Annual Public Affairs Grant Program

The Public Affairs Section (PAS) of the U.S. Embassy Bishkek is pleased to announce funding is available as specified below through the Embassy’s Public Diplomacy Grants program.  Applications may be submitted at any time for consideration on a rolling basis up until the deadline of August 23, 2020.  Awards will be made pending the availability of funds.

Background:  The Public Affairs Section (PAS) at the U.S. Embassy Bishkek is soliciting proposals for grants from:

  • Kyrgyz Republic-registered not-for-profit civil society organizations (CSOs), non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and associations, think tanks, and academic institutions,
  • Kyrgyz Republic individuals, and
  • U.S non-governmental organizations (NGO), educational institutions, and individuals seeking funding to support cultural and/or educational programs in the Kyrgyz Republic and partnering with Kyrgyz Republic-registered organizations.

Applicants should pay close attention to the Public Affairs Section’s goals, priorities, and target audiences when developing their proposals. Due to the volume of applicants and inquiries, PAS does not accept letters of intent, concept papers, or requests for meetings prior to application.

Public diplomacy programming includes communications with international audiences, cultural programming, media strengthening, educational exchanges, expanding academic capacity, civil society engagement, and education including English language instruction, and STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math).

Goals of PAS Grants Program:

PAS invites proposals for programs that support one of the following goals:

1) Counterterrorism and Security – PAS-Bishkek is seeking proposals that strengthen regional security and stability and transnational threats in one of the following ways:

  • Improve communication and coordination between civil society, local communities, and the Government of the Kyrgyz Republic to prevent rise and/or combat violent extremism;
  • Develop skills that provide alternative opportunities to individuals who may be drawn to radicalization to increase in their economic and societal integration within their communities;
  • Increase resilience of at-risk groups to the allure of extremist messages and recruitment attempts through messaging about the dangers of violent extremism;
  • Encourage positive dialogue about methods for threat reduction;
  • Increase in content that educates about the risks of recruitment;
  • Educate populations on human trafficking.

2) Promoting Business and Free Markets – PAS-Bishkek is seeking proposals that strengthen entrepreneurship and small business development initiatives through development of skills needed for a high-tech economy, particularly among youth, women, and under-represented groups;

3) Promoting Democracy and Stability – PAS-Bishkek is seeking proposals that support a more inclusive and accountable democracy in one of the following ways:

  • Strengthen civil society and independent media organizations capacity through facilitating connections, relationships, and opportunities to collaborate;
  • Educate citizens on rights and protections;
  • Increase effectiveness of citizen oversight of political processes and government, regulations, budget processes, and activities;
  • More effective collaboration between citizens and government bodies resulting in improved policy formation, governance, and service delivery;
  • Better access to civically-relevant information for Kyrgyz citizens through better quality and more of locally produced, locally relevant, and balanced media products.

Project proposals may include the following or other innovative strategies to realize the goals above:

  • Peace building programs that promote tolerance, leadership development, youth and women’s empowerment, diversity and inclusion. Such projects should strengthen ties between the United States and the Kyrgyz Republic or on a regional basis for Central Asian countries;
  • Arts, Culture, and Sports programs that deepen ties between Kyrgyz Republic and the U.S. and improve understanding about U.S. culture and values;
  • English Language programs that promote the use and spread of the English language to increase professional level of government officials, civil society including disadvantaged students and to provide better access to English-language sources of information;
  • Educational programs that focus on raising awareness and knowledge, training soft and professional skills;
  • Media strengthening and literacy programs that develop Kyrgyz language media, fact-checking and research for journalists or media consumers, capitalize on social media use for greater transparency, and/or expand such programs to rural and remote areas of the Kyrgyz Republic;
  • Innovation, entrepreneurship, and economic empowerment programs that develop innovative ideas involving STEAM, space, social entrepreneurship, adaptive technologies, rural economic development, economic diversification, women’s empowerment, corporate social responsibility, access to finance, and support for entrepreneurs.

All project proposals should demonstrate through the Theory of Change (ToC) template how they contribute to one of the above stated goals. The ToC is a specific type of methodology for planning, participation, and evaluation that provides a comprehensive description and illustration of how and why a desired change is expected to happen in a particular context. To learn more about the ToC model please visit https://usaidlearninglab.org/lab-notes/what-thing-called-theory-change.

Priority Areas:

Priority Audiences:

Projects should engage Public Affairs’ key audiences, including youth (14-25 years old), entrepreneurs/innovators, journalists, women, other marginalized groups, civil society organizations, and/or non-profit organizations.

In addition to the specific requirements listed above by program area, all proposals must:

  1. Clearly indicate the primary activity area for consideration;
  2. Focus on the key public diplomacy audiences and specified goals;
  3. Engage underserved geographic regions and communities in Kyrgyz Republic, as well as non-elite schools (if possible);
  4. Establish interactions or linkages with U.S. counterparts for greater sustainability after the grant ends (if possible);
  5. Clearly delineate how elements of their program will have a multiplier effect and be sustainable beyond the life of the grant;
  6. Provide a traditional and/or social media plan for raising awareness of program activities and outcome, if applicable;
  7. Identify the cities/districts in which activities will take place;
  8. Identify specific outcomes to be achieved by the end of the grant period;
  9. Identify any tools (surveys, beneficiary interviews, focus groups, etc.) that will be developed for Monitoring and Evaluation purposes.

Applicants must also demonstrate competency to manage all financial aspects of the project, including participant costs and transparent arrangements of sub-grant relationships with partner organizations, if applicable.

Brief instruction how to find the APS on Grants.gov:

  1. Open grants.gov site
  2. Click on SEARCH GRANTS tab
  3. Search by opportunity # STATE-BISHKEK-PAS-20-0002
  4. Open the APS
  5. Click on RELATED DOCUMENTS tab
  6. Download APS instruction, application, TOC, and budget templates
  7. Fill out the application following instructions in APS
  8. Submit proposal to BishkekProjectProposals@state.gov.