NOFO – Academy for Women Entrepreneurs, 2021 | AFKAM-PAS-FY21-2 | Closing : Monday, April 12, 2021 

U.S. EMBASSY Kampala  | 
Notice of Funding Opportunity 

Funding Opportunity Title: Academy for Women Entrepreneurs, 2021

Funding Opportunity Number: AFKAM-PAS-FY21-2

Deadline for Applications: MondayApril 12, 2021 

CFDA Number: 19.022

Total Amount Available: $30,000 


The U.S. Mission in Uganda is pleased to announce the open competition to award a cooperative agreement for a new cohort in Uganda of the “Academy for Women Entrepreneurs” (or “AWE”). The Public Affairs Office invites proposals from established, non-profit Ugandan associations, committed and organized civil-society organizations, and academic institutions to design and implement an intensive training program that would provide approximately 100 emerging female entrepreneurs (in four cohorts of 25 participants each) with critical skills for founding or scaling up their businesses and help develop a network among participants and trainers for future collaboration and support.  U.S. and third-country organizations or nationals are not eligible for cooperative agreements under this program unless in partnership with a Ugandan organization.

Through the Academy for Women Entrepreneurs, participants will take part in facilitated training sessions featuring an online curriculum (“DreamBuilder”) that will be provided by the State Department and that offers modules on the fundamentals of launching and scaling up businesses.  These sessions should be highly interactive and should be supplemented by in-person talks and workshops, including from successful Ugandan and American entrepreneurs and alumni of U.S. government exchange programs, trade fairs, business accelerators, or pitch competitions. 

The AWE program will target female Ugandan business owners and entrepreneurs, who are approximately 25 to 40 years old and who have 1 – 5 years of business experience.  Participants should be recruited via a competitive application process. In addition to demonstrating an appropriate level of business/entrepreneurship experience and strong motivation for participating in AWE, participants must also be computer literate and have reliable access to an internet-connected computer or smart phone. The online DreamBuilder curriculum is in English so participants must be able to demonstrate requisite language skills.  

The program will be held in Kampala and at three regional centers selected by the awardee in consultation with the U.S. Embassy’s Public Affairs Office. The Kampala cohort will focus on entrepreneurship in the creative sector while the remaining cohorts will target entrepreneurs/businesswomen in the technology sector or whose enterprises utilize technology for a significant aspect of their work, including digital sales and marketing.

All AWE activities should have a strong American focus. To supplement the facilitated “Dreambuilder” online sessions, the Public Affairs Office will work with the awardee to identify and recruit relevant local American business experts and professors in Uganda, business experts from the Ugandan branches of American companies, and alumni of U.S. government exchange programs to provide complementary lectures and workshops.  The Public Affairs Office will seek to include a substantial proportion of female role models among these experts.  The Awardee will integrate these experts into the AWE curriculum and arrange and fund their travel and lodging.


Each proposal should meet the following objectives, in addition to strengthening understanding of U.S. values, institutions, and precepts: 

  1. Expand participants’ understanding of the fundamentals of developing and scaling up a business.   
  2. Expose participants to U.S. models for business development and connect them with American entrepreneurship experts.  
  3. Facilitate the development of an ongoing network of female entrepreneurs who can offer support and ongoing best practices while sustaining their relationship with the U.S. Embassy.  


Applicants are encouraged to submit proposals that use a variety of interactive activities, workshops, and other learning experiences to help participants develop their entrepreneurship skills.  All proposals should contain a proposed syllabus briefly describing how in-person speakers and other activities would supplement the online sessions in the attached Dreambuilder course description, and how these activities would relate to overall program objectives.  Proposals should also include a detailed explanation of how applicants will be recruited and a description of how institute activities will bring about the intended results. Proposals should include ideas for at least one follow-on activity approximately two to six months after the institute that would allow all or select participants to deepen their entrepreneurship skills (please note that this award would not cover the costs of any such follow-on activity, which would be subject to additional funding resources).  

Notice: All proposals submitted in response to this Notice of Funding Opportunity must include a contingency plan describing in detail how the proposed activity would be implemented in the event that COVID-19 related health restrictions are in place during the anticipated period of performance.

Only non-profit Ugandan associations, committed and organized civil-society organizations, and academic institutions with experience executing entrepreneurship and/or women’s empowerment programs will be eligible to receive funding. U.S. and third-country organizations or nationals are not eligible for cooperative agreements under this program unless in partnership with a Ugandan organization.   

  • Awardees will work closely with the Embassy’s Public Affairs Office to design and execute a facilitated program for 100 Ugandan female entrepreneurs (age 25 – 40).  Activities should include workshops, mentoring, and other interactive sessions. The activities should be innovative and hands-on.   
  • A clear methodology of participant recruitment and selection should be detailed in the proposal. 
  • The cooperative agreement should cover the costs of venues for the training sessions and supplemental activities.
  • The cooperative agreement should cover the costs of travel, lodging, and full board for facilitators, mentors, and guest expert speakers.
  • The cooperative agreement should cover funding for any materials necessary for the promotion of the AWE program/recruiting participants and other materials for use in program activities. 
  • Awardees should be prepared to design and implement surveys, polls, or other methods for evaluating the institute’s effectiveness before, during, and after completion.  
  • The proposal should include information about how the awardee will identify and recruit local facilitators and experts.  
  • The proposal should contain a sample agenda of sessions and activities.  
  • Awardees should be available to participate in regular planning calls with the Embassy until the launch of the institute.  
  • Equipment cannot account for more than 10% of the total project cost. 
  • The cooperative agreement will be only awarded to non-profit associations, committed and organized civil-society organizations and academic institutions that already have a final registration receipt and an established bank account at the time that they apply. 
  • Associations, civil-society organizations, and academic institutions applying to this program should have experience both in organizing large-scale programs as well as demonstrated knowledge of the entrepreneurship and business environment in Uganda.  
  • U.S. and third-country organizations or nationals who seek to apply for this funding opportunity are encouraged to do so in partnership with a Ugandan NGO.  
  • All proposals must be submitted to the U.S. Embassy by Monday, April 12, 2021. No late proposals will be considered. 
  • All applicants will be notified of funding decisions by Mid-May 2021, subject to the availability of funds.   


  • Number of awards anticipated: one award.  
  • Approximate award amount: The amount will be a maximum of approximately $30,000.  Projects for lesser or greater values will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Funding may be renewed for up to an additional two years on a non-competitive basis pending successful performance and availability of funds. 
  • Type of Funding: FY21 ECA Funds 
  • The awardee should plan to end the project by July 2022 with dates to be set in coordination with the Embassy.   

This notice is subject to availability of funding. 

Funding Instrument Type:  Cooperative Agreement. The Public Affairs Office will be actively involved in the award implementation. U.S. Embassy staff will: 

  • Provide standardized logos/branding guidelines for AWE promotional materials  
  • Initiate and participate in promotional activities, to include promotion of the AWE through the U.S. Mission in Uganda’s social media platforms and media engagements. 
  • Assist in identifying possible institute venues.  Approve the selection of the venue.  
  • Approve participant, facilitator, and expert speaker recruitment and selection plans. 
  • Assist the implementing partner in developing a multistage review process for applicants, including an initial technical review of applications, review and creation of a short list, and process for interviews, which will include a panel of reviewers with Embassy representation. 
  • Assist in identifying and contacting alumni of U.S. government exchange program, representatives of U.S. companies, and U.S. Mission personnel as potential speakers or trainers. .  
  • Review and approve proposed institute speaker and trainer rosters and activity/workshop/site visit topics and formats.  
  • During the training program, use social media and outreach to print and television networks, as well as engagement by senior Mission officials, to showcase AWE for a wider Ugandan audience. 
  • Collaborate with the awardee in assessing participant needs for post-boot camp additional training and assist in designing a follow-on activity.  


Proposal Format

To apply, please provide the following information, in English:

1. Mandatory application forms

    • SF-424 (Application for Federal Assistance – organizations) or SF-424-I (Application for Federal Assistance –individuals) 

Application for Federal Assistance SF-424 (fill out pdf file – requires latest Adobe reader)

Application For Federal Assistance SF 424 – Individual (fill out pdf file – requires latest Adobe reader)

    • SF424A (Budget Information for Non-Construction programs) 

BUDGET INFORMATION – Non-Construction Programs (fill out pdf file – requires latest Adobe reader)

    • SF424B (Assurances for Non-Construction programs)

Assurances – Non-Construction Programs (fill out pdf file – requires latest Adobe reader)

2. Summary Coversheet: Cover sheet stating the applicant name and organization, proposal date, program title, program period proposed start and end date, and brief purpose of the program. We highly recommend that in addition to this, the applicant fill out the Organizational Information template provided. 

3. Proposal (5 pages maximum): The proposal should contain sufficient information that anyone not familiar with the project would understand exactly what the applicant wants to do. We highly recommend that the applicant use the proposal template provided here. If the applicant elects not to use the template provided, they may use their own proposal format, but must provide all the items listed below.

      • Proposal Summary: Short narrative that outlines the proposed program, including program objectives and anticipated impact.
      • Introduction to the Organization or Individual Applying: A description of past and present operations, showing ability to carry out the program, including information on all previous grants from the U.S. Embassy and/or U.S. government agencies.
      • Problem Statement: Clear, concise and well-supported statement of the problem to be addressed and why the proposed program is needed
      • Program Goals and Objectives: The goals” describe what the program is intended to achieve.  What aspect of the relationship between the U.S. and Uganda will be improved? The objectives” refer to the intermediate accomplishments on the way to the goals. These should be achievable and measurable.
      • Program Activities: Describe the program activities and how they will help achieve the objectives.
      • Program Methods and Design: A description of how the program is expected to work to solve the stated problem and achieve the goal.
      • Proposed Program Schedule: The proposed timeline for the program activities. Include the dates, times, and locations of planned activities and events.
      • Key Personnel: Names, titles, roles and experience/qualifications of key personnel involved in the program. What proportion of their time will be used in support of this program?
      • Program Partners: List the names and type of involvement of key partner organizations and sub-awardees.
      • Program Monitoring and Evaluation Plan: This is an important part of successful grants. Throughout the time-frame of the grant, how will the activities be monitored to ensure they are happening in a timely manner, and how will the program be evaluated to make sure it is meeting the goals of the grant?
      • Future Funding or Sustainability Applicant’s plan for continuing the program beyond the grant period, or the availability of other resources, if applicable.

4. Budget Justification Narrative: After filling out the SF-424A Budget (mandatory form), use a separate sheet of paper to describe each of the budget expenses in detail. See Guidelines for Budget Submissions below for further information. While not required, we highly recommend that the applicant use the budget template provided here. Do remember to submit the budget with the mandatory SF424A.

Guidelines for Budget Justification

Personnel: 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. 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.

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.

Contractual: Describe goods and services that the applicant plans to acquire through a contract with a vendor. Also describe any sub-awards to non-profit partners that will help carry out the program activities.

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 or applicable taxes. All Other” or Miscellaneous” expenses must be itemized and explained.

Indirect Costs: These are costs that cannot be linked directly to the program activities, such as overhead costs needed to help keep the organization operating. If your organization has a Negotiated Indirect Cost Rate (NICRA) and includes NICRA charges in the budget, attach a copy of your latest NICRA. Organizations that have never had a NICRA may request indirect costs of 10% of the modified total direct costs as defined in 2 CFR 200.68.

Cost Sharing” refers to contributions from the organization or other entities other than the U.S. Embassy. It also includes in-kind contributions such as volunteers’ time and donated venues.

Alcoholic Beverages:  Please note that award funds cannot be used for alcoholic beverages.


  • 1-page CV or resume of key personnel who are proposed for the program
  • Letters of support from program partners describing the roles and responsibilities of each partner
  • Official permission letters, if required for program activities
  • A copy of the final registration papers for the organization.
  • Proposals must include a draft syllabus of training sessions (Please use and attach your own form) 
  • If other partners are willing to support the proposed activity, please list them as well as their contribution. 

The complete set of proposal documents must be submitted to :  no later than Monday, April 12, 2021. 


All applicants must have the following registrations: 

  • Dun and Bradstreet (D&B) Data Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number; 
  • NATO Commercial and Government Entity (NCAGE) code; and 
  • System for Award Management ( (If you have applied and have not yet received the registration number, provide proof of application). 

Please apply for the D&B DUNS Number and NCAGE Code at the same time to reduce waiting time for registration.  The Legal Business Name and Address must MATCH EXACTLY when entering it into the D&B DUNS, NCAGE, and websites – this includes spaces, parentheses, capitalization, small letters, punctuation, etc.  Self-registration in D&B DUNS, NCAGE, and is free of charge. 


The DUNS/UEI number is a nine-digit number established and assigned by Dun and Bradstreet, Inc. (D&B) to uniquely identify business entities. 

Log onto the D&B website at 

For assistance, contact D&B at the following email address: 

While acquiring the D&B DUNS/UEI Number, please register to receive an NCAGE Code Number with NCS at the same time.  See instructions below. Step by step information is also included here (Word – 567 KB). 


NATO Commercial and Government Entity (NCAGE) codes are required for all foreign entities to create an account in  The Code is a five-character ID number, and can take, at a minimum, 4-5 business days to create. 

Steps to register: (Please use the Internet Explorer web browser) 

Foreign registrants must log into: CAGE Code Request at 

Once in the NATO Codification Tools website, scroll to the right-hand corner and click the “Magnifying Glass.” The magnifying glass will open a new page. 

Scroll down the right-hand side until you see “Request New,” click on this link and it will take you to the next page to apply for an NCAGE Code Number. 

When asked if the entity to be registered is a supranational organization please click “No” (if you are not part of a member state). 

Validate the newly assigned NCAGE Code via the Business Identification Number Cross- Reference System (BINCS) at 

If the assigned NCAGE is not listed in BINCS, the recipient should call 001-269-961-4623 or send a message to NCAGE@NSPA.NATO.INT.  

For assistance by telephone, please call: 1-888-227-2423 (inside the U.S.) OR 001-269-961-7766 (outside the U.S.).  E-mail for any problems in obtaining an NCAGE code.  

  1. SYSTEM FOR AWARD MANAGEMENT ( (Please use either the Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox web browser) 

SAM is a U.S.-government wide registry of vendors doing business with the U.S. federal government and requires annual renewal.  The system centralizes information about grant applicants/recipients, and provides them with a central location to change their organizational information.  More information about and useful guides for setting-up a new account, updating an existing account, or renewing an expired account can be found at:  

Please complete ALL of the above steps before attempting to register in SAM. 

  • Log onto  
  • If you have had an active record in The Central Contractor Registration (CCR), you may already have an active record in SAM. To check for an active registration, please conduct a “search” for your record using the organization name and/or DUNS Number in SAM.  If you are not registered, your organization or entity will not be found. 
  • If your organization does not have an active registration, you must create a user account and input all information in the exact manner as you have for the IRS, D&B DUNS, and NCAGE. 
  • Complete and submit the online form. 

If the applying organization already has the necessary information on hand (see the SAM User Guide), the online form takes approximately one hour to complete, depending upon the size and complexity of the applying entity.  Because of the different steps in the process, it might take anywhere from three to fourteen business days to complete the process of creating an account with the system. 

If you encounter any error, please contact the SAM Federal Service Desk to report problem at  There is a standard (not toll free) number that customers can use 334-206-7828. 


  1. Criteria 

Each application will be evaluated and rated on the basis of the evaluation criteria outlined below.  

Quality and Feasibility of the Proposed Institute Program:  The program idea is well developed, with detail about how program activities will be carried out. The proposal includes a reasonable implementation timeline, including for recruitment of participants, facilitators and expert speakers.  Goals and objectives are clearly stated and program outline is likely to provide maximum impact in achieving the proposed results. 

Organizational Capacity, Entrepreneurship Experience, and Record on Previous Grants/Program Implementation: The organization has expertise in the Ugandan entrepreneurship ecosystem, has experience managing complex projects, and has the internal controls in place to manage federal funds.  This includes a financial management system and a bank account. 

U.S. Component:  There is strong participation of facilitators/expert speakers with a connection to the United States and application of U.S. business models.   

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 is able to measure program success against key indicators and provides milestones to indicate progress toward goals outlined in the proposal. The program includes output and outcome indicators, and shows how and when those will be measured. 

  1. Review and Selection Process 

The Public Affairs Office will evaluate all eligible applications.  The evaluation process will consist of two stages.  First, a technical review will be completed to ensure that proposals and organizations meet the criteria set forth above.  Second, a Grant Review Committee comprised of personnel from the U.S. Embassy in Kampala will evaluate eligible proposals on the basis of the criteria identified above.   


    1. Federal Award Notices 

The grant award or cooperative agreement will be written, signed, awarded, and administered by the Grants Officer. The assistance award agreement is the authorizing document and it will be provided to the recipient for review and signature by email. The recipient may only start incurring program expenses beginning on the start date shown on the grant award document signed by the Grants Officer. 

If a proposal is selected for funding, the Department of State has no obligation to provide any additional future funding. Renewal of an award to increase funding or extend the period of performance is at the discretion of the Department of State.  

Issuance of this NOFO does not constitute an award commitment on the part of the U.S. government, nor does it commit the U.S. government to pay for costs incurred in the preparation and submission of proposals. Further, the U.S. government reserves the right to reject any or all proposals received. 

    1. Administrative and National Policy Requirements 

Terms and Conditions: Before submitting an application, applicants should review all the terms and conditions and required certifications which will apply to this award, to ensure that they will be able to comply.  These include: 

2 CFR 2002 CFR 600, Certifications and Assurances, and the Department of State Standard Terms and Conditions, all of which are available at: 

Note the U.S Flag branding and marking requirements in the Standard Terms and Conditions.   

    1. Reporting 

Reporting Requirements: Recipients will be required to submit financial reports and program reports.  The award document will specify how often these reports must be submitted.