Ambassador’s Fund for Cultural Preservation 2019 – Large Grants Program Funding Opportunity (DEADLINES: Round 1: December 21, 2018; Round 2: February

Ambassador’s Fund for Cultural Preservation 2019 – Large Grants Program Funding Opportunity (DEADLINES: Round 1: December 21, 2018; Round 2: February 15, 2019)

  1. Summary: The U.S. Embassy Ouagadougou is accepting project abstracts and full applications for the U.S. Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP) 2019 Large Grants Program.  The deadline for submitting project abstracts is December 11, 2018.  For abstracts that advance to Round 2, the submission deadline for full project applications is February 01, 2019.  Full implementation of the AFCP 2019 program is pending the availability of FY 2019 funds and an approved congressional spend plan.  End Summary.

 

  1. AFCP Large Grants Program Objectives: The Department of State established the AFCP at the request of the Congress in Conference Report 106-1005 accompanying H.R. 4942 (October 26, 2000).  The Senate report on this bill noted that the preservation of cultural heritage “offers an opportunity to show a different American face to other countries, one that is non-commercial, non-political, and non-military.”  The projects recommended for funding under this program shall advance U.S. foreign policy goals and demonstrate American leadership in the preservation and protection of cultural heritage in support of prosperity and stability around the world.

 

  1. Competition Format: This opportunity consists of two application rounds: Round 1 (Project Abstract) and Round 2 (Full Application).  During Round 1, applicants shall submit project abstracts to the Embassy.  After the technical review, rating, ranking of abstracts, Washington DC will select the first round of approvals.  If approved to advance to round 2, the embassy shall submit a full project application on the applicant’s behalf.  AFCP Large Grants Program funding determined after round 2 is an is an internal competition among embassies for funding, not an open competition as in round 1.

 

  1. Award Information:
  • Funding Instrument Type: Grant
  • Program Authorization: “Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act of 1961” (P.L. 87-256 Sec 102(b)(5), as amended)
  • CFDA Number: 19.025
  • Floor on Amount of Individual Awards: US $200,000 per project
  • Ceiling on Amount of Individual Awards: US $800,000 per project

In FY 2018, awards made through this program ranged from US $200,000 to US $600,000.

  1. Foreign Policy Areas: AFCP will recommend for funding those projects that address one or more of the following strategic goals:
  • Promote American leadership
  • Renew America’s competitive advantage for sustained economic growth by increasing the global skills of Americans and expanding the reach of U.S. businesses and institutions
  • Counter foreign government disinformation and foster alternatives to radicalization through international exchange programs
  • Promote American values, such as tolerance and respect for cultural diversity

 

  1. Funding Areas: The AFCP Large Grants Program supports the preservation of major ancient archaeological sites, historic buildings and monuments, and major museum collections that are accessible to the public and protected by law in the host country.  Appropriate project activities may include:
  • Preventive conservation (addressing conditions that damage or threaten the site)
  • Stabilization (reducing the physical disturbance [settling, collapse, etc.] of a site)
  • Conservation (addressing damage or deterioration to a collection or sites)
  • Consolidation (connecting or reconnecting elements of a site)
  • Anastylosis (reassembling a site from its original parts)
  • Restoration (replacing missing elements to recreate the original appearance of a site, usually appropriate only with fine arts, decorative arts, and historic buildings)

 

  1. Funding Priorities: Applications for projects that directly support one or more of the following will receive additional consideration in FY 2019:
  • U.S. treaty or bilateral agreement obligations, such as cultural property agreements
  • U.S. Embassy Integrated Country Strategy (ICS) goals
  • Disaster risk reduction for cultural heritage in disaster-prone areas
  • Post-disaster cultural heritage recovery
  • Preservation of inscribed World Heritage sites

 

  1. Special Note Regarding Sites and Objects that have a Religious Connection: The establishment clause of the U.S. Constitution permits the government to include religious objects and sites within an aid program under certain conditions.  For example, an item with a religious connection (including a place of worship) may be the subject of a cultural preservation grant if the item derives its primary significance and is nominated solely on the basis of architectural, artistic, historical, or other cultural (not religious) criteria.

 

  1. Eligible Project Applicants: The Center defines eligible project applicants as reputable and accountable non-commercial entities, such as non-governmental organizations, museums, ministries of culture, or similar institutions and organizations that are registered and active in SAM.gov and able to demonstrate that they have the requisite experience and capacity to manage projects to preserve cultural heritage.  Embassies must vet applicants for eligibility, suitability, and reputable performance in cultural preservation or similar activities and ensure that the applicants are able to receive U.S. federal assistance.  Embassies must consider any country-specific sanctions that might impede project implementation before submitting applications.

 

  1. Ineligible Activities and Unallowable Costs:  AFCP does not support the following activities or costs, and the Center will deem applications involving any of these activities or costs ineligible:
  • Preservation or purchase of privately or commercially owned cultural objects, collections, or real property, including those whose transfer from private or commercial to public ownership is envisioned, planned, or in process but not complete at the time of application
  • Preservation of natural heritage (physical, biological, and geological formations, paleontological collections, habitats of threatened species of animals and plants, fossils, etc.)
  • Preservation of hominid or human remains
  • Preservation of news media (newspapers, newsreels, radio and TV programs, etc.)
  • Preservation of published materials available elsewhere (books, periodicals, etc.)
  • Development of curricula or educational materials for classroom use
  • Archaeological excavations or exploratory surveys for research purposes
  • Historical research, except in cases where the research is justifiable and integral to the success of the proposed project
  • Acquisition or creation of new exhibits, objects, or collections for new or existing museums
  • Construction of new buildings, building additions, or permanent coverings (over archaeological sites, for example)
  • Commissions of new works of art or architecture for commemorative or economic development purposes
  • Creation of new or the modern adaptation of existing traditional dances, songs, chants, musical compositions, plays, or other performances
  • Creation of replicas or conjectural reconstructions of cultural objects or sites that no longer exist
  • Relocation of cultural sites from one physical location to another
  • Removal of cultural objects or elements of cultural sites from the country for any reason
  • Digitization of cultural objects or collections, unless part of a larger, clearly defined conservation or documentation effort
  • Conservation plans or other studies, unless they are one component of a larger project to implement the results of those studies
  • Cash reserves, endowments, or revolving funds (funds must be expended within the award period [up to five years] and may not be used to create an endowment or revolving fund)
  • Costs of fund-raising campaigns
  • Contingency, unforeseen, or miscellaneous costs or fees
  • Costs of work performed prior to announcement of the award unless allowable per 2 CFR 200.458 and approved by the Grants Officer
  • International travel, except in cases where travel is justifiable and integral to the success of the proposed project
  • Travel or study outside the host country for professional development
  • Individual projects costing less than $200,000
  • Independent U.S. projects overseas

 

  1. Ineligible Project Applicants: AFCP does not award grants to individuals, commercial entities, or past award recipients that have not fulfilled the objectives or reporting requirements of previous AFCP awards.

 

  1. Application and Submission Information: The application process for the AFCP Large Grants Program consists of two rounds: Round 1 (project abstract) and Round 2 (full application).  S. embassies in eligible countries shall submit completed Round 1 abstracts electronically on behalf of applicants through the AFCP application website. The Center considers each abstract on its own merit.  If invited to submit full applications to Round 2, the AFCP Program Office will include detailed instructions on how to do so in the Round 2 invitations.

 

  1. Application Closing Dates: Round 1 abstracts:  Friday, December 11, 2018; Round 2 applications:  Friday, February 1, 2019.

 

  1. Project abstracts must include or address the following (Note: The list includes items required by 2 CFR 200 and State Department federal assistance regulations):
  • Full and complete Application for Federal Assistance (SF-424), including Budget Information for Non-Construction Programs (SF-424A), Assurances for Non-Construction Programs (SF-424B), and, if applicable, Disclosure of Lobbying Activities (SF-LLL)
  • Project basics, including title, project dates, location, and site
  • Project applicant information, including contact information, DUNS Number, and SAM registration status
  • Special designations (national monument, World Heritage Site, etc.)
  • Law(s) protecting the site or collection (citations only)
  • Project purpose that summarizes the project objectives and desired results
  • Statement of importance highlighting the historic, architectural, artistic, or cultural (non-religious) values of the site or collection
  • Rationale for U.S. support, written by the embassy, explaining: 1) why it is in the interests of the U.S. government to fund the project and; 2) how it relates to Integrated Country Strategy (ICS) goals, existing bilateral agreements, or other U.S. foreign policy objectives
  • At a minimum and required, five (5) high quality digital images (JPEGs) or audiovisual files that convey the nature and condition of the site or collection and show the urgency or need for the proposed project (collapsing walls, water damage, etc.)
  • Embassy Front Office (FO) clearance

 

  1. Cost Sharing and Other Forms of Cost Participation: There is no minimum or maximum percentage of cost participation required for this competition.  When an applicant offers cost sharing, it is understood and agreed that the applicant must provide the amount of cost sharing as stipulated in its application and later included in an approved agreement.  The applicant will be responsible for tracking and reporting on any cost share or outside funding, which is subject to audit per 2 CFR 200.  Cost sharing may be in the form of allowable direct or indirect costs.

 

  1. DUNS Number and SAM Registration: Applicants must have a Dun & Bradstreet Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number, a NATO Commercial and Government Entity (NCAGE) code, and be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) prior to submitting full applications. It is mandatory for applicants to have a DUNS and SAM.gov registration unless they meet one of the exemptions specified in the Federal Assistance Directive (http://a.m.state.sbu/sites/OPE/FA/SitePages/Policy.aspx).  Note: The DUNS/NCAGE/SAM.gov process can take weeks/months, especially for non-U.S. applicants.  Applicants may acquire DUNs numbers at no cost by calling the dedicated toll-free DUNs number request line at 1-866-705-5711 or by requesting a number online at http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform. Non-U.S. based applicants may request a NCAGE code at https://eportal.nspa.nato.int/AC135Public/scage/CageList.aspx. SAM is the official, free on-line registration database for the U.S. government.  gov replaced the Central Contractor Registration (CCR), the Online Representations and Certifications Application (ORCA), and the Excluded Parties List System (EPLS) in July 2012.  SAM.gov collects, validates, stores, and disseminates data in support of federal agency acquisition and grant award mission.  Registration in SAM is free: http://sam.gov

 

  1. Project Abstract Screening (Round 1): Washington D.C. will screen all project abstracts for technical eligibility based on the objectives, priorities, requirements, ineligible activities, and unallowable costs contained in this funding opportunity.  Washington D.C. may deem abstracts ineligible if they do not fully adhere to the criteria stated herein.  It will forward the technically eligible abstracts to the relevant regional bureaus for comment.  Washington D.C. may forward project abstracts for advisory peer review to other federal agency personnel with relevant experience.  On or around December 21, 2018, the Center will notify embassies of the Round 1 results and invite a subset to submit full applications.

 

  1. Full Application Review and Selection (Round 2): Washington D.C. will convene a technical advisory panel of subject matter experts from elsewhere within the U.S. government to review the applications and provide comment.  It will also forward the applications to the relevant regional bureaus for comment.  Washington D.C. contacts will submit a comprehensive funding recommendation to the Department’s Bureau of Budget and Planning (BP) and request that BP make funds available to the embassies through the Department’s regional bureaus for the recommended AFCP projects.  Washington D.C. may consult with the Senate Committee on Appropriations prior to making the funding recommendation.

 

  1. Period of Performance of AFCP 2019 Grants: The period of performance begins upon the Grants Officer’s signature and the awardee’s countersignature on a Notice of Award.  A Notice of Award notifies an award recipient that an award has been made and that funds are available for use during the specified award period.  Failure to produce a complete Notice of Award package may result in the nullification of the award.

 

  1. Administrative and National Policy Requirements: Notices of Award for AFCP projects incorporate terms and conditions subject to OMB Uniform Guidance (2 CFR 200): Cost Principles, Audit, and Administrative Requirements for Federal Awards (2 CFR Chapter I, Chapter II, Part 200, et al.).  All applicants should familiarize themselves with these requirements.  Other requirements and guidance will appear as program-specific provisions or be incorporated by reference in the Notice of Award.

 

  1. Performance and Deliverables: AFCP 2019 award recipients must submit performance progress, federal financial status reports, and final reports on time as specified in the Notice of Award.  ECA encourages embassies to document AFCP milestones via cable and in the Mission Activity Tracker.  The Center will compile this information in a report to Congress and in a published annual report of completed projects.

 

  1. Disclaimer: Issuance of this funding opportunity does not constitute an award commitment on the part of the AFCP program or the U.S. government.  Washington D.C. reserves the right to waive program formalities and to reduce, revise, or increase application budgets in accordance with the needs of the program and the availability of funds.