Alumni Grants Program

The U.S. Mission to Kazakhstan, in partnership with implementing NGO National Alumni Network (NAN), announces the second round of Alumni Grants Program (AGP) for 2022-2023.

  • Did you study or participate in a U.S.-sponsored educational or professional exchange program?
  • Do you have a project you would like to undertake that would benefit your community, strengthen the relationship between American and Kazakhstani citizens, or increase knowledge of one community about the other?

The Alumni Grants Program supports innovative and sustainable projects developed and implemented by Kazakhstani citizens who are alumni of a U.S. government or U.S. Embassy educational or professional exchange program.

PROGRAM DESCRIPTION 

With AGP 2022-2023, NAN provides alumni of U.S. sponsored exchange programs with substantial funding and resources to expand on skills and knowledge gained during their exchange programs to design and implement effective and sustainable solutions to current challenges facing their local communities in Kazakhstan. Proposals should focus on strengthening communities and capacity building.

Competitive proposals will address one of the following:

Support civil society in the regions (outside capital cities) to advocate for their needs and work with their communities to: 

  • Build the capacity of civil society organizations to seek and manage resources and funds.
  • Understand recent legislative changes, for example regarding the media and civil society legislation, election reforms, disability rights, etc.
  • Promote tools and methods to support a culture of respect for rule of law, accountability, transparency, and inclusive governance processes.
  • Counter disinformation and increase media literacy through targeted programming for youth.

Strengthen Higher Education: 

  • Support USG exchange alumni to share U.S. best practices or their own expertise to support faculty and administrators/university leadership implement academic freedom. This could include efforts to:
  • Improve university management, course offerings, teaching methodology, peer to peer training;
  • Promote academic integrity, anti-corruption; and/or
  • Improve student services.
  • Strengthen student body development by helping student groups to: o Develop capacity in overall soft skills, student government, voluntarism, charity, and community service; and/or
  • Provide administrators feedback for positive advancements by integrating best practices from the U.S. universities and the U.S. student organizations.  Priority will be given to projects with locations outside of the main cities (Astana, Almaty) and/or adapted/able to support work in Kazakh speaking communities/groups.

GENERAL GUIDELINES 

To apply for the AGP, applicants need to carefully read the announcement and the guidelines in this file and follow the step described below:

Application should be submitted via registration form in the following 4 simple steps:

  1. Download 3 documents: Application Guidelines, Application Form and Budget Form
  2. Fill out Application Form and Budget Form with your project proposal
  3. All Application Form and Budget Form should be submitted by February 26, 23.59 PM (Astana time) via email alumnikazakhstan@gmail.com
  4. Decision regarding your Application will be communicated to you via emails no later than March 20, 2023

Application Selection Process 

A Selection Committee composed of the National Alumni Network with Public Affairs Sections in the U.S. Embassy and Consulate will use the following criteria to evaluate all applications.

CRITERIA FOR SELECTION 

  • Quality and Feasibility of the Program Idea
  • Project Planning/Ability to Achieve Objectives
  • Evaluation and Sustainability of the Project
  • Budget Justification

FEDERALAWARD INFORMATION 

Announcement posted: January 25, 2023

Closing date for applications: February 26, 2023

Funding type: Grant

Decision date: no later than March 20, 2023

Expected size of individual awards: Between $3,000 to $7,000 Program Performance Period: Proposed programs should be completed before June 30, 2023.

ELIGIBILITY INFORMATION 

Applicants must be Kazakhstani alumni of a U.S. Department of State-funded exchange program (https://alumni.state.gov/list-exchange-programs), or a U.S. government-sponsored exchange program (https://j1visa.state.gov/).

  • Alumni who are U.S. citizens may not submit proposals, but U.S. citizen alumni may participate as team members in a project.
  • Applications must be submitted by individual and exchange alumni. Not-for-profit, non-governmental organizations, think tanks, and academic institutions are not eligible to apply in the name of the organization but can serve as partners for implementing project activities.

COST SHARING 

Inclusion of cost share is not a requirement of this opportunity.

TIPS FOR CREATING A STRONG PROPOSAL 

Make your proposal stand out! Winning AGP projects demonstrate innovation by tackling an important issue, using a unique approach, working with a well-defined target group of people, or performing the project in a creative way. The strategies and questions below are designed to help you create a strong proposal.

In writing your summary, consider the following questions:

  • What is your project and why is it important (what problem are you trying to solve)?
  • What change does your project seek (what is your solution, and why do you think it will work)?
  • Who is your target audience (are you trying to reach youth; a specific professional sector; disadvantaged communities; or change the mindset or actions of a certain group, etc.?)
  • How many people will it reach?
  • Are you carrying out an awareness campaign, training, mentoring program, etc.? What impact or changes will you see because of the project in the short and medium-term?
  • Who are your partners? What responsibilities will each team member and partner have?
  • What major steps and activities will you undertake to make your project happen? How will you monitor the success of your project before, during and after the project?

CONTACT US 

If you have any questions about the process, we encourage you to contact the NAN team by email at: alumnikazakhstan@gmail.com 

Please contact the NAN team first to inquire about AGP 2022-2023 as they will have specific information about the competition. Only if you are unable to contact the NAN team, you may contact the U.S. Mission’s Alumni Coordinators at kazakhstanalumni@state.gov