Administration for Children and Families
 
 
Administration on Children, Youth, & Families
 
Initiative to Reduce Long-Term Foster Care
HHS-2010-ACF-ACYF-CT-0022
Application Due Date: 08/09/2010

 

Initiative to Reduce Long-Term Foster Care
HHS-2010-ACF-ACYF-CT-0022
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Overview
Executive Summary
Section I. Funding Opportunity Description
Section II. Award Information
Section III. Eligibility Information
  1. Eligible Applicants
  2. Cost Sharing or Matching
  3. Other - (if applicable)
Section IV. Application and Submission Information
  1. Address to Request Application Package
  2. Content and Form of Application Submission
  3. Submission Dates and Times
  4. Intergovernmental Review
  5. Funding Restrictions
  6. Other Submission Requirements
Section V. Application Review Information
  1. Criteria
  2. Review and Selection Process
  3. Anticipated Announcement and Award Dates
Section VI. Award Administration Information
  1. Award Notices
  2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements
  3. Reporting
Section VII. Agency Contact(s)
Section VIII. Other Information

header icon
Initiative to Reduce Long-Term Foster Care
HHS-2010-ACF-ACYF-CT-0022
ANNOUNCEMENT MODIFICATION | Validate & Approve
 
Department of Health & Human Services
Administration for Children & Families
 
Program Office:Administration on Children, Youth, & Families - Children's Bureau
Funding Opportunity Title:Initiative to Reduce Long-Term Foster Care
Announcement Type:Modification
Funding Opportunity Number:HHS-2010-ACF-ACYF-CT-0022
CFDA Number:93.648
Due Date for Applications: 08/09/2010
Executive Summary:

The purpose of this funding opportunity announcement is to fund demonstration projects that support the implementation and test the effectiveness of innovative intervention strategies to improve permanency outcomes of subgroups of children that have the most serious barriers to permanency in spite of the reform efforts in the Adoption and Safe Families Act of 1997(ASFA). Many provisions of ASFA focused on moving children and youth to permanent families more quickly while maintaining children's safety. Even so, many jurisdictions struggle with a growing population of children who are aging out of foster care.

These projects will address site specific issues in order to help children leave foster care in fewer than three years. The cooperative agreements will fund activities that include:

  • The planning necessary to develop effective intervention strategies;
  • Collaborative planning to leverage other Federal, State and local investments of existing funding streams into effective permanency achievement programs and practices;
  • The range of activities and services needed to develop, adopt, implement, assess, and sustain effective permanency achievement programs;
  • The services which address barriers to children's placement with permanent families outside of the foster care system;
  • Active participation in rigorous site-specific and cross-site evaluations that include process/implementation, outcome, and cost study components; and
  • Dissemination of information about grantee experiences.

All applicants must identify local barriers to permanent placement and implement innovative intervention strategies that mitigate or eliminate those barriers throughout the continuum of service to reduce the likelihood that future children entering foster care encounter similar barriers upon entry or during their stay in care. The cooperative agreements allow flexibility in identification of the target population and the design of the interventions. If cooperative agreement funds are used to provide direct services they should not supplant Federal, State, or local funding.

Innovative intervention strategies and program models may focus on, but are not limited to:

  • Reducing the number of children who enter care;
  • Intervening at the point of entry with the families of children who typically remain in care for lengthy periods of time;
  • Targeted assessment of children and/or families to determine their strengths, challenges, trauma history, and individualized service needs;
  • Intervening with children who have already experienced long stays in foster care;
  • Revising practices that impact child and family well-being to expedite achievement of permanency;
  • State/Tribal collaboration to reduce the length of stay for the foster care population with Tribal heritage;
  • Innovative interventions for populations of children and youth who have long stays in foster care;
  • Recruitment of foster homes in communities with the highest rate of removal; or
  • Any combination of the above services.

Projects will be eligible for incentive payments if they achieve targets for permanency and well-being outcomes. Projects will be given flexibility in how to use the incentive payments to fund enhanced project-related activities.

The cooperative agreements aim to achieve two goals:

  • Implement innovative intervention strategies, informed by the relevant literature to reduce long-term foster stays and improve child outcomes.
  • Rigorously evaluate these efforts to provide substantial information about the effectiveness of the programs, interventions, and practices implemented in reducing long-term foster care.
I. Funding Opportunity Description

Statutory Authority

The legislative authority is Section 426 of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. Section 626).

Description

 

Background

Background information is provided to give context regarding the need to define and implement practices which can reduce the length of time children and youth spend in foster care. Data and findings at the national level furnish a general understanding of the challenges which impact the target population and point to promising practices which may reduce foster care stays. Previous demonstration projects provide additional information on promising practices.  

Child and Family Services Review Findings

As of September 2009, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF), Children's Bureau (CB) had completed the second round of Child and Family Services Reviews (CFSRs) in 32 States. The CFSRs yield useful information with regard to children who experience long stays in foster care. Among other areas, the CFSRs assess States' achievement of outcomes for children in foster care related to moving them to permafnency and in improving families' capacity to care for their children. The findings from both the first and second rounds of the CFSR indicate that States continue to be challenged to achieve permanency for children in foster care, particularly those who experience long stays (i.e., three years or more).

The two lowest rated outcomes thus far in the second round of the CFSR process are Permanency Outcome 1, children have permanency and stability in their living situations, and Well-Being Outcome 1, families have enhanced capacity to provide for their children's needs. Forty-two percent of States were found to be in sufbstantial conformity for Permanency Outcome 1, and 46 percent for Well-Being Outcome 1. Moreover, States have demonstrated minimal improvemfent on Permanency Composite 3, achieving permanency for children in foster care for long periods of time. In Fiscal Year (FY) 2005, 25.5 percent of children in care for longer than two years achieved permanency, in comparison to 28.4 percent in FY 2008. No State achieved substantial conformity on the outcome that evaluates the timely achievement of permanency goals for children in foster care. 

States are challenged with moving children to adoption in a timely manner, with 37 percent of all cases reviewed in round two being rated as a strength in Item 9 of the CFSR, Adoption. Other areas in which States continue to experience challenges are establishing appropriate permanency goals for children in a timely manner; use of other planned permanent living arrangement; caseworker visits with parents; needs and services of child, parents, foster parents; and child and family involvement in case planning. All of these findings support the need to develop more effective programs that will address the multiple areas that impact the child welfare system's effectiveness in reducing long stays for children in foster care.

CFSR findings also provide useful information regarding child welfare practices that are associated with stronger performance in Permanency Outcome 1 and Permanency Composite 4, placement stability. For example, items associated with stronger performance on Permanency Outcome 1 include CFSR Safety Outcome items such as provision of services to families to protect children in the home and prevent removal or re-entry into care, and CFSR Well-Being Outcome items such as conducting needs assessment and services to both children and parents and caseworker visits with both the child and parents. Additionally, the CFSR item associated with stronger performance in Permanency Composite 4 is caseworker visits with the child.

Reports on the first and second rounds of CFSRs regarding States' conformity with Federal standards for child welfare are available on the CB website (http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/cwmonitoring/results/index.htm).

Prevalence of Challenges in Achieving Permanency

Finalized data from the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) illustrate the difference in characteristics of children who experience long stays in foster care as compared to all children in care. Of the more than 463,000 children and youth estimated to have been in foster care nationally as of September 30, 2008, the average length of stay was almost 27 months, while the median length of stay was 15 months, with an average number of placement settings of three. Twenty-two percent of all children entered care due to "Neglect Only," and 40.6 percent entered care due to multiple reasons. 

AFCARS data indicate that once children remain in care for three years or longer, they tend to diverge from the universe of all children in care in important ways. Approximately 23 percent of children who had been in care three years or more had experienced an average of nearly six placement settings, almost double that of the universe of children in care. Of children in care for three years or more, nearly 42 percent (41.8 percent) were African American, which is a significant departure from the total number of African American children in care (30.1 percent). There was not much distinction for the entire universe of white children (30.5 percent for all, 31.2 percent in care three years or more) or Hispanic children (18.2 percent for all, 19.9 percent in care for three years or more) in care compared to those in care for three years or more. Children in care for three years or more did not significantly differ from all children in care in terms of gender or reason for entry; however, they tended to be older, with a median age of 14 years, as compared to a median age of seven years for those in care less than three years. These data have important implications for the need for innovative intervention strategies that meet the special needs of certain segments of the child population that continue to experience long stays in out-of-home care.

A review of the literature on children who experience long stays in foster care, as well as those who successfully achieve permanency, supports that this is a complex and pervasive area of child welfare service that affects and is affected by a multitude of variables at the practice, organizational, and systems levels as well as by the characteristics of the child experiencing long stays and those of his/her family. Examples of child and family characteristics that may be associated with permanency include but are not limited to the age, racial identity, health and mental health problems, and placement instability of the child; as well as housing, income, employment, and drug use/abuse of parents.

Additionally, while not definitive, numerous studies suggest that children who remain in foster care for longer periods of time suffer negative consequences more so than their counterparts who are not in care for lengthy periods. Examples include higher incidences of behavioral and mental health problems, educational difficulties, and juvenile delinquency.

With current child welfare practice, several studies have found that permanency appears to be more difficult to achieve for some children than for others:

  • Children with mental health and behavioral problems experience more placement moves, have longer stays in care, and are reunified and/or adopted at lower rates;
  • Children with developmental and physical disabilities also experience longer stays in care;
  • Children placed into care as a result of child sexual abuse are less likely to be reunified or adopted than children removed for reasons of neglect;
  • Native American children are five times more likely than white children to remain in out-of-home placement for two or more years;
  • Gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered, and questioning (GLBTQ) youth tend to experience longer stays as well as multiple placements; and
  • Certain segments of children have less of an opportunity to be placed in a permanent home:
    • Teenagers and teen parents;
    • Sibling groups;
    • Juvenile sex offenders; and
    • Children dually diagnosed with mental retardation and emotional disturbances.

Although adoption would seem to be a desirable permanency outcome, unfortunately, in some cases, adoptions do not always mean the successful achievement of permanency for children, as they at times end in dissolution. Half of dissolutions occur within three years of the adoption. Older children are more likely to experience dissolution than younger children. African-American children are twice as likely as white children to return to placement after adoption.

These findings support the need for increased access to services, and the need for innovative intervention strategies that address the specific needs of those subgroups of children who continue to experience long stays in care, and to ensure the viability and stability of permanent placements for children exiting the foster care system. While a number of interventions and practices exist that have proven successful in moving some subgroups of children to permanency, the above-mentioned segments of the population continue to present challenges to the child welfare field in attaining permanency in a similar manner and time trajectory. Some examples of such strategies that may be useful in these subpopulations may include, but are not limited to, early intervention with subpopulations who enter care and are at-risk of placement instability to provide intensive mental and behavioral health services and supports to both the child and her caregiver(s); the importance of fictive kinship networks for GLBTQ youth; targeted services for young children experiencing post-traumatic stress; and treatment for attention-related problems. However, the literature clearly indicates that further innovations are needed to effectively achieve permanency for the children that remain in care for lengthy periods of time.

It is notable that the amount of time children spend in foster care varies by State, and such variations may be linked to differences in child welfare practice. For example, children who are reunified with their parents tend to have shorter stays in foster care. As a result, States with high reunification rates may demonstrate shorter lengths of stay in care. Conversely, children who are adopted tend to have longer stays in foster care. As a result, States with higher adoption rates tend to demonstrate longer stays in care. Additionally, some States provide more intensive front-end services in an effort to prevent children from entering into care. Thus, once children are taken into foster care, the likelihood of reunification may be greatly diminished, as the reasons for entry may be more egregious; therefore, children in these States may have longer stays in care. There are many contextual factors that may impact States' data on reunification, placement stability, permanency rates, and length of stay in care (U.S. Government Accountability Office, 2002).

Projects funded under this funding opportunity announcement will develop and implement innovative intervention strategies that result in permanent placements for those subpopulations of children who continue to experience long stays in care. These projects will allow States, Tribes, and localities the necessary flexibility to determine at which point(s) in the child welfare system to intervene in order to most effectively and cost-efficiently reduce the use of long-term foster care in their specific jurisdiction.

Legislated Programs that Address Permanency

There have been a number of legislative measures to focus the attention of child welfare systems on practices to more quickly place children in foster care with permanent families.

The Adoption Assistance and Child Welfare Act of 1980 provided the first Federal subsidies to encourage the adoption of children from the Nation's foster care system. Adoption assistance serves to remove financial barriers for families interested in adoption and contributes to an increase in adoption of children with special needs.

The Adoption and Safe Families Act (ASFA) (1997), and later Promoting Safe and Stable Families (PSSF) (2001), allow for the provision of Adoption Incentive Payments to reward States that increase the number of foster children placed for adoption each year above established baselines. They also provide funds for adoption promotion and support services and time-limited family reunification services. States have the flexibility to reinvest Adoption Incentive Payments in whatever manner deemed most appropriate for their child welfare systems. States most frequently use the Adoption Incentive Payments and PSSF adoption promotion and support services funds to recruit adoptive parents, provide post-adoption services, and to hire and train social workers (U.S. Government Accountability Office, 2002). However, there may be other ways to use such funds in a manner that more effectively addresses the long-standing issue of children remaining in foster care for lengthy periods of time at a considerable cost to the State. Additionally, it should be noted, AFSA requires that termination of parental rights petitions be filed for children who have been in care 15 of the last 22 months unless there are compelling reasons not to file, emphasizing the need to move children to permanency in a timely manner.

The Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (2003) provisions include funding to States to develop, operate, expand, and enhance community-based, prevention-focused programs and activities designed to strengthen and support families to prevent child abuse and neglect.

The Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008 provisions include creating an option to provide kinship guardianship assistance payments. Such assistance payments are similar to those currently provided to adopted children under the Adoption Assistance Program, but include eligible children who are under the care of a legal guardian. Further, this act sets a timeframe for notification of relatives after a child enters foster care, again supporting the need to expedite permanency for children.

Children's Bureau Grant Programs that Address Permanency

CB currently funds approximately 300 discretionary grants in over 50 different program areas. Through their work with a broad spectrum of populations within the child welfare arena, discretionary grantees develop a wealth of knowledge across numerous program areas. The findings from these programs can be useful in informing the field of promising practices. Specifically, CB has addressed the issues related to permanency and long-term foster care through a number of avenues, including various formula and discretionary grants.

For more information on CB discretionary grant programs, please see http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/programs_fund/index.htm#disc and http://basis.caliber.com/cbgrants/ws/library/docs/cb_grants/GrantHome.

Improving Child Welfare Outcomes Through Systems of Care

In FY 2003, CB awarded discretionary grants to nine sites to support the implementation of a systems of care approach in a child welfare setting. Preliminary findings from the local and cross-site evaluatiofns have shown encouraging outcomes through the employment of this principle-driven approach to create change in child welfare policies, procedures, and practices for youth in long-term foster care. These findings indicate that a systems of care approach to providing child welfare services to children in care, and particularly youth, may be effective in improving reunification outcomes and placing children with relatives, which in turn positively impacts permanency. For more information on the Systems of Care Demonstration Projects, see http://www.childwelfare.gov/pubs/soc/socd.cfm.

Youth Open Adoption Grants

In FY 2005, CB awarded discretionary grants to nine sites to support the design of models of open adoption to facilitate permanency for youth over age 12 in foster care. These grant programs have been successful in placing teens in permanent families and have already identified a number of lessons learned that may be useful when working with youth to prevent long stays in foster care. These grants are currently in operation and are participating in local evaluations, with final results pending. For more information on the Youth Open Adoption Grant Program, see http://www.nrcadoption.org/youthpermanencycluster/index.html.

Diligent Recruitment of Families for Children in the Foster Care System

In FY 2008, CB awarded discretionary grants to nine sites to support the design and implementation of models of diligent recruitment for kinship, foster, and adoptive families to improve permanency outcomes for children and youth in foster care and to meet the diligent recruitment requirements of  the Multiethnic Placement Act of 1994 (MEPA). For a listing of grantees for the Diligent Recruitment Grant Program see http://www.hunter.cuny.edu/socwork/nrcfcpp/grantees.html. For more information on the Diligent Recruitment Grant Program, see http://basis.caliber.com/cbgrants/ws/library/docs/cb_grants/GrantHome.

Family Connection Discretionary Grants

In FY 2009, CB awarded discretionary grants to 24 sites for grant programs in the areas of kinship navigator programs; programs utilizing intensive family-finding efforts to locate biological family and reestablish relationships; programs utilizing family group decision-making meetings; and/or residential family treatment programs. For a listing of grantees for the Family Connection Grants Program, see http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/programs_fund/discretionary/2009.htm.

Title IV-E Waiver Demonstration Projects

A portion of States' foster care costs are reimbursable through title IV-E Federal funds, which are heavily restricted in terms of how these funds can be expended (http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/programs_fund/state_tribal/fostercare.htm).

P.L. 103-432, and later ASFA, authorized State waiver demonstration projects to grant States flexibility in the use of Federal funds (particularly title IV-E foster care funds) for alternative services and supports. Several of these demonstration projects are still in operation, and thus the final evaluation of this approach to funding child welfare services is not yet available. However, preliminary results may lead to better use of Federal funds to impact local permanency outcomes.

The evaluation of the waiver demonstration projects has yielded mixed results in some areas, and consistent findings in others (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2005). In general, results varied across sites with respect to cost savings as a result of flexible funding; reduction in the length of stay of children in care; improvement in permanency rates; and the use of flexible funds to develop new or expand existing services.

Across the waiver demonstration projects, most sites demonstrated significantly reduced probability of out-of-home placement. However, perhaps the strongest finding across sites was that the waiver program exerted positive influence on development of collaborative relationships among agencies and community-based social service organizations. Additionally, the sites frequently utilized joint funding and cost sharing mechanisms as part of the waiver demonstration projects.

The waiver demonstration projects also demonstrated that the design and establishment of new programs require up-front expenditures to prepare for implementation. Additionally, the time required to develop infrastructure for implementation of a statewide demonstration resulted in delays in start-up. This indicates a need for initial flexibility to implement new programs, without possibility of financial risk, in an effort to test a new strategy's ability to result in cost savings for the agency.

The evaluation findings underscore the importance of collaborative relationships among child welfare and other child-serving agencies and community-based organizations; the utility of joint funding and cost sharing; and the need for funding that supports the development of an infrastructure that will ultimately successfully support the implementation of the program. Applicants will be expected to incorporate these core elements into their proposed projects.

For more information on the Title IV-E Waiver Demonstration Projects, see http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/programs_fund/cwwaiver/2008/summary_demo2008.htm.

Barriers to Achieving Permanency and Possible Strategies

In addition to the findingfs from CB-supported grant initiatives that address permanency and long-term foster care, a number of sources have also thoroughly documented the numerous barriers to achieving permanency (The Urban Institute, 2004; U.S. Government Accountability Office, 2002; and The National Resource Center for Foster Care and Permanency Planning, 2003). The findings from these sources are also supported by the findings from both the first and second rounds of CFSRs (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 2004; ibid, 2009).

One of the most prevalent barriers to achieving permanency is the recruitment of resource and adoptive homes. In particular, there is a paucity of adoptive homes for children with special needs, such as older youth, siblings, and children with medical and behavioral problems and disabilities; there is also a lack of homes that reflect the racial and ethnic diversity of children in need of placement. Some of the solutions that agencies are using to address this barrier include the use of websites to profile children available for adoption; involving significant adults in a child's life to assist in identifying adoption options; featuring available children on television news shows; and holding adoption parties. These efforts have yet to be evaluated for their effectiveness.

The lack of emphasis in contacting extended family members and involving them early in the case planning process is another common barrier. The Youth Open Adoption Grants have demonstrated that relative family members are the most likely adoptive resources for the population of children who currently stay in foster care long-term.

The court management of foster care cases can frequently present another barrier to permanency. This includes frequent continuances of cases, crowded dockets, difficulty scheduling hearings, judicial beliefs about adoption, and a lack of communication with the child welfare agency. The termination of parental rights (TPR) proceedings also present obstacles, including the reluctance of the court to TPR without an identified adoptive home; the need to work with the non-custodial parent; parents' request for another chance to meet the goals identified in the case plan; parents' file for appeal; and prior services that do not address parents' identified problems. While some of these barriers are appropriate (e.g., working with the non-custodial parent), solutions to those that can be remediated are limited and have not been tested for effectiveness. Examples of strategies to address these barriers include the development of ongoing committees to address barriers, implementing a visiting judge system, use of active concurrent planning, the use of tracking systems, improvements in scheduling, and the use of Court Improvement Program Bench Books.

Another common barrier is the management of foster care cases. Challenges inherent in this area include high staff turnover, high caseloads, insufficient staff training, lack of communication with courts, delays when cases are transferred from one unit to another (e.g., from the foster home unit to the adoption unit), and incomplete case records. Some strategies used to address this barrier include reorganizing staff (e.g., creation of adoption-specific units and/or adoption-specific positions), provision of additional training on the need to achieve permanency, and creation of permanency task forces or committees.

Other frequently cited barriers to permanency include delays in approving adoptive homes; obstacles and delays in interjurisdictional placements; poor access to services needed to reunify children with their parents; lack of use of a uniform approach to child assessment; inadequate reimbursement rates; and inconsistent use of concurrent planning.

Promising Approaches to Permanency

Despite the amount of information regarding the numerous barriers to permanency, there are few documented strategies to address these barriers. Although some potential strategies have been identified to address the previously identified barriers, their effectiveness has not been formally evaluated to date. Even fewer promising approaches exist, and fewer yet evidence-based programs and practices.

One of the promising programs in preventing placement instability and increasing exits from foster care is Project KEEP (Keeping Foster and Kin Parents Supported and Trained) (Chamberlain et al., 2006; Chamberlain et al., 2008; Fisher, et al., 2000; and Price et al., 2008). The purpose of Project KEEP is to give foster parents effective tools for dealing with a child's externalizing and other behavioral and emotional problems and to support them in the implementation of those tools. This program is intended for use with children in foster or kinship care placements ages four to 12. It has been rated as "promising research evidence" by the CEBC (see below for more information) (http://www.cachildwelfareclearinghouse.org/program/65/detailed).

As previously noted, the Youth Open Adoption Grants have identified several successful strategies when working with youth to prevent long stays in foster care. These include the engagement and empowerment of youth, families, and professionals; training for child welfare professionals, courts, and resource families on the needs of youth for permanency and continued connections; provision of post-permanency activities to support the permanent placement; and the use of comprehensive family assessments when preparing a youth and family for adoption.

The Urban Institute (2004) also identified several promising approaches to addressing some of the previously identified barriers. To more effectively recruit adoptive homes, some agencies conduct extensive recruiting campaigns using a variety of media, make use of exchanges and websites, and contract and/or collaborate with other agencies to conduct recruiting activities. To expedite the approval of adoptive homes, agencies engage in dual-licensing of homes to be in compliance with both foster and adoptive regulations; expediting of home studies; collaboration with neighboring States; and contracting with other agencies to conduct part or all of the approval process.

Current Gaps in and Need for the Development of an Evidence Base on Permanency

Although some of the strategies and solutions identified above to address the barriers to permanency may be useful to child welfare agencies, there are very few evidence-based practices or programs that have been documented through rigorous evaluation to be effective in addressing such barriers.

A review of child welfare programs rated by the California Evidence-based Clearinghouse (CEBC) further supports the lack of scientifically-tested child welfare programs and practices. The CEBC "provides child welfare professionals with easy access to vital information about selected child welfare related programs." (http://www.cachildwelfareclearinghouse.org/). A search of the CEBC finds no programs with the highest level of evidence for reunification and few with strong or recent evidence.

Additionally, the Urban Institute (2004) identified barriers but no promising approaches in the provision of sufficient legal services during TPR proceedings, as well as those barriers presented by TPR appeals process. Further, although no barriers were identified for diligent searches for birth fathers and relatives, preparation and transition of the child and adoptive family, and conducting adoption proceedings, no promising approaches were identified.

Applicants are encouraged to conduct an in-depth search for evidence-based practices and promising approaches that will support its selection of the innovative intervention strategies for use with its target population. In addition to the CEBC, applicants are referred to the Technical Assistance Partnership for Child and Family Mental Health website (http://www.tapartnership.org/content/childWelfare/publications.php?id=topic17); the Cochrane Reviews (http://www.cochrane.org/); and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Center for Injury Prevention and Control (http://www.cdc.gov/injury/index.html) for publications and information.

The projects funded under this funding opportunity announcement will be used to support knowledge-building in the area of permanency and reduction of use of long-term foster care.

Project Requirements

The purpose of this funding opportunity announcement is to fund demonstration projects that support the implementation and test the effectiveness of innovative intervention strategies to improve the permanency outcomes of subgroups of children that have the most serious barriers to permanency in spite of the reform efforts in the Adoption and Safe Families Act of 1997(ASFA). Many provisions of ASFA focused on moving children and youth to permanent families more quickly while maintaining children's safety. Even so, many jurisdictions struggle with a growing population of children who are aging out of foster care.

These projects will address site specific issues in order to help children leave foster care in fewer than three years. The cooperative agreements will fund activities that include:

  • The planning necessary to develop effective intervention strategies;
  • Collaborative planning to leverage other Federal, State and local investments of existing funding streams into effective permanency achievement programs and practices;
  • The range of activities and services needed to develop, adopt, implement, assess, and sustain effective permanency achievement programs;
  • The services which address barriers to children's placement with permanent families outside of the foster care system;
  • Active participation in rigorous site-specific and cross-site evaluations that include process/implementation, outcome, and cost study components; and
  • Dissemination of information about grantee experiences.

All applicants must identify local barriers to permanent placement and implement innovative intervention strategies that will mitigate or eliminate those barriers throughout the continuum of service to reduce the likelihood that future children entering foster care encounter similar barriers upon entry or during their stay in care. The cooperative agreements allow flexibility in identification of the target population and the design of the interventions. If cooperative agreement funds are used to provide direct services they should not supplant Federal, State, or local funding.

Innovative intervention strategies and program models may focus on, but are not limited to:

  • Reducing the number of children who enter care;
  • Intervening at the point of entry with the families of children who typically remain in care for lengthy periods of time;
  • Targeted assessment of children and/or families to determine their strengths, challenges, trauma history, and individualized service needs;
  • Intervening with children who have already experienced long stays in foster care;
  • Revising practices that impact child and family well-being to expedite achievement of permanency;
  • State/Tribal collaboration to reduce the length of stay for the foster care population with Tribal heritage;
  • Innovative interventions for populations of children and youth who have long stays in foster care;
  • Recruitment of foster homes in communities with the highest rate of removal; or
  • Any combination of the above services.

Projects will be eligible for incentive payments if they achieve targets for permanency and well-being outcomes. Projects will be given flexibility in how to use the incentive payments to fund enhanced project-related activities.

The cooperative agreements aim to achieve two goals:

  • Implement innovative intervention strategies, informed by the relevant literature, to reduce long-term foster stays and improve child outcomes.
  • Rigorously evaluate these efforts to provide substantial information about the effectiveness of the programs, interventions, and practices implemented in reducing long-term foster care.

These demonstration projects are expected to test the effectiveness of innovative intervention strategies aimed at addressing the permanency needs of one or more subgroups of children that have the most serious barriers to permanency and for whom their systems have been least successful in the past. Successful applicants will be expected to build knowledge about interventions, models, programs, and/or practices that are effective in addressing such permanency needs.

In addition to the testing of innovative approaches, this demonstration initiative will feature performance incentives.  The purpose of the incentives is to encourage applicants to use the opportunity of this funding announcement to address the permanency needs of one or more subgroups of children that have the most serious barriers to permanency and for whom their systems have been least successful in the past, as well as to reward projects in tangible ways when they achieve measurable improvements in outcomes for these challenging populations. (More information on incentive payments is provided in the Evaluation: Incentive Payments section.) Necessarily, projects will be expected to participate in rigorous evaluations to build evidence, as well as to establish target measures that will be used to determine eligibility for incentive payments. Projects will actively participate in a national cross-site evaluation effort.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to consider those key practices identified in the Background section of this funding opportunity announcement that are correlated/associated with stronger performance on the CFSR outcome measures. Applicants are encouraged to utilize the knowledge being developed by CB discretionary research and demonstration projects, CFSR findings, and other related child welfare reform activities when developing proposals in response to this funding opportunity announcement.

Proposals should include the following information:

1. Analysis of the data from the proposed jurisdictions justifying selection of one or more subpopulations that have not yet been successfully moved to permanency, and demonstration of the need of the target population(s) inclusive of data on the following criteria:

  • Average age;
  • Number of child abuse and neglect reports (substantiated and unsubstantiated);
  • Number of first time victims of child abuse and neglect;
  • Average length of time in care prior to achieving to permanency;
  • Average number of placements;
  • Percent that emancipates out of the system without achieving permanency;
  • Proportion who would otherwise be expected to age out of foster care without achieving permanency; and
  • Size of the applicant's target population relative to the larger child welfare population

2. Identification of the barriers to permanent placement that are specific to the identified jurisdiction(s) and population(s) to be targeted;

3. Justification of the proposed approach to address the identified areas of need based on existing research/evidence and/or a strong theoretical model;

4. Identification of models, programs and/or practices proposed for implementation which will be reviewed and approved, if appropriate, in year one of the project;

5. Description of the how services, program activities, and materials will be developed and provided in a manner that is racially and culturally sensitive to the population being served;

6. Applicants in large jurisdictions proposing a staged approach to project implementation should describe the process for introducing and evaluating the new approach at each successive stage of implementation (A discussion of the staging process is in the last portion of the Project Requirement section.);

7. Arrangements for technical assistance to sites and front line staff implementing new practices including, when applicable, collaboration with the original designer/developer of the model(s) selected to support the replication effort, to ensure fidelity to the model(s) and provide for quality service provision.

8. Description of the process, including timeframes, that will be used during the Assessment/Planning Phase to further develop and fine-tune the plan, and during the Implementation Phase to implement the proposed project, including the activities to be conducted in chronological order, showing a reasonable schedule of accomplishments and target dates and the factors that may accelerate or decelerate the work;

9. Description of how the proposed project is commensurate with the level of funding provided in this announcement;

10. Identification of the administrative structure for the project, including the lead agency responsible for implementing the plan, providing management and oversight for the proposed initiative, and coordinating with the other partner agencies, the relevant partners, including the courts and the proposed roles and level of commitment of the agencies and service providers that have entered into partnership with the applicant, as evidenced by a letter of intent or memorandum of understanding. If the primary applicant is a non-profit organization or institution of higher education, the applicant must document a strong partnership(s) and willingness to be actively involved with the project on the part of the public child welfare agency(ies) with responsibility for administering the child welfare program(s) in the targeted geographical area(s);

11. Description of key personnel, their roles and how they will ensure their continued support throughout the project;

12. Description of a framework for how youth and other consumers of services will be involved in the planning and on-going implementation of the project;

13. Description of the plan to work with the designated evaluator during the planning year to establish targets for the identified outcomes, and throughout the implementation phase to actively participate in site-specific and cross-site evaluation activities, and the expertise of the key personnel working with the designated evaluator.

14. A strategy for information dissemination about both the innovative interventions strategies and their effectiveness;

15. Identification of linkages with appropriate agencies, organizations, and resources on the local, regional, State, Tribal or Federal levels that address issues pertaining to permanency needs of one or more subgroups of children that have the most serious barriers to permanency and for whom their systems have been least successful in the past;

16. A logic model; and

17. Description of how the programs or practices implemented to reduce the use of long term foster care will be sustained after Federal assistance has ended.

Applicants should demonstrate familiarity with the CFSR process in their service area. Additionally, applicants should be familiar with their States' Child and Family Services Plans (CFSP), State-wide Assessments, CFSR final reports, and PIPs, which are also available on the CB website (http://basis.caliber.com/cwig/ws/cwmd/docs/cb_web/SearchForm). Whenever possible, projects funded under this funding opportunity announcement will be expected to:

  • Coordinate with the State's CFSP; and
  • Coordinate with the CFSR Program Improvement Plan (PIP) if related permanency or well-being issues and/or timeliness to permanency are an area needing improvement.

It is expected that these projects may find coordination with the CFSR PIP to be beneficial in addressing strategies to improve permanency outcomes.

Cooperative agreements will be awarded for an initial Assessment/Planning Phase in year one and, pending successful completion of that phase and approval from CB of the proposed program plan, funds for the implementation phase will be provided for years two through five. During the Assessment/Planning Phase, the projects will engage in a collaborative process to document a detailed plan needed for the development, implementation and continued assessment of programs and practices to reduce the need for children and youth to remain in foster care longer than three years. Further activities during the Assessment/Planning Phase include working in concert with the designated evaluator to finalize a set of process and outcome measures as well as targets for assessing improvements in the areas of permanency and well-being. Reliable data sources for collection of baseline and follow-up comparison data should be identified and a data collection plan developed.  To the extent possible, projects should plan to utilize data that already is collected or provided through the CFSRs, AFCARS, or other similar efforts. CB will provide final approval of baseline measures and proposed targets.

During the Implementation Phase, the projects will implement their plan, participate in a rigorous evaluation, contribute data to the cross-site evaluation, and disseminate lessons learned to the field. The efforts of the five-year project are expected to culminate in lasting practice improvements with effective quality assurance feedback loops which will continue to produce improved outcomes for the population(s) targeted in the project after Federal assistance has ended.

While not required, some large jurisdictions may propose to approach implementation activities in a staged manner. For example:

  • By the end of year two of the project, the applicant fully implements innovative intervention strategies and the model and/or practices in one geographic area and within six months thereafter completes a preliminary assessment and recommendations for expansion including changes in policies and training to more effectively implement transformative systems change in the next geographic area(s) identified for the staged implementation.
  • By the end of year three of the project, the applicant fully implements the innovative intervention strategies and model and/or practices in several additional geographic areas and within six months thereafter completes an assessment of the second stage of the implementation effort and additional recommendations for further expansion.
  • The staged implementation may be planned so that during year five of the project the applicant completes implementation in a manner which impacts the majority of the service population at risk of remaining in care for more than three years, and finalizes a sustainability plan for year five of theproject and beyond.

Projects with larger service areas are encouraged to implement programs in a staged process as described above so that challenges can be addressed in an incremental manner based on the data collected from each successive implementation site. By the end of year five, the innovative intervention strategies should be implemented broadly enough to impact the services provided to the majority of the target population(s) served by projects in large jurisdictions, and all of the target population(s) served by projects in smaller jurisdictions.

Phase I: Assessment/Planning Phase (Year 1)

CB discretionary projects frequently benefit when given the opportunity to engage in a planning year prior to implementing a program. By investing the resources and time in effective assessment and planning processes, child welfare agencies enhance the progress of program implementation. Therefore, projects under this funding opportunity announcement will be required to engage in a 10-month Assessment/Planning Phase during the first year. The Federal award amount for the first year, as a result, will be less than the award amount for the ensuing implementation years.

During the Assessment/Planning Phase, projects will be expected to initiate a collaborative planning process to further develop and refine the proposed project as described in this application. While preparing their applications and during Phase I, applicants must collaborate with other relevant State and community agencies to plan the investment of Federal, State, local and private funding streams, where appropriate, in the proposed project. If the primary applicant is a non-profit or institution of higher education, the applicant must involve the public child welfare agency(ies) with responsibility for administering the child welfare program(s) in the targeted geographical area(s) in the Assessment/Planning Phase. The overall purpose is to ensure that all relevant partners and funding streams are identified and included in these coordination efforts. The culmination of this process will be the development and implementation of a detailed plan to be implemented during years two through five of the project.

The final plan submitted after the 10-month planning period should amplify and refine the plan the applicant describes in its application for Federal funding. The final plan should include, at a minimum, but is not limited to, the following elements:

Refining the Target Population

In order to assist the project in fine-tuning the focus of innovative intervention efforts, to more clearly define the population which will be the focus of the planned activities, and to further demonstrate need for the program, model or practice changes proposed, additional analysis should be conducted of data related to the target service population within the project's identified jurisdiction. If the primary applicant is a non-profit or institution of higher education, the applicant must collaborate with the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) in the identification of the target population, and must provide evidence of such collaboration (e.g., an item in the relevant letter of agreement/MOU identifying the mutually agreed-upon target population(s).The analysis should further identify commonalities and differences of children who achieved permanency within one year for children who had other finalized permanency plans than adoption, and two years for children who have been adopted, in comparison to children who have been in foster care over three years or who have an identified permanency plan of Alternative Living Arrangement, long-term foster care, emancipation or aging-out-of-care. Consideration should be given to child characteristics such as age at entry, behavioral/mental health or physical health, or complexity of placing sibling groups. The analysis may also address family characteristics that possibly contribute to children's extended stays in foster care, such as parental mental health issues or substance abuse. The analysis may include other factors, such as reasons for removal, repeat maltreatment, re-entry into foster care, placement stability, and circumstances for use of congregate care. 

Conducting a Detailed Assessment of Needs and Strengths

The purpose of the assessment is to assist the project in fine-tuning the focus of innovative intervention strategies to reduce the incidence of children and youth remaining in foster care for long periods of time and to demonstrate need for the interventions proposed. Applicants are encouraged to refer to existing supporting documentation regarding barriers specific to their agency, such as the CFSR State-wide Assessment, CFSR Final Report, Court Improvement Program assessment results or other community needs and/or organizational assessments. If the primary applicant is a non-profit or institution of higher education, the applicant must involve the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) in the assessment. The assessment should focus on barriers to permanency, including artificial or perceived barriers, across areas such as:

  • Communities and environmental factors, such as jurisdiction-specific challenges to permanency, including the role the court system. It may also include other on-going, relevant projects or initiatives.
  • Service delivery and access, including front-line practice, supervision, service availability, collaboration, and joint accountability. The assessment should include any existing program models in the applicant's jurisdiction that have been demonstrated to be effective. Applicants should cite data from evaluations of these efforts to demonstrate the program's effectiveness. If an existing model, program, and/or practice is identified, the applicant should describe the selection and identification process. Where appropriate, a formal agreement must be in place to ensure that the original program developer(s) will be supporting the replication effort.
  • Resources (agency and system financial structures), including a comprehensive inventory of existing and potential Federal, State, local, and private funding streams which support expedited permanency achievement. The assessment should address the fiscal leveraging plan and the mechanism for the disbursement of funds to support the programs which reduce the need for children and youth to remain in foster care long-term. The goal of the fiscal leveraging plan is to identify any other sources of funding which may be used to support the direct services provided to families to support expedited permanency. The plan should address the use of incentive payments, if awarded, for reinvestment into the child welfare agency's activities. The use of incentive funds must address the issues associated with the use of long-term foster care and barriers to permanency and build upon the plan for the proposed project at the time the incentive bonus is awarded. Plans also should include preliminary ideas for sustaining the programswhen Federal support ends,including identification of key public and private partners that will figure prominently in the ongoing sustainability of the program.
  • Collaboration and joint accountability, including a description of on-going and established interagency collaborative efforts or plan to establish interagency collaborative efforts, with plans for linking and coordinating the State and permanency achievement services with other health and human services, and formal and informal resources that comprise the continuum of care for families. If the primary applicant is a non-profit organization or institution of higher education, it provides evidence of a strong partnership(s) with the public child welfare agency(ies) with responsibility for administering the child welfare program(s) in the targeted geographical area(s), and provides documentation from the relevant child welfare agency(ies) which demonstrates a full understanding of what is expected by its participation in the proposed project and a willingness to take steps that are described in the application.
  • Policies and procedures, including an analysis of those policies or procedures that may present de facto barriers to implementation of services and programs that effectively address permanency and work plans for necessary revisions, if revisions cannot be completed in the planning year.

Building an Accountable Collaborative Governance Structure

The applicant should provide a detailed description of the structure of the governing body of the project, including how the lead agency will provide comprehensive management and oversight for this initiative. The description should identify roles and responsibilities of participants, including how key personnel will be involved in the implementation phase to ensure continued support of the project including identification of the roles of the management team, implementation team and local level teams, if appropriate. If the primary applicant is a non-profit or institution of higher education, it provides documentation from the relevant child welfare agency(ies) which demonstrates a full understanding of what is expected by its participation in the proposed project and a willingness to maintain commitment to the project throughout the implementation phase. The description will identify formal links between the governing body, key partnering agencies, courts, and consumers. Additionally, decision-making processes, joint accountability, and oversight should be addressed, including communication protocols and feedback loops at the practice, supervisory, organizational, and systems levels. Implementation Phase teams should be considered with the following makeup and responsibilities:

  • State-based or management level teams with program design responsibilities containing key decision makers, youth and family consumers, liaisons from other relevant programs;
  • Implementation teams with responsibility to prepare frontline staff, community and consumers for program changes and to ensure implementation through follow-up with those stakeholders and with researchers on effective program implementation; and
  • Local level teams, if deemed appropriate by the size of the project site, including representatives of the management level and implementation teams, to promote communication, identify barriers, and provide feedback.

Identifying and Planning Future Activities

This detailed plan should include several components, such as:

  • Timeline for implementing the plan. Applicants may choose to use a phased-in approach that starts with one local jurisdiction serving as an initial implementation site and then expands to other areas within the project's jurisdiction once the initial efforts have proven successful. Other proposed alternatives will be considered if demonstrated to be appropriate for the jurisdiction and target population.
  • Description of the programs, models and/or practices which will be implemented. The plan should clearly identify and confirm the innovative intervention strategies that will be implemented during the Implementation Phase.
  • Provision of comprehensive training and technical assistance and support to implementation sites and front-line staff in meeting project goals. At a minimum, the applicant should address the capacity to provide the initial technical assistance and support to teams that will be assisting the local sites in implementing the programs, model(s) or practices. This may include such strategies as coaching, mentoring, or supervision improvements to facilitate implementation.
  • Capacity for ongoing training and professional development. The plan should identify who will need development and how it will be provided.
  • Plans for working with local sites in order to accomplish project goals.
  • Systematic screening and assessment processes to identify parents, children and youth who need to be referred to the expedited permanency programs, models or services. The proposed plan for these processes should justify how the target population being served is consistent with the target population vulnerable to long-term foster care in the applicant's jurisdiction.

Refining the Project Logic Model to Guide the Interventions and Evaluation

The logic model should link the activities proposed for the implementation phase to the identified outcomes. It should present a clear illustration of how the applicant's plans will result in expediting permanency for the identified target population. The logic model will also serve as the foundation upon which the evaluation is developed, implemented, and monitored, which in turn will be the basis for determining eligibility for incentive payments.

Finalizing a Site-Specific Evaluation Plan (see Evaluation section below)

Developing Targets for Incentive Payments

As described in more detail in the Evaluation section below, applicants are expected to propose (and projects are expected to finalize during their planning year) specific targets that they will seek to meet and/or outcomes they seek to improve as a result of project activities. Projects that meet negotiated targets in years two, three and four will be eligible for incentive payments that will be awarded above and beyond the base award amount and that will be available for enhanced project-related activities by successful projects. According to a process that will be established during the planning year, projects meeting established targets will be eligible for a portion of the incentive payments pool to be determined by CB. Projects will be given flexibility in how to use the incentive payments to enhance project-related activities. See Evaluation: Incentive Payments section for more information on incentive payments.

Since applicants do not know if they will be receiving an incentive payment, they are not expected to address incentive activities or expenditures in their proposals (e.g., program narrative, budget, budget justification).

Review and Approval by CB

Ten months after the initial award, the project will be required to submit its draft implementation plan for review and approval by CB. A revised plan that incorporates the recommendations of CB may be required. Continuation funding for years two through five will be contingent upon CB's final approval of the plan.

Phase 2: Implementation Phase (Years Two through Five)

During years two through five, the project implements the plan proposed in its application and strengthened and fine-tuned in the Assessment/Planning Phase. Using the comprehensive and collaborative implementation plan and timelines approved by CB, the project develops the infrastructure and implements its project models and/or programs. The plan resulting from the Assessment/Planning Phase provides a roadmap for the partners to follow as they implement their project.

As the projects implement the various components of their plans in years two through five, they will work closely with CB to adhere to the plan, share lessons learned along the way and disseminate best practices.

Collaboration and Joint Accountability

CB is very interested in interagency collaborative efforts and commitment to joint accountability across various disciplines with common target populations and shared outcomes. As a result, applicants are encouraged to collaborate with the following entities in the development of the project application, project plan and the subsequent implementation of projects when relevant to the target population: 

  • Public child welfare agencies;
  • Private child and family services agencies;
  • Designated lead agency for Community-Based Child Abuse Prevention (see www.friendsnrc.org for a list of contacts);
  • The Courts(s) with jurisdiction over the targeted child welfare population;
  • The State Court Improvement Project http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/programs_fund/state_tribal/ct_imprv.htm ;
  • Tribal child welfare programs and Tribes with IV-E agreements;
  • State and/or local education systems;
  • State and/or local mental health, juvenile justice, and substance abuse systems; and
  • Community-based organizations.

Evaluation

CB expects that projects funded under this funding opportunity announcement will build the evidence base for new innovative interventions that will enhance well-being and improve permanency outcomes for particular groups of children and youth who are at high risk for long-term foster care and who experience the most serious barriers to timely permanency in the applicants' child welfare systems.

Projects are required to engage with the designated evaluator in rigorous site-specific evaluations in order to improve their processes and services and to demonstrate linkages between proposed interventions and improved outcomes. Additionally, projects are expected to participate fully in a national cross-site evaluation of this initiative. The purposes of the cross-site evaluation are to identify interventions that impact permanency and well-being outcomes for children who experience lengthy stays in out-of-home care; to provide useful information about the implementation of those interventions within a child welfare system; to provide information about the cost implications of these interventions for the child welfare system; and to extrapolate how the interventions might work more broadly in and to disseminate those findings to the field. The designated evaluator will be identified and supported by CB, and will assume primary responsibility for conducting both the site-specific evaluation and the national cross-site evaluation and for providing technical assistance to projects in collecting and reporting evaluation data. While applicants will not be responsible for identifying an evaluator for its site-specific evaluation, applicants should plan for additional program staff time and effort related to participation in both the site-specific and cross-site evaluations. Additionally, at a minimum, applicants must outline in their proposals how data would be obtained, tracked (including whether this would require agreements with project partners) and reported to the designated evaluator. 

Successful applicants will be expected to participate in the collection and reporting of common process, outcome and cost data across all projects funded under this announcement to support the national cross-site evaluation. As appropriate, based on identified target populations and interventions, projects will be asked to track and report common outcomes in order to assess whether the interventions are leading to improvements in child/youth well-being and reductions in the system's use of long-term foster care. Projects will work in collaboration with the cross-site evaluator to develop a set of measures on which all projects (or clusters of projects) will be expected to report. 

Evaluation Plan

Guided by the logic model for the project, applicants should include in their proposal a preliminary rigorous site-specific evaluation plan that includes process, outcome, and cost evaluation components. At the time of award, successful applicants' preliminary plans will be provided to the designated evaluator who will be responsible for implementing the site-specific evaluation plan, as well as the cross-site evaluation.

During year one, the designated evaluator and other project staff will revise and finalize the plan, and submit this plan for review and approval with the draft implementation plan, due 10 months after the award.  Starting in year two, projects will begin to report on process and cost measures. By the start of year three, projects will be expected to report on proximal outcomes. In years four and five, projects will continue to track these outcomes, as well as report on system-level outcomes related to changes in key permanency and well-being indicators. If the primary applicant is a non-profit or institution of higher education, the applicant must involve the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) in the development and implementation of the site-specific and cross-site evaluation efforts.

Process Evaluation

The process evaluation should be designed to describe and document in detail the interventions being demonstrated and to assess and monitor the degree to which the project's chosen interventions are successfully implemented. The process evaluation should capture:

  • Output data for the different stages of the project (including quantity and frequency of activities and services performed);
  • Descriptive data about the interventions;
  • Descriptive data about the activities carried out to implement the interventions;
  • Data about the degree to which adoption and implementation (e.g., uptake, penetration, fidelity, etc.) of the interventions has occurred;
  • Data about changes in readiness, capacity, infrastructure, and organization intended to support and sustain implementation; and
  • Data about cost (described below under Cost Evaluation).

CB expects the process evaluation to provide critical information throughout the demonstration.  As interventions are being piloted and adapted, the process evaluation will capture what is being done by those practicing the new interventions.  In addition to producing information about the amount of services provided, the process evaluation will also capture data about the adoption of the interventions and the level of adherence to the key components, procedures, and protocols by practitioners.  The process evaluation will support quality assurance and assess whether the interventions are being practiced with consistency.

CB intends for the process evaluation to support the revision and adaptation of interventions when necessary and to generate knowledge by the end of the project about whether the implementation activities have successfully embedded the interventions in institutional practice within and/or across targeted systems.  For example, a project might evaluate the degree to which its innovative interventions have been embedded  into its policies, interagency agreements, data systems, organizational structure, quality assurance protocols, and training and human resource systems. These institutional and organizational changes may be critical to the success of the proposed interventions, fidelity to the intervention models, and improved outcomes. Applicants should identify appropriate process measures for their proposals, including possible measures related the areas described above.

Outcome Evaluation

The outcomes component should utilize a sufficiently rigorous approach to examine how the innovative interventions affect key outcomes of interest. Findings from the evaluation are expected to build the evidence base for practices that enhance well being and improve permanency outcomes that are associated with reductions in long-term foster care for the target population.  CB expects this initiative and its evaluation activities to provide the field with new knowledge and examples of strategies that have produced positive outcomes for children and families. Experimental designs involving random assignment to treatment and control groups are the preferred method for determining the effectiveness of the interventions. An applicant may propose another type of evaluation/research design but must include an adequate description and justification that the proposed design is the most rigorous design possible for addressing the questions of interest with the target population.

Applicants are strongly encouraged to review the data indicators measured in the CFSRs when identifying the proximal and distal outcomes which they anticipate evaluating. Specifically, the project's evaluation plan should consider using performance indicators that focus on increasing the permanency and well-being of children and youth in the target population. When appropriate and feasible, the proposed evaluation plan should yield data that can be compared to, and contrasted with, regional, State and national level CFSR data, as appropriate. The applicant may also identify other outcomes not in the CFSR that may yield substantive and useful information specific to its program area.

For access to the CFSR On-Site Review Instrument and definitions of terms therein, applicants are directed to http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/cwmonitoring/tools_guide/onsitefinal.htm.

Proximal Outcomes

CB expects well-defined interventions to target proximal outcomes that, if achieved, will subsequently reduce long-term foster care and improve well-being. CB expects proposed outcome measures to follow the theory of change depicted in the applicant's logic model. Regardless of the type and focus of the interventions proposed applicants must identify proximal outcomes that are specifically targeted by the new interventions they intend to demonstrate. 

For example, an applicant may propose to demonstrate a new treatment model with adolescent boys in foster care whose experiences of trauma and defiant behavior have been identified as major barriers to permanency. In this case, reductions in trauma-related symptoms, increased school attendance, and fewer classroom disruptions might be appropriate indicators for measuring improvement in mental health and educational outcomes. The applicant might also propose to test a new resource family recruitment and retention model to engage teens in identifying prospective parents and build its resource family pool for older youth. The proximal outcomes might include increasing the number of recruited families that fit particular demographics and characteristics targeted by the agency.

Distal Outcomes

In their proposal, applicants must identify one or more distal outcome measures within at least one of the permanency-focused outcome categories below as well as identify well-being outcomes relevant to the proposed interventions.  

Permanency Outcomes

For the applicant's chosen target population of children/youth:

Outcome Category 1: Placement Prevention:

  • Decrease in foster care entries for target group (without repeat maltreatment).

Outcome Category 2: Permanency Attainment:

  • Increase in adoptions for target group (without dissolutions);
  • Increase in reunifications for target group (without re-entry); and
  • Increase in other permanent placements for target group (e.g., guardianship - without re-entry).

Outcome Category 3: Length of Stay:

  • Increase in timeliness of adoptions for target group (without dissolutions);
  • Increase in timeliness of reunification for target group (without re-entry); and
  • Increase in timeliness of other permanent placement options for target group (e.g., guardianship without re-entry).

Well-Being Outcomes 

Applicants have the flexibility to propose appropriate well-being outcomes to measure changes in targeted areas such as health (physical, social, emotional, mental), educational performance and school participation, and future self-sufficiency. Well-being outcome measures must be identified for the children/youth targeted by the project but may also address the well-being of the larger family. In some cases well-being measures may be appropriate for promixal and/or distal outcomes depending on the nature of the interventions being demonstrated.

Additional Outcome Measures

Applicants are encouraged to identify additional outcomes measures as well. These additional measures should target related outcomes that are tailored to the applicant's project objectives (e.g., placement stability) and are specific to the interventions that the applicant intends to implement. Projects focusing on older youth may choose to identify measures that correspond to those reported for the National Youth in Transition Database (NYTD).

Incentive Payments

The purpose of the incentive payments is to encourage applicants to use the opportunity of this funding opportunity announcement to address the permanency needs of one or more subgroups of children that have the most serious barriers to permanency and for whom their systems have been least successful in the past, as well as to reward projects in tangible ways when they achieve measurable improvements in outcomes for these challenging populations. The performance incentives will take the form of a "reinvestment pool" that will set aside a portion of the program's total resources that will be distributed based on project performance. Funds from the reinvestment pool may be used by projects to fund enhancements to their programs that support and extend the project's ability to serve its target population; they may also be used for the recruitment and retention of qualified staff. Incentives will be awarded to those projects that are successful in achieving improved outcomes for their target populations.

A portion of the incentive payments may be allotted to project partners, including the Court(s) having jurisdiction over the targeted child welfare population, to encourage participation of the partners, including the relevant Court(s), in the proposed project.

At the end of year two, the award of incentive funds will be based on the project's performance on process measures identified during the planning year. Incentive funds for the end of year three will be based on the project's performance on process measures as well as proximal outcome measures. At the end of year four, incentive funds will be based on performance in process measures, proximal outcome measures, and identified distal outcome measures in the areas of permanency and well-being, as well as other outcome measures identified by the project that are tailored to its project objectives and that are specific to the interventions that it intends to implement. Eligibility for incentive payments are subject to CB approval and the availability of funds. As described elsewhere in this funding opportunity announcement, beginning in the application and continuing into the initial, planning year, the applicant will select those measures that are applicable to its project and that it will be held accountable for achieving over the life of the project. 

Projects should anticipate working with the designated evaluator beginning in the Assessment/Planning Phase of the project to finalize process and outcome measures, establish baselines for the measures, and set appropriate targets; and throughout the Implementation Phase to collect data for the site-specific and national cross-site evaluations. Data on individual project performance in meeting established targets will be used by CB to determine incentive payments. Beginning in year two, process data provided by projects to the designated evaluator will be used to determine eligibility for incentive payments. For example, measures might be used to assess the frequency, quantity and duration of services provided as well as uptake, fidelity, and penetration among practitioners and staff that are expected to adopt and consistently pilot the new interventions. By year three all projects must report on proximal measures that must be strongly linked to the distal outcomes they hope to achieve. All projects must report on distal permanency and well-being outcomes during years four and five.

All proposed measures and targets will be reviewed by the designated evaluator and are subject to negotiation with CB. The methodology for setting targets and assessing relative degrees of achievement with respect to these targets will be the responsibility of the designated evaluator. CB will make all final decisions about incentive payments based on project success in meeting established targets.

During the planning year, the designated evaluator will work with projects to make decisions on site-specific measures, as well as common indicators that will allow for comparability across sites and serve as reference for CB decisions about incentives. In the process of working with other projects and the designated evaluator, projects may also develop additional common evaluation components (i.e., methods, data collection tools, processes, outputs, and/or outcomes).

Cost Evaluation

Successful applicants should anticipate working with other projects funded under this funding opportunity announcement, CB, and the designated evaluator to develop common cost templates for aggregate and programmatic costs to be reported to the designated evaluator. For example, common cost elements might include costs for program management and administration, training and supervision, services, and costs for on-going foster care placement. The designated evaluator will assume primary responsibility for conducting cost-benefit and/or cost-efficiency analyses utilizing data reported by projects. However, at a minimum, applicants must outline in their proposals how cost data would be obtained, tracked (including whether this would require agreements with project partners) and reported to the designated evaluator.

Quality Assurance

Applicants' evaluation plans should also describe mechanisms to monitor the on-going quality of the interventions implemented, including fidelity to program models; the development or enhancements of data quality or management information systems that can be used for quality assurance and oversight of programs; and a plan for on-going data collection, analysis and monitoring which will continue after the end of the grant. If the primary applicant is a non-profit or institution of higher education, the applicant must apprise the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) of the interim and final findings of the evaluation efforts for the purposes of continuous quality improvement.

Reports

Projects will regularly update their Federal Project Officer (FPO) about ongoing evaluation activities in required progress reporting and provide CB with a written report at the end of the project. Projects will also be expected to collaborate with the designated evaluator to make project findings available, in forms that can readily be used by CB's Training and Technical Assistance (T/TA) Network in its work with State and Tribal child welfare systems. Projects in collaboration with each other, their State and Tribal partners, CB, and any applicable national evaluation contractor(s), may produce a comprehensive evaluation report at the conclusion of the project period and present findings to CB and other stakeholders. If the primary applicant is a non-profit or institution of higher education, it is expected that the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) will also receive a copy of all reports generated as a result of the project.

Technical Assistance

To ensure that both assessment/planning and implementation phases are successful in meeting project goals, CB proposes providing technical assistance to the funded projects. Extensive technical assistance will be provided during the planning year focused on developing organizational infrastructure to support innovative intervention strategies. Additionally, technical assistance will be provided to the funded projects around targeting outcomes and innovative interventions related to time in foster care, expediting permanency achievement for children, well-being support to enhance permanency achievement, and associated workforce development issues. Technical assistance efforts provided by CB will be focused at the organizational level, as the project will be responsible for providing technical assistance at the front line and site implementation level.

Resources

Through its T/TA Network, CB has developed numerous resources on strategic planning and infrastructure building for use by States, Tribes, and localities. Applicants are encouraged to utilize the following resources when conceptualizing how the strategic planning period would be utilized:

Selected References on Systems Change and Implementation Strategies

Fixsen, D. L., Naoom, S.F., Blase, K.A., Friedman, R.M., Wallace, F.  (2005). Implementation Research:  A Synthesis of the Literature.  Tampa, FL:  University of South Florida, Louis de la Parte Florida Mental Health Institute, National Implementation Research Network (FMHI Publications #23).

Fixsen, D. L., Blase, K.A., Horner, R., Sugai, G.  (2009). Readiness for Change.  University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, FPG Development Institute, State Implementation & Scaling-up of Evidefnce-based Practices (Scaling-up Brief #3).

Fixsen, D. L., Blase, K.A., Horner, R., Sugai, G.  (2009). Scaling Up Evidenced based Practice in Education, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, FPG Development Institute, State Implementation & Scaling-up of Evidence-based Practices (Scaling-up Brief #1).

Ross, T., Vandiver, S. Indicators for Child Maltreatment Prevention Programs, (2009), Center for the Study of Social Policy, The Quality Improvement Center on Early Childhood

Primer Hands On Child Welfare, Improving Child Welfare Outcomes through Systems of Care: Building the Infrastructure, and other publications at https://gushare.georgetown.edu/ChildHumanDevelopment/ CENTER%20PROJECTS/ WebSite/PRIMER_ChildWelfare.pdf . More information about changing systems can be found at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb/cwmonitoring/.) 

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2008).  Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2008. Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies Appropriation Act, 2008.  (Public Law 110-161)  Excerpts for the Administration for Children and Families available at:  http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/olab/budget/2008/2008_consolidated_appropriations_act_pl110_161.htm

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.  (2007).  Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration Identifying and Selecting Evidence-Based Interventions http://ncadi.samhsa.gov/.

Demonstration Projects

Activities funded under this funding opportunity announcement are demonstration projects. At CB a demonstration project is one that puts into place and tests new, unique, or distinctive approaches for delivering services to a specific population.

Demonstration projects may test whether a program or service that has proven successful in one location or setting can work in a different context. Demonstration projects may test a theory, idea, or method that reflects a new and different way of thinking about service delivery. Demonstration projects may be designed to address the needs of a very specific group of clients or focus on one service component available to all clients. The scope of these projects may be broad and comprehensive or narrow and targeted to specific populations. A demonstration project must:

  • Develop and implement an evidence-based model with specific components or strategies that are based on theory, research, or evaluation data; or replicate or test the transferability of successfully evaluated program models;
  • Determine the effectiveness of the model and its components or strategies using a rigorous evaluation approach;
  • Identify target audiences; assess their needs; produce detailed procedures, materials and other products based on the program evaluation; and disseminate information about assessed needs, project designs, evaluation and quality assurance findings related to process (implementation) and outcome measures, costs, other evaluation questions, lessons learned, etc.; and
  • Contribute to and promote evidence-based strategies, practices, and programs that may be used to guide replication, program improvements, systems change or testing in other settings.

Expectations of Non-Profit Organization and Tribal Applicants

If the primary applicant responsible for administering the cooperative agreement is a non-profit organization or institution of higher education, the applicant must document a strong partnership with the public child welfare agency(ies) with responsibility for administering the child welfare program(s) in the targeted geographical area(s) and courts having jurisdiction over the targeted child welfare population. This documentation should include the following: 

  • Letter(s) of commitment or MOU(s) from the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) and courts, which describe, in detail, the roles and responsibilities of the project partners;
  • Evidence that the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) and court(s) fully understand, are fully committed to the proposed project, and demonstrate a willingness to be fully engaged in the activities that are described in the application;
  • Evidence that the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) and court(s) will follow through on these commitments, regardless of changes in administration, economic status, or other foreseeable factors; and
  • Any other evidence that would demonstrate the full commitment of the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) and court(s) to making the proposed project a success.

If the primary applicant responsible for administering the cooperative agreement is a Native American Tribal government (Federally recognized) or Tribal Organization, the applicant must document that it is a title IV-B recipient and/or has a Title IV-E agreement or memoranda of understanding.

Additional Project Requirements

The applicant's signature on the application constitutes its assurance that it will comply with the following requirements:

1. Have Phase I of the project fully functioning within 90 days following the notification of the cooperative agreement award.

2. Participate if CB chooses to do a cross-site evaluation or a technical assistance contract that relates to this funding opportunity announcement.

3. Submit all performance indicator data, program, evaluation, and financial reports in a timely manner (see Section VI.3), in the recommended formats (to be provided). CB prefers and will accept the interim and final reports on disk or electronically using a standard word-processing program; however, projects are required to provide the original and two copies of performance progress and final reports.

4. Submit an original and two copies of the final report, the evaluation report, and any program products to CB within 90 days of project end date.

5. Allocate sufficient funds in the budget to support required travel:  

  • Within three months after the award of the 12-month Assessment/Planning Phase (Phase I) of the cooperative agreement, the project director, child welfare liaison (if different from the project director), evaluator and/or other key staff must attend a two- to three-day kick-off meeting in Washington, D.C., with the other funded projects, the FPO(s), and other staff and contractors of the CB for the purpose of discussing details of the project work plan and cooperative agreement.
  • Travel to the kick-off meeting, as well as funding for three key staff persons to attend the three-day CB annual grantee meeting, usually held in the spring. In each of the four implementation years, the awardee must send only the project director, child welfare agency liaison if different from the project director, and the evaluator to the annual grantee meeting.

Pre-Application Conference

The Children's Bureau may sponsor a pre-application conference for all parties interested in applying for the Initiative to Reduce Long-term Foster Care.

The purpose of the conference would be to assist applicants to develop effective applications and respond to questions about the funding opportunity announcement.

If the Children's Bureau sponsors a pre-application conference, a recording and transcript of the conference will be posted at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/grantreview/cb/ following the conference and will be available until the closing date of the announcement.

Information about the conference can be found at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/grantreview/cb/ or by contacting the CB Operations Center, c/o Master Key Consulting, 4915 St. Elmo Avenue, Suite 101, Bethesda, MD 20814, 866-796-1591 or TTY 711, cb@luxcg.com.

II. Award Information

Funding Instrument Type: Cooperative Agreement
Estimated Total Funding: $17,000,000
Expected Number of Awards: 5
Award Ceiling: $2,500,000 Per Budget Period
Award Floor: $0 Per Budget Period
Average Projected Award Amount: $2,500,000 Per Budget Period

Length of Project Periods:


60-month project with five 12-month budget periods

Additional Information on Awards:

Awards made under this announcement are subject to the availability of Federal funds.

 

In the first budget period, the maximum Federal share of the project is not to exceed $2,500,000. In subsequent budget periods, the maximum Federal share of the project is not to exceed $3,000,000 per budget period. The projects awarded will be for a project period of 60 months. The initial cooperative agreement award will be for a 12-month budget period. The award of continuation beyond each 12-month budget period will be subject to the availability of funds, satisfactory progress on the part of the project, and a determination that continued funding would be in the best interest of the Federal Government.

Description of ACF's Anticipated Substantial Involvement Under the Cooperative Agreement

 

A cooperative agreement is a specific method of awarding Federal assistance in which substantial Federal involvement is anticipated.  A cooperative agreement clearly defines the respective responsibilities of CB and the awardee prior to the award. CB anticipates that agency involvement will produce programmatic benefits to the recipient otherwise unavailable to them for carrying out the project. The involvement and collaboration includes:

  • CB review and approval of planning stages of the activities before implementation phases may begin;
  • CB and recipient joint collaboration in the performance of key programmatic activities (i.e., strategic planning, implementation, information technology enhancements, T/TA, publications or products, and evaluation);
  • Close monitoring by CB of the requirements stated in this announcement that limit the awardee's discretion with respect to scope of services offered, organizational structure, and management processes; and
  • Close monitoring by CB during performance which may, in order to ensure compliance with the intent of this funding, exceed those Federal stewardship responsibilities customary for grant activities.

Please see Section IV.5 Funding Restrictions for any restrictions on the use of grant funds awarded under this announcement.

III. Eligibility Information
III.1. Eligible Applicants

Eligible Applicants are:

  • State governments
  • County governments
  • Native American tribal governments (Federally recognized)
  • Native American tribal organizations (other than Federally recognized tribal governments)
  • Public and State-controlled institutions of higher education
  • Private institutions of higher education
  • Non-profits having a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS, other than institutions of higher education
  • Non-profits that do not have a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS, other than institutions of higher education

 

 

 

Individuals, foreign entities, and sole proprietorship organizations are not eligible to compete for, or receive, awards made under this announcement.

Faith-based and community organizations that meet eligibility requirements are eligible to receive awards under this funding opportunity announcement.
See "Legal Status of Applicant Entity" in Section IV.2 for documentation required to support eligibility.
 
III.2. Cost Sharing or Matching
Cost Sharing / Matching Requirement: Yes
Grantees must provide at least 10% percent of the total approved cost of the project. The total approved cost of the project is the sum of the ACF (Federal) share and the non-Federal share. The non-Federal share may be met by cash or in-kind contributions, although applicants are encouraged to meet their match requirements through cash contributions. For example, in order to meet the match requirements, a project requesting $2,500,000.00 in ACF (Federal) funds must provide a non-Federal share of the approved total project cost of at least $277,778.00 , which is 10% percent of total approved project cost of $2,777,778.00 .Grantees will be held accountable for commitments of non-Federal resources even if they exceed the amount of the required match. Failure to provide the required amount will result in the disallowance of Federal funds. A lack of supporting documentation at the time of application submission will not exclude the application from competitive review.
III.3. Other

Collaborative efforts are strongly encouraged, but applicants must identify a primary applicant responsible for administering the cooperative agreement. 

If the primary applicant responsible for administering the cooperative agreement is a non-profit organization or institution of higher education, the applicant must document a strong partnership with the public child welfare agency(ies) with responsibility for administering the child welfare program(s) in the targeted geographical area(s) and courts having jurisdiction over the targeted child welfare population.

 

 

 

 

 

Disqualification Factors

Applications with requests that exceed the ceiling on the amount of individual awards as stated in Section II. Award Information, will be deemed non-responsive and will not be considered for funding under this announcement.

Applications that fail to satisfy the due date and time deadline requirements stated in Section IV.3. Submission Dates and Times, will be deemed non-responsive and will not be considered for funding under this announcement. 

See Section IV.3. Submission Dates and Times for disqualification information specific to electronically-submitted applications:

  • Electronically-submitted applications that do not receive a date/time-stamp email indicating application submission on or before 4:30 p.m., eastern time, on the due date, will be disqualified and will not be considered for competition.
     
  • Electronically-submitted applications that fail the checks and validations at www.Grants.gov because the Authorized Organization Representative (AOR) does not have a current registration at the Central Contractor Registry (CCR) at the time of application submission will be disqualified and will not be considered for competition.

 

IV.1. Address to Request Application Package

IV.1. Address to Request Application Package

Standard Forms, assurances, and certifications are available at the ACF Forms webpage at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/grants_resources.html
Standard Forms are also available at the Grants.gov Forms Repository website at http://apply07.grants.gov/apply/FormLinks?family=15.

 
CB Operations Center
c/o Master Key Consulting
4915 St. Elmo Avenue, Suite 101
Bethesda, MD 20814
Phone: (866) 796-1591
Email: cb@luxcg.com
 

Federal Relay Service:

Hearing-impaired and speech-impaired callers may contact the Federal Relay Service for assistance at 1-800-877-8339 (TTY - Text Telephone or ASCII - American Standard Code For Information Interchange).

IV.2. Content and Form of Application Submission

Section IV.2. Content and Form of Application Submission

This section provides information on the required format, Standard Forms (SFs) and other forms, certifications, assurances, D-U-N-S requirement, project description, budget and budget justification, and methods of application submission.  A checklist of required application elements is available for applicants' use in Section VIII of this announcement.

Applicants are required to submit one original and two copies of all application materials if applying in hard-copy.  Applicants submitting applications electronically via www.grants.gov need not provide additional copies of their application materials. The original signature of the Authorized Organization Representative (AOR) is required only on the original copy.  The AOR is named by the applicant, and is authorized to act for the applicant, to assume the obligations imposed by the Federal laws, regulations, requirements, and conditions that apply to the grant application or awards.  A point of contact on matters involving the application must also be identified on the SF-424 at 8f.  This point of contact, known as the Project Director or Principal Investigator, should not be identical to the person identified as the AOR.

 

Each application must contain the following items in the order listed:

Application for Federal Assistance. (Standard Form (SF) 424, SF-424A and SF-424-B). Follow the instructions that accompany the forms and those in Section IV.2, Application Review Information.

Certifications/Assurances. See Forms, Assurances, and Certifications, below.

Table of Contents. List the major sections of the application, and show the page that each section begins on.

Project Summary/Abstract (one page maximum, double spaced). See Section IV.2, Project Description. Clearly mark this page with the applicant name as shown on SF-424, identify the program announcement and the title of the proposed project as shown on SF-424, and indicate the service area as shown on SF-424. The summary description should not exceed 300 words.

Care should be taken to produce a summary/abstract that accurately and concisely reflects the proposed project.

The Project Description. Applicants should organize their project description in this sequence: 1) Objectives and Need for Assistance; 2) Approach; 3) Evaluation; 4) Organizational Profiles; and 5) Budget and Budget Justification.  

Budget and Budget Justification. Provide a budget with line-item detail and detailed calculations for each budget object class identified on the Budget Information Form (SF-424A). Detailed calculations must include estimation methods, quantities, unit costs, and other similar quantitative detail sufficient for the calculation to be duplicated. Provide a narrative budget justification for each year of the proposed project. The narrative budget justification should describe how the categorical costs are derived. Discuss the necessity, reasonableness, and allocation of the proposed costs.

Indirect Charges. If claiming indirect costs, provide documentation that the applicant currently has an indirect cost-rate approved by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) or another cognizant Federal agency.

Third-Party Agreements. If applicable, provide written and signed agreements between grantees and subgrantees, or subcontractors, or other cooperating entities. These agreements must detail the scope of work to be performed, work schedules, remuneration, and other terms and conditions that structure or define the relationship. Note: General letters of support not expressing specific commitments are not required and will not be considered by reviewers under the evaluation criteria.

Staff and Position Data.  Include job descriptions and curriculum vitae/resumes for proposed project staff.

Page Limit. The length of the entire application package may be less than, but must not exceed, 100 pages. This includes, but is not limited to, all required Federal forms, narrative and attachments.

All pages of the application package must be sequentially numbered, beginning with SF-424 as page one. Each applicant must organize its application in the order listed in this section and number all application pages. Pages will be counted in the order they are submitted in hard copy and numbered when received electronically.

All pages of each application will be counted to determine total length. All pages exceeding the page limit will be removed and will not be considered in the reviewing process. Applicants are reminded that a cover letter and general letters of support are NOT required and if submitted, they will count towards the page limit.

General Content and Form Information. To be considered for funding, each application must be submitted with the Standard Federal Forms and must follow the guidance provided. The application must be signed by an individual authorized to act for the applicant agency and to assume responsibility for the obligations imposed by the terms and conditions of the award.

The project description must be typed and double-spaced on a single side of 8.5 x 11 inch plain white paper with a least one inch margins on all sides, using black print with 12-point size Times New Roman font.

For charts, budget tables, supplemental letters, and documents, applicants may use a different point size and font, but no less than 10-point size and single spaced.

Applicants that deviate from these format and page limit requirements risk having pages removed from their applications.

All copies of an application must be submitted in a single package.  A separate package must be submitted for each funding opportunity. The package must be clearly labeled for the specific funding opportunity it is addressing.

Because each application will be duplicated, do not use or include separate covers, binders, clips, tabs, plastic inserts, maps, brochures, or any other items that cannot be processed easily on a photocopy machine with an automatic feed. Do not bind, clip, staple, or fasten in any way separate subsections of the application, including supporting documentation. Use a clip (not a staple) to securely bind the application together. Applicants are advised that the copies of the application submitted, not the original, will be reproduced by the Federal Government for review.

Tips for Preparing a Competitive Application. It is essential that applicants read the entire announcement package carefully before preparing an application and include all of the required application forms and attachments. The application must reflect a thorough understanding of and support the purpose and objectives of the applicable legislation. Reviewers expect applicants to understand the goals of the legislation and CB's interest in each topic and to address and follow all of the evaluation criteria in ways that demonstrate this understanding. Applications that do not clearly address the evaluation criteria or program requirements generally receive very low scores and are rarely funded.

CB's website (http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/cb) provides a wide range of information and links to other relevant websites. Before preparing an application, applicants can learn more about CB's mission and programs by exploring the website.

Logic Model. A logic model is a tool that presents the conceptual framework for a proposed project and explains the linkages among program elements. While there are many versions of the logic model, they generally summarize the logical connections among the needs that are the focus of the project, project goals and objectives, the target population, project inputs (resources), the proposed activities/processes/outputs directed toward the target population, the expected short- and long-term outcomes the initiative is designed to achieve, and the evaluation plan for measuring the extent to which proposed processes and outcomes actually occur. Information on the development of logic models is available on the Internet at  http://www.childwelfare.gov/preventing/developing/toolkit/

Evaluation.  Project evaluations are very important. A helpful document titled "Program Manager's Guide to Evaluation" can be accessed at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/opre/other_resrch/pm_guide_eval/reports/pmguide/pmguide_toc.html

Protection of Human Subjects.   General information about the HHS Protection of Human Subjects regulations can be obtained at http://www.hhs.gov/ohrp/. Applicants may also contact OHRP by email (ohrp@csophs.dhhs.gov) or by phone (240-453-6900).

Organizing the Application. Reviewers will use the specific evaluation criteria in Section V of this funding announcement to review and evaluate each application. The applicant should address each of these specific evaluation criteria in the project description. Applicants should organize their project description in this sequence: (1) Objectives and Need for Assistance; (2) Approach; (3) Evaluation; (4) Organizational Profiles; and (5) Budget and Budget Justification. The applicant must use the same headings as these criteria, so that reviewers can readily find information that directly addresses each of the specific review criteria.

Electronic Submission. Applicants that submit their application electronically are advised to be sure that they secure and retain their service ticket number for reference whenever they have any interaction with the Grants.gov Contact Center.

Forms, Assurances, and Certifications

Applicants seeking financial assistance under this announcement must submit the listed Standard Forms (SFs), assurances, and certifications.  All required Standard Forms, assurances, and certifications are available at ACF Funding Opportunities Forms or at the Grants.gov Forms Repository unless specified otherwise.

Forms / Assurances / Certifications Submission Requirement Notes / Description

Survey on Ensuring Equal Opportunity for Applicants

Submission is voluntary.

Non-profit private organizations (not including private universities) are encouraged to submit the "Survey on Ensuring Equal Opportunity for Applicants"  with their applications.  Submission of the survey is voluntary.   Applicants applying electronically may submit this survey along with the application.  Hard copy submissions should include the survey in a separate envelope.

SF-424A - Budget Information - Non-Construction Programs

SF-424B - Assurances  - Non-Construction Programs

Submission required for all applicants applying for a non-construction project by the application due date.

Required for all applications.

Certification Regarding Lobbying

Submission required of all applicants prior to award.

Required for all applications.

SF-LLL - Disclosure of Lobbying Activities, if applicable

If applicable, submission is required prior to award.

If any funds have been paid or will be paid to any person for influencing or attempting to influence an officer or employee of any agency, a Member of Congress, an officer or employee of Congress, or an employee of a Member of Congress in connection with this commitment providing for the United States to insure or guarantee a loan, the applicant shall complete and submit the SF-LLL, "Disclosure Form to Report Lobbying," in accordance with its instructions. Applicants must furnish an executed copy of the Certification Regarding Lobbying prior to award.

SF-424 - Application for Federal Assistance

SF-P/PSL  - Project/Performance Site Location(s)

Submission required for all applicants by the application due date.

Required for all applications


The Pro-Children Act of 2001, 42 U.S.C. 7181 through 7184, imposes restrictions on smoking in facilities where federally funded children's services are provided. HHS grants are subject to these requirements only if they meet the Act's specified coverage.  The Act specifies that smoking is prohibited in any indoor facility (owned, leased, or contracted for) used for the routine or regular provision of kindergarten, elementary, or secondary education or library services to children under the age of 18.  In addition, smoking is prohibited in any indoor facility or portion of a facility (owned, leased, or contracted for) used for the routine or regular provision of federally funded health care, day care, or early childhood development, including Head Start services to children under the age of 18.  The statutory prohibition also applies if such facilities are constructed, operated, or maintained with Federal funds.  The statute does not apply to children's services provided in private residences, facilities funded solely by Medicare or Medicaid funds, portions of facilities used for inpatient drug or alcohol treatment, or facilities where WIC coupons are redeemed.  Failure to comply with the provisions of the law may result in the imposition of a civil monetary penalty of up to $1,000 per violation and/or the imposition of an administrative compliance order on the responsible entity.
 
By signing and submitting the application, applicants are making the appropriate certification of their compliance with all Federal statutes relating to nondiscrimination.

Additional information on certifications and assurances may be found in the HHS Grants Policy Statement at: http://www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/grants_related.html.

Non-Federal Reviewers

Since ACF will be using non-Federal reviewers in the review process, applicants have the option of omitting from the application copies (not the original) specific salary rates or amounts for individuals specified in the application budget as well as Social Security Numbers, if otherwise required for individuals. The copies may include summary salary information. If applicants are submitting their application electronically, ACF will omit the same specific salary rate information from copies made for use during the review and selection process.
 
 

D-U-N-S Requirement

All applicants must have a D&B Data Universal Numbering System (D-U-N-S) number.   A D-U-N-S number is required whether an applicant is submitting a paper application or using the Government-wide electronic portal, Grants.gov.   A D-U-N-S number is required for every application for a new award or renewal/continuation of an award, including applications or plans under formula, entitlement, and block grant programs.  A D-U-N-S number may be acquired at no cost online at http://www.dnb.com.  To acquire a D-U-N-S number by phone, contact the D&B Government Customer Response Center:

U.S. and U.S Virgin Islands: 1-866-705-5711
Alaska and Puerto Rico: 1-800-234-3867 (Select Option 2, then Option 1)
Monday - Friday 7 AM to 8 PM C.S.T.

The process to request a D-U-N-S® Number by telephone takes between 5 and 10 minutes.
You will need to provide the following information:

  • Legal Name
  • Tradestyle, Doing Business As (DBA), or other name by which your organization is commonly recognized
  • Physical Address, City, State and Zip Code
  • Mailing Address (if separate)
  • Telephone Number
  • Contact Name
  • SIC Code (Line of Business)
  • Number of Employees at your location
  • Headquarters name and address (if there is a reporting relationship to a parent corporate entity)
  • Is this a home-based business?
IV.2. Content and Form of Application Submission (contd.)

The Project Description

Part I: The Project Description Overview

The project description provides the majority of information by which an application is evaluated and ranked in competition with other applications for available assistance.  The project description should be concise and complete.  It should address the activity for which Federal funds are being requested.  Supporting documents should be included where they can present information clearly and succinctly.  In preparing the project description, information that is responsive to each of the requested evaluation criteria must be provided.  Awarding offices use this and other information in making their funding recommendations.   It is important, therefore, that this information be included in the application in a manner that is clear and complete.

 

General Expectations and Instructions

ACF is particularly interested in specific project descriptions that focus on outcomes and convey strategies for achieving intended performance. Project descriptions are evaluated on the basis of substance and measurable outcomes, not length. Extensive exhibits are not required. Cross-referencing should be used rather than repetition. Supporting information concerning activities that will not be directly funded by the grant or information that does not directly pertain to an integral part of the grant-funded activity should be placed in an appendix.

 

Part II: General Instructions for Preparing a Full Project Description

Introduction

Applicants that are required to submit a full project description shall prepare the project description statement in accordance with the following instructions while being aware of the specified evaluation criteria. The topics listed in this section provide a broad overview of what the project description should include while the Criteria in Section V.1 identify the measures that will be used to evaluate applications.

 
Table of Contents

List the contents of the application including corresponding page numbers.

 
Project Summary/Abstract

Provide a summary of the application's project description.  The summary must be clear, accurate, concise, and without reference to other parts of the application.  The abstract must include a brief description of the proposed grant project including the needs to be addressed, the proposed services, and the population group(s) to be served. 

Please place the following at the top of the abstract: 

  • Project Title
  • Applicant Name
  • Address
  • Contact Phone Numbers (Voice, Fax)
  • E-Mail Address
  • Web Site Address, if applicable

 The project abstract must be single-spaced and limited to one page in length.

 
Objectives And Need For Assistance

Clearly identify the physical, economic, social, financial, institutional, and/or other problem(s) requiring a solution.  The need for assistance including the nature and scope of the problem must be demonstrated, and the principal and subordinate objectives of the project must be clearly and concisely stated; supporting documentation, such as letters of support and testimonials from concerned interests other than the applicant, may be included.  Any relevant data based on planning studies or needs assessments should be included or referred to in the endnotes/footnotes.  Incorporate demographic data and participant/beneficiary information, as needed.  In developing the project description, the applicant may volunteer or be requested to provide information on the total range of projects currently being conducted and supported (or to be initiated), some of which may be outside the scope of the program announcement.

 
Approach

Outline a plan of action that describes the scope and detail of how the proposed work will be accomplished.  Account for all functions or activities identified in the application.  Cite factors that might accelerate or decelerate the work and state your reason for taking the proposed approach rather than others. Describe any unusual features of the project such as design or technological innovations, reductions in cost or time, or extraordinary social and community involvement.

Provide quantitative monthly or quarterly projections of the accomplishments to be achieved for each function or activity in such terms as the number of people to be served and the number of activities accomplished.  Data may be organized and presented as project tasks and subtasks with their corresponding timelines during the project period. For example, each project task could be assigned to a row in the first column of a grid. Then, a unit of time could be assigned to each subsequent column, beginning with the first unit (i.e., week, month, quarter) of the project and ending with the last.  Shading, arrows, or other markings could be used across the applicable grid boxes or cells, representing units of time, to indicate the approximate duration and/or frequency of each task and its start and end dates within the project period.

When accomplishments cannot be quantified by activity or function, list them in chronological order to show the schedule of accomplishments and their target dates.

Provide a list of organizations, cooperating entities, consultants, or other key individuals who will work on the project, along with a short description of the nature of their effort or contribution.

 
Evaluation

Provide a narrative addressing how the conduct of the project and its results will be evaluated.  In addressing the evaluation of results, state what measures will be used to determine the extent to which the project has achieved its stated objectives and the extent to which the accomplishment of objectives can be attributed to the project.  Discuss the criteria to be used to evaluate results, and explain the methodology that will be used to determine if the needs identified and discussed are being met and if the project results and benefits are being achieved.  With respect to the conduct of the project, define the procedures to be employed to determine whether the project is being conducted in a manner consistent with the work plan presented and discuss the impact of the project's various activities that address the project's effectiveness.

 
 
Legal Status of Applicant Entity

Applicants must provide the following documentation of their legal status:

 

Proof of Non-Profit Status

Non-profit organizations applying for funding are required to submit proof of their non-profit status.  Proof of non-profit status is any one of the following:

  • A reference to the applicant organization's listing in the IRS's most recent list of tax-exempt organizations described in the IRS Code.
  • A copy of a currently valid IRS tax-exemption certificate.
  • A statement from a State taxing body, State attorney general, or other appropriate State official certifying that the applicant organization has non-profit status and that none of the net earnings accrue to any private shareholders or individuals.
  • A certified copy of the organization's certificate of incorporation or similar document that clearly establishes non-profit status.
  • Any of the items in the subparagraphs immediately above for a State or national parent organization and a statement signed by the parent organization that the applicant organization is a local non-profit affiliate.

When applying electronically, proof of non-profit status may be submitted as an attachment; however, proof of non-profit status must be submitted prior to award.

 
 
Logic Model

Applicants are expected to use a model for designing and managing their project. A logic model is a tool that presents the conceptual framework for a proposed project and explains the linkages among program elements. While there are many versions of the logic model, they generally summarize the logical connections among the needs that are the focus of the project, project goals and objectives, the target population, project inputs (resources), the proposed activities/processes/outputs directed toward the target population, the expected short- and long-term outcomes the initiative is designed to achieve, and the evaluation plan for measuring the extent to which proposed processes and outcomes actually occur.

 
Project Sustainability Plan

Provide a plan for sustainability that details how the proposed project approach will create project self-sufficiency and help to ensure that the impact of the project will continue after Federal assistance has ended.  The applicant may include information on plans to secure additional financial resources.

 
 
Organizational Capacity
  • Organizational charts
  • Documentation of experience in the program area
  • Any other pertinent information the applicant deems relevant.
 

Provide a biographical sketch or resume for each key person appointed. Resumes should be no more than two pages in length. Job descriptions for each vacant key position should be included as well. As new key staff are appointed, biographical sketches or resumes will also be required.

 
Dissemination Plan

Provide a plan for distributing reports and other project outputs to colleagues and to the public.  Applicants must provide a description of the method, volume, and timing of distribution.

Third-Party Agreements

Provide written and signed agreements between grantees and subgrantees, or subcontractors, or other cooperating entities. These agreements must detail the scope of work to be performed, work schedules, remuneration, and other terms and conditions that structure or define the relationship.
 
Budget and Budget Justification

Provide a budget with line-item detail and detailed calculations for each budget object class identified on the Budget Information Form (SF-424A or SF-424C).  Detailed calculations must include estimation methods, quantities, unit costs, and other similar quantitative detail sufficient for the calculation to be duplicated.  If matching is a requirement, include a breakout by the funding sources identified in Block 18 of the SF-424.

 
Provide a narrative budget justification for each year of the proposed project. The narrative budget justification should describe how the categorical costs are derived. Discuss the necessity, reasonableness, and allocation of the proposed costs.
 
General

Use the following guidelines for preparing the budget and budget justification.  Both Federal and non-Federal resources (when required) shall be detailed and justified in the budget and budget narrative justification.   "Federal resources" refers only to the ACF grant funds for which you are applying.  "Non-Federal resources" are all other non-ACF Federal and non-Federal resources.  It is suggested that budget amounts and computations be presented in a columnar format:  first column, object class categories; second column, Federal budget; next column(s), non-Federal budget(s); and last column, total budget.  The budget justification should be in a narrative form.

 
Personnel

Description:  Costs of employee salaries and wages.

Justification:  Identify the project director or principal investigator, if known at the time of application.   For each staff person, provide:  the title; time commitment to the project in months; time commitment to the project as a percentage or full-time equivalent; annual salary; grant salary; wage rates; etc.  Do not include the costs of consultants, personnel costs of delegate agencies, or of specific project(s) and/or businesses to be financed by the applicant.

 
Fringe Benefits

Description: Costs of employee fringe benefits unless treated as part of an approved indirect cost rate.

Justification: Provide a breakdown of the amounts and percentages that comprise fringe benefit costs such as health insurance, Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) taxes, retirement insurance, taxes, etc.

 
Travel

Description: Costs of project-related travel by employees of the applicant organization.  (This item does not include costs of consultant travel). 

Justification:  For each trip show:  the total number of traveler(s); travel destination; duration of trip; per diem; mileage allowances, if privately owned vehicles will be used to travel out of town; and other transportation costs and subsistence allowances.  If appropriate for this project, travel costs for key staff to attend ACF-sponsored workshops should be detailed in the budget.

 
Equipment

Description:  "Equipment" means an article of nonexpendable, tangible personal property having a useful life of more than one year and an acquisition cost that equals or exceeds the lesser of:  (a) the capitalization level established by the organization for the financial statement purposes, or (b) $5,000.  (Note:   Acquisition cost means the net invoice unit price of an item of equipment, including the cost of any modifications, attachments, accessories, or auxiliary apparatus necessary to make it usable for the purpose for which it is acquired. Ancillary charges, such as taxes, duty, protective in-transit insurance, freight, and installation, shall be included in or excluded from acquisition cost in accordance with the organization's regular written accounting practices.)

Justification:  For each type of equipment requested provide:  a description of the equipment; the cost per unit; the number of units; the total cost; and a plan for use on the project; as well as use and/or disposal of the equipment after the project ends.  An applicant organization that uses its own definition for equipment should provide a copy of its policy, or section of its policy, that includes the equipment definition.

 
Supplies

Description:  Costs of all tangible personal property other than that included under the Equipment category.

Justification:  Specify general categories of supplies and their costs.  Show computations and provide other information that supports the amount requested.

 
Contractual

Description:  Costs of all contracts for services and goods except for those that belong under other categories such as equipment, supplies, construction, etc.  Include thirdparty evaluation contracts, if applicable, and contracts with secondary recipient organizations, including delegate agencies and specific project(s) and/or businesses to be financed by the applicant.

Justification:  Demonstrate that all procurement transactions will be conducted in a manner to provide, to the maximum extent practical, open and free competition. Recipients and subrecipients, other than States that are required to use 45 CFR Part 92 procedures, must justify any anticipated procurement action that is expected to be awarded without competition and exceeds the simplified acquisition threshold fixed at 41 U.S.C. 403(11), currently set at $100,000.  Recipients may be required to make pre-award review and procurement documents, such as requests for proposals or invitations for bids, independent cost estimates, etc. available to ACF.

Note:    Whenever the applicant intends to delegate part of the project to another agency, the applicant must provide a detailed budget and budget narrative for each delegate agency, by agency title, along with the same supporting information referred to in these instructions.

 
Other

Description:  Enter the total of all other costs.  Such costs, where applicable and appropriate, may include but are not limited to:  local travel; insurance; food; medical and dental costs (noncontractual); professional services costs; space and equipment rentals; printing and publication; computer use; training costs, such as tuition and stipends; staff development costs; and administrative costs.

Justification:  Provide computations, a narrative description and a justification for each cost under this category.

 
Indirect Charges

Description:  Total amount of indirect costs.  This category should be used only when the applicant currently has an indirect cost rate approved by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) or another cognizant Federal agency.

Justification:  An applicant that will charge indirect costs to the grant must enclose a copy of the current rate agreement.  If the applicant organization is in the process of initially developing or renegotiating a rate, upon notification that an award will be made, it should immediately develop a tentative indirect cost rate proposal based on its most recently completed fiscal year, in accordance with the cognizant agency's guidelines for establishing indirect cost rates, and submit it to the cognizant agency.  Applicants awaiting approval of their indirect cost proposals may also request indirect costs.  When an indirect cost rate is requested, those costs included in the indirect cost pool should not be charged as direct costs to the grant.  Also, if the applicant is requesting a rate that is less than what is allowed under the program, the authorized representative of the applicant organization must submit a signed acknowledgement that the applicant is accepting a lower rate than allowed.

 
Program Income

Description:  The estimated amount of income, if any, expected to be generated from this project.

Justification:  Describe the nature, source and anticipated use of program income in the budget or refer to the pages in the application that contain this information.

 
Commitment of Non-Federal Resources

Description:  Amounts of non-Federal resources that will be used to support the project as identified in Block 18 of the SF-424.

Justification:  If an applicant is relying on match from a third party, then a firm commitment of these resources (letter or other documentation) is required with the application.   Detailed budget information must be provided for every funding source identified in Block 18 of the SF-424.

 
Paperwork Reduction Disclaimer

As required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995, Pub.L. 104-13, the public reporting burden for the Project Description is estimated to average 40 hours per response, including the time for reviewing instructions, gathering and maintaining the data needed, and reviewing the collection information. The Project Description information collection is approved under OMB control number 0970-0139, which expires 11/30/2012. An agency may not conduct or sponsor, and a person is not required to respond to, a collection of information unless it displays a currently valid OMB control number.

 
IV.2. Content and Form of Application Submission

Application Submission Options

Electronic Submission via www.Grants.gov

  • ACF will not accept applications via facsimile or email.

  • The Funding Opportunity Announcement is found on the Grants.gov website at http://www.grants.gov where the electronic application can be downloaded for completion.

  •  To apply electronically, applicants must be registered with Grants.gov, Dun and Bradstreet, and the Central Contractor Registry (CCR).

  • Electronically submitted applications must be submitted and time/date stamped by the due date and receipt time described in Section IV.3. Submission Dates and Times, of this announcement.

  • To submit an application through Grants.gov, the applicant must be an Authorized Organization Representative (AOR) for their organization and must have a current registration with the Central Contractor Registry (CCR).

  • Central Contractor Registry (CCR) registration must be updated annually. Electronically submitted applications will not pass the validation check at Grants.gov if the AOR does not have a current CCR registration and electronic signature credentials.

  • Applications rejected by Grants.gov for an unregistered AOR will be disqualified and will not be considered for competition.

  • Additional guidance on the submission of electronic applications can be found at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/registration_checklist.html.

  • If difficulties are encountered in using Grants.gov, applicants must contact the Grants.gov Contact Center at:1-800-518-4726, or by email at support@grants.gov, to report the problem and obtain assistance.

  • Applicants are advised to retain Grants.gov Contact Center service ticket number(s) as they may be needed for future reference.

  • Applicants that submit their applications electronically are encouraged to retain a hard copy of their application.

  • It is to an applicant's advantage to submit their applications 24 hours in advance of the closing date and time.

Contact with the Grants.gov Contact Center prior to the listed due date and time does not ensure acceptance of your application.  If difficulties are encountered, the Grants Management Officer (GMO) will make a determination whether the issues are due to system errors or user error. 


Hard Copy Submission

Applicants that are submitting their application in paper format should submit one original and two copies of the complete application with all attachments. The original and each of the two copies must include all required forms, certifications, assurances, and appendices, be signed by the Authorized Organization Representative (AOR), and be unbound. The original copy of the application must have original signature(s). See Section IV.6 of this announcement for address information for hard copy application submissions.


Applicants may refer to Section VIII. Other Information for a checklist of application requirements that may be used in developing and organizing application materials.  Details concerning acknowledgment of received applications are available in Section IV.3. Submission Dates and Times of this announcement.

IV.3. Submission Dates and Times

IV.3. Submission Dates and Times

Due Date for Applications: 08/09/2010
 

Explanation of Due Dates

The due date for receipt of applications is listed in this section. Applications received after 4:30 p.m., eastern time, on the due date will be classified as late and will not be considered in the current competition.

Applicants are responsible for ensuring that applications are received by mail, hand-delivery, or submitted electronically well in advance of the application due date and time.

Mailed Applications

Mailed applications must be received no later than 4:30 p.m., eastern time, at the address provided in Section IV.6 of this announcement on the due date listed in this section.

Hand-Delivered Applications

Applications hand-delivered by applicants, applicant couriers, other representatives of the applicant, or by overnight/express mail couriers must be received on, or before, the due date listed in this section, between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., eastern time, Monday through Friday (excluding Federal holidays). Applications should be delivered to the address provided in Section IV.6. of this announcement.

Electronically-Submitted Applications

ACF cannot accommodate transmission of applications by facsimile or email.  Instructions for electronic submission through www.Grants.gov may be found at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/registration_checklist.html

After the application is submitted electronically via Grants.gov, the applicant will receive three emails.  
The following emails will be sent to the applicant from Grants.gov: 

  1. An automatic acknowledgement from Grants.gov of the application's submission that provides a Grants.gov tracking number.
    The date/time-stamp in this email serves as the official record of your application submission.  The date/time-stamp must reflect a submission time on or before 4:30 p.m., eastern time, on the application due date for the application to be considered as meeting the due date and to be considered for competition.

  2. An acknowledgement from Grants.gov that the submitted application package has passed or failed a series of checks and validations.
    Applications that fail the validation check at Grants.gov because the Authorized Organization Representative (AOR) is not currently registered with the Central Contractor Registry (CCR) will be disqualified and will not be considered for competition. 

  3. An additional email from the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) will be sent to the applicant indicating that the application has been retrieved from Grants.gov and received by ACF.


Late Applications
No appeals will be considered for applications classified as late under the three cited circumstances:

  • Hard-copy applications received after 4:30 p.m., eastern time, on the due date will be classified as late and will be disqualified.
     
  • Electronically-submitted applications are considered late and are disqualified when the date/time-stamp received by email from www.Grants.gov is after 4:30 p.m., eastern time, on the due date.
     
  • Electronically-submitted applications submitted by an AOR that does not have a current registration with the Central Contractor Registry (CCR) will be rejected by Grants.gov. Although the applicant may have an acceptable dated and time-stamped email from Grants.gov, these applications are considered late and are disqualified and will not be considered for competition.  

Extension/Waiver of Due Date and Receipt Time
ACF may extend an application due date and receipt time when circumstances such as natural disasters occur (floods, hurricanes, etc.); when there are widespread disruptions of mail service; or in other rare cases.  The determination to extend or waive due date and receipt time requirements rests with ACF's Chief Grants Management Officer.

 

Acknowledgement of Received Application

ACF will not provide acknowledgement of receipt of hard copy application packages submitted via mail or courier services.

Applicants who submit their application packages electronically via http://www.Grants.gov will receive two email acknowledgements from that website:

  1. Your application has been submitted and provides a Time/Date Stamp. This is considered the official submission time.
  2. Your application has been validated and provides a Time/Date Stamp. See the previous section on disqualification for failing validation check because of an unregistered Authorized Organization Representative.

An acknowledgement email from the Administration on Children and Families (ACF) indicating that the application has been retrieved and received by ACF will be sent to applicants that apply via http://www.Grants.gov

IV.4. Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs (SPOC)

IV.4. Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs

This program is not subject to Executive Order (E.O.) 12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs," or 45 CFR Part 100, "Intergovernmental Review of Department of Health and Human Services Programs and Activities."  No action is required of applicants under this announcement with regard to E.O. 12372.

IV.5. Funding Restrictions

IV.5. Funding Restrictions

Costs of organized fund raising, including financial campaigns, endowment drives, solicitation of gifts and bequests, and similar expenses incurred solely to raise capital or obtain contributions, are considered unallowable costs under grants awarded under this announcement.

Grant awards will not allow reimbursement of pre-award costs.
Construction is not an allowable activity or expenditure under this grant award.
Purchase of real property is not an allowable activity or expenditure under this grant award.
IV.6. Other Submission Requirements

IV.6. Other Submission Requirements

Submit applications to one of the following addresses:

Submission By Mail

CB Operations Center
c/o Master Key Consulting
4915 St. Elmo Avenue, Suite 101
Bethesda, MD 20814
 

Hand Delivery

CB Operations Center
c/o Master Key Consulting
4915 St. Elmo Avenue, Suite 101
Bethesda, MD 20814
 

Electronic Submission

See Section IV.2 for application requirements and for guidance when submitting applications electronically via http://www.Grants.gov.


For all submissions, see Section IV.3 for information on due dates and times.

V. Application Review Information
V.1. Criteria
Applications competing for financial assistance will be reviewed and evaluated using the criteria described in this section. The corresponding point values indicate the relative importance placed on each review criterion. Points will be allocated based on the extent to which the application proposal addresses each of the criteria listed. Applicants should address these criteria in their application materials, particularly in the project description and budget justification, as they are the basis upon which competing applications will be judged during the objective review. The required elements of the project description and budget justification may be found in Section IV.2 of this announcement.
 
Objectives and Need for Assistance Maximum Points: 20

  

In reviewing the objectives and need for assistance, reviewers will consider the extent to which:

  1. The applicant demonstrates a sound rationale for choosing the identified target population(s), including presentation and analysis of data on the foster care population within the project's jurisdiction, and evidence that such analysis was done in collaboration with the relevant public child welfare agency(ies).
  2. The applicant identifies the barriers to permanent placement that are specific to the identified jurisdiction(s) and population(s) to be targeted in their project.
  3. The applicant presents a clear, concise, and appropriate vision for the proposed project. The overall vision for the approach reflects an understanding of the priorities described in the "Purpose" section of this funding opportunity announcement.
  4. The applicant demonstrates understanding of the use of Phase 1: The Planning year as an opportunity to amplify and fine-tune their proposed project plan, laying a solid foundation for the implementation activities during Phase 2: years two through five.
Objectives and Need for Assistance: Bonus Points Maximum Points: 20

   

When considering awarding Bonus Points under this section, reviewers will consider the extent to which the target population identified by the applicant has characteristics indicating serious barriers to permanency. The applicant shows that these characteristics are barriers for this target population both locally and nationally. The applicant demonstrates that these barriers are a significant issue in terms of the size of the population, the impact of these barriers on the population, and the scope and cost of the problem. If the primary applicant is a non-profit or institution of higher education, the applicant demonstrates that it has collaborated with the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) and other collaborating agencies in jointly identifying the target population based upon data from various sources available to those collaborating agencies. The applicant presents data, in one or more of the following domains, that documents the greater need of children and youth in its identified target population as it compares to the larger child welfare population within its jurisdiction(s) and nationally:

  1. Average age;
  2. Average length of time in care prior to achieving permanency;
  3. Average number of previous placements;
  4. Proportion who would otherwise be expected to age out of foster care without achieving permanency; and/or
  5. Size of the applicant's target population relative to the larger child welfare population.
Approach Maximum Points: 35

   

In reviewing the approach, reviewers will consider the extent to which:

  1. The applicant clearly identifies the lead agency responsible for implementing the project and coordinating with the other partner agencies, and provides a plan for providing management and oversight for the proposed initiative; including roles and description of key personnel to ensure continued support throughout the project. If the applicant is a non-profit or institution of higher education, the applicant documents a strong partnership(s) and a willingness and intent to be actively involved with the project on the part of the public child welfare agency(ies) with responsibility for administering the child welfare program(s) in the targeted geographical area(s).
  2. The applicant describes the process, including timeframes, that will be used to develop and fine-tune the project plan during the first year and to verify the appropriateness of the permanency achievement models, programs, policies and/or practices to be implemented, expanded and/or enhanced and incorporated into the agency's on-going functioning during years two through five of the project. If appropriate, the applicant describes a staged implementation process to accomplish this objective.
  3. The applicant identifies models, programs and/or practices proposed for implementation, and provides a synopsis of the evidence or research base, if any, for the proposed approach. The applicant demonstrates that the proposed intervention will be tailored to meet the needs of the proposed target population(s). If little or no research exists, the applicant clearly outlines its theoretical model.
  4. The applicant describes the critical components of its proposed implementation phase as described in the "Implementation Phase" section of this funding opportunity announcement.
  5. There is a reasonable timeline (e.g., Gantt chart, bar chart or other chart that illustrates project schedules) for implementing the proposed project, including the activities to be conducted in chronological order, showing a reasonable schedule of accomplishments and target dates and the factors that may accelerate or decelerate the work.
  6. The application provides a workable plan of action. The plan includes sound and feasible steps for accomplishing the stated objectives, covers the entire scope of the project, including Planning and Implementation Phase activities that are consistent with the expectations described in this funding opportunity announcement.
  7. The applicant describes clear training and technical assistance (T/TA) strategies (e.g., coaching, mentoring, supervision improvements) to assist in the implementation of innovative intervention strategies, and to ensure that sites successfully adopt, implement, and sustain the proposed programs.
  8. The applicant provides a convincing plan for involving partners to support the planning and infrastructure needed for the development, implementation and continued assessment of proposed programs and practices. The plan includes strategies that promote parent and youth leadership and involve youth and other consumers of services in the planning, implementation, and evaluation of funded programs.
  9. The project would promote: (1) joint accountability in interagency collaboration and implementation of new procedures for blending and leveraging funding streams; (2) collaborative long-range planning of foster care and permanency services; and (3) incorporating innovative intervention strategies which will address the barriers throughout the continuum of service to ensure that children entering foster care do not encounter similar barriers upon entry or during their stay in care.
  10. The applicant includes plans to collaborate and coordinate with other relevant State, local and private programs and Federal and national efforts.
  11. The applicant's services, program activities, and materials will be developed and provided in a manner that is racially and culturally sensitive to the population being served.
  12. The applicant describes how it will utilize the knowledge being developed by other CB discretionary research and demonstration projects and other related research in its T/TA activities.
  13. The applicant proposes a dissemination plan which addresses the items described in this funding opportunity announcement.
Evaluation Maximum Points: 20

  

In reviewing the evaluation plan, reviewers will consider the extent to which:

  1. The applicant provides a well-defined logic model to guide the proposed project. The logic model demonstrates strong links between proposed inputs and activities and intended short- and long-term outcomes.
  2. The applicant proposes a clear and convincing plan for working with the designated evaluator to evaluate the project, guided by the project's logic model. If the primary applicant is a non-profit or institution of higher education, this plan includes involvement of the public child welfare agency(ies) in the development and implementation of the evaluation efforts. The evaluation would rigorously measure achievement of project objectives, changes in practices, the fidelity of the program implementation, and linkages between services/practice changes and the impact of the project.
  3. The applicant's evaluation plan identifies specific evaluation questions for investigation, and appropriate methods and timelines for addressing the questions. The plan includes development of a data collection infrastructure that is sufficient to support a methodologically sound evaluation. Data collection procedures (including access to data sources) and instruments (including information on reliability and validity) are described.
  4. The applicant's evaluation plan outlines an appropriate sampling approach that ensures sample sizes sufficient to detect significant effects. The plan includes a rationale for use of various analytic techniques, and the analysis methods are appropriate for addressing the questions of interest.
  5. The evaluation plan includes an appropriate comparison group for determining the influence of the project activities on outcomes. If a comparison group is not proposed, the applicant provides a reasonable explanation for not using a comparison group and offers another equally rigorous approach to evaluating the influence of the program on outcomes. Ideally, the comparison group and the program/treatment group are assigned at random or matched on key characteristics. If not assigned at random or matched on key characteristics, the applicant provides a reasonable explanation of how it will identify and address any pre-existing differences between the comparison group and the program/treatment group.
  6. The applicant proposes appropriate process and outcomes measures and sufficiently justifies their selection. The applicant identifies implementation measures and permanency and well-being outcome measures, describes how the measures will be tracked, and proposes reliable sources for obtaining baseline and follow-up data. The applicant provides a rationale for the selection of measures, which are realistic and flow from the proposed plan as demonstrated in the applicant's logic model. The applicant will work with the designated evaluator during the planning year to establish targets for the identified outcomes, and throughout the implementation phase to participate in site-specific and cross-site evaluation activities.
  7. The applicant agrees to work with its key partners and the designated evaluator, other projects and CB to develop and report on a common set of measures for the cross-site evaluation. If the primary applicant is a non-profit or institution of higher education, the applicant includes a realistic plan for involving the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) in the development and reporting on the common set of measures.
  8. The applicant demonstrates an understanding of the level of effort required to collect and report cost data, and the capacity to fully participate in the cost evaluation. If applicable, letters of commitment from project partners to provide data relevant to the cost evaluation are provided.
  9. The proposed evaluation would be culturally sensitive to the target population of the identified program.
  10. There is an appropriate plan for working with the designated evaluator in securing informed consent and implementing an Institutional Review Board (IRB) review and Tribal review, if applicable.
  11. The applicant presents a realistic plan for using evaluation findings to produce ongoing documentation of project activities and results.  The plan includes performance feedback and periodic assessment of program progress that can be used to modify the program, as necessary, and serve as a basis for program adjustments. If the primary applicant is a non-profit or institution of higher education, the applicant proposes an effective strategy for apprising the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) of the interim and final findings of the evaluation efforts for the purposes of continuous quality improvement.
Organizational Capacity Maximum Points: 20

  

In reviewing the organizational capacity, reviewers will consider the extent to which:

  1. The applicant organization and its staff document experience and expertise in successful collaboration and joint accountability with a variety of partners. The applicant makes a strong case that it has the capacity and the commitment to support the planning and infrastructure needed for the widespread collaborative development, adoption, implementation and continued assessment of programs and practices to reduce the need for long-term foster care.
  2. The applicant (and its partners and contractors, if applicable) demonstrates sufficient and relevant experience and expertise in administration, development, implementation, management, and evaluation of similar projects. The applicant has sufficient experience, expertise and understanding in child welfare systems, foster care, permanency planning and achievement, building family capacity and connections, family-centered practice, and family engagement, to assess and successfully address the barriers identified in their application. The applicant possesses sufficient knowledge about child welfare systems and populations to develop sound child welfare agency focused and culturally competent outreach and networking activities.
  3. The proposal clearly demonstrates the applicant's ability to administer and implement the project effectively and efficiently. The applicant and any partnering organizations collectively have sufficient experience and expertise in the roles and functions required for the proposed project. If the project involves partnerships with additional agencies, organizations or subcontractors; each partnering organization has the ability and organizational capacity to fulfill its roles and functions such that it can fulfill its commitments related to the intent of this funding opportunity announcement. When appropriate, the applicant describes plans for holding partners and contractors accountable for implementing consistent permanency achievement models, programs and/or practices.
  4. The roles, responsibilities, and time commitments of each proposed key project staff position, including consultants, subcontractors and/or partnering agencies or organizations, are clearly defined and appropriate for the successful implementation of the proposed project. The applicant has secured commitments from its key partners. The application includes appropriate Memoranda of Understanding (MOU) or letters of commitment from key partnering organization(s), as appropriate.
  5. The proposed project director and key project staff possess sufficient relevant knowledge, experience and capabilities to effectively implement and manage a project of this size, scope and complexity. The role, responsibilities and time commitments of each proposed project staff position, including consultants, subcontractors and/or partners, are clearly defined and appropriate to the successful implementation of the proposed project.
  6. There is a sound management plan for achieving the objectives of the proposed project on time and within budget, including clearly defined responsibilities, timelines and milestones for accomplishing project tasks and ensuring quality. The plan clearly defines the role and responsibilities of the lead agency. The plan clearly describes the effective management and coordination of activities carried out by any partners, subcontractors and consultants, as appropriate. There would be a mutually beneficial relationship between the proposed project and other work planned, anticipated or underway with Federal assistance by the applicant.
  7. The applicant possesses the organizational capability to successfully perform the activities described in this announcement and to fulfill the roles and functions required by the funding opportunity announcement and the applicant's proposal.
  8. The applicant demonstrates engagement with partner organizations that could potentially contribute to the sustainability of the proposed project.
  9. If the primary applicant responsible for administering thecooperative agreementis a non-profit organization or institution of higher education, there is documentation of a strong partnership with the public child welfare agency(ies) with responsibility for administering the child welfare program(s) in the targeted geographical area(s) and courts having jurisdiction over the targeted child welfare population. This documentation includes the following:
    • Letter(s) of commitment or MOU(s) from the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) and courts, which describe, in detail, the roles and responsibilities of the project partners;
    • Evidence that the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) and court(s) fully understand, are fully committed to the proposed project, and demonstrate a willingness to be fully engaged in the activities that are described in the application;
    • Evidence that the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) and court(s) will follow through on these commitments, regardless of changes in administration, economic status, or other foreseeable factors; and
    • Any other evidence that would demonstrate the full commitment of the relevant public child welfare agency(ies) and court(s) to making the proposed project a success.
  10. If the primary applicant responsible for administering the cooperative agreement is a Native American Tribal government (Federally recognized) or Tribal Organization, there is documentation that the applicant is a title IV-B recipient and/or has a Title IV-E agreement or memoranda of understanding.  
Budget and Budget Justification Maximum Points: 5

  

In reviewing the budget and budget justification, reviewers will consider the extent to which:

  1. There is a detailed narrative budget justification for each year of the project. The costs of the proposed project are reasonable, in view of the activities to be conducted and expected results and benefits. The budget includes the costs associated with travel for the project director, child welfare liaison (if different from the project director), evaluator and/or other key staff or collaborating partners to attend annual grantees conferences and required meetings in Washington, D.C.
  2. The applicant's fiscal controls and accounting procedures would ensure prudent use, proper and timely disbursement and accurate accounting of funds received under this funding opportunity announcement.
V.2. & V.3. Review and Selection Process
V.2. Review and Selection Process

No grant award will be made under this announcement on the basis of an incomplete application.
 
Initial ACF Screening

Each application will be screened to determine whether it was received by the closing date and time and whether the requested amount exceeds the award ceiling.  Applications that are designated as late according to Section IV.3. Submission Dates and Times or those with requests that exceed the award ceiling, stated in Section II. Award Information will be returned to the applicant with a notation that they were deemed non-responsive and will not be reviewed.

Objective Review and Results

Applications competing for financial assistance will be reviewed and evaluated by objective review panels using the criteria described in Section V.1 of this announcement.  Each panel is made up of experts with knowledge and experience in the area under review. Generally, review panels are composed of three reviewers and one chairperson.

Results of the competitive objective review are taken into consideration by ACF in the selection of projects for funding; however, objective review scores and rankings are not binding and are one element of the decision-making process.

ACF may elect to not fund applicants with management or financial problems that would indicate an inability to successfully complete the proposed project. Applications may be funded in whole or in part.  Successful applicants may be funded at an amount lower than that requested.  ACF reserves the right to consider a preference to fund organizations serving emerging, unserved, or under-served populations, including those located in pockets of poverty, and to consider the geographic distribution of Federal funds in its funding decisions.

Please refer to Section IV.2. of this announcement for information on non-Federal reviewers in the review process.
 


Approved but Unfunded Applications

Applications that are approved but unfunded may be held over for funding in the next funding cycle, pending the availability of funds, for a period not to exceed one year.

 
V.3. Anticipated Announcement and Award Dates

Applications will be reviewed during the Summer 2010. Cooperative agreement awards will have a start date no later than September 30, 2010.

VI. Award Administration Information
VI.1. Award Notices

Successful applicants will be notified through the issuance of a Financial Assistance Award (FAA) document that sets forth the amount of funds granted, the terms and conditions of the grant, the effective date of the grant, the budget period for which initial support will be given, the non-Federal share to be provided (if applicable), and the total project period for which support is contemplated. The FAA will be signed by the Grants Officer and transmitted via postal mail.  Following the finalization of funding decisions, organizations whose applications will not be funded will be notified by letter, signed by the Program Office head.

 
VI.2. Administrative and National Policy Requirements

Awards issued under this announcement are subject to the uniform administrative requirements and cost principles of 45 CFR Part 74 (Awards And Subawards To Institutions Of Higher Education, Hospitals, Other Nonprofit Organizations, And Commercial Organizations), or 45 CFR Part 92 (Grants And Cooperative Agreements To State, Local, And Tribal Governments).

An application funded with the release of Federal funds through a grant award, does not constitute, or imply, compliance with Federal regulations.  Funded organizations are responsible for ensuring that their activities comply with all applicable Federal regulations.

Grantees are subject to the limitations set forth in 45 CFR Part 74, Subpart E-Special Provisions for Awards to Commercial Organizations (45 CFR §74.81_Prohibition against profit), which states that, "... no HHS funds may be paid as profit to any recipient even if the recipient is a commercial organization.  Profit is any amount in excess of allowable direct and indirect costs."

Grantees are also subject to the requirements of 45 CFR Part 87, Equal Treatment for Faith-Based Organizations: "Direct Federal grants, sub-award funds, or contracts under this ACF program shall not be used to support inherently religious activities such as religious instruction, worship, or proselytization. Therefore, organizations must take steps to separate, in time or location, their inherently religious activities from the services funded under this program.  Regulations pertaining to the Equal Treatment for Faith-Based Organizations, which includes the prohibition against Federal funding of inherently religious activities, can be found at the HHS web site at: http://www.hhs.gov/fbci/waisgate21.pdf.

A faith-based organization receiving HHS funds retains its independence from Federal, State, and local governments, and may continue to carry out its mission, including the definition, practice, and expression of its religious beliefs. For example, a faith-based organization may use space in its facilities to provide secular programs or services funded with Federal funds without removing religious art, icons, scriptures, or other religious symbols. In addition, a faith-based organization that receives Federal funds retains its authority over its internal governance, and it may retain religious terms in its organization's name, select its board members on a religious basis, and include religious references in its organization's mission statements and other governing documents in accordance with all program requirements, statutes, and other applicable requirements governing the conduct of HHS funded activities."  Additional information on "Understanding the Regulations Related to the Faith-Based and Community Initiative" can be found at: http://www.hhs.gov/fbci/regulations/index.html.

The Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) is available at http://www.gpoaccess.gov/CFR/.

Award Term and Condition for Trafficking in Persons

Awards issued under this announcement are subject to the requirements of Section 106 (g) of the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000, as amended (22 U.S.C. 7104).  For the full text of the award term, go to http://www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/award_term.html.  If you are unable to access this link, please contact the Grants Management Contact identified in Section VII. Agency Contacts of  this announcement to obtain a copy of the Term.

HHS Grants Policy Statement

The HHS Grants Policy Statement (HHS GPS) is the Department of Health and Human Services' single policy guide for discretionary grants and cooperative agreements.  ACF grant awards are subject to the requirements of the HHS GPS, which covers basic grants processes, standard terms and conditions, and points of contact, as well as important agency-specific requirements.  Appendices to the HHS GPS include a glossary of terms and a list of standard abbreviations for ease of reference.  The general terms and conditions in the HHS GPS will apply as indicated unless there are statutory, regulatory, or award-specific requirements to the contrary that are specified in the Financial Assistance Award (FAA). The HHS GPS is available at  http://www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/grants_related.html

VI.3. Reporting

Grantees under this announcement will be required to submit performance progress and financial reports periodically throughout the project period. The frequency of required reporting is listed later in this section.

In FY 2009, most ACF grantees began using a standard form for required performance progress reporting (PPR). Use of the new standard form, the ACF-OGM SF-PPR, began for new awards and continuation awards made by ACF in FY 2009.  At a minimum, grantees are required to submit the ACF-OGM SF-PPR, which consists of the ACF-OGM SF-PPR Cover Page and the Program Indicators-Attachment B. ACF Programs that utilize reporting forms or formats in addition to, or instead of, the ACF-OGM SF-PPR have listed the reporting requirements later in this section.

Grant award documents will inform grantees of the appropriate performance progress report form or format to use beginning in FY 2009.  Grantees should consult their award documents to determine the appropriate performance progress report format required under their award.

Grantees will continue to use the Financial Status Report (FSR) SF-269 (long form) for required financial reporting.

Performance progress and financial reports are due 30 days after the end of the reporting period. Final program performance and financial reports are due 90 days after the close of the project period.  Final reports may be submitted in hard copy to the Grants Management Office Contact listed in Section VII. Agency Contacts of this announcement.

The SF-269 (long form) and the ACF-OGM-SF-PPR may be found at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/grants_resources.html.

 
Program Progress Reports: Semi-Annually
Financial Reports: Semi-Annually
 
VII. Agency Contacts

Program Office Contact

Bethany Miller
Administration for Children and Families
Administration on Children, Youth and Families
Children's Bureau Headquarters
Portals Building
1250 Maryland Ave SW
Washinigton, DC 20024
Phone: (202) 205-8565
Fax: (202) 260-9345
Email: Bethany.Miller@ACF.hhs.gov
 
 

Office of Grants Management Contact

Ben Sharp
CB Operations Center
c/o Master Key Consulting
4915 St. Elmo Avenue, Suite 101
Bethesda, MD 20814
Phone: (866) 796-1591
Email: cb@luxcg.com
 

Federal Relay Service:

Hearing-impaired and speech-impaired callers may contact the Federal Relay Service for assistance at 1-800-877-8339 (TTY - Text Telephone or ASCII - American Standard Code For Information Interchange).

VIII. Other Information

Reference Websites

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on the Internet http://www.hhs.gov/.

Administration for Children and Families (ACF) on the Internet http://www.acf.hhs.gov/.

Administration for Children and Families - Funding Opportunities homepage  http://www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/.

Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA) https://www.cfda.gov/.

Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.)  http://www.gpoaccess.gov/cfr/index.html.  

United States Code (U.S.C) http://www.gpoaccess.gov/uscode/.

Sign up to receive notification of ACF Funding Opportunities at www.Grants.gov http://www.grants.gov/applicants/email_subscription.jsp.

Checklist

All required Standard Forms, assurances, and certifications are available on the ACF Forms page at http://www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/grants_resources.html and on the Grants.gov Forms Repository webpage at  http://apply07.grants.gov/apply/FormLinks?family=15.

Versions of other Standard Forms (SFs) are available on the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Grants Management Forms web site at http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/grants_forms/.

For information regarding accessibility issues, visit the Grants.gov Accessibility Compliance Page at http://www07.grants.gov/aboutgrants/accessibility_compliance.jsp.

Applicants may use the checklist below as a guide when preparing your application package.
 
What to Submit Where Found When to Submit

SF-424 - Application for Federal Assistance

SF-P/PSL - Project/Performance Site Location(s)

Referenced in Section IV.2  and found at http:// www.acf.hhs.gov/ grants/grants_resources.html and at the Grants.gov Forms Repository at   http:// apply07.grants.gov /apply/FormLinks?family=15.

Submission due by application due date found in Overview and Section IV.3.

SF-424A - Budget Information - Non-Construction Programs

SF-424B - Assurances - Non-Construction Programs

Referenced in Section IV.2 and found at http:// www.acf.hhs.gov /grants/grants_resources.html.

Submission due by application due date found in Overview and Section IV.3.

Table of Contents

Referenced in Section IV.2 of the announcement under "Project Description."

Submission due by application due date found in Overview and Section IV.3.

Project Summary/Abstract

Referenced in Section IV.2 of the announcement under "Project Description."

Submission due by application due date found in Overview and Section IV.3.

Project Description

Referenced in Section IV.2 of the announcement.

Submission due by application due date found in Overview and Section IV.3.

Logic Model

Referenced in Section IV.2 of the announcement under "Project Description."

Submission due by application due date found in Overview and Section IV.3.

Budget and Budget Justification

Referenced in Section IV.2 of the announcement under "Project Description."

Submission due by application due date found in Overview and Section IV.3.

Third-Party Agreements

Referenced in Section IV.2 of the announcement under "Project Description."

If available, submission is due by application due date found in Overview and Section IV.3. or by time of award.

Documentation of  Commitment of Non-Federal Resources

Referenced in Section IV.2 of the announcement under "Budget and Budget Justification."

Submission due by application due date found in Overview and Section IV.3.

Project Sustainability Plan

Referenced in Section IV.2 of the announcement under "Project Description."

Required of all applicants for projects of three years (36 months) or more in length.

By application due date found in Overview and Section IV.3.

Certification Regarding Lobbying

Referenced in Section IV.2 of the announcement and found at http:// www.acf.hhs.gov /grants/grants_resources.html

Submission due by date of award.

Survey on Ensuring Equal Opportunity for Applicants

Non-profit private organizations (not including private universities) are encouraged to submit the "Survey on Ensuring Equal Opportunity for Applicants" with their applications. Applicants using a hard copy application, place the completed survey in an envelope labeled "Applicant Survey." Seal the envelope and include it along with your application package. Applicants applying electronically, please submit this survey along with your application.

The Survey is referenced in Section IV.2 of the announcement. The Survey may be found at http:// www.acf.hhs.gov /grants/grants_resources.html.

Submission due by date of award.

SF-LLL - Disclosure of Lobbying Activities, if applicable

"Disclosure Form to Report Lobbying" is referenced in Section IV.2 and found at http:// www.acf.hhs.gov /grants/grants_resources.html.

Submission of this form is required if any funds have been paid, or will be paid, to any person for influencing, or attempting to influence, an officer or employee of any agency, a Member of Congress, an officer or employee of Congress, or an employee of a Member of Congress in connection with this commitment providing for the United States to insure or guarantee a loan.

Submission due by application due date found in Overview and Section IV.3.

Signature
Date: 06/23/2010
_________________________________________________
  Bryan Samuels
  Commissioner
  Administration on Children, Youth and Families
 
▲ Top of Page