Funding Opportunity Title:
START Notice of Funding OpportunityFunding Opportunity Number:
STARTSSY40022 Opportunity Package ID:
PKG00271939Deadline for Applications:
June 10, 2022 (06/10/2022) Funding Instrument Type:
Grant (Fixed Amount or Individual award) Assistance Listing Number:
9. 021 – Investing in People in the Middle East and North Africa Category Explanation:
Public Diplomacy ProgramsTotal Amount Available:
$317,00 0. 00Maximum for Each Award:
$20,00 0. 00 - $50,00 0. 00A.
PROGRAM DESCRIPTIONThe Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs Office of Press and Public Diplomacy (NEA/PPD), in cooperation with the Syria Transition Assistance Response Team Public Diplomacy (START PD) office of the U. S. Department of State, is pleased to announce this open competition for organizations and individuals to submit applications to carry out a public diplomacy program to advance U. S. foreign policy goals and objectives for Syria.
This Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) outlines NEA/PPD’s and START PD funding priorities, strategic and thematic areas of focus, and procedures to submit applications for funding.
Please carefully review and follow all instructions below to ensure conformance with the procedures for application.
Northeast Syria and projects focused on Syrian populations in Turkey, Jordan, and Lebanon; projects for implementation in countries other than Syria are subject to the approval of U. S. diplomatic missions in those countries.
NEA/PPD and START PD invite proposals from eligible not-for-profit organizations, non-government organizations (NGOs), and individuals to design and implement public diplomacy programs that support U. S. policy goals and objectives in Syria.
See “Priority Program Areas” below for descriptions of the types of programmatic activities NEA/PPD and START PD have identified as complementary from a public diplomacy standpoint to the advancement of U. S. policy objectives delineated below.
Under Section B.
Federal Award Information, the U. S. Congressional legislation that serves as the basis for public diplomacy funding and programming is described.
Prospective applicants should review this carefully to ensure their proposal(s) are aligned with the intent of this legislation.
U. S. policy goals and objectives Expanding Humanitarian Access:
Support the removal of barriers to aid delivery to address humanitarian needs across Syria Accountability and Justice:
Support efforts to hold the Assad regime accountable for its gross violations of human rights and international norms Political Process:
Laying the foundation for, and generating momentum towards, a political solution to the Syrian crisis consistent with UN Security Council Resolution 2254 The Enduring Defeat of al-Qa’ida and ISIS:
Preserving the U. S. military presence and partnership with the Syrian Democratic Forces to maintain pressure on ISIS and al-Qa’ida Supporting Ceasefires:
Supporting international and/or local agreements to reduce levels of violence NEA/PPD and START PD will prioritize projects that build mutual understanding among affected communities, support moderate voices, and foster a positive sense of identity, cultural pride, and community empowerment in regions or countries where prospective projects may be implemented.
Building the capacity of local partners and community organizations is a key tenet of NEA/PPD and START PD funded programs.
Hence, international or U.S.-based applicants are expected to partner with local partners in the project’s country of focus to assist these local partners in building their capacity.
Such partnership can take the form of the local organization(s) assisting in beneficiary selection, design and implementation of activities, and evaluation of program impact and effectiveness; potential local partners should be identified in the application.NEA/PPD and START PD require applicants be in good legal standing and have all the necessary approvals with appropriate government authorities in the country where the project will be implemented.
Award recipients will be required to maintain such legal standing throughout the lifespan of the award, including for any sub-grant and/or sub-contract made under its auspices.
Priority Program Areas (include, but are not limited to):• Strengthening youth community engagement:
Strong civic engagement is an essential ingredient in fostering an engaged citizenry, social cohesion, democratic norms and values, and rendering societies more resistant to pernicious forces.
Projects in this category would inspire youth to engage more fully and positively in their home communities, thereby strengthening the social fabric within them.
Consistent with public diplomacy initiatives, projects in this category could engage a community or communities in a shared endeavor via sports, the fine or performing arts, etc.
• Peacebuilding and reconciliation:
The philosopher Spinoza wrote (1670), “Peace is not an absence of war, it is a virtue, a state of mind, a disposition for benevolence, confidence, justice.” Projects in this category would promote peace as a positive virtue as expressed in this statement, thereby increasing prospects for reconciliation amongst groups in conflict, e.g.
initiatives related to non-violent conflict mitigation and/or promoting constructive dialog among different communities.
Despite significant U. S. government and other donors’ investment in this sector, substantial deficits in Syrian children’s and youth’s access to education remain.
Hence programs should be designed to address some of these deficits and/or offer educational activities not currently available.
Just some examples include programs in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM); in-service training for educators to increase their capacity for effective curricular delivery; sports, recreational, and/or extra-curricular program for girls in particular; working with government ministries responsible for education to streamline processes for enrollment of students; or assisting young adult drop-outs with transitioning to employment.
• Strengthening the media sector and/or enhancing journalistic skills to develop the professional capacity of practitioners in this field, thereby enabling them to combat disinformation.
• Promote inclusive economic growth and socio-economic development:
According to the U. S. Small Business Administration, small businesses (defined as less than 500 employees with an average of 10) account for two-thirds of net new job growth and 44% of U. S. economic activity.
Projects in this category would focus on sharing U. S. expertise and practices for starting and/or growing a small business enterprise, with the goal of increasing value for the business owner and the firm’s employees alike.
• Countering the ideology of Designated Terrorist Organizations (DTO):
Many DTOs possess relatively sophisticated communications operations designed to persuade listeners of the DTO’s worldview and to recruit new members to their ranks.
Public diplomacy supported initiatives have adopted a variety of approaches to counter DTO activity in this sphere, such as counter-messaging programs tailored to the local socio-cultural context delivered by messengers with outstanding credibility.
Projects in this category would serve to strengthen individual and community resilience to deter DTOs’ propaganda and recruitment efforts whether locally or internationally.
Applications in the priority area of “Countering the ideology of DTOs” will be accepted only for projects slated for implementation within Syria itself.
Project proposals for all other ‘Priority Program Areas’ will be accepted for all countries and/or regions described in ‘Priority Region’ above.