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Application Kit: Request For Applications (RFA) for Outreach Partnerships

2010 Request for Applications for Community Outreach and Assistance Partnerships
RMA announces availability of approximately $2.5 million for partnership agreements to fund outreach projects to provide information and training for limited resource, socially disadvantaged and other traditionally under-served farmers and ranchers, who produce Priority Commodities as defined in Part I.C. Awards will be made on a competitive basis for projects of up to one year. Recipients must demonstrate non-financial benefits from a partnership agreement and must agree to the substantial RMA involvement in the project.

CLOSING DATE: The closing date and time for receipt of an application is 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Apr 15, 2010. Applications received after the deadline will not be evaluated by the technical review panel.

The following information and forms will assist you in preparing an application under the RFA:

1. OMB Standard Form 424 - Application for Federal Assistance PDF | Word - Please complete this form in its entirely. The original copy of the application must contain a pen and ink signature of the authorized organizational representative (AOR) individual with the authority to commit the organization's time and other relevant resources to the project. The Catalogue of Federal Domestic Assistance Number (block 10) is "10-455, Community Outreach and Assistance." Optional: Please indicate in Block 7 if you are a faith-based organization.

2. Table of Contents - Each application must contain a detailed Table of Contents immediately following OMB SF 424.

3. Project Summary - (Limited to one page, placed after the Table of Contents). The summary should be a self-contained, specific description of the activity to be undertaken and should focus on: overall project goals(s) and supporting objectives; plans to accomplish project goals; and relevance of the project to the goals of the community outreach and assistance program.

4. Progress Report - (Limited to three pages, placed immediately after the Project Summary). Renewal applications of an existing project supported under the same program should include a clearly identified summary progress report describing the results to date. The progress report should contain a comparison of actual accomplishments with the goals established for the project.

5. A Project Description - (Limited to 25 single-sided pages; anything over will not be considered or reviewed) that describes the outreach project in detail, including the program delivery plan and a Statement of Work. The description should provide reviewers with sufficient information to effectively evaluate the merits of the application under the criteria contained in Part V. The description should include the circumstances giving rise to the proposed activity; a clear, concise statement of the objectives; the steps necessary to implement the program to attain the objectives; an evaluation plan for the activities; and a program delivery plan and statement of work that describes how the activities will be implemented and managed by the applicant.

6. Statement of Work - Word | PDF - in table format should identify each objective and the key tasks to achieve the objective, the entity responsible for the task, the completion date, the task location, and RMA's role. Applicants are strongly encouraged to refer to the sample table in the application package, when preparing a delivery plan and to use this table format in that portion of the application narrative that addresses the delivery plan.

7. OMB Standard Form 424A - Budget Information, Non-Construction Programs - Indirect costs allowed for projects submitted under this announcement will be limited to 10 percent of the total direct cost of the partnership or cooperative agreement. Applicants should include reasonable travel costs associated with attending at least two RMA designated two-day events, which will include a Project Directors' meeting and civil rights training.

8. Budget Narrative - A detailed narrative in support of the budget should show all funding sources and itemized costs for each line item contained on the SF-424A. All budget categories must be individually listed (with costs) in the same order as the budget and justified on a separate sheet of paper and placed immediately behind the SF-424A. There must be a detailed breakdown of all costs, including indirect costs. Include budget notes on each budget line item detailing how each line item was derived. Also provide a brief narrative description of any costs that may require explanation (i.e., why a specific cost may be higher than market costs). Only items or services that are necessary for the successful completion of the project will be funded as permitted under the Act, the applicable Federal Cost principles, and are not prohibited under any other Federal statute. Salaries of project personnel should be requested in proportion to the effort that they would devote to the project.

Include a Statement of Non-financial Benefits that demonstrates that the applicant will receive a non-financial benefit as a result of a partnership agreement. Non-financial benefits must accrue to the applicant and must include more than the ability to provide employment income to the applicant or for the applicant's employees or the community.

9. Key Personnel - The roles and responsibilities of each PD and/or collaborator should be clearly described; and the vitae of the PD and each co-PD, senior associate and other professional personnel.

10. Collaborative Arrangements (including Letters of Support) - If it will be necessary to enter into formal consulting or collaborative arrangements, such arrangements should be fully explained and justified. If the consultants or collaborators are known at the time of application, a vitae or resume should be provided. Evidence (e.g., letter of support) should be included if the collaborators involved have agreed to render these services. Additional information on consultants and collaborators are required in the budget portion of the application.

11. Current and Pending Support - All applications must list all current public or private support to which personnel identified in the application have committed portions of their time, whether or not salary support for persons involved is included in the budget. An application that duplicates or overlaps substantially with an application already reviewed and funded (or to be funded) by another organization or agency will not be funded under this program. The projects proposed for funding should be included in the pending section of the form.

12. OMB Standard Form LLL, Disclosure of Lobbying Activities - All applications must contain a signed copy of this form (See Part VI (F). Applicants who are not engaging in lobbying activities should write "Not Applicable" and sign the form.

13. AD-1047 - A completed and signed Certification Regarding Debarment, Suspension, and Other Responsibility Matters (Primary Covered Transactions).

14. AD-1049 - A completed and signed Certifications Regarding Drug-Free Workplace.

15. Appendices are allowed if they are directly germane to the proposed project.

For more information, please contact:
Jay Howard-Brock, 202-690-4789,
Rudy Perez, 202-230-1606,
Ron Brown, 919-875-4896,
Michelle Wert, 202-690-1687, Michelle