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Request for Applications (RFA) Number: CSA-RFA-012 “Safeguarding Women and Girls in Concession Communities Against Gender-Based Violence and Sexual Abuse”

  • Location:
  • Salary:
    negotiable
  • Job type:
    Bid / ToR/RFQ/RFP/EOI
  • Posted:
    3 months ago
  • Category:
    Bid / ToR/RFQ/RFP/EOI
  • Deadline:
    December 24, 2023

USAID Liberia Civil Society Activity (CSA)

Request for Application (RFA)

Issuance Date: November 24, 2023

Closing Date: December 24, 2023 (30 days after issuance date)

Closing Time: 5:00 PM (GMT)

Deadline for questions: December 18, 2023

Subject: Request for Applications (RFA) Number: CSA-RFA-012 Safeguarding Women and Girls in Concession Communities Against Gender-Based Violence and Sexual Abuse”

Reference: Issued Under USAID/Liberia Civil Society Activity

USAID Contract No. 72066922C00003

The Liberia Civil Society Activity (CSA) is a five-year program funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) implemented by DAI Global, LLC (DAI). The goal of the activity is to strengthen Liberians’ ability to advocate for policy reforms, policy implementation, and service delivery improvements through multi-stakeholder coalitions that build feedback loops among the GOL, CSOs, and citizens around reform priorities. The project provides opportunities CSOs to build linkages with their peers and constituencies at national and subnational levels. Through these linkages, CSOs can communicate reform achievements back to their constituencies and engage them in policy dialogue.

Furthermore, the program promotes greater collaboration with Liberian traditional leaders and media outlets to communicate reform priorities to citizens across the country. Better connections with constituencies will not only help the CSA devise best-fit solutions to local problems, but also facilitate behavior change leading to greater civic awareness and citizen participation.

The Civil Society Activity is designed to address these challenges and take advantage of the emerging opportunities described above. The civil society activity will build on significant investments—such as USAID LAVI, USAID Local Empowerment for Government Inclusion and Transparency (LEGIT) Activity, and USAID Media Development Activity—to transform how Liberian civil society advocates for sustainable policy reforms and effective policy implementation. The activity will support the formation of coalitions representing diverse constituencies around key policy priorities, including the implementation of reforms supported by LAVI.

In line with the new focus on fostering a citizen-state compact, CSA will help coalition members extend their reach past Monrovia to provide mechanisms for the collection of citizen feedback. Sustainable coalitions will elevate citizens’ aspirations and concerns through feedback loops, use this input to co-design adaptive advocacy strategies, and communicate policy achievements back to citizens to encourage continued engagement. The activity will also build financial resilience and adaptability of coalition members so they can replicate these approaches beyond the life of the activity.

The Liberia Civil Society Activity has four complementary objectives:

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1) Linkages between CSOs with shared priorities strengthened to increase their impact 2) Civil society’s ability to serve as a conduit for information between constituents and officials enhanced.

3) Supported CSOs’ financial and organizational sustainability enhanced.

4) Ongoing capacity development services available on the local market

In execution of the objective number 1 & 2 above, CSA is soliciting proposals from qualified registered local Liberian organizations who have met the eligibility criteria indicated in Section A below. Successful applicant(s) will be required to implement the program described in section D of this RFA in achieving the program goal and expected output.

Please refer to the Program Description for a complete statement of goals and expected results.

Pursuant to 2 CFR 700.13, it is USAID policy not to award profit under assistance instruments such as grant awards. However, all reasonable, allocable, and allowable expenses, both direct and indirect, which are related to the grant program and are in accordance with applicable cost principles (2 CFR 200 Subpart E for all non-profit organizations, and the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Part 31 for all for-profit organizations), may be paid under the grant.

For non-US organizations, the Standard Provisions for Non-US Nongovernmental Organizations (ADS 303mab) will apply. For US organizations, 2 CFR 200 and the Standard Provisions for U.S. Nongovernmental Organizations (ADS 303maa) will apply. See Annex 1 for the web address links to these Standard Provisions.

CSA is soliciting applications from registered Liberian civil society organizations to implement program for Safeguarding Women and Girls in Concession Communities Against Gender-Based Violence and Sexual Abuse. Applications may include any two of the following geographic locations: Montserrado, Margibi, Grand Bassa, Bong, Lofa and Nimba Counties. Grants are expected to launch in January 2024 and may run for up to one year. The estimated total funds available to implement the Safeguarding Women and Girls in Concession Communities Against Gender-Based Violence and Sexual Abuse is $75,000 USD per award under this RFA and the number of awards anticipated is up to 4, depending on the quality of the applications received as well as the availability of funds. DAI Global, as primary implementer of the USAID Liberia Civil Society Activity reserves the right to fund any or none of the applications submitted.

Selected organizations will form coalition to implement subject program as a joint advocacy team. To formulate the coalition, DAI and its core partner will organize and hold a shared vision workshop for successful applicants as a mean of building relationship and developing a shared vision for the coalition.

To enhance the capacity of CSOs interested in applying, CSA will hold a replicated one-day grants application skills training across 6 counties. Interested applicants are encouraged to participate in the training in the county where your organization is based or located; one representative per organization (preferably the person who will develop the application). Most importantly, if your organization is interested in participating in the training, kindly notify CSA grants team at most

three (3) days prior to the training date indicated below by sending an email to CSA_Grants@dai.com. When notifying CSA about your organization’s interest to participate in the training, please indicate the full name of the person who will represent your organization, his/her telephone number and the name of the county in which you desire to participate. For

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planning purpose, only organizations who duly expressed interest in participating in the training via email to CSA will be allowed to participate in any of the training sessions as scheduled below:

Date County Venue/Hall Monday, December 4, 2023 Montserrado & Bong To be communicated upon RSVP Wednesday, December 6, 2023 Lofa & Margibi To be communicated upon RSVP Friday, December 8, 2023 Nimba & Grand Bassa To be communicated upon RSVP

Note that participation in the training sessions is not a pre-requisite for applying in response to the RFA. It is optional and has no implication on determining successful applicants. However, interest applicants are highly encouraged to participate in the training given that it is intended to explain the terms and conditions of the RFA as well as enhance the skills of applicants in developing strong proposals.

For the purposes of this program, this RFA is being issued and consists of this cover letter and the following components:

Section A – Grant Application Instructions

Section B – Special Grant Requirements

Section C – Selection Process

Section D – Program Description

Annexes

Applications must be received at the USAID Liberia Civil Society Activity offices in Monrovia, Liberia not later than 30 days after the date of issuance indicated at the top of this cover letter at the place designated below for receipt of applications. Applications and modifications thereof shall be submitted in pdf (preferred) or other electronic format to the USAID Liberia Civil Society Activity at CSA_GrantApplications@dai.com .

Award will be made to the responsible applicant(s) whose application(s) offers the best value.

Issuance of this RFA does not constitute an award commitment on the part of DAI, nor does it commit DAI to pay for costs incurred in the preparation and submission of an application. Further, DAI reserves the right to reject any or all applications received. Applications are submitted at the risk of the applicant. All preparation and submission costs are at the applicant’s expense.

Any questions concerning this RFA or a request for the Microsoft Word version of the application templates (Annex 03 and Annex 04 ) should be submitted in writing not later than 5 days prior to the closing date shown above to CSA_Grants@dai.com. Applicants should retain for their records one copy of all enclosures which accompany their application.

Thank you for your interest in USAID Liberia Civil Society Activity.

Sincerely,

Stephen Terravecchia

Chief of Party

USAID Liberia Civil Society Activity

18th Street & Warner’s Avenue

Monrovia, Liberia

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Safeguarding Women and Girls in Concession Communities Against Gender-Based Violence and Sexual Abuse

Table of Contents

Section A – Grant Application Instructions……………………………………………………………………… 5 1. Application Procedure………………………………………………………………………………………………. 5 A. Completion and submission of applications ………………………………………………………… 5 B. Preparation Instructions – Technical……………………………………………………………………. 5 C. Preparation Instructions – Financial and Administrative Documentation ………….. 7 B. Special Grant Requirements…………………………………………………………………………………………. 8 C. Selection Process ………………………………………………………………………………………………………..11 D. Program Description………………………………………………………………………………………………….14 Annex 1: Mandatory Standard Provisions……………………………………………………………………….20 Annex 2: Certifications, Assurances, Other Statements of the Recipient………………21 Annex 3: Application template ………………………………………………………………………………………..22 Annex 5: Budget template ……………………………………………………………………………………………….24 Annex 6: CV Form and BioData Form ……………………………………………………………………………25 Annex 7: Financial Capability Questionnaire …………………………………………………………………..28 Annex 8: Instructions for Obtaining an Unique Entity ID (SAM)……………………………………38 Annex 9: Self Certification for Exemption from Unique Entity ID

(SAM)Requirement………………………………………………………………………39 Annex 10: Application Checklist……………………………………………..………….40

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Section A – Grant Application Instructions

  1. Application Procedure
  2. Completion and submission of applications

Eligibility Requirements

In order to be eligible for consideration by DAI under this RFA, organizations must meet the following eligibility requirements:

  1. Support outcomes and results consistent with and linked to CSA’s outputs and objectives.
  2. Support activities within the CSA target counties.
  3. Be registered organizations (for-profit or non-profit U.S. or Liberian organizations, or local government entities). Individuals are not eligible for grant funding.
  4. Include realistic and reasonable partner contributions (if applicable).
  5. Have background or experience in implementing advocacy related programs

Application Submission Requirements

Applications may be submitted only via email using the address indicated above (CSA_GrantApplications@dai.com)

Applications must include:

  • Completed Application Form (Annex 3)
  • Projected Grant Budget and Budget Notes (Annex 4)
  • CVs and BioData forms of all project team members (Annex 6)
  • Completed Financial Capability Questionnaire and attachments (Annex 7) Statement of liability (part of application form)

Deadlines

Applications must be received at USAID Liberia Civil Society Activity not later than December 24, 2023, at 5:00pm as indicated in the cover letter. Applications and modifications thereof shall be submitted in pdf (preferred) or other electronic format to USAID Liberia Civil Society Activity at CSA_GrantApplications@dai.com .

Late Applications

All applications received by the deadline will be reviewed for responsiveness and programmatic merit according to the specifications outlined in these guidelines and the application format. Section C of this RFA addresses the evaluation procedures for the applications. Applications which are submitted late or are incomplete run the risk of not being considered in the review process.

  1. Preparation Instructions – Technical

Page Limitation: Applications should be specific, complete, presented concisely and shall not exceed 12½ pages (exclusive of annexes).

Applications submitted in response to this RFA must include the following information:

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  1. Application Cover Page

The application must include a cover page that provides general information about the organization including, but not limited to, its email and physical addresses, names and addresses of its head and contact person, purpose/mission of the organization, etc.

  1. Executive Summary

The applicant must provide a summary of the project and any necessary background information and clearly indicate what the project will accomplish, in addition to why and how it will be implemented.

  1. Organization’s Profile and Past Performance

The applicant must provide a history and description of their organization and include information about its past experience in implementing similar activities.

  1. Project Background, Problem Statement and Advocacy Goal The applicant should provide details about the problem that the organization is trying to solve as well as the goal of the advocacy.
  2. Project Results

The applicant should detail what tangible or specific changes in Knowledge, Attitudes, Practices, Behaviors does your organization and or coalitions anticipate that this grant will achieve.

  1. Program Description & Technical Approach

The applicant must specify the steps or activities that would be implemented to deliver the proposed project and which organization(s) or team members will be responsible for each.

  1. Monitoring and Evaluation (Results and Benchmarks)

The applicant should define, to the maximum extent possible at the application stage, results and benchmarks for monitoring the performance towards attainment of program objectives. The results and benchmarks must align with one or more of the relevant CSA objectives/sub-objectives and indicators indicated in section vi of the application template (see Annex 3).

  1. Gender Equity and Social Inclusion

The applicant must describe how the activity will ensure the active participation of women, persons with disabilities and other marginalized communities and how the project activities will affect women and girls, persons with disabilities and other marginalized communities.

  1. Potential for Sustainability

The applicant should describe how the project or its benefits will continue after grant funding ends.

10.Potential Impact

The applicant should describe the potential impact that the proposed activity will have on the problem being solved or addressed.

11.Project Management (Personnel)

The applicant should propose the names of key personnel who will implement the proposed project including their roles and responsibilities. Each applicant should provide, as part of their

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application, detailed curriculum vitae that demonstrate the Key Personnel’s ability to perform the duties outlined in the statement of work and in accordance with the evaluation factors found herein. DAI will evaluate the CV to determine the individual’s knowledge, skills and abilities in the areas listed herein.

  1. Budget

All proposals must include a completed budget; see Section C for more details.

13.Grantee Contribution

Applicants are encouraged, but not required or compulsory, to propose in-kind or financial contributions in their applications. If an applicant does propose to provide contributions (e.g. in-kind items, labor time, venue rental costs, etc.) they must provide sufficient details regarding any such proposed in-kind or supplemental contributions by your organization.

In-kind contributions by grantees are allowable as cost share, in accordance with 2 CFR 200.306. This includes such things as proportionate shares of management and other employee time, equipment, office supplies, and other costs of program operation. Rates for employee services shall be consistent with those paid for similar work in the recipient’s organization. The value of equipment (i.e., computers) shall not exceed the fair market value of equipment of the same age and condition. The basis for determining the valuation of services, equipment and supplies shall be documented in the application.

14.Other material

Applicants may also want to submit other material as attachments along with their applications such as letters of reference, newspaper clippings reporting on the organization’s activities, brochures or other promotional material. Support letters demonstrating partnerships and cooperation with local government are of particular interest. However, attachments should be limited to 5 pages and they will not be returned to the applicants.

  1. Preparation Instructions – Financial and Administrative Documentation
  2. Completed Budget. All budget lines must be clearly linked to specific project activities. Although DAI will support organization staff and operating costs that are necessary for reaching project goals, applicants should direct their resources primarily to project implementation, rather than organization operating costs. See attached Annex 5 for the budget form. Supporting information shall be provided, as necessary, in sufficient detail to allow a complete analysis of each line-item cost.
  3. Completed Financial Capability Questionnaire, which includes: a. Audited Financial Reports: Copy of the applicant’s most recent financial report, which has been audited by a certified public accountant or other auditor satisfactory to DAI. If no recent audit, a “Balance Sheet” and “Income Statement” for the most current and previous fiscal year.
  4. Incorporation Papers or Certificate of Registration and Statute c. Organizational chart
  5. Documentation that the applicant has a satisfactory record of integrity and business ethics. (Documentation may include references from other donors or clients and a summary of previous awards, including type of funding, value, client, etc.)

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  1. Depending on size, type, and complexity of the grant, the following may also specifically be requested at this stage:
  • if applicable – NICRA, or if no NICRA, the profit and loss statements which include detail of the total costs of goods and services sold, by information of the applicant’s customary indirect cost allocation method, together with supporting computations of the basis for the indirect cost allocation method
  • cash flow, description of management structure, and/or oversight procedures, if available copy of applicant’s accounting manual
  • copy of applicant’s operations manual
  • copy of purchasing policies and description of the applicant’s purchasing system (for large grantees)
  1. Unique Entity ID (SAM). There is a mandatory requirement for the applicant to provide a Unique Entity ID (SAM) to DAI, if required per the criteria stated in the paragraph below. Without a Unique Entity ID (SAM), DAI cannot deem an applicant to be “responsible” to conduct business with and therefore, DAI will not enter into an agreement with any such organization. The award of a grant resulting from this RFA is contingent upon the winner providing an Unique Entity ID (SAM) to DAI. Organizations who fail to provide an Unique Entity ID (SAM) will not receive an award.

All U.S. and foreign organizations which receive a grant with a value of $25,000 and above are required to obtain an Unique Entity ID (SAM) prior to signing of the agreement. Organizations are exempt from this requirement if the gross income received from all sources in the previous tax year was under $300,000. DAI requires that grant applicants sign the self

certification statement if the applicant claims exemption for this reason.

For those required to obtain an Unique Entity ID (SAM), see Annex 8- Instructions for Obtaining an Unique Entity ID (SAM)- DAI’S Vendors, Subcontractors and Grantees. For those not required to obtain a Unique Entity ID (SAM), see Annex 9- Self Certification for Exemption from Unique Entity ID (SAM)Requirement

  1. Special Grant Requirements

The applicant shall bear in mind the following special requirements for any grants awarded in response to this RFA:

Separate Account: At DAI’s sole discretion, DAI may require the grantee to establish a separate bank account to house all funds provided under the grant, as well as all interest income.

Permitted Uses of Program Income: The Grantee will inform DAI of any program income generated under the grant and agrees to follow USAID’s disposition requirements for such program income, which is in accordance with 2 CFR 200.307. Program income earned under this agreement shall be applied and used in the following descending order:

  1. Added to funds committed by USAID and the recipient to the project or program, and used to further eligible project or program objectives;
  2. Used to finance the non-Federal share of the project or program; and 3. Deducted from the total project or program allowable cost in determining the net allowable costs on which the federal share of costs is based.

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If the terms and conditions of the award do not specify how program income is to be used, then number 2) (above) shall apply automatically. Grantees who are commercial organizations may not apply Option 1) to their program income.

Use of Funds: Funds provided under any grant awarded shall be used exclusively to implement activities relating to “Safeguarding Women and Girls in Concession Communities Against Gender-Based Violence and Sexual Abuse”. Diversion of grant funds to other uses will result in cancellation of award and retrieval of funds disbursed to the grant recipient.

Reporting Procedures: A description of reporting requirements will be included in the Grant Agreements. The types of reporting required, along with the schedule of reporting, will depend on the grant type and project duration. Reporting forms will be provided to grant recipients. Types of reporting will generally include the following:

  • Program report to be submitted during project implementation according to a schedule determined by DAI. This report will include a description of project activities and progress towards meeting the project goal; problems in project implementation; actions taken to overcome them; and plans on how the next phase of the project will be implemented.
  • Final program report will describe how the project objectives and goals were reached, results of the project, and problems and solutions during implementation. This information should be presented in a manner suitable for presentation to the public.
  • Financial reports will be submitted to DAI according to a schedule described in the grant agreements. Types of financial reports, as well as the schedule of reporting, will depend on the type of grant, length of project, and amount of grant funding. Financial reports will be required in order to receive grant installments. These reports will describe the amount of grant funds spent during the previous period, total amount spent to date, and amount remaining in each budget line item. In addition, all grant recipients are required to submit a detailed Final Financial Report.

Issuance of the final installment of grant funds is contingent upon DAI’s receipt and acceptance of Final Financial and Final Program Reports.

Project Monitoring: DAI staff will monitor projects in terms of both programmatic and financial aspects. Grant recipients will be expected to facilitate monitoring by making relevant information available to DAI staff.

Restrictions: The Grant Funds provided under the terms of this Agreement shall not be used to finance any of the following:

  1. Goods or services which are to be used primarily to meet military requirements or to support police or other law enforcement activities,
  2. Surveillance equipment,
  3. Equipment, research and/or services related to involuntary sterilization or the performance of abortion as a method of family planning,

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  1. Gambling equipment, supplies for gambling facilities or any hotels, casinos or accommodations in which gambling facilities are or are planned to be located,
  2. Activities which significantly degrade national parks or similar protected areas or introduce exotic plants or animals into such areas, or
  3. Establishment or development of any export processing zone or designated area where the labor, environmental, tax, tariff, and/or safety laws of the country in which such activity takes place would not apply.
  4. Pharmaceuticals,
  5. Pesticides,
  6. Logging equipment,
  7. Luxury goods (including alcoholic beverages and jewelry),
  8. Establishing or expanding any enterprise that will export raw materials that are likely to be in surplus in world markets at the time such production becomes effective and that are likely to cause substantial injury to U.S. producers,
  9. Activities which would result in the loss of forest lands due to livestock rearing, road construction or maintenance, colonization of forest lands or construction of dams or other water control structures,
  10. Activities which are likely to have a significant adverse effect on the environment, including any of the following (to the extent such activities are likely to have a significant adverse impact on the environment):

i.) Activities which may lead to degrading the quality or renewability of natural resources.

ii.) Activities which may lead to degrading the presence or health of threatened ecosystems or biodiversity;

iii.) Activities which may lead to degrading long-term viability of agricultural or forestry production (including through use of pesticides).

iv.) Activities which may lead to degrading community and social systems, including potable water supply, land administration, community health and well-being or social harmony.

  1. Activities which are likely to involve the loss of jobs in the United States due to the relocation or expansion outside of the United States of an enterprise located in the United States, or
  2. Activities which the Grantee is aware are reasonably likely to contribute to the violation of internationally or locally recognized rights of workers,
  3. Activities to support the production of agricultural commodities for export from Liberia when such commodities would directly compete with exports of similar United States agricultural commodities to third countries and have a significant impact on United States exporters.

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Other: As mentioned, grants will be made available to qualified Liberian civil society organizations in grant amounts ranging up to $75,000 USD (all grants will be distributed in USD or local currency equivalent). Payment will be made according to a monthly or installment schedule, and in no event will more than 90% of the total agreed budget be disbursed prior to receiving and approving the Final Financial and Final Program Report.

  1. Selection Process

Within 5 working days of the deadline for submitting applications, a review panel will convene. The review panel will include relevant technocrats from CSA who shall be voting members and non-voting to include representatives from USAID and CSA Core Partners (CENTAL , Accountability Lab and NAYMOTE) who shall serve as observers for the grant selection process. Throughout the evaluation process, DAI shall take steps to ensure that members of the review panel do not have any conflicts of interest or the appearance of such with regard to the organizations whose applicants are under review. An individual shall be considered to have the appearance of a conflict of interest if that person, or that person’s spouse, partner, child, close friend or relative works for or is negotiating to work for or has a financial interest (including being an unpaid member of a Board of Directors) in any organization that submitted an application currently under the panel’s review. Members of the panel shall neither solicit nor accept gratuities, favors, or anything of monetary value from parties to the awards.

All applications that meet the application requirements will be reviewed by the review panel. Verification of the application submission requirements will be conducted at the USAID Liberia Civil Society Activity Headquarters by its grants staff.

If suitable applications are received, one or more awards will be made (at DAI’s discretion) within 21 working days of the review panel meeting provided that the awardee(s) furnish(es) DAI with all the required documentation as itemized in Section A of this RFA.

The applications will be evaluated according to the evaluation criteria set forth below. To the extent necessary (if award is not made based on initial applications), negotiations may be conducted with each applicant whose application, after discussion and negotiation, has a reasonable chance of being selected for award. Award will be made to responsible applicants whose applications offer the best value.

Awards will be made based on the ranking of applications by the review panel according to the evaluation criteria and scoring system identified below.

Successful applicants will be selected based on how they articulate their methodologies and approaches for working with national and local stakeholders on agreeable guidelines and indicators for monitoring and reporting on the issues covered by this RFA.

Applicant must demonstrate awareness of both formal and informal gender-based violence and sexual abuse occurring in concession areas in Liberia. They must also understand and have working experience with the RFA’s theme and the proposed communities, including knowledge of Multi-Stakeholders’ Platforms (MSPs) with whom to collaborate. Successful applicants will show the most effective strategy and approach. Applicants should also show a track record of collaborative engagements with some of the potential stakeholders for the activities that will be generated by the implementation of this RFA: mobilization and engagements with women groups and other stakeholder organizations working on this issue in concession communities, national, county, and district level government institutions, concession stakeholders and legal authorities, community leaders, and those who advocate against sexual abuse and violence against women.

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:

The following criteria should be adjusted as necessary to suit project needs.

  1. Organization’s Profile, Past Performance, and Capabilities

The applicant’s past experience and capabilities in conducting projects of a similar nature. Very good = 15 points; good = 10 points; average = 5 points; poor = 0 points

  1. Project Background: Problem Statement and Advocacy Goal

How clear and achievable are the problem statement and advocacy goal? Very good = 5 points; good = 4 points; average = 3 points; poor = 0 points

  1. Project Result

What tangible or specific changes in knowledge, attitudes, practices, and/or behaviors does your organization and or coalitions anticipate that this grant will achieve

Very good = 5 points; good = 4 points; average = 3 points; poor = 0 points

  1. Program Description and Technical Approach

Is the design innovative, creative and realistic?

Very good = 30 points; good = 15 points; average = 5 points; poor = 0 points

  1. Monitoring and Evaluation

Alignment of proposed monitoring and evaluation activities with CSA indicators

Very good = 15 points; good = 10 points; average = 5 points; poor = 0 points

  1. Gender Equity and Social Inclusion

To what extent does the proposed project include gender equity and social inclusion? Very good = 10 points; good = 7 points; average = 5 points; poor = 0 points

  1. Potential for Sustainability

Is the project or its benefits likely to continue after grant funding ends?

Very good = 5 points; good = 4 points; average = 3 points; poor = 0 points

  1. Potential Impact on Safeguarding Women and Girls in Concession Communities Against Gender-Based Violence and Sexual Abuse:

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Is the project likely to Safeguard Women and Girls in Concession Communities Against Gender-Based Violence and Sexual Abuse in Liberia?

Is there evidence of buy-in and involvement?

Very good = 5 points; good = 4 points; average = 3 points; poor = 0 points

  1. Project Management (Personnel).

Is the cost reasonable in terms of the expected results?

Very good = 10 points; good = 7 points; average = 5 points; poor = 0 points

DAI and USAID reserve the right to fund any or none of the applications received

Signing of Grant Agreements

Upon USAID concurrence of the applicant, a Grant Agreement will be prepared. After DAI and the successful applicant have signed the Grant Agreement, DAI will provide training on financial management and reporting on grant funds. All reporting and contractual obligations will be explained to the grant recipients. Before receiving the first grant installment, all DAI may require grant recipients must open a separate bank account as the means by which grant funds will be transferred from DAI to the grant recipient.

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  1. Program Description

Title: Safeguarding Women and Girls in Concession Communities Against Gender- Based

Violence and Sexual Abuse

Thematic Window: Security / Human Rights

CSA Project Activities Locations: Bong, Nimba, Lofa, Grand Cape Mount, and Grand Bassa Counties

Organization (s): Civil Society Organizations (both national and sub-national)

Performance Period: One year

Background

Preventing and responding to gender-based violence (GBV) and sexual abuse is a matter of human rights, justice, equity, and equality. These issues are rooted in structural gender inequalities, patriarchic culture, and power imbalances. Economic insecurity also increases a person’s vulnerability to violence and exploitation due to the lack of financial resources needed to meet their most basic needs. As a result, safety and economic security are inextricably linked for GBV and sexual abuse survivors.

In February 2023, the USAID Liberia Civil Society Activity (CSA) selected Security as a third thematic window in addition to Health and Education. The Activity commissioned a Political Economy Analysis (PEA) research focused on natural resource concession areas to define the drivers of conflict in proximate communities and the effects such conflict has on human rights, communities, the private sector, and government stakeholder interests. Specifically, the PEA sought to identify key opportunities and the most effective approaches that civil society coalitions may use to prevent conflicts, reduce the potential for violence, promote human rights, and facilitate platforms through which concessions and communities can recognize the mutual benefits of conflict-reduced coexistence.

The PEA found that those who have experienced GBV, sexual exploitation, abuse, harassment, intimidation, or other violations around concessions are often unwilling to escalate their issues to any authority—government, unions, or businesses —largely due to a lack of trust in these groups to handle cases appropriately and sensitively. This is further compounded by a lack of capacity to respond, a patriarchal culture, and fear of retaliation and victim-blaming.

Based on this finding from the PEA research, CSA will award grants to multiple Liberian civil society organizations (CSOs) to support one or more of the five categories below:

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1) Map incidences of GBV, sexual abuse, harassment, and other violations 2) Provide safe spaces to report cases of GBV, sexual abuse and harassment (with civil society support to protect anonymity).

3) Provide training to youth to become aware of, and techniques to prevent, GBV, sexual abuse, and harassment.

4) Collaborate with concession companies to develop anti-sexual abuse and violence frameworks.

5) Support civil society monitoring of cases of GBV and sexual abuse through official channels.

The purpose of this Request for Applications (RFA) is to seek applications from CSOs to advocate for the creation, adoption, and implementation of safeguarding activities, policies, and frameworks around concession communities to protect women and girls from GBV and sexual abuse as aligned with concession operations. The resulting grants will fund monitoring, mapping and documenting incidents of GBV and sexual abuse in concession areas and collaborate with local and subnational government bodies to track cases properly, ensure legal redress where necessary and advocate for appropriate policy reform.

Goal of the RFA

The goal of this RFA is to advance gender equality, human rights, and promote social inclusion in concession communities by strengthening legal avenues and CSO advocacy for the prevention and resolution of GBV cases. This initiative aims to reduce violence and sexual abuse impacting women and girls through strategic engagement of existing networks of women and advocacy groups at the national, county, and community levels. These groups will play a pivotal role in actively monitoring, documenting, and reporting on sexual misconduct and abuse incidents in concession areas.

Program Strategy

Successful applicants will be organized into a coordinated coalition of CSOs with identical or similar thematic focus across the selected counties. The proposed activities will also leverage the influence of an existing network of national, county, and community-level CSOs to become active participants in researching, monitoring, and reporting on conflict flashpoints around concession activities, including sexual exploitation and GBV.

As part of the CSA grants program, selected organizations will undergo capacity assessments. This will entail a comprehensive evaluation of both their institutional and advocacy capacities. The completion of CSA institutional capacity assessment will determine the organization’s readiness and areas in need of improvement in fulfilling the grant objectives. Simultaneously, the CSA advocacy capacity assessment will examine the organization’s proficiency in championing causes, influencing policy, and creating impactful advocacy campaigns. These assessments are pivotal to tailoring interventions, providing a baseline from which growth and progress can be measured. Additionally, they will guide the subsequent support that CSA offers, ensuring that capacity-building measures are aligned with each organization’s unique needs.

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CSA will provide the required technical support to Awardees/Grantees to further define and strengthen their methodologies and strategies for engaging with their stakeholders. CSA will also work along with other CSO partners to co-create the guidelines, scorecards, and other reporting/monitoring mechanisms by which to communicate findings and advocate in concession communities.

Evaluation Criteria

Successful applicants will be selected based on how they articulate their methodologies and approaches for working with national and local stakeholders on agreeable guidelines and indicators for monitoring and reporting on the issues covered by this RFA.

Applicants must demonstrate awareness of both formal and informal GBV and sexual abuse occurring in concession areas in Liberia. They must also understand and have working experience with the RFA’s theme and the proposed communities, including knowledge of Multi-Stakeholders’ Platforms (MSPs) with whom to collaborate. Successful applicants will show the most effective strategy and approach. Applicants should also show a track record of collaborative engagements with some of the potential stakeholders for the activities that will be generated by the implementation of this RFA: mobilization and engagements with women groups and other stakeholder organizations working on this issue in concession communities, national, county, and district level government institutions, concession stakeholders and legal authorities, community leaders, and those who advocate against sexual abuse and violence against women.

Description of Program Activities

The applications/proposals for the Fixed Amount Award should adequately and concisely describe how the Awardee will work with other CSOs in a coalition to undertake the activities in the following areas of concentration, and how proposed activities will contribute to the goal of the RFA. Based on self assessment and capacity, each applicant should select from one or more of the following concentration areas in Table 1. The following activities under each area are illustrative. Applicants are therefore encouraged to include other creative ideas in their applications that also contribute to the advocacy strategy and goal. Proposals should also provide clear strategies for mitigating the risk of endangering or inadvertently harming GBV and sexual abuse survivors. Applicants may submit proposals to work in one or more of the following counties: Bong, Nimba, Lofa, Grand Cape Mount, and Grand Bassa Counties. As men are key allies in efforts to reduce instances of GBV and sexual abuse, applications should demonstrate how the applicant’s outreach activities will address both men and women and if it requires a different approach based on the participant’s gender.

TABLE 1: RFA Concentration Areas & Illustrative Activities

Concentration AreaIllustrative Activities
Awareness:

Enhance

understanding of sexual misconduct’s impacts in

• Where appropriate, document through print, audio or video platforms cases of GBV and abuse.

• Conduct national and/or local radio talk shows to communicate key information to stakeholders and partners about the project and advocacy campaign.

 

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concession

communities

• Share documentaries with stakeholders at the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Liberia (MoGCSP) , Liberia National Police (LNP) and applicable subnational government entities and hold discussions on how findings can be used to help reduce sexual violence against women.

• Increase community awareness of avenues for redress and protection mechanisms developed by CSOs.

Monitoring: Ensure accountability in handling and

reporting of sexual misconduct cases

•Develop a monitoring checklist to gather evidence / data to support the advocacy strategy and service delivery outcomes. •Gather data on incidences of sexual exploitation and abuse using monitoring checklists.

•Develop and publicize a complaints hotline or text message system for reporting sexual violence and abuse.

• Analyze findings and launch reports.

Advocacy:

Strengthen Policy Framework on GBV, inequality,

discrimination,

sexual exploitation and abuse

• National and sub-national level inception meetings on existing laws/policies and/or guidelines on GBV and sexual abuse in concession communities.

• Hold consultative meetings with policymakers, including relevant authorities at the MoGCSP, LNP, women

organizations in concession communities, and CSOs, including the media.

• Hold policy dialogue involving key stakeholders to review findings and advocacy points developed through monitoring. • Organize and hold concession-community dialogues to address pressing issues discovered through monitoring

Inclusivity: Ensure inclusive

representation and support

• Work with local women’s organizations, cooperatives, support groups and other community entities in concession communities for more targeted support.

• Design a strategy to provide targeted support for women facing intersectionality with vulnerabilities like disability, class, or sexuality

Research &

Training: Conduct research and build capacity to address and understand

sexual misconduct challenges

• Research and report on the nature and causes of abuse in concession communities, available formal and inform redress mechanisms, and recommendations/advocacy strategy.

• Advocate for creation and implementation of anti- abuse and violence mechanisms at concession companies to ensure that cases are appropriately addressed.

• Collaborate with concessions and state / non-state actors to build their capacity to address incidences of abuse and violence.

 

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Private sector

engagement:

Foster collaborative approaches to

tackle gender

issues around

concession sites

• Support company policies according to international standards for eliminating violence and harassment against women. • Organize dialogues and workshops involving concession entities to jointly address the issues.

 

Expected Results

Projects are expected to contribute in part or in whole to the outcomes below and deliverables outlined in Table 2.

Expected Outcomes:

  • Enhanced understanding and transparency around the impacts of GBV and sexual abuses in concession communities.
  • Strengthened accountability mechanisms in handling and reporting of GBV and sexual abuse cases.
  • Improved policies and action plans against GBV and sexual abuse following robust community advocacy.
  • Increased representation and support for GBV and sexual abuse victims, including those with additional vulnerabilities.
  • Empowered concession communities with the knowledge and skills to address and understand GBV sexual abuse challenges.
  • Collaborative approaches between concession communities, private sector, and civil society to tackle GBV and sexual abuse issues.
  • Reduced cases of GBV and sexual abuse and a safer environment for women and girls in concession communities.

TABLE 2: RFA Illustrative Schedule of Deliverables

1 Pre-Intervention Deliverables
1.1 Completion of CSA institutional capacity assessment
1.2 Completion of CSA advocacy capacity assessment
1.3 Co-created sexual misconduct engagement strategies with key stakeholders, including local government agencies
1.4 Co-created community engagement strategies detailing collaboration with women groups, CSOs, and relevant authorities
1.5 Inclusivity strategies detailing methods to ensure gender balance, disability inclusion, and targeted support for intersectional vulnerabilities in all related activities
2 Intervention Deliverables
2.1 Community Engagement
2.1.1 Community Engagement Manual for CSOs/CBOs detailing best practices in addressing sexual misconduct in concession communities
2.1.2 Periodic community engagement reports reflecting findings from sexual misconduct monitoring and stakeholder discussions
2.2 Advocacy & Awareness

 

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2.2.1 Documented engagements with concession stakeholders, appropriate government agencies, and women groups on roll-out of pilot monitoring framework.
2.2.2 Advocacy with the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Liberia National Police, and parents on findings from sexual misconduct monitoring.
2.2.3 Advocacy campaigns to promote the adoption and development of anti-sexual misconduct frameworks in concession companies
2.2.4 Media/public information and prevention campaigns planned and executed, detailing prevention techniques and issues and redress mechanisms concerning sexual misconduct in concession communities
2.3 Monitoring & Reporting
2.3.1 Processes/mechanisms to capture real-time data concerning sexual misconduct incidents, redress outcomes, and support systems
2.3.2 Standardized sexual misconduct monitoring scorecard to assess the prevalence and response to sexual misconduct in concession communities
2.3.3 Enhanced feedback loops among key stakeholders including victims, women organizations, local CSOs, LNP, MoCSP, and concession companies
2.3.4 Media campaign kit including materials curated for public information campaigns on sexual misconduct awareness, prevention, and support
3 Documentation & Reporting Deliverables
3.1 Real-time data generated on sexual misconduct and violence at concession companies and shared among key stakeholders including concession companies, Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Liberia National Police, women organizations, and CSOs.
3.2 Comprehensive research reports on the nature, causes, and redress mechanisms for abuse in concession communities.
3.3 Documented adherence to inclusivity standards in all implemented activities and responses to sexual misconduct cases
3.4 Enhanced feedback loops among women organizations, local CSOs, LNP, MoCSP, and concession companies.
3.5 Documented improvements in community perceptions and behaviors concerning gender dynamics and sexual misconduct in select concession communities.

 

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Annex 1: Mandatory Standard Provisions

Mandatory Standard Provisions for US Nongovernmental Recipients: https://www.usaid.gov/sites/default/files/documents/303maa.pdf

or

Mandatory Standard Provisions for Non-US Nongovernmental Recipients: https://www.usaid.gov/sites/default/files/documents/303mab.pdf

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Annex 2: Certifications, Assurances, Other Statements of the Recipient

In accordance with ADS 303.3.8, DAI will require successful grant applicants to submit a signed copy of the following certifications and assurances, as applicable:

  1. Assurance of Compliance with Laws and Regulations Governing Non Discrimination in Federally Assisted Programs (Note: This certification applies to Non-U.S. organizations if any part of the program will be undertaken in the United States.)
  2. Certification Regarding Lobbying (This certification applies to grants greater than $100,000.)
  3. Prohibition on Assistance to Drug Traffickers for Covered Countries and Individuals (ADS 206)
  4. Certification Regarding Terrorist Financing, Implementing Executive Order 13224
  5. Certification Regarding Trafficking in Persons, Implementing Title XVII of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013 (Note: This certification applies if grant for services required to be performed outside of the United States is greater than $500,000. This certification must be submitted annually to the USAID Agreement Officer during the term of the grant.)
  6. Certification of Recipient

In addition, the following certifications will be included Part II – Key Individual Certification Narcotics Offenses and Drug Trafficking (Note: Only as required per ADS 206 for Key Individuals or Covered Participants in covered countries.)

Part III – Participant Certification Narcotics Offenses and Drug Trafficking (Note: Only as required per ADS 206 for Key Individuals or Covered Participants in covered countries.)

Part IV – Representation by Organization Regarding a Delinquent Tax Liability or a Felony Criminal Conviction

Part V – Other Statements of Recipient

Part VI – Standard Provisions for Solicitations

(Note: Parts V & VI – Are included in the grant file as part of the grant application.)

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Annex 3: Application Form

Kindly click on the icon below to access the application form (Annex 3)

Annex 3 – Application

Template

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Annex 5: Budget

Kindly click the icon below to access the grant budget and budget notes template:

Annex – 5 Budget and

Budget Notes Template

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Annex 6: CV Form and BioData Form

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ANNEX 6

Curriculum Vitae

Proposed position in the project:

Name (First, Middle, Last):

Citizenship:

Education:

Name and location of institutionMajor(s) or Degree(s) obtained:

 

Language proficiency – indicate proficiency on a scale of 1 (poor) to 5 (native):

LanguageReadingSpeakingWriting

 

Membership of NGOs or other professional bodies:

Key skills and qualifications relevant to the project (e.g. computer literacy, etc.):

Employment history:

Position

Title

Employer’s name and addressDates of employmentShort description

of tasks performed

From

(month,

year)

To

(month,

year)

 

Other relevant information: (e.g. publications, seminars/courses etc.):

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Kindly click on the icon below to access the biodata form

Employee Biodata

Form

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Annex 7: Financial Capability Questionnaire

Accounting System and Financial Capability Questionnaire For DAI Grant Recipients

The main purpose of this questionnaire is to understand the systems adopted by your institution for financial oversight and accounting of grant funds, especially those provided through the U.S. Federal Government. The questionnaire will assist DAI program and accounting staff to identify the extent to which your institution’s financial systems match the requirements of the U.S. Federal Government. This information will help the program staff work with you and your institution to review any problem areas that may be identified; thereby avoiding any problems or oversights which would be reportable should an audit of the program or institution be required.

The questionnaire should be completed by the financial officer of your institution in collaboration with DAI program staff. This questionnaire is informational only and will not have any bearing on the agreement to support your institution based on the technical merit of the proposal. Therefore, please answer all questions to the best of your knowledge.

While 2 CFR 200 does not cover awards to non-U.S. recipients, DAI shall rely on the standards established in that regulation in determining whether potential non-U.S. recipients are responsible to manage Federal funds. A determination shall be made on the potential recipient’s ability, or potential ability, to comply with the following USAID and federal-wide policies:

1) 2 CFR 200 Subpart D (Financial and Program Management);

2) 2 CFR 200 Subpart D (Property Standards);

3) 2 CFR 200 Subpart D (Procurement Standards); and

4) 2 CFR 200 Subpart D (Performance and Financial Monitoring and Reporting).

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SECTION A: General Information

Please complete this section which provides general information on your institution. Name of Institution:

Name and Title of Financial Contact Person:

Name of Person Filling out Questionnaire:

Mailing Address:

Street Address (if different)

Telephone, Fax, Email (if applicable)

Enter the beginning and ending dates of your institution’s fiscal year:

From: (Month, Day) To: (Month, Day)

SECTION B: Internal Controls

Internal controls are procedures which ensure that: 1) financial transactions are approved by an authorized individual and are consistent with U.S. laws, regulations and your institution’s policies; 2) assets are maintained safely and controlled; and 3) accounting records are complete, accurate and maintained on a consistent basis. Please complete the following questions concerning your institution’s internal controls.

  1. Does your institution maintain a record of how much time employees spend on different projects or activities?

Yes: No:

  1. If yes, how?

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  1. Are timesheets kept for each paid employee?

Yes: No:

  1. Do you maintain an employment letter or contract which includes the employee’s salary? Yes: No:
  2. Do you maintain inventory records for your institution’s equipment? Yes: No: (if no, explain)
  3. How often do you check actual inventory against inventory records?
  4. Are all financial transactions approved by an appropriate official?

Yes: No:

  1. The person responsible for approving financial transactions is: ________________ Title: ______________
  2. Is the person(s) responsible for approving transactions familiar with U.S. Federal Cost principles as described in 2 CFR 200 Subpart E?

Yes: No:

  1. Does your institution use a payment voucher system or some other procedure for the documentation of approval by an appropriate official?

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Yes: No:

  1. Does your institution require supporting documentation (such as original receipts) prior to payment for expenditures?

Yes: No:

  1. Does your institution require that such documentation be maintained over a period of time?

Yes: No:

If yes, how long are such records kept?

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  1. Are different individuals within your institution responsible for approving, disbursing, and accounting of transactions?

Yes: No:

  1. Are the functions of checking the accuracy of your accounts and the daily recording of accounting data performed by different individuals?

Yes: No:

  1. Who would be responsible for financial reports? ________________________________________

SECTION C: Fund Control and Accounting Systems

Fund Control essentially means that access to bank accounts and/or other cash assets is limited to authorized individuals. Bank balances should be reconciled periodically to the accounting records. If cash cannot be maintained in a bank, it is very important to have strict controls over its maintenance and disbursement.

An Accounting System accurately records all financial transactions and ensures that these transactions are supported by documentation. Some institutions may have computerized accounting systems while others use a manual system to record each transaction in a ledger. In all cases, the expenditure of funds provided by the USAID-funded program must be properly authorized, used for the intended purpose, and recorded in an organized and consistent manner.

  1. Does your institution maintain separate accounting of funds for different projects by: Separate bank accounts:

A fund accounting system:

  1. Will any cash from the grant funds be maintained outside a bank (in petty cash funds, etc.)? Yes: No:

If yes, please explain the amount of funds to be maintained, the purpose and person responsible for safeguarding these funds.

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  1. If your institution doesn’t have a bank account, how do you ensure that cash is maintained safely?
  2. Does your institution have written accounting policies and procedures? Yes: No:
  3. How do you allocate costs that are “shared” by different funding sources, such as rent, utilities, etc.?
  4. Are your financial reports prepared on a:

Cash basis: Accrual basis:

  1. Is your institution’s accounting system capable of recording transactions, including date, amount, and description?

Yes: No:

  1. Is your institution’s accounting system capable of separating the receipts and payments of the grant from the receipts and payments of your institution’s other activities?

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Yes: No:

  1. Is your institution’s accounting system capable of accumulating individual grant transactions according to budget categories in the approved budget?

Yes: No:

  1. Is your institution’s accounting system designed to detect errors in a timely manner? Yes: No:
  2. How will your institution make sure that budget categories and/or overall budget limits for the grant will not be exceeded?
  3. Are reconciliations between bank statements and accounting records performed monthly and reviewed by an appropriate individual?

Yes: No:

  1. Briefly describe your institution’s system for filing and keeping supporting documentation.

SECTION D: Audit

The grant provisions require recipients to adhere to USAID regulations, including requirements to maintain records for a minimum of three years to make accounting records available for review by appropriate representatives of USAID or DAI, and, in some cases,

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may require an audit to be performed of your accounting records. Please provide the following information on prior audits of your institution.

  1. Is someone in your institution familiar with U.S. government regulations concerning costs which can be charged to U.S. grants (2 CFR 200 Subpart E “Cost Principles” )?

Yes: No:

  1. Do you anticipate that your institution will have other sources of U.S. government funds during the period of this grant agreement?

Yes: No:

  1. Have external accountants ever performed an audit of your institution’s financial statements?

Yes: No:

If yes, please provide a copy of your most recent report.

  1. Does your institution have regular audits?

Yes: No:

If yes, who performs the audit and how frequently is it performed?

  1. If you do not have a current audit of your financial statements, please provide this office with a copy of the following financial statements, if available:
  2. A “Balance Sheet” for the most current and previous year; and
  3. An “Income Statement” for the most current and previous year.
  4. Are there any circumstances that would prevent your institution from obtaining an audit? Yes: No:

If yes, please provide details:

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CHECKLIST AND SIGNATURE PAGE

DAI requests that your institution submit a number of documents along with this completed questionnaire. Complete this page to ensure that all requested information has been included.

Complete the checklist:

Copy of your organization’s most recent audit is attached.

If no recent audit, a “Balance Sheet” “Income Statement” for the most current and previous fiscal year.

All questions have been fully answered.

An authorized individual has signed and dated this page.

Incorporation Papers or Certificate of Registration and Statute is attached. Information describing your institution is attached.

Optional:

Organizational chart, if available is attached (if applicable).

The Financial Capability Questionnaire must be signed and dated by an authorized person who has either completed or reviewed the form.

Approved by:

_________________________

Print Name

_________________________

Signature

__________________________

Title Date _____________

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Annex 8: Instructions for Obtaining an Unique Entity ID (SAM) – DAI’S Vendors, Subcontractors and Grantees

Form 3.9 Attachment

A – Instructions for Obtaining an Unique Entity ID.docx

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Annex 9: Self Certification for Exemption from Unique Entity ID (SAM) Requirement

Form 3.10 – Self

Certification for Exemption from Unique Entity ID Requirement (2).pdf

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Annex 10: Application Checklist

Before submitting your application, please check to make sure the following are included:

The application is submitted in electronic format

Budget is included (Annex 5)

In the budget, the applicant’s contribution is identified (if applicable)

The CVs and Biodata Forms are included (Annex 6)

The statement of liability is signed and stamped (cover page of application form – Annex 3) Completed Financial Capability Questionnaire (Annex 7)

Audited Financial Reports: Copy of the applicant’s most recent financial report, which has been audited by a certified public accountant or other auditor satisfactory to DAI. If no recent audit, a “Balance Sheet” and “Income Statement” for the most current and previous fiscal year.)

Incorporation Papers or Certificate of Registration and Statute

Organizational Chart (Optional)

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