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2023 Public Diplomacy Annual Program Statement
Notice of Funding Opportunity
February 9, 2023


Notice of Funding Opportunity

Funding Opportunity Title: U.S. Embassy in Madagascar and Comoros

Public Diplomacy Annual Program Statement

Funding Opportunity Number:  DOS-APS-AFMDG-23-01
Selection Process and Deadline: On a rolling basis through July 15, 2023
Assistance Listing: 19.040 – Smith Mundt
Funding Sources: FY2023 Public Diplomacy Funding
Award Ceiling: $100,000 (pending the availability of funding)
Email: AntanPASGrants@state.gov



The Public Diplomacy (PD) section of the U.S. Embassy in Madagascar and Comoros, part of the U.S. Department of State, is pleased to announce its Public Diplomacy Annual Program Statement (APS). This Notice of Funding Opportunity outlines the Embassy’s funding priorities, strategic themes, and procedures for submitting requests for funding.  Please carefully follow all instructions below.

Purpose of the Annual Program Statement:  The Public Diplomacy Annual Program Statement supports projects proposed by U.S., Malagasy, and/or Comorian educational, cultural, and other non-profit organizations or individuals that promote U.S. values, strengthen understanding between U.S. and Malagasy and/or Comorian people and institutions, and/or support U.S. Embassy goals of promoting human rights, transparency and good governance, economic and social prosperity, environmental stewardship, educational achievement, and sustainable development of natural resources.  All programs must include a U.S. cultural element or a connection with U.S. experts, organizations, or institutions that will encourage increased understanding of U.S. policy and perspectives.

Examples of Public Diplomacy Annual Program Statement programs include, but are not limited to:

    • Academic and professional lectures, seminars, and speaker programs;
    • Training, workshops, or courses to develop professional or academic skills;
    • Youth engagement programs;
    • Artistic and cultural workshops, joint performances, and exhibitions;
    • Cultural heritage conservation and preservation programs;
    • Professional and academic exchanges and programs; and
    • Communication campaigns related to human rights, democracy, and environment.

Priority Program Areas:

    • Improving English language learning through curriculum development, teacher training, and/or developing partnerships with U.S. educational institutions;
    • Advancing good governance and democratic values including accountability, transparency, and human rights in Madagascar and/or Comoros through the promotion of educated civic participation, particularly among youth and women;
    • Promoting transparent, free, and fair elections and democratic processes;
    • Enhancing youth leadership and engagement;
    • Advancing a free and responsible press and combatting disinformation including election disinformation;
    • Promoting the free exercise of religion and ensuring that laws and government policies do not interfere with its practice;
    • Increasing opportunity for women, girls, minorities, and/or disadvantaged populations;
    • Developing skills in innovation technology, STEM, and entrepreneurship;
    • Improving environmental stewardship, sustainable management of natural resources, and biodiversity conservation through environmental action programs; and
    • Promoting U.S. culture and values.

Participants and Audiences:

The list below delineates our target audiences:

    • Educators and administrators of public or private educational institutions at the primary, secondary, or tertiary levels;
    • Youth (15 – 35 y/o), particularly students;
    • Professionals, entrepreneurs, and innovators;
    • Media professionals;
    • Civil society professionals; and
    • Women, girls, minorities, and disadvantaged populations.

The following types of programs are not eligible for funding:

    • Programs relating to partisan political activity;
    • Charitable or development activities;
    • Construction programs;
    • Programs that support specific religious activities;
    • Fund-raising campaigns;
    • Lobbying for specific legislation or programs;
    • Scientific research;
    • Programs intended primarily for the growth or institutional development of the organization; or
    • Programs that duplicate existing programs.

 Authorizing legislation, type and year of funding:

Funding authority rests in the Smith-Mundt Act or the Fulbright-Hays Act.  The source of funding is FY2023 Public Diplomacy Funding.


Length of performance period: up to 18 months

Number of awards anticipated: Up to 4 awards (depending upon amounts)

Award ceiling: $100,000 (pending the availability of funds)

Type of funding:  Fiscal Year 2023 Public Diplomacy Funding

Anticipated programs start date: after receipt of the Award

This notice is subject to availability of funding.

Funding Instrument Type:  Grants, Fixed Amount Awards, Awards to Individuals, or Cooperative Agreements. Cooperative Agreements are different from grants in that Public Diplomacy staff are more actively involved in the grant implementation.

Program Performance Period:  Proposed programs should be completed in 18 months or less.  PD will entertain applications for continuation grants funded under these awards beyond the initial budget period on a non-competitive basis subject to availability of funds, satisfactory progress of the program, and a determination that continued funding would be in the best interest of the U.S. Department of State.


  1. Eligible Applicants

The Public Diplomacy section encourages applications from the United States, Madagascar, and Comoros:

    • Registered not-for-profit organizations, including think tanks and civil society/non-governmental organizations with programming experience;
    • Individuals;
    • Non-profit or governmental educational institutions;
    • Governmental institutions.

For-profit or commercial entities are not eligible to apply.  

  1. Cost Sharing or Matching

Cost sharing is not required.

  1. Other Eligibility Requirements

Applicants should only submit one proposal per organization.  If more than one proposal is submitted from an organization, all proposals from that institution will be considered ineligible for funding.

In order to be eligible to receive an award, all organizations must have a valid registration on www.SAM.gov in order to obtain the Unique Entity Identifier number– UEI.  Please see Section D.3 for information on how to obtain these registrations.  Individuals are not required to have an UEI.


  1. Address to Request Application Package

Application forms required below are available on the grants.gov .

  1. Content and Form of Application Submission

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 considered ineligible.

Content of Application

Please ensure:

    • The proposal clearly addresses the goals and objectives of this funding opportunity
    • All documents are written in English;
    • All budgets are calculated in U.S. dollars;
    • All pages are numbered;
    • All documents are formatted to 8½ x 11 or A4 paper; and
    • All Microsoft Word documents are single-spaced, 12 point Times New Roman font with a one-inch margins.

The following documents are required:

a. Mandatory application forms:
All mandatory application forms are available on the right-hand side of the grants.gov webpage. 

b. Program Narrative (5 pages maximum): The program narrative/proposal should contain sufficient information that anyone not familiar with it would understand exactly what the applicant wants to do. Applicants are encouraged to use the Program Narrative Template (supplemental to SF-424), that you can find on the grants.gov.

c. Budget Justification Narrative: After filling out the SF-424A Budget (above), applicants are encouraged to use the Budget Narrative Template (supplemental to SF-424A) that you can find on the grants.gov and to describe each of the budget expenses in detail.  See section H. Other Information: Guidelines for Budget Submissions below for further information.

 d. Attachments (suggested examples):

    • One-page CV or resume of each key member of the project leadership team.
    • Letters of support from program partners supporting the project describing the roles and responsibilities of each partner.
    • Official permission letters, if required for program activities.
  1. Required Registrations: 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) 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: As of April 2022, a DUNS number is no longer required for federal assistance Applications. 

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 the 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), a Commercial and Government Entity (CAGE) code, 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. Please note that as of December 2022, organizations based outside of the United States that do not intend to apply for U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) awards are no longer required to have a NATO CAGE (NCAGE) code to apply for non-DoD foreign assistance funding opportunities. If an applicant organization is mid-registration and wishes to remove an NCAGE code from their sam.gov registration, the applicant should submit a help desk ticket (“incident”) with the Federal Service Desk (FSD) online at fsd.gov  to seek guidance on how to do so.

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 technically ineligible to receive an award and use that determination as a basis for making an award to another applicant.

Please refer to 2 CFR 25.200 for additional information.

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

Information is included on the SAM.gov website to help international registrations Navigate to www.SAM.gov, click “HELP” in the top navigation bar, then click, “Explore” and “New to SAM.gov?” for general information. Please note, guidance on SAM.gov and the guidance on GSA’s website is being updated to reflect the change in NCAGE requirement. Applicants should review the website frequently for the most up-to-date guidance.

➢  Step 1: Create a secure.login.gov account

Follow these steps to download and install one of the supported applications and configure it to work with secure.login.gov.

a.  Choose a device, such as a computer or mobile device (phone or tablet), on which you can install apps.

b.  Download and install an authentication app to your device. Some popular options include:

c.  Open a new browser and sign in to your Login.gov account at https://secure.login.gov/.

d.  Select “Enable” next to “Authentication app” and follow the instructions to scan or enter a code associating your authentication app with your account.

You will be able to use the one-time passcodes generated by the application each time you sign in to Login.gov.

For assistance with login.gov, see: https://www.login.gov/help/ or contact login.gov: https://www.login.gov/contact/.

➢  Step 2: Register on SAM by logging onto: https://www.sam.gov. gov registration must be renewed annually.

a.  Go to https://sam.gov

b.  Click on “Get Started” or “Renew Entity”

c.  Follow the instructions provided

d.  NOTES:

    • The organization needs to have a Login.gov account to register an entity.
    • An entity will be required to undergo an “Entity Validation” * process (*the process during which SAM.gov verifies that the organization registering is a valid organization)

e.  Upon completion of registration, an entity will receive a Unique Entity Identifier number (UEI).

For full registration help, see information here: Quick Start Guide for International Registrants. Additional resources are available at the SAM.gov Help Desk, which is called the Federal Service Desk (FSD): https://www.fsd.gov/gsafsd_sp.

  1. Submission Dates and Times

For applications to be considered, they must be submitted before midnight Eastern African time on July 15, 2023.  No applications will be accepted after that date.

  1. Funding Restrictions

Funding cannot be used for construction or the purchase of alcoholic beverages.

  1. Other Submission Requirements

All application materials must be submitted by email to the Public Diplomacy section (PD) of the U.S. Embassy in Madagascar and Comoros at AntanPASGrants@state.gov.


  1. Criteria

Each application will be evaluated on a roll in basis and rated on the basis of the evaluation criteria outlined below. The criteria listed are closely related and are considered as a whole in judging the overall quality of an application.

Organizational capacity and record on previous grants: The organization/individual has expertise in its stated field and PD is confident of the applicant’s ability to undertake the project.  This includes possessing a valid a financial management system and a bank account.

Quality and feasibility of the program idea: The program proposal is well developed, including details about how program activities will be implemented.  The proposal outlines a reasonable time frame for project implementation.

Goals and objectives: Goals and objectives are clearly stated, and program approach is likely to achieve the proposed results. 

Embassy priorities: Applicant has clearly described how stated goals are related to and address the U.S. Embassy Madagascar/Comoros’s priority areas and target audiences.

Budget: The budget justification is detailed.  Costs are reasonable in relation to the proposed activities and anticipated results.  The budget is realistic, accounting for all necessary expenses to achieve proposed activities.

Monitoring and evaluation plan: Applicant clearly demonstrates how they will measure program success against key indicators and provides milestones to indicate progress toward goals outlined in the proposal.  The program includes output and outcome indicators, and shows how and when those will be measured.

Sustainability: Program activities will continue to have positive impact after the conclusion of the program.

American Content: How will the project promote a better of the United States among the target population.

  1. Review and Selection Process

A Grants Review Committee will evaluate all eligible applications on a rolling basis and as funding becomes available. Award announcements will be made on a rolling basis through September 2023.

  1. Federal Awardee Performance and Integrity Information System (FAPIIS)

For any Federal award under a notice of funding opportunity, if the Federal awarding agency anticipates that the total Federal share will be greater than the simplified acquisition threshold on any Federal award under a notice of funding opportunity may include, over the period of performance (see §200.88 Simplified Acquisition Threshold), this section must also inform applicants:

i.  That the Federal awarding agency, prior to making a Federal award with a total amount of Federal share greater than the simplified acquisition threshold, is required to review and consider any information about the applicant that is in the designated integrity and performance system accessible through SAM (currently FAPIIS) (see 41 U.S.C. 2313);

ii.  That an applicant, at its option, may review information in the designated integrity and performance systems accessible through SAM and comment on any information about itself that a Federal awarding agency previously entered and is currently in the designated integrity and performance system accessible through SAM;

iii. That the Federal awarding agency will consider any comments by the applicant, in addition to the other information in the designated integrity and performance system, in making a judgment about the applicant’s integrity, business ethics, and record of performance under Federal awards when completing the review of risk posed by applicants as described in §200.205 Federal awarding agency review of risk posed by applicants.


  1. Federal Award Notices

The grant award or cooperative agreement will be written, signed, awarded, and administered by the Grants Officer. 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.

Payment Method: Payments will be made in at least two installments, as needed to carry out the program activities.

Organizations whose applications will not be funded will also be notified via email.

  1. Administrative and National Policy Requirements

Terms and Conditions: Before applying, applicants should review all the terms and conditions and required certifications which will apply to this award, to ensure that they will be able to comply.  These include:

2 CFR 200, 2 CFR 600, Certifications and Assurances, and the Department of State Standard Terms and Conditions, all of which are available at:  https://www.state.gov/about-us-office-of-the-procurement-executive/. Note the U.S flag branding and marking requirements in the Standard Terms and Conditions.

  1. Reporting

Reporting Requirements: Recipients will be required to submit financial reports and program reports.  The award document will specify how often these reports must be submitted.


If you have any questions about the grant application process, please contact the Public Diplomacy section (PD) at: AntanPASGrants@state.gov.

Note:  We do not provide any pre-consultation for application related questions that are addressed in the APS. Once an application has been submitted, State Department officials and staff — both in the Department and at embassies overseas — may not discuss this competition with applicants until the entire proposal review process is completed.


Guidelines for Budget Justification

Personnel: 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. 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.