U.S. Embassy Kuala Lumpur Julia Taft Refugee Fund
Deadline for Applications: March 1, 2024
Each year, the Julia Taft Refugee Fund awards grants of up to $25,000 per country to address gaps in refugee assistance by issuing grants to local nonprofit organizations for quick-impact, time-limited projects. Grants are intended to address one-time needs or interventions, and/or respond to needs not addressed by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), or other non-governmental organizations (NGOs) receiving U.S. government funding. The activities of the proposed project should not be directed to sustained, long-term programs. We encourage community-based organizations (CBOs) and NGOs to submit proposals. Please note the beneficiaries of your proposed project must be at least 50 percent refugees, internally displaced persons, vulnerable migrants, and/or stateless persons. For FY2024, the U.S. Embassy may award multiple grants of up to $25,000 each, pending availability of funding.
- Proposals must be submitted by a local community group (CBO/NGO) that is registered in Malaysia, and not by government officials or private individuals. Projects that duplicate the work or services provided by the UNHCR or other multilateral refugee programs will not be funded. The organization(s) selected will be required to submit registration documents to demonstrate status as a nonprofit organization authorized to operate in Malaysia. Groups must have diverse membership (no single families) and must be already established and operating.
- Organizations must 1) register on SAM.gov and 2) have an active Unique Entity ID (UEI) before grants can be awarded. For further information about SAM.gov registration and how to obtain a UEI, please refer to this guide. (PDF 814KB)
- Ongoing administrative or operating costs, such as stipends or rent, may be included in the request, but should only account for a small portion of a comprehensive grant proposal.
- Organizations are welcome to submit proposals ranging from $5,000 to $25,000 total.
- All final proposals will require measurable results and indicators. The U.S. Embassy will regularly monitor the progress of any approved and funded projects.
- The U.S. Embassy may seek to promote funded projects by use of branding (i.e. U.S. flags) on project banners and/or materials, and via social media or other publicity (unless a branding waiver is granted).
Please contact KLJuliaTaftDL@state.gov with any specific questions.
Priorities for 2024
This year, we encourage applicant organizations to submit proposals that include at least one of the following areas of focus:
- Legal Assistance, Protection, Health (including Mental Health), or Education for Newly Displaced Persons: including activities that provide time-bound assistance to refugees, asylum seekers, and/or vulnerable migrants who were newly displaced into Malaysia during calendar years 2022 or 2023. We will not consider proposals that duplicate the work or services provided by UNHCR, other UN agencies, or other U.S. Government assistance programs.
- Stateless Persons: including activities aimed at resolving, reducing, or preventing statelessness.
- LGBTQI+ Persons: including activities that provide innovative assistance, promote equal access to protection, and assist with durable solutions for LGBTQI+ asylum seekers, refugees, vulnerable migrants, and/or stateless persons. We will not consider proposals that are focused primarily on research or surveying needs.
Grant Application Process, Review, and Timeline
Organizations interested in applying for the Julia Taft Refugee Fund should submit a complete proposal by 11:59 p.m. (Kuala Lumpur time) on Friday, March 1, 2024.
Proposals must be sent via e-mail to KLJuliaTaftDL@state.gov and should include the applicants e-mail and telephone contact information. In the subject line, please include the following: Proposal for the Julia Taft Refugee Fund – [insert the name of the organization]. Organizations that submit a complete proposal will receive a confirmation of receipt via email. If the submitting organization does not receive a confirmation email by Wednesday, March 6 at 5:00 pm (Kuala Lumpur time) please contact the U.S. Embassy at KLJuliaTaftDL@state.gov.
Each proposal will be evaluated and rated based on the evaluation criteria outlined below:
- Quality and Feasibility of the Project Idea: 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: Goals and objectives are clearly stated, and the project approach is likely to provide maximum impact in achieving the proposed results.
- Budget: 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: Applicant demonstrates it can measure project success against key indicators and provides milestones to indicate progress toward goals outlined in the proposal. The project includes output and outcome indicators and shows how and when those will be measured.
- Sustainability: Project activities will continue to have positive impact after the end of the project.
- Support of Equity and Underserved Communities: Proposals should clearly demonstrate how the project will support and advance equity and engage underserved communities in project administration, design, and implementation.
- Organizational Capacity and Record on Previous Grants: The organization has expertise in its stated field and has the internal controls in place to manage federal funds.
- Other: Project leadership from the affected community, geographic diversity, and originality of project idea.
U.S. Embassy Kuala Lumpur will review the final proposals and will seek to inform organizations about funding decisions by July 2024. Organizations will be expected to begin project activities by September 2024. Funds are subject to availability and appropriations by the U.S. Congress.
Format: The proposal must not be longer than (10) TEN PAGES. All documents must be single-spaced, 12-point Calibri font, with a minimum of 1-inch margins. Format should be as a Microsoft Word document or PDF and include the following:
Summary/Cover Page (1 page maximum): Cover sheet stating the applicant organization’s name, proposal date, project title, project period proposed start and end date, total budget requested, and brief purpose of the program (2 sentences maximum).
Proposal (6 pages maximum): The proposal should contain sufficient information that anyone not familiar with it would understand what the applicant wants to do. The proposal should clearly address the priorities listed in this notice of funding opportunity. 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 the organization’s past and present operations, showing ability to carry out the project, including information on all previous grants from the U.S. or other governments.
- Problem Statement: Clear, concise, and well-supported statement of the problem or issue to be addressed and why the proposed project is needed.
- Project Objectives: These should be achievable, time-bound, and measurable.
- Project Activities: Describe the specific project activities and how they will help achieve the objectives.
- Proposed Project Schedule and Timeline: The proposed timeline for the project activities. Include the dates, times, and if possible, locations of planned activities and events.
- Key Personnel: Please include the names, titles, and roles of key personnel who will implement this project. Please indicate what proportion of their time will be used to implement the project. Please also indicate if the proposed project will require hiring new staff.
- Project Monitoring and Evaluation Plan: This is a crucial part of successful grants. Please describe how your organization will monitor the activities to ensure they take place on schedule. Please also describe how your organization will evaluate the program to ensure it meets the stated objectives of the project.
- Sustainability: Please describe how the impact and outcomes of your program will last beyond the duration of the project.
Budget and Budget Justification Narrative (3 pages maximum): Please submit the proposed budget in a separate section. All budgets must be in U.S. Dollars. The budget section should include a numerical budget (in a table or bulleted list format). On a separate page(s), please provide a “Budget Justification Narrative” that describes in words each of the budget categories in detail. The budget and budget justification narrative must use the following categories:
- 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. (Note: For many small grant proposals this category may be $0.)
- 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.
- 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, applicable taxes, rental fees, interpreter fees, etc. All “Other” or “Miscellaneous” expenses must be itemized and explained in the budget justification narrative.
- Indirect Costs (optional category): These are costs that cannot be linked directly to the program activities, such as overhead costs needed to help keep the organization operating. This is an optional category and, if used, should be no more than 10% of the total budget.
- Cost Sharing (optional category): If your organization or entities other than the U.S. Embassy will plan to contribute funding to this specific project, please note the amounts in the budget. In-kind contributions can also include volunteers’ time and the cost of venues/rental space provided free of charge. Cost-sharing is not required and will not affect how we evaluate your proposal.
- Alcoholic Beverages: Please note that federal funds cannot be used for alcoholic beverages.
Organizational Registration (does not count against page limit): Please attach a copy of your organization’s registration certificate to the application, or a document that confirms the Malaysian government’s approval for your organization to operate in Malaysia and its territories.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)
Q: Do you accept applications in Bahasa Malaysia (or another language)?
A: No, all proposal submissions must be in English.
Q: Can I submit multiple proposals if I have multiple project ideas?
A: Yes, organizations may submit more than one proposal. If approved, however, organizations will receive a maximum of one (1) grant.
Q: Can I send in a proposal by postal mail?
A: No. Proposals will only be received at the email address indicated in the announcement, by the specified deadlines.
Q: I am having difficulty registering SAM.gov and/or obtaining a UEI, even after reading the PDF guide (PDF 814KB). Can you help?
A: The U.S. Embassy can provide additional guidance if your organization’s proposal is approved. Please contact the Embassy at KLJuliaTaftDL@state.gov.