AFI Fact Sheet Seeking Grant Application Reviewers
Seeking Grant Application Reviewers
The Office of Community Services is seeking experienced professionals to participate in reviewing grant applications for several programs including Assets for Independence (AFI). The office is particularly eager to identify potential reviewers with experience in administering or studying effective service delivery. While OCS selects fewer than 20 individuals to assist with reviewing applications for AFI grant, opportunities are also available for other OCS grant reviews.
The OCS uses a competitive process to select and fund its grants. During the competitive process, experts in the fields of asset building, social entrepreneurship, social and economic development, community development, capacity building, housing, education, finance or related fields are asked to read and evaluate applications based on program criteria.
This is an intense time! Applications must be reviewed thoroughly and reviewers are responsible for submitting written comments on strengths and weaknesses of each application in a timely manner.
Qualified reviewers must:
- Have demonstrated senior-level professional experience in asset building; social entrepreneurship; social and economic development; community development; capacity building; housing; education; finance or related fields.
- Be able to provide constructive written and oral evaluative comments based on professional knowledge measured against published criteria.
- As a team member working under the leadership of a chairperson, be able to listen attentively to the input of other panelists, engage in respectful discussions, bridge differences, and work with the chairperson to synthesize constructive evaluative comments.
- Have the highest personal standards of ethically reviewing proprietary information, maintaining confidentiality, and avoiding any conflict of interest.
As an OCS reviewer, you will be expected to:
- Read and score 10 or more applications online over a 10-day period during the applicable review season;
- Write narrative justifications for numerical scores in a timely manner;
- Record scores and narrative comments using a Web-based system in a well-timed manner; and
- Be available to actively participate in review team conference calls throughout the grant review process.
Benefits of Serving as an OCS Grant Reviewer
OCS recognizes that your time is valuable and hopes that you will consider participating in the application review process. Some of the benefits of participation include:
- The opportunity to learn more about innovative approaches in the asset building and social and economic development fields, as well as the grant process;
- A forum to meet and network with peer leaders from across the country;
- A chance to actively serve your community in a tangible, positive way; and
- A one-time honorarium payment as compensation for your time and energy.
How to Register
To apply to be an OCS Application Reviewer, please visit the Reviewer Recruitment Registration page, where you will be asked a series of questions regarding your professional skills and experience. When the application review is scheduled, your information will be provided to OCS. Considering the needs for each program area, OCS will select reviewers from the list of registered individuals based on areas of expertise and geographic distribution. If selected, you will be contacted regarding your availability.
Reviewer Confidentiality Statement
The content of grant applications is highly confidential. A application reviewer may not participate in a review of any application where a conflict of interest exists or may exist. Therefore, before reviewing an application, each reviewer will be given a Grant Application Reviewer Confidentiality Statement to read and affirm by signature.
If you have a disability that you believe may affect your participation in a review, please inform us of any special accommodations that may be required. Please give us this information at the time you are contacted (generally, over the telephone) with an initial confirmation as an ACF application reviewer or panel chairperson. We will make reasonable efforts to afford individuals with disabilities an equal opportunity to participate in a grant review.
Please call 1-800-281-9519 or email OCSGRANTS@acf.hhs.gov.
Office of Community Services
Administration for Children and Families
1515 Wilson Boulevard, Suite 100
Arlington, VA 22209
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