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 You are in: Under Secretary for Democracy and Global Affairs > Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration > What We Are Saying > Fact Sheets and Newsletters > 2003
Fact Sheet
Released by the Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration
Washington, DC
October 17, 2003

FY 2003 PRM Guidelines for NGO Projects: Relief for Iraqi Refugees and Returnees


The Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration (PRM)

The Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration (PRM) has primary responsibility within the U.S. Government for formulating U.S. foreign policy on refugee and migration issues, and for administering U.S. refugee assistance and admissions programs. In this capacity, PRM has the lead role within the State Department in responding to complex humanitarian situations around the world. The Bureau also is responsible for policy leadership on the U.S. Governmentís international population policies and programs, and it serves as the focal point within the U.S. Government for multilateral coordination of international migration policies and programs.

PRMís primary refugee assistance and admissions goals relate to protection and the achievement of durable solutions. A key PRM objective is to guarantee that refugees and returnees worldwide have access to basic, life-sustaining resources in ways that meet internationally accepted standards of care in shelter, food supply, nutrition, water supply, sanitation, and public health. PRMís program priorities include the promotion of refugee and returnee womenís equal access to resources -- and their participation in managing those resources. PRM also focuses considerable attention on meeting the special needs of refugee and returnee children. PRM supports the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR's) guidelines, including those on the protection of refugee women and children.

PRM relies mainly on UNHCR and other international organizations (IOs) to provide the basic framework of assistance to refugees and returnees, but it traditionally funds a number of NGO programs directly to fill critical gaps.

Iraqís Refugee Situation

The Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) and UNHCR have agreed that the conditions inside Iraq are not yet conducive to large-scale, assisted returns. But as security improves and infrastructure is rehabilitated, it is expected that Iraqis who became refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs) over the past three decades could begin to return in larger numbers. In fact, Iraqi refugees in neighboring countries and some IDPs inside Iraq have begun to return spontaneously. Currently, Iraqi refugees in the region live in Jordan, Lebanon, Kuwait, and Iran, with smaller numbers living in Saudi Arabia and Syria.

NGO Proposals

UNHCR is the lead coordinating agency for humanitarian assistance to Iraqi refugees and returnees. Its role is expanded in northern Iraq to include return and reintegration assistance for IDPs. Return and reintegration assistance to IDPs in central and southern Iraq is primarily a UNOHCI responsibility, but UNHCR will play a significant role. Nevertheless, the UN cannot cover all refugee/returnee needs and looks to NGOs to fill critical gaps, in close coordination with UNHCR and UNOHCI. PRM will review, on a rolling basis, NGO proposals for activities that address those gaps. Priority will be given to proposals that serve refugees and persons of concern to UNHCR, but proposals to serve other populations may also be considered. Proposals supported by UNHCR will be favored. PRM will also consider IDP-related proposals for implementation inside Iraq when these projects receive co-funding from other UN organizations or the International Organization for Migration (IOM).

Proposals to PRM should describe measures that ensure that women and children will have access to the program. They should also describe how NGOs will meet the needs of the most vulnerable. Proposals must include a copy of the NGO's Code of Conduct (which should reflect the IASC's six core principles), and a brief discussion of how the Code of Conduct will be reflected in the project implementation.

These guidelines are intended to help NGOs prepare proposals that target PRMís current funding priorities and follow the required proposal format. PRM will accept proposals from any NGO that follows these guidelines, but priority will be given to proposals from those organizations with an established presence in the region and that effectively demonstrate their ability to achieve the project goals. A proven track record in providing assistance to Iraqis is desirable, but not mandatory. Proposals must present evidence of coordination with UNHCR and other lead international organizations and should also be coordinated with relevant governments and/or the Coalition Provisional Authority. NGOs that have never received PRM funding must be prepared to demonstrate that their organizations meet the financial and accounting requirements of the U.S. Government before they will be eligible to receive PRM funding. Proposals that are not consistent with the guidance herein may be rejected without review.

Due to current funding limitations, PRM will give priority to proposals seeking contributions of less than $1 million dollars.

Current Funding Priorities

At the present time, PRM seeks to focus its Iraq funding on the following activities, in this order of priority:

  • Reintegration assistance for Iraqi returnees
    PRM will support the efforts of UNHCR and its partners to ensure that returnees will become sustainably reintegrated into their home communities. To this end, PRM will support NGO projects that provide reintegration assistance to returnees and will particularly support projects that complement UNHCRís activities and fill critical gaps in projected assistance programs. Proposals must demonstrate proper coordination with UNHCR and the UN Office of the Humanitarian Coordinator for Iraq (UNOHCI). NGO projects should aim to anchor returnees in Iraq, enable communities to better support those refugees who have returned home, and build capacity to absorb additional returnees. Within this category, PRM will give priority to NGO projects that provide life-saving, life-sustaining or other critical reintegration support to recent returnees, with emphasis on one or more of the following activities:

    • Shelter construction and rehabilitation
    • Water and sanitation systems construction and rehabilitation
    • Primary health care
    • Projects that promote sustainable livelihoods for returning refugees
    • Primary education (school construction or rehabilitation, teacher training, provision of materials and equipment, etc.)
  • Assistance to old-caseload refugees
    PRM is interested in supporting programs for vulnerable and underserved refugees who continue to require assistance in their country of asylum, including non-Iraqi refugees inside Iraq. Within this category, PRM will give priority to programs that focus on one or more of the following activities:

    • Primary health care
    • Water and sanitation, hygiene and nutrition
    • Primary education programs
    • Programs that provide refugees with training and skills that will help them reintegrate into their home communities when they repatriate
  • Assistance to internally displaced persons (IDPs)
    PRM will consider NGO programs that support vulnerable IDP populations. Proposals must be coordinated with either UNHCR or UNOHCI. Within this category, PRM will give priority to programs that focus on one or more of the following activities:

    • Shelter rehabilitation and repair
    • Water and sanitation systems rehabilitation and repair
    • Health and education infrastructure rehabilitation
    • Projects that promote sustainable livelihoods for returnees

PRM expects that some NGO projects inside Iraq would target mixed communities composed of refugees, IDPs, and members of local populations. Proposed projects should target communities in which at least 50% of the beneficiary population is expected to be refugees or returning refugees.

NGOs are encouraged to propose programs that include a mix of elements from the above categories. Although the list is not intended to be exclusive or binding, and PRM remains open to considering a broad range of NGO activities, priority will be given to programs that include one or more of these elements.

PRM will gladly review informal, brief concept papers prior to a full proposal if NGOs are unsure whether or not the proposed activity is consistent with PRMís current priorities.

Submitting Proposals

PRM will evaluate and fund proposals on an as-needed basis; therefore, there is no fixed deadline for submission. Proposals should be written in font size no smaller than 11 point and be no longer than 20 pages, including budgets and annexes. Remember: long proposals are not necessarily better. Each official submission to PRM must include a signed, dated cover letter on NGO letterhead, and the three USG-required certifications mentioned below (available from PRM/Washington upon request; and these are not included in the 20-page limit). Applicants should mail submissions from their Headquarters to PRM at the Washington, DC address listed below, and send an electronic copy of the full proposal by e-mail. The PRM addressee must be made aware that the proposal is on its way, or the package risks being turned away by Diplomatic Security. Questions can also be addressed to the individuals listed below.

Please address proposals or questions to:

Gina Costante
Department of State
Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration
2401 E St. NW
Suite L505, SA-1
Washington, D.C. 20522-0105

PRM Field Contacts (for questions and coordination):

Larry Bartlett, Advisor for Refugee & IDP Affairs
Coalition Provisional Authority
Tel (mobile): 1-914-360-6516 (dial as if you are calling a U.S. number)

Joan Polaschik, Refugee Coordinator
U.S. Embassy Amman
Tel: (962)(6)592-0101, ext. 2593
Fax: (962)(6)592-0159
E-Mail: PolaschikJA@state.gov

Proposal Format

Proposals submitted to PRM must be written according to the following format. Proposals that do not follow the format will not be considered. Please include 3 copies along with the original.

I. Executive Summary

The executive summary should include the following information and be limited to one page:

  • Name of organization
  • Contact information (Headquarters and in-country)
  • Points of contact, titles
  • Project title
  • Countries/regions targeted by project
  • Number and description of beneficiaries
  • Proposed period of activity
  • Total dollar amount of project - Include a breakdown of the dollar amount requested from PRM, the dollar amount provided through other sources and the dollar amount of in-kind contributions.
  • Budget summary
  • Brief project description -- In one, succinct paragraph describe the problem and how it will be addressed. Also state the goal and expected results of the project.
II. Problem Analysis

This section should provide the rational and justification for the proposal as follows:

A. Background
Describe the anticipated and/or known elements of the humanitarian situation, but only as they relate to the proposed project. DO NOT provide a general description of the humanitarian situation in and around Iraq.

B. Analysis
Provide a synthesis of assessments or other descriptive and analytical efforts that have been conducted to determine the nature of the problem. Indicate dates, sources of information, and describe the most critical needs, vulnerabilities or capacities that were identified.

C. Profile of the Target Population
At-risk populations should be qualified by number, current location, health status, length of time they have been in country of first asylum or amount of time that they have been displaced from their homes, percentage of beneficiaries who are refugees and demographic characteristics including gender, age, and ethnicity (where political circumstances allow), and any other unique or germane factors distinguishing the population. Please explain, where appropriate, the relationships between direct and indirect beneficiaries. Please cite information sources.

D. Need

Show how this proposal fills a gap in UNHCRís coverage of the beneficiary population.

III. Program Goals and Objectives

A. Program Goal
Define the goal, objectives and assumptions of the program. Organize the proposal based on the stated objectives that, in turn, should be distinct, quantifiable and measurable.

B. Indicators
Provide measurable indicators for assessing progress toward achievement of each objective and explain how they are to be measured. SPHERE Minimum Standards in Humanitarian Response should be used in developing indicators.

IV. Program Description

This is the core of a proposal. It should clearly and concisely outline the implementation plan for each objective including those elements described below, as appropriate. It should reflect a thorough understanding of the problem described in Section II.

A. Implementation Plan
For each objective, provide a detailed implementation plan. Identify the targeted population. Describe any goods and services to be provided, and the standard of delivery used (i.e. SPHERE). If the standard of delivery differs from an accepted international standard, provide justification for the variance.

B. Suggested Elements

1. Context-Specific Programming
Ensure that the proposal reflects an understanding of the particular characteristics of the humanitarian context.

2. Beneficiary Interaction and Capacity Building
Explain how the activity fits within, and enhances, the existing capacities of the beneficiary population. Indicate how the program draws upon and supports traditional coping mechanisms and involves the targeted population in its design and implementation.

3. Coordination Efforts
Indicate if this program will stand alone, or if it is part of a larger country program. Describe how the program fits into the broader country program, if applicable. Explain efforts to coordinate with UNHCR and other international organizations or NGOs to prevent overlap and duplication. Explain how the program will interface with and complement these programs, as applicable. Describe what other NGOs are doing in the same region, identify any links between their programs and yours, and explain how your activities are coordinated. Describe the proposed initiativeís possible regional (cross-border) implications.

4. Proposals must include a copy of the NGOís Codes of Conduct (which should reflect the IASCís six core principles), and a discussion of how the codes of conduct will be reflected in project implementation.

V. Management and Security

A. Program management
Provide details on the following areas of the programís management:

1. Describe the organizationís management structure. Describe how this structure will be used to achieve the stated objectives.
2. Provide examples of past performance that demonstrate the organizationís success in implementing similar programs.

B. Security

1. Describe the current security situation in the region of the programís operation.
2. Provide details on the organizationís ability to achieve program objectives given the current level of insecurity. Describe how the program will respond to a deterioration of the security situation.
3. Identify indicators that will be used to assess when program objectives cannot be met, and when the program would be suspended, due to security concerns.
4. State whether or not your organization and its Board of Directors have adopted the InterAction Security Planning Guidelines. If not, explain.

VI. Monitoring and Performance Measurement

A. Monitoring Plan
Describe your monitoring plan. Include, at a minimum, the following elements in the description:

  1. A time line to help PRM track the programís progress.
  2. Indicators and details on how they will be measured, including frequency of the measurements, units of measure, dates when indicators will be met, etc.
  3. Monitoring tools such as clinic records, rapid assessment surveys, etc.
  4. Organizations that received FY2002 funding from PRM should also include an assessment of their programsí success in meeting their goals.
B. Performance measurement
Establish, where possible, baseline and expected performance targets for each objective.

VII. Budget

Include a detailed budget that is broken down by each objective of the proposed program. Staffing and office needs often cannot be easily allotted to specific objectives and can be given for the whole program, if more appropriate. Be sure the budget also includes a breakdown of the dollar amount requested from PRM, the dollar amount(s) coming from other sources (including your own organization) and the dollar amount of in-kind contributions. Indicate clearly the funding source for each activity. The budget must also be accompanied by a summary budget of the major line items and a budget narrative.

VIII. Administrative Requirements

All submissions must include the following:

  • Original proposal in triplicate
  • Copy of the organizationís U.S. Government Negotiated Indirect Cost Rate Agreement (NICRA), if applicable.
  • The following three U.S. Government Certifications, signed and dated:

Certification Regarding Lobbying
Certification Regarding Debarment, Suspension and Other Responsibility Matters
Certification Regarding Drug-free Workplace Requirements

  • Information in support of any cost-sharing/cost-matching arrangements
  • Information detailing the source of any in-kind contributions
  • Details on any sub-agreements associated with the program
  • Copy of the organizationís Code of Conduct, which should reflect the IASCís six core principles

If the organization has not previously received funding from PRM, copies of 1) the most recent external financial audit, 2) incorporation papers and 3) confirmation of non-profit tax status.


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