2. Clarity of Purpose (20 points). The proposal should explain why this project is important, respond to a specific need in the community, and addresses at least one goal of this RFP. 
  3. Achievable Objectives (20 Points): Objectives should be realistic. Proposals should demonstrate how the activities will meet the project’s objectives. Proposed personnel and budget should be adequate and appropriate to achieve the objectives. 
  4. Project Development and Planning (20 Points): The proposed project should be well designed and provide a work plan with specific details, including project activities, timeline, and an annotated budget, and U.S. component. 
  5. Monitoring (10 Points): Proposals should show how the project will be monitored. Commitment to submitting a mid-program and end of program Project Narrative Report and Financial Report is required. 
  6. Sustainability (5 Points): The proposal should address how the project will continue on a long-term basis after the conclusion of the project. 
  7. Innovation (5 Points): Proposal articulates an innovative strategy; activities are creative and new. 

Review and Selection Process:  

All applications will be reviewed and selected by September 1, 2020. All applicants will receive an award or decline notice from PAS by this date. For questions, please contact: concursoconsuladotj@state.gov 


The grant, fixed amount award (FAA) shall be written, signed, awarded, and administered by the United States Government Grants Officer or his/her representative from PAS and signed by a responsible officer or individual from the applicant organization (Grantee). 

The assistance award agreement is the authorizing document and it will be provided to the recipient for review and signature by email. The recipient may only start incurring program expenses beginning on the start date shown on the grant award document signed by the Grants Officer.  

If a proposal is selected for funding, the Department of State has no obligation to provide any additional future funding. Renewal of an award to increase funding or extend the period of performance is at the discretion of the Department of State. 

Issuance of this NOFO does not constitute an award commitment on the part of the U.S. government, nor does it commit the U.S. government to pay for costs incurred in the preparation and submission of proposals. Further, the U.S. government reserves the right to reject any or all proposals received. 


Guidelines for Budget Justification 

Personnel and Fringe Benefits: Describe the wages, salaries, and benefits of temporary or permanent staff who will be working directly for the applicant on the program, and the percentage of their time that will be spent on the program. 

Travel: Estimate the costs of travel and per diem for this program, for program staff, consultants or speakers, and participants/beneficiaries. If the program involves international travel, include a brief statement of justification for that travel. 

Equipment: Describe any machinery, furniture, or other personal property that is required for the program, which has a useful life of more than one year (or a life longer than the duration of the program), and costs at least $5,000 per unit. 

Supplies: List and describe all the items and materials, including any computer devices, that are needed for the program. If an item costs more than $5,000 per unit, then put it in the budget under Equipment. 

Contractual: Describe goods and services that the applicant plans to acquire through a contract with a vendor. Also describe any sub-awards to non-profit partners that will help carry out the program activities. 

Other Direct Costs: Describe other costs directly associated with the program, which do not fit in the other categories. For example, shipping costs for materials and equipment or applicable taxes. All “Other” or “Miscellaneous” expenses must be itemized and explained. 

Indirect Costs: These are costs that cannot be linked directly to the program activities, such as overhead costs needed to help keep the organization operating. If your organization has a Negotiated Indirect Cost Rate (NICRA) and includes NICRA charges in the budget, attach a copy of your latest NICRA. Organizations that have never had a NICRA may request indirect costs of 10% of the modified total direct costs as defined in 2 CFR 200.68. 

“Cost Sharing” refers to contributions from the organization or other entities other than the U.S. Embassy.   It also includes in-kind contributions such as volunteers’ time and donated venues. 

Alcoholic Beverages:  Please note that award funds cannot be used for alcoholic beverages.