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Application process is closed. VAU PAS FY2023 Request for Statements of Interest: Annual Program Statement
November 9, 2022

Application process is closed


VAU PAS FY2023 Request for Statements of Interest: 

Annual Program Statement

Department of State

Notice of Funding Opportunity

Funding Opportunity Title:            Venezuela Affairs Unit (VAU) PAS Request for Statements of Interest:

Annual Program Statement


Deadline for Applications:             Proposals are accepted on a rolling basis and will be reviewed periodically


CFDA Number:                               19.040 – Public Diplomacy Programs


Estimated total program funding for all grants: $500.000


Award Ceiling:                               $60,000


Award floor:                                   $10,000




The Venezuela Affairs Unit (VAU) of the U.S. Department of State announces a request for Statements of Interest (SOI) that strengthens people-to-people ties between the United States and the people of Venezuela through cultural, educational, and media support programs that highlight shared values and promote a peaceful, democratic transition.


This is a two-part process. Applicants should first submit a SOI using the platform at https://loginprod.colfuturo.org/Colfuturo-Login/login.xhtml?idPatrocinador=30&idPlataforma=R&hash=78766a62333059525159684848414d77752f642f66413d3d&idPatrocinadorPLIC=72. This is not a full proposal, but a concise,  concept note designed to clearly communicate a program idea, its objectives, and budget outline, before the development of a full proposal application.  The VAU Public Affairs Section (PAS) will review SOIs and invite selected applicants to expand their ideas into full proposal applications.


Purpose of Public Diplomacy Grants:


PAS VAU invites proposals for communications, cultural and educational programs that support democratic initiatives and economic empowerment in Venezuela, highlight shared values, promote bilateral cooperation, and support diversity, equality, accessibility and inclusion. All programs must convey an element of U.S. culture, history, and/or shared values.  This must be a concrete element that establishes or strengthens ties between people in Venezuela and Americans in the United States. For example, competitive proposals  will include a connection with U.S. experts, organizations, or institutions that promote increased understanding of U.S. policy and perspectives and/or increased cooperation between the people of the United States and Venezuela even after the program has concluded. 


Priority Program Areas:


PAS VAU will prioritize grant proposals that address the following themes:


  •     Supporting freedom of speech and expression, including via civic education.


  •     Strengthening independent media through media literacy, training, and other engagement.


  •     Ensuring participation of citizens in the democratic process through education and outreach.


  •     Economic growth and entrepreneurship, particularly for marginalized groups, including women,LGBTI+, persons with disabilities, indigenous, and Afro-Venezuelans.


  •     Supporting grassroots activism that promotes human rights, democratic governance, and/or addresses Venezuelan citizens’ needs due to the man-made humanitarian crisis.


  •     Promoting inclusive social development, particularly through empowering women and girls, persons with disabilities, LGBTI, indigenous, and Afro-Venezuelans.


  •   Cultural Projects that promote Mutual Understanding: Cultural activities engage the public, especially youth, to bridge cultures, deepen cultural ties and understanding, discuss topics of importance, and promote the free exchange of ideas. The VAU is interested in supporting arts and culture projects that strengthen cultural ties between the United States and Venezuela. Examples of possible programs include writing workshops (e.g. creative writing and humor workshop, comics that promote social issues, playwriting as a form of social criticism); artist collaborations (e.g. American jazz master class, orchestral joint program); gaming workshops or programs; theater/filmmaking/storytelling/photography clubs, workshops, and festivals; , or similar events and activities. All cultural activities must include a clear U.S. component. 


Additional Criteria:

  • All programs must strive for gender balance when recruiting participants.
  • All programs must strive to recruit and accommodate participants from minority groups (persons with disabilities, LGBTI+, indigenous, Afro-Venezuelan).
  • Due to the Level 4 Travel Advisory, programs must not invite U.S. citizens to travel to Venezuela.  Their participation can only be virtual.


The following types of programs are not eligible for funding:


  •                           Programs relating to partisan political activity or campaigns;


  •                           Charitable or development activities;


  •                           Construction programs;


  •                           Programs that support specific religious activities;


  •                           Fund-raising campaigns;


  •                           Lobbying for specific legislation or programs


  •                           Scientific research;


  •                           Programs intended primarily for the growth or institutional development of the organization; 


  •                           Programs that duplicate existing programs.


  •                           Complete salaries for personnel.


Authorizing legislation, type, and year of funding:


The Statutory Authority for this program announcement is the Smith-Mundt Act. The source of funding is FY2023 Public Diplomacy Funding.




Number of awards anticipated: 12 awards (dependent on amounts)


Award amounts:                     $10,000 to $60,000.


Total available funding:        $500,000


Type of Funding:                   Fiscal Year 2023 Public Diplomacy Funding


This notice is subject to availability of funding.


Program Performance Period: Proposed programs should be completed in one year or less.


Funding Instrument Type: Grant, Individual award, Fixed Amount Award, or Cooperative agreement. Cooperative agreements are different from grants in that PAS staff are more actively involved in the grant implementation. 




  •  1. Eligible Applicants:


  •     Registered not-for-profit organizations, including think tanks and civil society/non-governmental organizations, with programming experience


  •     Individuals


  •     Non-profit or governmental educational institutions


For-profit or commercial entities are not eligible to apply.  


  • 2. Cost Sharing or Matching


  • Cost sharing is preferred, but not required.




The VAU Public Affairs Section will accept proposals from now through [Note: All funds have been expended. Application process is closed.]. PAS will accept proposals throughout the year and will review Statements of Interest monthly, with responses sent out by the end of the month.  Grant panels will meet quarterly to review proposals selected for broader consideration.  All application materials must be submitted via https://loginprod.colfuturo.org/Colfuturo-Login/login.xhtml?idPatrocinador=30&idPlataforma=R&hash=78766a62333059525159684848414d77752f642f66413d3d&idPatrocinadorPLIC=72


All SOIs should ensure that the following requirements are met:


Please follow all instructions below carefully. SOIs that do not meet the requirements of this announcement or fail to comply with the stated requirements will be ineligible.


Content of Application


Please ensure:


  •       The SOI clearly addresses the goals and objectives of this funding opportunity


  •       All documents are in English


  •       All budgets are in U.S. dollars


The following information is required [via application submission on platform]:


  1. Statement of Interest that includes:


o   The name of the organization seeking funding;


o   Program activity locations;


o   The total amount of funding requested from PAS, total amount of cost-share (if any), and total program cost (PAS funds + cost-share or other contributions);


o   Program length;


o   A synopsis of the program, including a brief statement on how the program will have a demonstrated impact and engage relevant stakeholders;


o   A concise breakdown explicitly identifying the program’s objectives and the activities, including a timeline of activities, and expected results that contribute to each objective; and,


o   A brief description of the applicant(s) that demonstrates the applicant(s) expertise and capacity to implement the program and manage a U.S. government award.




A Grants Review Committee will evaluate all eligible applications, considering the following criteria:


  • Quality and Feasibility of Program Idea: Is the proposed program needed? Will it meet program objectives and make an impact?


  •  Program Planning: Is the program designed to solve the stated problem and achieve the objectives? Are the timeline and activities well structured?


  •  Embassy priorities: Do the project goals relate to and support VAU’s priority areas?


  •  Ability to Achieve Objectives/Institutional Capacity: Does the applicant demonstrate the organization’s or individual’s expertise and previous experience in administering programs?


Successful applicants will be contacted by VAU PAS and invited to submit a full proposal.  Instructions on the requirements of a full application submission will be provided at that time.