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U.S. Mission to Pakistan seeking Applications for engaging Religious Communites for Peace

U.S. Mission to Pakistan seeking Applications for engaging Religious Communites for Peace

Deadline: 29 May 2020

The U.S. Embassy Islamabad Public Affairs Section’s (PAS) Community Engagement Office (CEO) is pleased to announce an open competition for awards, contingent on funding availability, through the Public Diplomacy Grants Program.

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This Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) seeks proposals identifying innovative ways to mitigate radical and extremist narratives in Pakistan by engaging religious communities and schools. Building on the recent Government of Pakistan religious school reform initiative, the projects should also support partnerships with relevant stakeholders to reduce violent extremist and radical ideologies through a process of integration, capacity building, critical thinking, and structured dialogue to build resilient and empowered communities collaboratively. The funds awarded through this NOFO should strengthen local institutions/bodies, organizations, and communities to build self-sustaining capacity to implement long-term interventions to reduce violent extremism and ultimately contribute to a peaceful, stable and prosperous Pakistan.

Project Goal

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To engage leadership and students of religious institutions/schools from different religious denominations through innovative and sustainable approaches to counter religious and political fallacies that contribute to violent extremism and hate speech. Through this engagement, religious institutions/schools will take on a more active role in contributing or conducting activities that lead to a more diverse, tolerant, and peaceful society and a stable and prosperous Pakistan.

Project Objectives

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This project must achieve the above goal through any or all three objectives:

Objective 1: Increase the collaboration between the parallel education systems (mainstream and religious) to reduce isolation and address stereotypes, through capacity building and structured dialogue that supports peaceful coexistence and acceptance of diversity through rigorous sensitization and awareness efforts
Objective 2: Increase coordination and collaboration among religious seminaries and government institutions in responding to violent extremism and conflict.
Objective 3: Increase involvement and recognition of religious institutions/schools’ leadership, their peers, and their followers who contribute to the prevention of radicalization and extremist mindsets through positive learning experiences and building narratives that prevent and counter extremist ideologies.
Project proposals may include the following (and/or propose other) strategies to realize their project objectives:

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At individual level:
Prevent and counter violent extremist opinions and ideologies
Build and enhance positive social networks
Reduce political/ sectoral grievances
Improve social/economic integration
At community level:
Help community members understand and identify violent extremism.
Differentiate and value both mainstream and religious education for a prosperous future
Build the capacity of community members to identify/engage with at-risk individuals
Build the capacity of positive and influential members or leaders of the community to credibly counter violent extremist ideologies
Create environments that are accepting of minority groups and other sects
Promote policies that support tolerance and diversity
Strengthen government capacity to curtail violent extremism
Help build and strengthen religious institutions/schools as progressive and peaceful organizations
Harness media’s power to challenge negative stereotyping around religious institutions/schools and to build positive imagery of religious institutions/schools as peace catalysts using positive role models.
Recognize the role that women and female-friendly religious institutions/schools can play in reducing violent extremism
Funding and Duration Information

The award floor is one hundred fifty thousand dollars $150,000; the award ceiling is three hundred thousand dollars $300,000.
Up to two years.
Participants and Audiences

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Religious institutions/schools’ leadership and their students, both male and female (if feasible) and their counterparts in the mainstream education system and relevant government institutions. Geographic scope is nationwide; applicants may apply with proposals covering one or more provinces or regions. Applicants are encouraged to include participants from rural, semi-rural and remote areas as appropriate.

Eligibility Criteria

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Eligibility is open to international and Pakistan-based non-profit organizations. Organizations may sub-award or sub-contract with other entities, but only one non-profit organization can be the prime recipient of the award. Pakistan government entities are not eligible to apply.
For-profit entities are not eligible to be the prime recipient of an award under this NOFO. When subawarding or sub-contracting with other entities, the responsibilities of each entity must be clearly defined in the proposal. The applicants must submit proof of their non-profit status with their proposal submission (e.g. proof of 501(c) (3) status, Pakistan NGO license). Applications that do not include proof of non-profit status will not be considered for an award. Individuals are not eligible for an award under this NOFO. U.S.-based or registered organizations should provide proof of registration to operate in Pakistan or have a documented agreement with a partner organization registered to operate in Pakistan.
Please ensure:

The application satisfies all requirements listed in this funding opportunity.
The proposal clearly addresses the goals and objectives of this funding opportunity.
All documents are in English.
All budgets are in U.S. dollars.
All pages are numbered.
All documents are formatted to 8 ½ x 11 paper.
All Microsoft Word documents are single-spaced, 12-point Times New Roman font, with a minimum of 1-inch margins.
All applicant authorized signatures are provided where indicated on the various, required forms.
For more information, visit https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/view-opportunity.html?oppId=326274

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