USAID/AMANAT Annual Program Statement seeking Applications from Afghan CSOs and NGOs
Deadline: 31 December 2019
In Afghanistan, Management Systems International (MSI) is the prime contractor implementing the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID)–funded “Afghanistan’s Measure for Accountability and Transparency” (AMANAT) project.
Through this Annual Program Statement (APS), AMANAT will assist international and Afghan nongovernmental and private sector organizations by supporting innovative and targeted activities that are intended to reduce or prevent corruption in the delivery of public services.
All proposed activities shall directly relate to the achievement of the objectives of the AMANAT program. Applicants are encouraged to propose the best mix of approaches and activities to achieve the results envisioned under the proposed program. Grant projects should include innovative, targeted and localized approaches, especially those that mainstream gender or engage women, as well as encourage collaborative work among several civil society organizations (CSOs) in different regions or working in different sectors. They are looking for project activities that address particular corruption problems and are likely to yield effective results in reducing corruption. Just conducting public awareness campaigns, advocacy campaigns or oversight initiatives related to corruption is not enough.
This APS will be held open for submissions for a six-month period. Grants will be provided to capable and responsible non-partisan legally-registered international and Afghan CSO and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs); consortia of local CSOs, research organizations, universities, business associations and the mass media. Capacity building will be provided by AMANAT to local organizations to help them perform the work funded by their grants, as well as to manage them appropriately.
Key Areas of Interest
The areas listed below highlight some of the topics for which AMANAT is interested in receiving grant applications under this APS. These areas have been identified as examples of where more innovative ideas are needed to support citizen, mass media, and private sector engagement in the fight against corruption. All ideas should seek to have an impact on corruption in the delivery of public services, such as health, education, pensions, licensing and permitting, land distribution, refugee matters, disability services, etc. Other innovative ideas are welcome as well.
- Youth-focused anti-corruption programs that make youth more aware of corruption and gets them engaged in fighting corruption. Projects need to appeal to a youth audience and provide them with incentives to oppose corruption. Activities could take the form, for example, of a film festival of short videos made by young people about their personal experiences with corruption and how to stand up for their rights, school debates, and sports events with anticorruption themes, among others.
- Simple e-governance apps for citizens – Develop simple apps that can be used by non-literate populations or by those who do not have smartphones, for example, using SMS, text or Interactive Voice Response (IVR) apps to register citizen complaints, blow the whistle on corrupt officials, support citizen watchdogs, get information from the local government on service delivery (fee schedules, budget expenditures, etc.), and find out how to stand up for your rights.
- Monitor local budgets – Participate in local budget hearings, monitor how the budget is used to pay for public services, and publicize the findings to ensure transparency and accountability for the use of government funds. The oversight data can be added to a central open data bank that is accessible to the public.
- Build a culture of public integrity through anti-corruption education in schools and universities – Teaching young people about public integrity, anti-corruption and the rule of law gives them the knowledge, skills and behaviors to fight corrupt practices and establish new behavioral norms and values for society. Activities can focus on building the capacity of teachers to integrate anticorruption into the existing school curriculum and developing new resource materials for primary school and higher grades.
- More active engagement of businesses and business associations – Develop activities that will engage the private sector more effectively in fighting corruption. This might involve business associations in developing and monitoring “integrity pacts” signed between companies and government agencies to halt corrupt practices in public procurements. It could also support the establishment of “business review boards” that would oversee how public tenders are developed and implemented. Projects could also focus on how permitting, licensing and public procurement processes can be simplified.
- Complaint management – Hotlines and simple text-based apps can be developed to allow citizens to register their corruption complaints. Then, a process can be implemented to pass these complaints to the relevant government office for resolution and feedback. An open access dashboard can be developed to display to citizens how the government is responding to such complaints. For complaints that are not resolved within a specified amount of time, more active approaches can be designed to incentivize resolution.
- AMANAT expects that grants provided through this mechanism will range in value from US$10,000 to US$250,000, subject to funds availability.
- To be eligible for grants over $100,000, organizations need to demonstrate significant past experience conducting projects of similar size and complexity, plus they need to employ rigorous financial systems that exercise appropriate controls over projects with larger funding. If applicants do not have such past experience, they are encouraged to apply, but at lower funding levels.
In developing innovative program approaches, AMANAT strongly encourages applicants to consider and apply the following cross-cutting practices:
- Mentor and support other CSOs
- Innovate and build on past successes
- Explore joint initiative / coalition / partnership arrangements
- Gender integration
The APS solicits applications for interventions which will be implemented in Kabul and other provinces throughout Afghanistan.
- Any non-partisan legally-registered international and Afghan CSO and Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs); consortia of local CSOs, research organizations, universities, business organization or the mass media is eligible to submit applications under this APS. For-profit companies are eligible to be prime recipients of a grant but may NOT receive any profit or fee under a grant award. Organizations may submit applications representing their firm or in partnership with other local organizations. If applications are done through a partnership or consortium, there must be one lead organization identified that would be responsible for managing the overall activity.
- The following are not eligible for grant support: individuals and government entities; political parties or organizations; organizations that advocate, promote, or espouse anti-democratic policies or illegal activities; faith-based organizations pursuing exclusive religious purposes or whose programs and services discriminate based on religion, and whose main objective of the grant is of a religious nature; and any entity whose name appears on the:
- List of Parties Excluded from Federal Procurement and Non-Procurement Programs
- Specially Designated Nationals List
- The list established and maintained by the 1267 Committee with respect to individuals, groups, undertakings and other entities associated with Al-Qaida
How to Apply
Applications should be sent via email at the address given on the website.
For more information, please visit http://www.acbar.org/rfq/9369.jsp