Call for Applications: 2020 COVID-19 Response Fund



Notice of Funding Opportunity

Funding Opportunity Title:             COVID-19 Response Fund  

Deadline for Applications:                until June 10, 2020

CFDA Number:                                19.900

Award floor:                                      $10,000

Award ceiling:                                   $20,000

Total amount available:                    $100,000

Anticipated number of awards:       5-7






The U.S. Embassy Podgorica/Public Affairs Office of the U.S. Department of State announces an open competition for organizations to submit applications to carry out a project to address secondary effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on vulnerable populations (included, but not limited to, women, youth, minorities, the elderly, and people with disabilities) in Montenegro.

Please read the Application Guidelines carefully.  Proposals that do not meet the requirements listed here will not be considered for funding. 

The application format may be found here:

COVID19 Response Fund Application Form


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.




Length of performance period: 12 months

Anticipated program start date: Summer/Fall 2020

Funding Instrument Type:  Grant

All application materials must be submitted by email to




  1. Eligible Applicants:

The following organizations are eligible to apply:

Montenegrin not-for-profit organizations, including think tanks, civil society/non-governmental organizations, educational organizations and other organizations that have displayed trustworthiness.

  1. 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 Please see Section D.3 for information on how to obtain these registrations.

Organizations may only submit one proposal. If more than one proposal is submitted from an organization, all proposals from that institution will be considered ineligible for funding.




Proposals that do not meet the requirements of this announcement or fail to comply with the requirements stated below will be ineligible.


Mandatory application forms:

  • Project proposal using the Application Form and in line with Application Guidelines.
  • Detailed budget in USD amounts and a budget narrative using format of your choice (see Application Guidelines for information about eligible and ineligible costs).
  • SF 424 (PDF, 265KB) and SF 424A (PDF, 1,518KB) forms filled out and signed in compliance with SF 424 guidelines andSF 424A guidelines.
  • One-page CV or resume of key personnel who are proposed for the program
  • Organization’s registration papers

Note: Project proposals should outline a clear evaluation plan for measuring the success of project activities.


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.

In order to be qualified for grants, selected organizations must obtain these registrations.  All are free of charge:

  • Unique entity identifier from Dun & Bradstreet (DUNS number)
  • NCAGE code
  • SAM registration

Step 1: Apply for a DUNS number and a NCAGE number (these can be completed simultaneously)

DUNS application: Organizations must have a Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number from Dun & Bradstreet. If your organization does not have one already, you may obtain one by calling 1-866-705-5711 or visiting

NCAGE application: Application page here:

Instructions for the NCAGE application process:


Step 2: After receiving the NCAGE Code, proceed to register in by logging onto:  SAM registration must be renewed annually.




  1. Criteria:

Each application will be evaluated and rated on the basis of the evaluation criteria outlined below.

Quality and Feasibility of the Project Idea – 20 points:  The project idea is well developed, with detail about how project activities will be carried out. The proposal includes a reasonable implementation timeline.

Project Planning/Ability to Achieve Objectives – 20 points: Goals and objectives are clearly stated and project approach is likely to provide maximum impact in achieving the proposed results.

Budget – 15 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 project 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 – 15 points: Project activities will continue to have positive impact after the end of the project.

Impact15 points: The extent to which the project will produce a positive impact on Montenegro, including, but not limited to, its institutions, legislation, education, and disadvantaged groups.


  1. Review and Selection Process:

An Embassy merit review panel will evaluate all eligible applications and will contact the applicants in case of any follow up questions.


Applicants will receive an e-mail notification when and if selected for the final review.




Federal Award Notices:


The grant award 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: Dynamics of grant payments would be discussed with grant recipients individually, and once agreed upon they will be stated in the award document.




Reporting Requirements: Award recipients will be required to submit financial reports and project reports.  The award document will specify how often these reports must be submitted.




If you have any questions about the grant application process, please contact



Cost sharing is not required.  However, if the Recipient includes cost sharing in the project proposal, then the Recipient is accountable for providing additional funds and justifying the costs.

If your organization has a NICRA and includes NICRA charges in the budget, your latest NICRA should be included as a PDF file.