Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs: Enhancing Small Business Development Centers in Central America

Deadline: 20 June 2016

The United States Department of State’s Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs (WHA) is seeking applications from organisations to increase and expand Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs) in Central America.

The desired impact of this project is to increase the growth of MSMEs and job creation in Central America by applying the SBDC model to provide business development services, especially among women, to stimulate economic development.

It will promote the viability and sustainability of micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) and local and regional economic development and will also support efforts to include opportunities for women’s entrepreneurship.


  • Increase the availability of business development services for MSMEs by facilitating the establishment of new SBDCs, particularly in rural or other underserved populations, including women entrepreneurs.
  • Strengthen Central America’s SBDC network through support for a standardized center accreditation and development of a Central American SBDC association.
  • Foster viable connections between Central American businesses by establishing specialty SBDCs focused on MSME participation in international trade, particularly intra-regional trade within Central America.
  • Provide ongoing support to participant SBDCs and MSMEs through information technology systems and other support to ensure efficient replication and future viability of newly-established SBDCs. In an effort to sustain the new SBDCs, applicants should develop an outreach plan to municipal and state governments on adopting and funding the SBDCs beyond the period of performance in the award.

Funding Information

  • Subject to the availability of funds, WHA intends to issue an award in an amount not to exceed$1,188,118 Economic Support Funds for a project period of up to three years.
  • The anticipated start date for this activity is September 2016.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Applicants that are eligible to apply are Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), Public International Organizations (PIOs), Educational Institutions, and other qualified organizations that are able to respond to the NOFO and be able to mobilize in a short period of time.
  • Organizations must have a commitment to non‐discrimination with respect to beneficiaries and adherence to equal opportunity employment practices. Non‐discrimination includes equal treatment without regard to race, religion, ethnicity, gender, and political affiliation.
  • Applicants are reminded that U.S. Executive Orders and U.S. law prohibits transactions with and the provision of resources and support to, individuals and organizations associated with terrorism. It is the legal responsibility of the Recipient to ensure compliance with these Executive Orders and laws. This provision must be included in any sub‐awards issued under this grant award.
  • WHA encourages applications from potential new partners.

How to Apply

Interested applicants can apply via given website.

Eligible Country: United States

For more information, please visit grants.gov.


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