An official website of the United States government

YSEALI Regional Workshop: Civic Education for Good Governance
June 9, 2021

Public Affairs Section
Notice of Funding Opportunity

Funding Opportunity Title:             YSEALI Regional Workshop: Civic Education for Good Governance
Funding Opportunity Number:      21-PHL-NOFO-YSEALI2022
Deadline for Applications:               June 4, 2021
CFDA Number:                                19.040
Total Amount Available:                  $250,000 


The Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy in the Philippines announces an open competition for a cooperative agreement to develop and implement a Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) on Civic Education for Good Governance, pending the availability of funding. The six-day workshop (inclusive of travel days) will convene emerging leaders, ages 18-35, from all ten ASEAN member states and Timor-Leste to build competencies in developing and sustaining initiatives to promote good governance, transparency and accountability through youth civic participation and civic education. The workshop will be held in Manila, Philippines in the 2nd quarter of 2022.

YSEALI is the U.S. government’s signature initiative to engage with emerging leaders in Southeast Asia. The program aims to create a network of young Southeast Asian leaders who work across national borders and the four pillars of YSEALI – environmental issues, economic growth and social entrepreneurship, civic engagement, and education – to solve common problems.

Please carefully follow all instructions below.

Priority Region: Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Laos, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam, and Timor-Leste.

Program Objectives:

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.

YSEALI is open to young leaders ages 18-35 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. Responding to priorities from youth in the ASEAN region, YSEALI programs focus on four themes (Economic Growth and Social Entrepreneurship, Environmental Issues, Education, and Civic Engagement).

One component of YSEALI are the annual regional workshops held across Southeast Asia on strategic topics.

This regional workshop on civic education for good governance will advance the YSEALI theme of Civic Engagement and the U.S. Embassy in the Philippines’ priority to promote resilient and accountable democratic institutions at the local, regional, and national levels that engage civil society.

The YSEALI Regional Workshop on Civic Education for Good Governance will bring together around 100 YSEALI members from ASEAN member nations and Timor-Leste who are currently working on civic education initiatives to promote civic participation, good governance, and transparency and accountability in government. The workshop will deepen participants’ knowledge and understanding of current challenges, including socio-economic and environmental (e.g.:  climate change and biodiversity degradation), and opportunities for governments and civil society in Southeast Asia to effectuate positive change. The workshop will introduce methods and tools for civil society and government to promote youth civic participation, mobilize stakeholders, and implement effective projects or campaigns. The workshop should include in-depth discussions and experiential learning sessions led by experts from Southeast Asia and the United States.

Participants should be encouraged to collaborate with fellow emerging leaders from across the region and coordinate with government agencies at all levels, business development institutions, community organizations, and youth groups in their respective countries to implement projects or campaigns. The workshop will also create and sustain a virtual network of emerging leaders. At the workshop’s finale, participants may compete for small grants to implement projects and/or campaigns to promote civic participation, transparency, and accountability in government.  A follow-on activity may also be implemented after the program to report on project successes and challenges and produce a toolkit with best practices on cross-border collaboration.

Participants and Audiences:

Participants will be emerging leaders from ASEAN member nations and Timor-Leste who are lawmakers, government officials, educators, civil society leaders, journalists, and youth organization representatives with initiatives to promote civic participation, good governance, and transparency and accountability in government. Participants should demonstrate commitment to develop and sustain their projects. Participants should also be registered YSEALI members (before or during application via http://yseali.state.gov)

The grant recipient will create an online application process and coordinate with the U.S. Embassy in the Philippines and other U.S. Embassies in the region to recruit and select participants from all ten ASEAN member countries and Timor-Leste. All participants must be proficient in written and spoken English. Participants must be citizens and residents of an ASEAN member country or Timor-Leste.

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, and insurance.

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.

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. 


Length of performance period:     12 to 18 months 

Number of awards anticipated:     One (1)            

Award amounts: Up to $250,000 contingent on funding availability                     

Type of Funding:    FY21 Public Diplomacy Funds                      

Anticipated program start date:    October 2021 (Grant will be issued before Sept 30 2021)     

This notice is subject to availability of funding.

Funding Instrument Type: [Cooperative agreement]. The U.S. Embassy in the Philippines will have substantial involvement in the development, content, and schedule of the workshop. In consultation with the coordinating U.S. Embassy in the Philippines, the award recipient must actively engage all relevant U.S. embassies related to the recruitment and selection process as well as communication with the participants.

Working closely with U.S. Embassy in the Philippines, the recipient of this cooperative agreement shall develop a robust program for the workshop; schedule the event at a mutually agreed upon location; manage the application and selection process through a secure portal; develop the agenda and content for the workshop; recruit speaker(s); manage all travel logistics for participants and speakers; and generate content for social media and other publicity. The recipient is expected to provide all design files, photos and video recorded, as well as a promotion-ready, U.S. Embassy-approved photo album and a video series of the workshop after completion.

Regular, transparent communication via email, phone and video conference calls and face-to-face meetings (as appropriate) with the Grants Officer, Grants Officer Representative, and Program Officer throughout the period of performance is critical to the success of this cooperative agreement.

All major elements of the program and its content require advance approval by U.S. Embassy in the Philippines, including, but not limited to:

  • Choices of dates, venue, accommodations, and menus;
  • Final selection of participants, mentors, and speakers (from the United States, an ASEAN member country, or Timor-Leste);
  • Titles, format, and content of workshop sessions and other program activities;
  • Design and content of all marketing materials, publicity, and media products.

 Program Performance Period: Proposed programs should be completed in 18 months or less. The workshop must be minimum of four full days not including travel days.


  1. Eligible Applicants
    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
  2. Cost Sharing or Matching
    Cost-sharing is not required for this proposal.

  3. Other Eligibility Requirements
    In order to be eligible to receive an award, all organizations must have a unique entity identifier (Data Universal Numbering System/DUNS number from Dun & Bradstreet), as well as a valid registration on www.SAM.gov. Please see Section D.3 for information on how to obtain these registrations. Individuals are not required to have a unique entity identifier or be registered in SAM.gov.


  1. Address to Request Application Package
    Application forms and templates are available at the “Related Documents” tab of grants.gov post for this opportunity.
  1. Content and Form of Application Submission
    Please follow all instructions below carefully. Proposals that do not meet the requirements of this announcement or fail to comply with the stated requirements will be ineligible.
  1. Content of Application
    Please ensure: 

    • 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, and
    • All Microsoft Word documents are single-spaced, 12 point Times New Roman font, with a minimum of 1-inch margins.The following documents are required:
    • Mandatory application forms
      • SF-424 (Application for Federal Assistance – organizations)
      • SF-424A (Budget Information for Non-Construction programs)
      • SF-424A Supplemental (Detailed Budget and Cashflow)
      • SF-424B(Assurances for Non-Construction programs) (note: the SF-424B is only required for individuals and for organizations not registered in SAM.gov)
    • Summary Page: Cover sheet stating the applicant name and organization, proposal date, program title, program period proposed start and end date, and brief purpose of the program.
    • Proposal (15 pages maximum): The proposal should contain sufficient information that anyone not familiar with it would understand exactly what the applicant wants to do. You may use your own proposal format, but it must include all the items below.
      • Proposal Summary: Short narrative that outlines the proposed program, including program objectives and anticipated impact.
      • Introduction to the Organization Applying: A description of past and present operations, showing ability to carry out the program, including information on all previous grants from the U.S. Embassy and/or U.S. government agencies.
      • Problem Statement: Clear, concise and well-supported statement of the problem to be addressed and why the proposed program is needed
      • Program Goals and Objectives: The “goals” describe what the program is intended to achieve.  The “objectives” refer to the intermediate accomplishments on the way to the goals. These should be achievable and measurable.
      • Program Activities: Describe the program activities and how they will help achieve the objectives (including post workshop follow-up).
      • Program Methods and Design: A description of how the program is expected to work to solve the stated problem and achieve the goal. Include a logic model as appropriate.
      • Proposed Program Schedule and Timeline: The proposed timeline for the program activities. Include the dates, times, and locations of planned activities and events.
      • Key Personnel: Names, titles, roles and experience/qualifications of key personnel involved in the program. What proportion of their time will be used in support of this program?
      • Program Partners: List the names and type of involvement of key partner organizations and sub-awardees.
      • Program Monitoring and Evaluation Plan: This is an important part of successful grants. Throughout the time-frame of the grant, how will the activities be monitored to ensure they are happening in a timely manner, and how will the program be evaluated to make sure it is meeting the goals of the grant?
      • Future Funding or Sustainability: Applicant’s plan for continuing the program beyond the grant period, or the availability of other resources, if applicable.
      • Budget Justification Narrative: Describe each of the budget expenses in detail.  The budget should not exceed [USD].  See section Other Information: Guidelines for Budget Submissions below for further information.
    • Attachments:
      • 1-page CV or resume of key personnel who are proposed for the program
      • Letters of support from program partners describing the roles and responsibilities of each partner
      • If your organization has a NICRA and includes NICRA charges in the budget, your latest NICRA should be included as a PDF file
      • Official permission letters, if required for program activities
    • Unique Entity Identifier and System for Award Management (SAM.gov)Required Registrations:
      Any applicant listed on the Excluded Parties List System (EPLS) in the System for Award Management (SAM) is not eligible to apply for an assistance award in accordance with the OMB guidelines at 2 CFR 180 that implement Executive Orders 12549 (3 CFR, 1986 Comp., p. 189) and 12689 (3 CFR, 1989 Comp., p. 235), “Debarment and Suspension.” Additionally, no entity listed on the EPLS can participate in any activities under an award.  All applicants are strongly encouraged to review the EPLS in SAM to ensure that no ineligible entity is included.
      All organizations applying for grants (except individuals) must obtain these registrations.  All are free of charge: 

      • Unique entity identifier from Dun & Bradstreet (DUNS number)
      • NCAGE/CAGE code
      • SAM.gov registration
  1. Submission Dates and Times
    Applications are due no later than JUNE 4, 2021 (FRIDAY).
  1. Funding Restrictions
    Please see “Guidelines for Budget Justification” at the last page of this document for more information.
  1. Other Submission Requirements
    All application materials must be submitted by email to ysealiphilippines@state.gov (cc: grantsmanila@state.gov) with subject title: (Name of Applicant) YSEALI 2022 Workshop Proposal” by June 4, 2021 (Friday), 11:59 p.m. Philippine Time. Late submissions will not be considered. Kindly send inquiries to ysealiphilippines@state.gov .


  1. Criteria
    Each application will be evaluated and rated on the basis of the evaluation criteria outlined below.
    • Quality and Feasibility of the Program Idea – 25 points: The program idea is well developed, with detail about how program activities will be carried out. The proposal includes a reasonable implementation timeline.
    • Organizational Capacity and Record on Previous Grants – 25 points: The organization has expertise in its stated field and has the internal controls in place to manage federal funds. This includes a financial management system and a bank account.
    • Program Planning/Ability to Achieve Objectives – 15 points: Goals and objectives are clearly stated and program approach is likely to provide maximum impact in achieving the proposed results.
    • Budget – 10 points: The budget justification is detailed. Costs are reasonable in relation to the proposed activities and anticipated results. The budget is realistic, accounting for all necessary expenses to achieve proposed activities.
    • Monitoring and evaluation plan – 15 points: Applicant demonstrates it is able to measure program success against key indicators and provides milestones to indicate progress toward goals outlined in the proposal. The program includes output and outcome indicators, and shows how and when those will be measured.
    • Sustainability – 10 points: Program activities will continue to have positive impacts after the end of the program.
  1. Review and Selection Process
    A Grants Review Committee will evaluate all eligible applications.
  1. Federal Awardee Performance & Integrity Information System (FAPIIS)
    For any Federal award under a notice of funding opportunity, if the Federal awarding agency anticipates that the total Federal share will be greater than the simplified acquisition threshold on any Federal award under a notice of funding opportunity may include, over the period of performance (see §200.88 Simplified Acquisition Threshold), this section must also inform applicants: 

    • That the Federal awarding agency, prior to making a Federal award with a total amount of Federal share greater than the simplified acquisition threshold, is required to review and consider any information about the applicant that is in the designated integrity and performance system accessible through SAM (currently FAPIIS) (see 41 U.S.C. 2313);
    • That an applicant, at its option, may review information in the designated integrity and performance systems accessible through SAM and comment on any information about itself that a Federal awarding agency previously entered and is currently in the designated integrity and performance system accessible through SAM;
    • That the Federal awarding agency will consider any comments by the applicant, in addition to the other information in the designated integrity and performance system, in making a judgment about the applicant’s integrity, business ethics, and record of performance under Federal awards when completing the review of risk posed by applicants as described in §200.205 Federal awarding agency review of risk posed by applicants.


  1. Federal Award Notices
    The cooperative agreement will be written, signed, awarded, and administered by the Grants Officer. The assistance award agreement is the authorizing document and it will be provided to the recipient for review and signature by email. The recipient may only start incurring program expenses beginning on the start date shown on the grant award document signed by the Grants Officer.
    If a proposal is selected for funding, the Department of State has no obligation to provide any additional future funding. Renewal of an award to increase funding or extend the period of performance is at the discretion of the Department of State.
    Issuance of this NOFO does not constitute an award commitment on the part of the U.S. government, nor does it commit the U.S. government to pay for costs incurred in the preparation and submission of proposals. Further, the U.S. government reserves the right to reject any or all proposals received.
    Payment Method: The recipient must request payment under this award by completing form SF-270—Request for Advance or Reimbursement and submitting the form to the Grants Officer. Unless otherwise stipulated, the recipient may request payments on a reimbursement or advance basis.
  1. Administrative and National Policy Requirements
    Terms and Conditions: Before submitting an application, applicants should review all the terms and conditions and required certifications which will apply to this award, to ensure that they will be able to comply.  These include: 

In accordance with the Office of Management and Budget’s guidance located at 2 CFR part 200, all applicable Federal laws, and relevant Executive guidance, the Department of State will review and consider applications for funding, as applicable to specific programs, pursuant to this notice of funding opportunity in accordance with the following:  NOTE:

  • President’s September 2, 2020 memorandum, entitled Memorandum on Reviewing Funding to State and Local Government Recipients of Federal Funds that Are Permitting Anarchy, Violence, and Destruction in American Cities;
  • Executive Order on Protecting American Monuments, Memorials, and Statues and Combating Recent Criminal Violence (E.O. 13933); and
  • Guidance for Grants and Agreements in Title 2 of the Code of Federal Regulations (2 CFR), as updated in the Federal Register’s 85 FR 49506 on August 13, 2020, particularly on:
    • Selecting recipients most likely to be successful in delivering results based on the program objectives through an objective process of evaluating Federal award applications (2 CFR part 200.205),
    • Prohibiting the purchase of certain telecommunication and video surveillance services or equipment in alignment with section 889 of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2019 (Pub. L. No. 115—232) (2 CFR part 200.216),
    • Promoting the freedom of speech and religious liberty in alignment with Promoting Free Speech and Religious Liberty (E.O. 13798) and Improving Free Inquiry, Transparency, and Accountability at Colleges and Universities (E.O. 13864) (§§ 200.300, 200.303, 200.339, and 200.341),
    • Providing a preference, to the extent permitted by law, to maximize use of goods, products, and materials produced in the United States (2 CFR part 200.322), and
    • Terminating agreements in whole or in part to the greatest extent authorized by law, if an award no longer effectuates the program goals or agency priorities (2 CFR part 200.340).

Note the U.S Flag branding and marking requirements in the Standard Terms and Conditions.
Additional branding requirements will be provided after award.

  1. Reporting
    Reporting Requirements: The recipient will be required to submit financial reports and program reports. The award document will specify how often these reports must be submitted. Recipients will be required to submit financial reports and program reports.  The award document will specify how often these reports must be submitted.
    Foreign Assistance Data Review: As required by Congress, the Department of State must make progress in its efforts to improve tracking and reporting of foreign assistance data through the Foreign Assistance Data Review (FADR). The FADR requires tracking of foreign assistance activity data from budgeting, planning, and allocation through obligation and disbursement.  Successful applicants will be required to report and draw down federal funding based on the appropriate FADR Data Elements, indicated within their award documentation.  In cases of more than one FADR Data Element, typically program or sector and/or regions or country, the successful applicant will be required to maintain separate accounting records.


If you have any questions about the grant application process, please contact: XXXX@state.gov.


Guidelines for Budget Justification

Personnel and Fringe Benefits: Describe the wages, salaries, and benefits of temporary or permanent staff who will be working directly for the applicant on the program, and the percentage of their time that will be spent on the program.

Travel: Estimate the costs of travel and per diem for this program, for program staff, consultants or speakers, and participants/beneficiaries. If the program involves international travel, include a brief statement of justification for that travel.

Equipment: Describe any machinery, furniture, or other personal property that is required for the program, which has a useful life of more than one year (or a life longer than the duration of the program), and costs at least $5,000 per unit.

Supplies: List and describe all the items and materials, including any computer devices, that are needed for the program. If an item costs more than $5,000 per unit, then put it in the budget under Equipment.

Contractual: Describe goods and services that the applicant plans to acquire through a contract with a vendor.  Also describe any sub-awards to non-profit partners that will help carry out the program activities.

Other Direct Costs: Describe other costs directly associated with the program, which do not fit in the other categories. For example, shipping costs for materials and equipment or applicable taxes. All “Other” or “Miscellaneous” expenses must be itemized and explained.

Indirect Costs:  These are costs that cannot be linked directly to the program activities, such as overhead costs needed to help keep the organization operating.  If your organization has a Negotiated Indirect Cost Rate (NICRA) and includes NICRA charges in the budget, attach a copy of your latest NICRA. Organizations that have never had a NICRA may request indirect costs of 10% of the modified total direct costs as defined in 2 CFR 200.68.

“Cost Sharing” refers to contributions from the organization or other entities other than the U.S. Embassy. It also includes in-kind contributions such as volunteers’ time and donated venues.

Alcoholic Beverages: Please note that award funds cannot be used for alcoholic beverages.