The U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor (DRL) announces an open competition for proposals that enhance protections for civil society, human rights defenders, and journalists so that they can operate securely and freely.
DRL’s goal is to empower and protect human rights defenders, journalists, and civil society organizations in Libya. DRL aims to ensure that Libyan civil society and human rights defenders are able to safely operate and be seen as essential avenues of information representing issues of public importance in Libya.
DRL requires all programs to be non-discriminatory and expects implementers to include strategies for nondiscrimination of individuals/organizations/beneficiaries based on race, color, religion, sex, gender identity, gender expression, sex characteristics, sexual orientation, pregnancy, national origin, disability, age, genetic information, marital status, parental status, political affiliation, or veteran’s status. Proposal approaches should specifically center on supporting underserved and marginalized communities in Libya. This may include, women, residents of South Libya, indigenous communities including Amazigh, Tuareg, and Tebu peoples, migrants, asylum seekers, internally displaced persons, and/or LGBTQI+ identifying people.
Where appropriate, competitive proposals may include:
- Opportunities for beneficiaries to apply their new knowledge and skills in practical efforts;
- Solicitation of feedback and suggestions from beneficiaries when developing activities in order to strengthen the sustainability of programs and participant ownership of project outcomes;
- Input from participants on sustainability plans and systematic review of the plans throughout the life of the project, with adjustments made as necessary;
- Inclusion of vulnerable populations;
- Joint identification and definition of key concepts with relevant stakeholders and stakeholder input into project activities;
- Systematic follow up with beneficiaries at specific intervals after the completion of activities to track how beneficiaries are retaining new knowledge as well as applying their new skills.
Proposals must address one or both of the following program focus areas:
- Bolstering Support and Resiliency for Libyan Civil Society (not to exceed $1,000,000): Programs should enable Libyan civil society to engage on human rights issues safely and effectively. Potential program approaches may include:
- Providing CSOs effective access to multi-sectoral services that enhance their operational security and resilience, including digital, physical, and psychosocial security resources, support mechanisms, and legal assistance.
- Building the capacity of CSOs to more impactfully advocate with key government and international stakeholders.
- Fostering partnerships between CSOs, nascent or informal organizations, human rights actors, and the communities they represent to help identify key issues, needs, and concerns and form consensus on priorities and resources.
- Promoting coalition and network building efforts among CSOs across all regions of Libya on rights-related issues.
- Supporting CSOs to bolster policies and regulations that safeguard civic space and fundamental freedoms, including efforts to monitor and report on violations.
- Strengthening Credibility for Libyan Civil Society (not to exceed $1,500,000): Programs should seek to curb online harassment targeting Libyan civil society and strengthen the credibility of CSOs as an essential avenue of information on and representation of issues of public importance in Libya. Program approaches may include:
- Strengthening public trust in high quality information produced by independent Libyan civil society and media.
- Supporting CSOs to raise awareness about disinformation, including its origins, identification, and potential negative effects particularly highlighting the harm it brings to underserved groups.
- Promoting CSOs to lead fact-based and human rights-centered reporting and digital media literacy programs that deter online harassment of CSOs and human rights actors.
- Providing CSOs and human rights actors with tools and resources to counter disinformation, hate speech and online harassment campaigns that impedes their ability to operate and engage with the communities they seek to represent and access.
- Proposals may also combine these approaches or elements (not to exceed $2,500,000).
- Total Funding Floor: $750,000
- Total Funding Ceiling: $2,500,000
- Anticipated Number of Awards: 2-3
- Type of Award: Grant, Cooperative Agreement.
- Period of Performance: 24-36 months.
- DRL welcomes applications from U.S.-based and foreign-based non-profit organizations/nongovernmental organizations (NGO) and public international organizations; private, public, or state institutions of higher education; and for-profit organizations or businesses. DRL’s preference is to work with non-profit entities; however, there may be some occasions when a for-profit entity is best suited.
- Applications submitted by for-profit entities may be subject to additional review following the panel selection process. Additionally, the Department of State prohibits profit to for-profit or commercial organizations under its assistance awards. Profit is defined as any amount in excess of allowable direct and indirect costs. The allowability of costs incurred by commercial organizations is determined in accordance with the provisions of the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) at 48 CFR 30, Cost Accounting Standards Administration, and 48 CFR 31 Contract Cost Principles and Procedures.
For more information, visit DRL.