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Notice of Funding Opportunity: 2025 YSEALI Seeds for the Future

Notice of Funding Opportunity: 2025 YSEALI Seeds for the Future

Deadline: 17-Jul-24

The Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Mission to ASEAN of the U.S. Department of State announces an open competition for a cooperative agreement to develop and implement a Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) Seeds for the Future Grant Competition pending the availability of funding.

The YSEALI Seeds for the Future Program is one of YSEALI’s many components and will be entering its 11th year. Since 2015, the program has awarded more than $2,500,000 to emerging leaders across ASEAN through the YSEALI Seeds for the Future grant competition held across Southeast Asia.

YSEALI (yseali.state.gov) is the U.S. government’s signature initiative to engage emerging leaders in Southeast Asia. The program aims to create a network of young Southeast Asian leaders who work across national borders to solve common problems. Through a variety of programs and engagements, YSEALI seeks to build the leadership capabilities of youth in the region, strengthen ties between the United States and Southeast Asia, and nurture a community of leaders who work across borders to solve shared issues.

Responding to priorities from youth in the ASEAN region, YSEALI programs focus on four themes (i.e., Civic Engagement, Economic Empowerment and Social Entrepreneurship, Education and Environmental Issues).

Funding Information
  • Total available funding: $300,000
  • Award amounts: award may range from a minimum of $200,000 to a maximum of $300,000
  • Length of performance period: 16 months (October 1, 2024 – January 31, 2026)
  • Number of awards anticipated: One
  • Anticipated program start date: October 2024
  • While working closely with the U.S. Mission to ASEAN and the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs Office of Public Diplomacy, the recipient shall develop a robust program for the 2025 YSEALI Seeds for the Future with responsibilities as follows:
    • Provide an online site to receive and manage subgrant participant applications, and answer questions from applicants. Provide virtual resources (e.g. webinars) to help applicants prepare.
    • Collaborate with USASEAN to develop scoring criteria. Review and score all applications and provide a shortlist (maximum 40 projects). USASEAN will have substantial involvement in final participant selection.
    • Work together with USASEAN to notify winning teams of approved proposals.
    • Design and execute a two to three-day kick-off workshop in early 2025 at an ASEAN country for the selected participants, taking ownership of all logistics and programming. The goal of this workshop is to bring together all project participants (maximum 3 members per project), train them on subgrant expectations (e.g. budgeting, administration, communication, reporting, work plan, digital storytelling), and allow them to collaborate and improve their work plans.  All logistics expenditures and travel costs for participants and trainers must be covered by the overall program budget.  (e.g. flights, lodging, per diem, venue).  The kick-off workshop should also have a cultural site visit and also include YSEALI swags to give out to the team members.
    • Pair subgrantees with mentors that will help them with their project implementation throughout the program.
    • Distribute funds to winning projects by January 2025 as follows: sixty percent of funding after submitting a detailed timeline and work plan (including marketing strategy for the project); thirty-five percent of funding after submitting a mid-term report (including direct and indirect impact metrics, both qualitative and quantitative); five percent of funding after submitting the final report with detailed project results.
    • Oversee the implementation of projects and monitor subgrants by actively corresponding with the subgrant participants on at least a weekly basis. Collect monthly, mid-term and final reports.  Track budget usage.
    • Provide USASEAN with quarterly and final program and financial reporting. The program reports should summarize the progress on the subaward projects, identifying key milestones, successes, and challenges. Include both qualitative and quantitative success metrics to measure the impact of each project on their community.
    • Collect media (photos/videos) and project stories to amplify on YSEALI website and social media through a robust and detailed communication and social media plan.
    • Ensure that all program content and media adhere to the YSEALI and Department of State branding guidelines, including US flag and the YSEALI Seeds logo.
    • Develop a “lessons learned” for future Seeds programs.
    • The proposal should include workshop follow-on activities such as virtual collaborative work, projects funded through small seed grants, or ongoing mentorship. The follow-on activity should be included in the monitoring and evaluation plan. For example, design virtual engagement opportunities for a minimum once per two months post kickoff workshop for the grantees to keep connected with other participants, an implementing partner, and U.S. Mission to ASEAN as a way for them to connect and learn from each other and help run their projects throughout the year.
    • The proposal should include a pre and post workshop survey to measure the overall effectiveness of the workshop as well as any changes to the participants’ knowledge of the workshop topic.
    • The concepts of leadership, giving back, and strengthening a Southeast Asian/ASEAN identity based on shared values and shared challenges should be integrated into the program.
    • Workshop speakers/facilitators/mentors should be citizens of the United States, an ASEAN member country, or Timor-Leste.
    • The recipient is expected to develop syllabus materials and an event program with participant and speaker biographies, as well as design banners, backdrops, and other printed materials. The recipient is expected to design a digital engagement strategy for workshop participants and social media audiences, including live video or live online engagement during the program.
    • No new website specific to the event should be created or launched. Domain, hosting and build costs will not be covered.
Participants and Audiences
  • The recipient will coordinate with U.S. Mission to ASEAN and with the U.S. embassies in ASEAN member states and Timor-Leste to recruit and select up to 25 projects. Participants will be between the ages of 18 to 35.
  • Recipient should provide a diverse range of applicants from inside and outside capital cities, as appropriate.  Application criteria should include the name of the city from where the applicant originates.
  • All participants must be proficient in written and spoken English. All programs must include participants from all ten ASEAN member countries and Timor-Leste.
  • The workshop will be conducted in English.
  • The recipient will be responsible for arranging and using cooperative agreement funds to cover all elements related to participant and staff travel including international and domestic flights, visas, travel to and from airports, visas, accommodations, per diem, meals during the program, insurance, etc.
Eligibility Criteria
  • YSEALI is open to young leaders ages 18 to 35 who are both citizens and residents of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) member countries (Brunei, Burma, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and Vietnam) or Timor-Leste.
  • The following organizations are eligible to apply:
    • U.S. public and private educational institutions
    • U.S. not-for-profit organizations, including think tanks
    • Foreign public and private educational institutions
    • Foreign not-for-profit organizations, including think tanks

For more information, visit U.S. Mission to ASEAN.

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