2016 Ambassador’s Fund for Cultural Preservation Large Grant

Call for Proposals

The U.S. Embassy in Amman is pleased to announce a call for proposals for the U.S. Ambassador’s Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP) 2016 Large Grants Program.  The floor on the Amount of Awards is U.S. $200,000.  Since 2008, awards made through this program for new large-scale projects have ranged from $500,000 to $979,000 with an average award amount of $575,400.  Please note that this program is separate from the AFCP small grants process

How to apply:

The application process for the AFCP Large Grants Program takes place in two rounds: Project Abstract (Round One) and Full Project Proposal (Round Two). All interested applicants must submit Project Abstracts for Round One via email to AbdelhadiR@state.gov and BradfordTA@state.gov by close of business (5 p.m.) on Monday, February 1,  2016.

Applicants will be notified by February 29, 2016 if their project abstracts received a favorable rating to submit complete project proposals to Round Two by March 21, 2016.

Past recipients of AFCP Large Grants Program support may submit proposals for continuation funds.

This document details program guidelines, eligibility requirements and application procedures. Please adhere to all written deadlines and procedures.

AFCP large grants funding areas

The AFCP Large Grants Program supports the preservation of major ancient archaeological sites, historic buildings and monuments, and major museum collections that are accessible to the public and protected by law in the host country.

Funding Priorities:

The AFCP Large Grants Program gives top priority to project activities that are appropriate and in keeping with international cultural heritage preservation standards. An appropriate preservation activity is one that protects the values of the site, object or collection, or form of traditional cultural expression as they are understood by stakeholders. Stakeholders may include national, regional, or local cultural authorities; the local community; and others with vested interests in the site and the outcome of a project. Appropriate project activities may include:

  • Preventive conservation (addressing conditions that damage or threaten the site)
  • Stabilization (reducing the physical disturbance [settling, collapse, etc.] of a site)
  • conservation (addressing damage or deterioration to a collection or sites)
  • consolidation (connecting or reconnecting elements of a site)
  • Anastylosis (reassembling a site from its original parts)
  • Restoration (replacing missing elements to recreate the original appearance of a site, usually appropriate only with fine arts, decorative arts, and historic buildings)

Additional Program Information

The Ambassador’s Fund for Cultural Preservation large grant does NOT support the following activities or costs, and applications involving any of the activities or costs below will be deemed ineligible:

Preservation or purchase of privately or commercially owned cultural objects, collections, or real property, including those whose transfer from private or commercial to public ownership is envisioned, planned, or in process but not complete at the time of proposal submission.

  • Preservation of natural heritage (physical, biological and geological formations, paleontological collections, habitats of threatened species of animals and plants, fossils, etc.).
  • Preservation of hominid or human remains.
  • Preservation of news media (newspapers, newsreels, radio and TV programs, etc.)
  • Preservation of published materials available elsewhere (books, periodicals, etc.).
  • Development of curricula or educational materials for classroom use.
  • Archaeological excavations or surveys for research purposes.
  • Historical research, except in cases where the research is justifiable and integral to the success of the proposed project.
  • Acquisition or creation of new exhibits or collections for new or existing museums.
  • Construction of new buildings or permanent coverings (over archaeological sites, for example).
  • Commissions of new works of art or architecture for commemorative or economic development purposes.
  • Creation of new or the modern adaptation of existing traditional dances, songs, chants, musical compositions, plays, or other performances.
  • Creation of replicas or re-creation of cultural objects or sites that no longer exist.
  • Relocation of cultural sites from one physical location to another.
  • Removal of cultural objects or elements of cultural sites from the country for any reason.
  • Digitization of cultural objects or collections, unless part of a larger, clearly defined conservation effort.
  • Conservation plans or other studies, unless they are one component of a larger project to implement the results of those studies.
  • Costs of fund-raising campaigns.
  • Contingency, unforeseen, or miscellaneous costs or fees.
  • Costs of work performed prior to announcement of the award.
  • International travel, except in cases where travel is justifiable and integral to the success of the proposed project.
  • Travel or study for professional development.
  • Individual projects costing less than $200,000 unless they are on-going projects supported previously by the AFCP Large Grants Program.
  • Independent U.S. Projects overseas.
  • Cash reserves, endowments or revolving funds (funds must be expended within the award period [up to five years] and may not be used to create an endowment or revolving fund).

Special Note Regarding Sites and Objects That Have a Religious Connection: The establishment clause of the U.S. Constitution permits the government to include religious objects and sites within an aid program only under certain conditions. For example, an item with a religious connection (including a place of worship) may be the subject of a cultural preservation grant if the item derives its primary significance and is nominated solely on the basis of architectural, artistic, historical or other cultural (not religious) criteria.

Eligibility Requirements

Eligible project applicants are defined as reputable and accountable non-commercial entities, such as non-governmental organizations, museums, ministries of culture, or similar institutions and organizations, including U.S.-based organizations subject to Section 501(c)(3) of the tax code, that are able to demonstrate the requisite experience and capacity to manage large-scale multi-year projects to preserve cultural heritage.  Applicants should be able to receive support from the U.S. Government and AFCP grants in accordance with AFCP program policies.

Applicants who have previously received AFCP awards must have fulfilled all reporting requirements before applying for new awards. Failure to do so may adversely affect eligibility for support from AFCP in 2016.

AFCP does not award grants to individuals, commercial entities, or to embassies or past award recipients which have not fulfilled the reporting requirements of previous AFCP awards.

Abstract requirements (Deadline: February 1, 2016)

Applicants interested in participating in the AFCP Large Grants Program must first submit a project abstract describing the proposed activity. The project abstract must include the following items in the following order:

  • Full and complete Application for Federal Assistance (SF-424), including Budget Information for Non-Construction Programs (SF-424A) (PDF 437 KB), Assurances for Non-Construction Programs (SF-424B)(PDF 706 KB), Disclosure of Lobbying Activities (SF-LLL) (PDF 54 KB).
  • Project Basics, including title, project dates, location, and site.
  • Project Applicant information, including contact information, DUNS Number, and SAM registration status.
  • Special Designations (national monument, World Heritage Site, etc.) and Law/s Protecting the Site or Collection (citations only).
  • Project Purpose that summarizes the project objectives and desired results.
  • Statement of Importance highlighting the historic, architectural, artistic, or cultural (non-religious) values of the site or collection.
  • Rationale for U.S. Support, explaining if it relates to existing bilateral agreements.
  • Estimated Project Cost (total project cost and proposed US share, if different).
  • Statement of Accessibility (is it accessible to the public? what are admission costs? etc.) and Statement of Ownership of the site or collection.

Applicants may be invited to submit full project proposals upon favorable review of the abstracts.

Full Proposal requirements (Round One – deadline: March 21, 2016)

The proposals must fully satisfy the program objectives, funding areas and priorities, and the eligibility requirements specified above. Furthermore, to be considered complete, they must include:

  • Revised project abstract, if applicable.
  • Proof of official permission to undertake the project and the full endorsement and support of the national cultural authority in the host country.
  • Project Activities Description that presents the project tasks in chronological order. If the proposed project is part of a larger effort involving multiple projects supported by other entities, the plan must present the full scope of the preservation effort and the place of the proposed project within that larger effort.
  • Project Time Frame or Schedule that lists the major project phases and milestones with target dates for achieving them (NOTE: Applicants may propose project periods of up to 60 months [five years]).
  • Project Participant information, including resumes or CVs of the proposed project director and key project participants.
  • Statement of Urgency indicating the severity of the situation and explaining why the project must take place now.
  • Statement of Sustainability outlining the steps or measures that will be taken to maintain the site or collection in good condition after the AFCP-supported project is complete.
  • Detailed Project Budget, demarcated in one-year budget periods (2016, 2017, 2018, etc.), that lists all costs in separate categories (Personnel, Fringe Benefits, Travel [including Per Diem], Equipment, Supplies, Contractual, Other Direct Costs, Indirect Costs, Cost Sharing); indicates funds from other sources; and gives a justification for any anticipated international travel costs.
  • Budget Narrative explaining how the costs were estimated (quantity x unit cost, for example) and any unique line items in the budget.
  • Media and Outreach Plan, describing how it intends to highlight AFCP-supported activities through existing print, electronic, and social media platforms.
  • Ten (10) or more high quality digital images (JPEGs) or audiovisual files that convey the nature and condition of the site or museum collection and show the urgency or need for the proposed project (collapsing walls, extensive water damage, etc.).
  • Relevant supporting documentation, such as historic structure reports, restoration plans and studies, conservation needs assessments and recommendations, architectural and engineering records, etc., compiled in preparation for the proposed project.

Cost Sharing and other forms of cost participation:

There is no minimum or maximum percentage required for this competition. However, AFCP encourages cost sharing, in-kind contributions, and other forms of cost participation. When cost sharing is offered, it is understood and agreed that the applicant must provide the amount of cost sharing as stipulated in its proposal and later included in an approved agreement.  The applicant will be responsible for tracking and reporting on any cost share or outside funding, which is subject to audit per 2 CFR 200. Cost sharing may be in the form of allowable direct or indirect costs.

Project Schedule

Applicants may propose project performance periods of up to 60 months (five years) with five budget periods of one year each; projects must begin no earlier than September 30, 2016, and conclude no later than September 30, 2020.

DUNS Number and SAM Registration:

All applicants must have a Dun & Bradstreet Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number, a NATO Commercial and Government Entity (NCAGE) code, and be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) prior to submitting full proposals.

Applicants may acquire DUNs numbers at no cost by calling the dedicated toll-free DUNs number request line at 1-866-705-5711 or by requesting a number online.

Non-U.S. based applicants may request a NCAGE code.

SAM is the official, free on-line registration database for the U.S. Government. SAM.gov collects, validates, stores, and disseminates data in support of federal agency acquisition and grant award mission. Registration in SAM, required for all program applicants, Registration in SAM is free

NOTE: This process can take weeks/months, especially for non-U.S. applicants

Performance and deliverables

AFCP 2016 award recipients must submit performance progress and financial status reports and final reports on time as specified in the AFCP 2016 Notice of Award.

Selection Criteria

The Cultural Heritage Center will review and select project abstracts (Round One) and full project proposals (Round Two) according to the program objectives, funding areas and priorities, ineligible activities and unallowable costs, and other proposal requirements. The Center may deem applicants ineligible if the project abstracts or the full project proposals do not fully adhere to AFCP 2016 Large Grants Program objectives, requirements, and other neutral criteria stated herein.

Information on previous awards is available from the Center and the AFCP Web site: The Center has expertise in the preservation of cultural heritage and is available for technical guidance.