U.S. Embassy Democracy Commission Small Grants Program

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Notice of Funding Opportunity


U.S. Department of State

Embassy of the United States of America in Chisinau, Moldova

Public Affairs Section

Funding Opportunity Number: PAS-CHISINAU-FY18-02

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance Number: 19.900

CFDA Title: AEECA PD Programs

Program: Democracy Commission Small Grants Program

Announcement Type: Open Competition

Announcement Date: December 11, 2017

Deadline for submission of proposals: February 15, 2018 18:00

Agency Contact: Stelian Rusu, rusus@america.gov


The Democracy Commission Small Grants Program was initiated in 1994 as a flexible mechanism for U.S. embassies to support initiatives that contribute to open and competitive political and economic systems and the protection of human rights.  The Democracy Commission Grants Program has been implemented in Moldova since 1996, providing support to Moldovan NGOs and mass media to carry out projects throughout Moldova.

The U.S. Embassy invites Moldovan non-profit and non-governmental organizations to submit project proposals to the Democracy Small Grants Program. This program supports projects that foster the development and education of civil society in Moldova. It is a focused yet flexible mechanism that provides seed money for unique and sustainable projects, particularly projects that help develop the capacity of non-governmental organizations in Moldova. The selection of the projects is based on the applicants’ ability to demonstrate concrete achievements that can show impact in a given field or in a specific community.

Project proposals must address at least one of the following themes:

Restore confidence in the European path by tackling corruption and state capture while supporting real reforms and tangible economic development for the Moldovan people; adoption of European and international standards and institutional capacity building; promotion of democratic reforms and strengthening democratic institutions.

Bridge divides in Moldovan society by promoting unity, civic engagement and grassroots demand for accountable governance, and independent voices; build a strong and effective civil society that can support accountability and democracy; Civic awareness and engagement that promotes Moldova’s identity as a multi-ethnic state and reinforces connections rather than divisions.

Support a whole and secure Moldova to reduce the strategic risk posed by territories outside of state control:  promote confidence building measures and people-to-people contacts that can help bridge divides between the two sides.

Promotion of diversity and tolerance particularly through youth empowerment: The programs may include activities promoting tolerance and respect of ethnic and religious groups, sexual minorities, persons with disabilities, etc.

The U.S. Embassy administers similar programs through various sections of the Mission, including USAID and International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Section (INL).  Applicants should familiarize themselves with their funding opportunities, so as to avoid redundancy.

This funding opportunity is authorized by the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961.


The U.S. Embassy will consider awarding grants ranging from $1,000 up to $25,000. Any requests outside of these limits will not be considered. Please read section C. Eligibility Information about requirements and criteria for different funding levels.

Total budget for the competition: $100,000.

Assistance Instruments: Grants or Fixed Amount Awards

Maximum period of performance:  12 months

Anticipated award date: March 1, 2018


Eligibility is limited to not-for-profit organizations (NGOs, CSOs, Think-Tanks) officially registered in the Republic of Moldova.

American or other donor country organizations and individuals are not eligible for grants under this program.  The organizations without Moldovan registration can apply only as partners through an eligible organization.

Additional Eligibility criteria by funding level:

Level I: $1,000-$4,999

Only organizations without a grant history or organizations without prior grants from the U.S. Embassy or other U.S. Government Agencies may apply for this funding level.

Level II: $5,000-$14,999

Applicant organizations requesting grants above $5,000 must have:

  • At least one successfully implemented grant from other funding organizations
  • At least 3 years of experience
  • Annual Activity Report for 2016 (Containing both narrative and Financial information)

Level III: $15,000-$25,000

Applicant organizations requesting grants above $15,000 must have:

  • At least one successfully implemented grant from the U.S. Embassy
  • A functioning board of directors
  • Proven national visibility (Program will check internet presence, social profiles and media coverage for information about the activities implemented by the applicant)
  • A publicly accessible Annual Activity Report for 2016 (Containing both narrative and Financial information)

Other general criteria:

  • Organizations should not have implemented another Democracy Commission grant from the U.S. Embassy in the last 12 months.
  • Grants are made on a one-time basis. No repeat grants will be issued.
  • Organizations should have existing, or demonstrate the capacity to develop, active partnerships with in-country entities and relevant stakeholders including the public sector, private sector, and civil society, as relevant to the proposed program objectives.
  • Organizations may form consortia and submit a combined proposal. However, one organization should be designated as the lead applicant.
  • Organizations may submit only one proposal.
  • Public Affairs Section reserves the right to request additional background information on applicants that do not have previous experience administering federal grant awards, and these applicants may be subject to limited funding on a pilot basis.
  • Please note: the Department of State prohibits profit under its assistance awards to for-profit or commercial organizations. No funds will be paid as profit to any recipient.  Profit is defined as any amount in excess of allowable direct and indirect costs.  The permissibility of costs incurred by commercial organizations is determined in accordance with the provisions of the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) at 48 CFR Part 31, Cost Accounting Standards, and Part 31 Contract Cost Principles and Procedures.  Program income earned by the recipient must be deducted from the total project or program allowable cost in determining the net allowable costs on which the federal share of costs is based.
  • Please note: no entity listed on the Excluded Parties List System in the System for Award Management (SAM) is eligible for any assistance or can participate in any activities under an award in accordance with the OMB guidelines at 2 CFR 180 that implement Executive Orders 12549 (3 CFR Part 1986 Comp., p. 189) and 12689 (3 CFR Part 1989 Comp., p. 235), “Debarment and Suspension.” All applicants are strongly encouraged to review the Excluded Parties List System in SAM (sam.gov) to ensure that no ineligible entity is included.


The Democracy Commission Small Grants Program cannot fund:

  • Organizations with affiliation to elected officials, political parties, or religious groups;
  • Humanitarian or charitable activities, including direct social services to populations;
  • Fundraising campaigns;
  • Career development;
  • Political or partisan activities;
  • Scientific research;
  • Individual trips abroad;
  • Trade activities; or
  • Health projects.


Cost Sharing or Matching


Applicants are not required to include funding from other donors.  However, applications that include additional in-kind and/or cash contributions from non-U.S. Government sources will be more competitive, since cost-sharing demonstrates a strong commitment to the planned activities and greater cost effectiveness.

Cost sharing may be a certain percentage or amount, or may be in the form of contributions of specified items or activities (e.g., provision of equipment).



Phase One: Concept Paper (Summary)

Applicants are requested to submit a one-page concept paper (Microsoft Word or PDF) in English describing the project idea and a summary budget. A committee will review these concept papers and invite organizations with interesting ideas to submit a full proposal.

Note: Unsolicited attachments will not be read and should not be submitted for this award.

Deadline for submitting Concept Papers: January 19, 2018 18:00

Please send the Concept electronically to MoldovaGrants@state.gov including the Funding opportunity Number and Name of the Organization in the subject of your email.   

Example:  Concept PAS-CHISINAU-FY18-02 Asociatia Moldova

The Embassy will notify the applicants within one week whether the Embassy is interested in receiving a full proposal from the applicant.

Phase Two: Full Project Proposal

The Embassy will invite the applicants with interesting ideas to submit a full project proposal

Deadline for submission of full proposals (invited applicants only) February 15, 2018, 18:00

Do not archive documents in RAR, or other archive formats. The documents should be attached as individual files and sent in one email before the deadline. Do not send the application package more than one time. Multiple submissions will lead to project disqualification.

It is the responsibility of all applicants to ensure that proposals have been submitted on time the emails specified.  The U.S. Embassy bears no responsibility for data errors during the transmission or conversion processes.

  1. Complete Proposal Requirements (only for organizations invited to submit a full proposal)

This section outlines requirements for the proposal package and also includes detailed instructions on budget, budget narrative, and monitoring and evaluation plan submission.

All materials must be written in English.

We encourage the applicants to use the downloadable application form and project format.  If Internet access is limited, please contact us to arrange an alternative way of receiving the application package.

A complete application must contain the following mandatory elements:

  1. Signed SF424 Application Coversheet Form (pdf format) (All Funding Levels)
  2. Project Format in .doc format  (original doc format) (All Funding Levels)
  3. Detailed Budget (Excel Spreadsheet) (All Funding Levels)
  4. Budget Narrative (All Funding Levels)
  5. Monitoring and Evaluation plan (level II and Level III)
  6. Project Timeline (All Funding Levels)
  7. CVs of the paid staff and experts (All Funding Levels)
  8. Most Recent Annual Activity Report (Level II and III)

Other Submission Requirements

Please use only Microsoft Word to fill out the project form.  Using OpenOffice, LibreOffice, or other programs might break the format and render the forms unusable.  If you do not have Microsoft Office software, feel free to use the computers at the American Resource Center (find address on the Embassy’s website) or any other public access center (e.g., Novateca’s nationwide library network, Internet cafés, etc.).

Please contact us at rusus@america.gov if you experience technical problems or are unable to submit an electronic version of the application.

Organizații vizate: Ambasada SUA |

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