Entrepreneurship in Arts and Creative Industries

The U.S. Embassy in Ukraine – Kyiv
Public Diplomacy Section

Notice of Funding Opportunity

Funding Opportunity Title:  Entrepreneurship in Arts and Creative Industries
Funding Opportunity Number:  PAS-Ukraine-FY23-03
Deadline for Applications: July 31, 2023; 23:59 Kyiv time (GMT+3)
Assistance Listing Number: 19.040
Total Amount Available: $100,000.00


The U.S. Embassy in Ukraine of the U.S. Department of State announces an open competition for Ukrainian and U.S. registered non-profit, non-governmental organizations to submit applications to carry out a program to foster entrepreneurship in arts and creative industries.  The arts are especially crucial now during Russia’s war of aggression since they strengthen collective resilience and safeguard Ukrainian identity.  This funding opportunity will help create a diverse, multistakeholder system for the arts that responds to the needs of different audiences across Ukraine and promotes cooperation between arts organizations, ministries, NGOs, and private sector companies.  Please follow all instructions below.

Priority Region: Ukraine

Program Objectives:

The U.S. Embassy Kyiv Public Diplomacy Section (PDS) invites Ukrainian and U.S. registered non-profit, non-governmental organizations to apply for funding to support entrepreneurship in arts and creative industries as a dominant social and economic power in the times of crisis.  The projects should feature U.S. – Ukraine collaboration in arts management and creative industries.

Projects for startups, arts organizations and creative businesses should focus on one of the following:

  1. Capacity building. Projects should help organizations to:
  • evaluate their organizational capacity, viability of business model, sustainability and accessibility, develop a go-to-market strategy and operations plan for a commercial or social venture;
  • develop crowdfunding & pitching skills to attract investment in arts;
  • make connections between art and business / private and public partnership in arts;
  • develop business skills to act entrepreneurially and to profit financially and socially;
  • support creative business development process, exploring knowledge bases, processes, and practices to an entrepreneurial approach in art making and art management;
  • develop and conduct educational programs and trainings for artists and art managers, including topics such as sustainable business financing methods, business efficiency, alternative sources of financing;
  1. Developing and realizing innovative projects in arts and creative industries that :
  • may include newness in culinary arts, sustainable built environment, urban planning, sustainable fashion, and others;
  • promote innovations and technological change in creative industries.

Funding priorities are:

  • Strengthen U.S.-Ukraine relations through arts and creative industries;
  • Promoting innovation and entrepreneurship in arts and creative industries;
  • Expanding public partnership and business ties in arts between Ukraine and the United States;
  • Supporting Ukrainian economy in times of crisis;

The following types of programs are not eligible for funding:

  • Projects in performing arts, exhibitions, film screenings
  • Programs relating to partisan political activity
  • Charitable or development activities
  • Construction programs
  • Programs that support specific religious activities
  • Fund-raising campaigns
  • Lobbying for specific legislation or programs
  • Scientific research
  • Programs that duplicate existing programs

Applicant organizations should place a strong emphasis on developing relationships between Americans and Ukrainians through this program. Participation of American experts and/or art managers is strongly encouraged. Collaborative, sustainable projects that include innovative elements are preferred, as are projects that target less frequently engaged regions of Ukraine. Applicants must demonstrate their capacity for conducting both in-person and virtual events, providing expertise on entrepreneurship in arts, reaching young professionals and youth audiences, and working in a multi-stakeholder environment with Ukrainian and U.S. partners.  Applicants must demonstrate how the project drives social cohesion, sustainable development and economic growth, and bring long-term social and economic benefits, especially to local communities.

Participants and Audiences:

The project must be tailored towards Ukrainian audiences, and all project activities supported by the U.S. Embassy grant should take place in Ukraine and incorporate a substantive U.S. component. This program targets youth, entrepreneurs, art managers, cultural leaders, government, and private, and non-profit stakeholders throughout Ukraine and the United States to promote entrepreneurship in arts, spur innovation, raise awareness, and ensure sustainability.


Length of performance period: up to twelve months. This time should include preparation and wrap-up.
Number of awards anticipated: 5 – 10 awards (dependent on amounts)
Award amounts: awards may range from a minimum of $15, 000 to a maximum of $55,000
Total available funding: $ 100,000.
Type of Funding:  FY23 Smith Mundt Public Diplomacy Funds
Anticipated program start date:  projects should start between November 1, 2023, and June 1, 2024.
This notice is subject to availability of funding.

Funding Instrument Type:  Grant, fixed amount award (FAA), or cooperative agreement. Cooperative agreements and some FAAs are different from grants in that bureau/embassy staff are more actively involved in the grant implementation (“Substantial Involvement”).

Examples of substantial involvement may include, but are not limited to:

  • Approving speakers/experts for a program
  • Approving courses, trainings
  • Selecting or approving participants

Program Performance Period: Proposed programs should be completed in 12 months or less.

The Department of State will entertain applications for continuation grants funded under these awards beyond the initial budget period on a non-competitive basis subject to availability of funds, satisfactory progress of the program, and a determination that continued funding would be in the best interest of the U.S. Department of State. The total duration of any award, including potential non-competitive continuation amendments, shall not exceed 36 months.  Any non-competitive continuation is contingent on performance and pending availability of funds.  A non-competitive continuation is not guaranteed and applies only to Grants (not Fixed Amount Awards of Cooperative Agreements).


  1. Eligible Applicants

The following organizations are eligible to apply

  • S. and Ukrainian not-for-profit organizations, think-tanks, civil society, nongovernmental organizations, not-for-profit educational and cultural institutions
  • For-Profit organizations or commercial entities are not eligible to apply!
  1. Cost Sharing or Matching

Cost-share is recommended but is not required. Although the Review Committee will not assign additional points to applicants who offer cost sharing, the Review Committee will use cost sharing to break ties among applications with equivalent scores after evaluation against all other factors.

  1. Other Eligibility Requirements

In order to be eligible to receive an award, all organizations must have a Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) number issued via www.SAM.gov as well as a valid registration on www.SAM.gov. Please see Section D.3 for more information.


  1. Address to Request Application Package

Application forms required below are available at grants.gov.

  1. Content and Form of Application Submission

Please follow all instructions below carefully. Proposals that do not meet the requirements of this announcement or fail to comply with the stated requirements will be ineligible.

Content of Application

Please ensure:

  • The proposal clearly addresses the goals and objectives of this funding opportunity
  • All documents are in English
  • All budgets are in U.S. dollars
  • All pages are numbered
  • All documents are formatted to 8 ½ x 11 paper, and
  • All Microsoft Word documents are single-spaced, 12-point Calibri font, with a minimum of 1-inch margins.

The following documents are required:

  1. Mandatory application forms
  1. Summary Page: Cover sheet stating the applicant organization, proposal date, program title, proposed period of performance, including start and end date, requested funding in USD, brief program purpose and description. The cover sheet should be signed and dated.
  1. Proposal (10 pages maximum): The proposal should contain sufficient information that anyone not familiar with it would understand exactly what the applicant wants to do. You may use your own proposal format, but it must include all the items below.
  • Proposal Summary: Short narrative that outlines the proposed program, including program objectives and anticipated impact.
  • Introduction to the Organization 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 intends to achieve.  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. Include a logic model as appropriate.
  • Proposed Program Schedule and Timeline: The proposed timeline for the program activities.  Include the dates, times, and locations of planned activities and events. The period of performance should include sufficient time for preparation and reporting.
  • 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, if available.
  • Program Monitoring and Evaluation Plan: This is an important part of successful grants. Throughout the timeframe 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. 
  1. Budget Justification Narrative: After filling out the SF-424A Budget (above), use a separate sheet of paper to describe each of the budget expenses in detail. See section H. Other Information: Guidelines for Budget Submissions below for further information. PDS has a suggested  Detailed Budget Optional Template. If you choose to use your own form, it must include all the budget categories described in the section H.
  1. Attachments:
  • 1-page CV or resume of key personnel who are proposed for the program
  • If your organization has a Negotiated Indirect Cost Rate Agreement (NICRA) and includes NICRA charges in the budget, your latest NICRA should be included as a PDF file.

Required Registrations:

All organizations, whether based in the United States or in another country, must have a Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) and an active registration with the SAM.gov. A UEI is one of the data elements mandated by Public Law 109-282, the Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act (FFATA), for all Federal awards.

Note:  As of April 2022, a DUNS number is no longer required for federal assistance applications.

The 2 CFR 200 requires that sub-grantees obtain a UEI number.  Please note the UEI for sub-grantees is not required at the time of application but will be required before an award is processed and/or directed to a sub-grantee.

 Note:  The process of obtaining or renewing a SAM.gov registration may take anywhere from 4-8 weeks.  Please begin your registration as early as possible.

  • Organizations based in the United States or that pay employees within the United States will need an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and a UEI number prior to registering in SAM.gov.
  • Organizations based outside of the United States and that do not pay employees within the United States do not need an EIN from the IRS but do need a UEI number prior to registering in SAM.gov.
  • Please note that as of November 2022 and February 2022 respectively, organizations based outside of the United States that do not intend to apply for U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) awards are no longer required to have a NATO Commercial and Government Entity (NCAGE) code or CAGE code to apply for non-DoD foreign assistance funding opportunities. If an applicant organization is mid-registration and wishes to remove a CAGE or NCAGE code from their SAM.gov registration, the applicant should submit a help desk ticket (“incident”) with the Federal Service Desk (FSD) online at fsd.gov using the following language: “I do not intend to seek financial assistance from the Department of Defense. I do not wish to obtain a CAGE or NCAGE code. I understand that I will need to submit my registration after this incident is resolved in order to have my registration activated.”

Organizations based outside of the United States and that DO NOT plan to do business with the DoD should follow the below instructions:

Step 1:  Proceed to SAM.gov to obtain a UEI and complete the SAM.gov registration process.  SAM.gov registration must be renewed annually.

Organizations based outside of the United States and that DO plan to do business with the DoD in addition to Department of State should follow the below instructions:

Step 2:  Apply for an NCAGE code by following the instructions on the NSPA NATO website linked below:

NCAGE Homepage:


NCAGE Code Request Tool (NCRT):


An exemption from the UEI and sam.gov registration requirements may be permitted on a case-by-case basis if:

  • An applicant’s identity must be protected due to potential endangerment of their mission, their organization’s status, their employees, or individuals being served by the applicant.
  • For an applicant, if the Federal awarding agency makes a determination that there are exigent circumstances that prohibit the applicant from receiving a unique entity identifier and completing SAM registration prior to receiving a Federal award. In these instances, Federal awarding agencies must require the recipient to obtain a unique entity identifier and complete SAM registration within 30 days of the Federal award date.

Organizations requesting exemption from UEI or SAM.gov requirements must email the point of contact listed in the NOFO at least two weeks prior to the deadline in the NOFO providing a justification of their request. Approval for a SAM.gov exemption must come from the warranted Grants Officer before the application can be deemed eligible for review.

  1. Submission Dates and Times

The deadline for application submissions is July 31, 2023; 23:59 Kyiv time (GMT+3). Any proposals sent after this date will not be considered.

  1. Funding Restrictions

Award funds cannot be used for:

  • Office rent and utilities
  • Capital improvements, such as construction and renovation
  • Purchase of vehicles
  • Activities that convey the appearance of partisanship or support for electoral campaigns
  • Social welfare or charity activities
  • Academic or analytical research (if not part necessary to accomplish a larger project)
  • Scholarships
  • Travel to the United States and activities in the United States
  • Alcoholic Beverages.
  1. Other Submission Requirements

All application materials must be submitted by email to KyivPDGrants@state.gov.

The subject line of submission emails should follow this format: Entrepreneurship in Arts: Abbreviated Project Title, Name of Applicant Organization. In 10 days, you will receive a message confirming receipt of your electronic application containing a registration number.

Interview: Applicants shortlisted by the review committee may be called for an in-person or virtual interview to review the details of their proposal before a final decision is made.


  1. Criteria

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

Quality and Feasibility of the Program Idea :  The program idea is well developed, with detail about how program activities will be carried out. The proposal includes a reasonable implementation timeline.

Organizational Capacity and Record on Previous Grants: The organization has expertise in its stated field and has the internal controls in place to manage federal funds.  This includes a financial management system and a bank account.

Program Planning/Ability to Achieve Objectives: Goals and objectives are clearly stated and program approach is likely to provide maximum impact in achieving the proposed results.

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 ability 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.

Sustainability: Program activities will continue to have positive impact after the end of the program.

Support of Equity and Underserved Communities:  Proposals should clearly demonstrate how the program will support and advance equity and engage underserved communities in program administration, design, and implementation.

  1. Review and Selection Process

A review committee will evaluate all eligible applications. The applicants will be notified of the review committee decision no later than September 30, 2023.

  1. Responsibility/Qualification Information in SAM.gov (formerly, FAPIIS)
    i. The Federal awarding agency, prior to making a Federal award with a total amount of Federal share greater than the simplified acquisition threshold, is required to review and consider any information about the applicant that is in the U.S. government designated integrity and performance system accessible through SAM.gov (see 41 U.S.C. 2313);ii. An applicant, at its option, may review and comment on any information about itself that a Federal awarding agency previously entered. Currently, federal agencies create integrity records in the integrity module of the Contractor Performance Assessment and Reporting System (CPARS) and these records are visible as responsibility/qualification records in SAM.gov;iii. The Federal awarding agency will consider any comments by the applicant, in addition to the other information in the designated integrity and performance system, in making a judgment about the applicant’s integrity, business ethics, and record of performance under Federal awards when completing the review of risk posed by applicants as described in §200.206 Federal awarding agency review of risk posed by applicants.


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. Reporting requirements will be outlined in the award agreement.

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.

Payment Method: Payments are typically made in two or more installments, as needed to carry out the program activities based on the Request for Advance or Reimbursement (SF-270) forms submitted by a grantee.

  1. Administrative and National Policy Requirements

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:

In accordance with the Office of Management and Budget’s guidance located at 2 CFR part 200, all applicable Federal laws, and relevant Executive guidance, the Department of State will review and consider applications for funding, as applicable to specific programs, pursuant to this notice of funding opportunity in accordance with the following:  NOTE:

  • Guidance for Grants and Agreements in Title 2 of the Code of Federal Regulations (2 CFR), as updated in the Federal Register’s 85 FR 49506 on August 13, 2020, particularly on:
    • Selecting recipients most likely to be successful in delivering results based on the program objectives through an objective process of evaluating Federal award applications (2 CFR part 200.205),
    • Prohibiting the purchase of certain telecommunication and video surveillance services or equipment in alignment with section 889 of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2019 (Pub. L. No. 115—232) (2 CFR part 200.216),
    • Promoting the freedom of speech and religious liberty in alignment with Promoting Free Speech and Religious Liberty (E.O. 13798) and Improving Free Inquiry, Transparency, and Accountability at Colleges and Universities (E.O. 13864) (§§ 200.300, 200.303, 200.339, and 200.341),
    • Providing a preference, to the extent permitted by law, to maximize use of goods, products, and materials produced in the United States (2 CFR part 200.322), and
    • Terminating agreements in whole or in part to the greatest extent authorized by law, if an award no longer effectuates the program goals or agency priorities (2 CFR part 200.340).
  1. Reporting

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


If you have any questions about the grant application process, please contact: KyivPDGrants@state.gov.


Guidelines for Budget Justification

Personnel and Fringe Benefits: 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, for program staff, consultants or speakers, and participants/beneficiaries. 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 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.