USAID-BHA Grant 2020-2022 Questions & Answers

Question 1: Is there a minimum or maximum length of implementation period per activity?

Answer: Specific time period of 18 months is indicated and is very important for surge capacity activities (for HR positions) as noted in the list of Activities table here. However, for other activities a more general timeframe between 1 April 2021 and 30 September 2022 is set.

Question 2: We’ll be applying for funding under a few different items so I wanted to check with you how best to complete the Project Proposal Template. I heard in the webinar that with the excel form we can use one form to complete all relevant sections, so that is clear. With the Project Proposal Template however, is it recommended that this is completed separately for each item? Or if activities under certain items clearly link to one another – for example this would be the case for us in relation to activities under items 7,8,9 – can these be combined within the same proposal form?

Answer: You could use the same List of Activities table document and the same Project Proposal template. However, please make sure to have clear divisions among activities within the Proposal template, especially when it comes to budgets, outcomes, and narrative descriptions because otherwise the Selection Committee will no longer be able to compare between submissions when various combinations of activities are submitted lumped together.

If it helps to keep activities neatly separated, please feel free to submit several Project Proposal templates and one List of Activities table.

Question 3: What are the required administration files for applying? Do we have to attach any legal document of the applying agency to the proposal? 

Answer: Administration files are not a requirement to apply. At this stage please only submit the List of Activities Table and the Project Proposal Template. Once selected, non-National Society partner agencies will be required to submit the Non-National Society Project Partner Financial Management and Risk Assessment form with all the required attachments.

Question 4: Even if co-funding is not mentioned as necessary for some activities (for example the number 7), is it better if organization will contribute resources?   

Answer: The proposals will be selected based on the selection criteria set for the activity. When the selection criteria do not include co-funding, the Selection Committee will have no way of adding points to the proposals for co-funding.

Question 5: As a National Society, we are preparing a partner project proposal for the USAID-BHA grant, which may include some activities by the Regional IFRC office. Can this component be included in our project proposal, or should the IFRC Regional Office submit another proposal through internal channels?

Answer: IFRC Regional Offices may not submit proposals for these funds because they are only open to GSC partners. The IFRC Secretariat does not need to advertise a call for expressions of interest to allocate funding to its regional offices. This process is oriented towards external partners, which includes National Societies.

Question 6: Research and Advocacy Focal Points: UNHCR Stand-by Partners may not have many people in their rosters with these two profiles. Would it be possible for NGOs without stand-by partner agreements with UNHCR to also apply to host these roles?
Answer: Yes, these two roles can also be hosted by GSC partners provided that they accept that the FPs will be supervised by a GSC Support Team member from UNHCR in their activities related to the GSC. The organization should be ready to host these roles when they travel to the field or second them to UNHCR if the organization has no presence in-country. While a full time person is preferred, a team of people with different dedications can also be accepted. Contributions from the partner in terms of salary, travel costs or research costs are also welcome.

Question 7: In the webinar last week, it was said that the necessity for an organisation to commit to co-funding for localization activities would be removed. However, I note in the excel file List of Activities template - applicants are scored on their ability to co-fund. As an individual (and not an organisation) it is not possible for me to co-fund. I would appreciate it if you could clarify if the situation is the former (co-funding is not required) or the latter (applicants that are co-funded are preferred). 

Answer: The co-funding criteria has been removed for localization activity 7: Localization initiatives. Activities 8 and 9 do have the co-funding criteria because it is expected that they would be mostly carried out by agencies that lead the clusters at the country level and therefore could benefit from additional resources.

Additionally, Project Partner proposals cannot be submitted by individuals. They can only be submitted by agencies. You would have to request an agency to submit this initiative in support of the two shelter cluster objectives specified under this request for proposals. IFRC may not submit proposals as this funding is for agencies other than IFRC.

Question 8: In the list of activities excel sheet under the requirements column, there is a statement which says "The applying organization needs to have a standby partner agreement with UNHCR as this position is to be seconded to UNHCR as GSC co-lead agency". Does this mean that we should create this standby partnership agreement before applying for the grants or it can be established later on? What would be the procedure to establish such partnership?

Answer: The process for an organization to become a UNHCR stand-by partner takes a very long time, more than a year, therefore organizations should be stand-by partners to UNHCR before submitting the expression of interest. Please note that the answer to the question number 6 on the Research and Advocacy Focal Points might be of interest as it also looks at how agencies which are not UNCHR stand-by partners may apply. 
Question 9: Who will decide what the research will focus on? (Activity 14)
Answer: The priorities, themes, and areas for research will be identified following an open process, using rigorous methodologies and responding to the needs of the cluster following advice from the SAG.
Question 10: How can a researcher apply to the activity 14 as an individual?
Answer: Project Partner proposals cannot be submitted by individuals. They can only be submitted by agencies. Individual researchers need to request an agency to submit this initiative in support of the two shelter cluster objectives specified under this request for proposals. IFRC may not submit proposals as this funding is for agencies other than IFRC.