COVID-19 Response Grants

COVID-19 Response Grants

ადვოკატირების გრანტები

ადვოკატირების გრანტები

Rule of Law and COVID-19

Rule of Law and COVID-19

საქართველოს იუსტიციის უმაღლესი საბჭო

საქართველოს იუსტიციის უმაღლესი საბჭო

იუსტიციის უმაღლესი სკოლა

იუსტიციის უმაღლესი სკოლა

საქართველოს ადვოკატთა ასოციაცია

საქართველოს ადვოკატთა ასოციაცია

საქართველოს საერთო სასამართლოების მოსამართლეთა სადისციპლინო კოლეგია

საქართველოს საერთო სასამართლოების მოსამართლეთა სადისციპლინო კოლეგია

კოალიცია დამოუკიდებელი და გამჭვირვალე მართლმსაჯულებისათვის

კოალიცია დამოუკიდებელი და გამჭვირვალე მართლმსაჯულებისათვის

დავის ალტერნატიული გადაწყვეტის ეროვნული ცენტრი

დავის ალტერნატიული გადაწყვეტის ეროვნული ცენტრი

Advocacy Grants (ka)

Background

This Request for Applications (RFA) is issued under a five-year program entitled Promoting Rule of Law in Georgia (PROLoG) Activity. The program is carried out based on a Cooperative Agreement between the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the East-West Management Institute (EWMI), a New York based not-for-profit organization. The purpose of PROLoG is to strengthen the justice system to ensure due process, judicial independence, and the protection of human rights.

PROLoG supports the civil society in working towards these goals, primarily through supporting the Coalition for an Independent and Transparent Judiciary uniting NGOs with an aim to promote civil society engagement and government accountability for ensuring independence and transparency of the judicial system.

The Coalition members have previously collaboratively implemented research and advocacy on several important topics, such as the institutional problems of the judicial system in Georgia, judicial disciplinary liability, and law and practice of plea bargaining and preventive measures.  In 2017 the Coalition members worked together to comprehensively assess the reforms carried out since 2012.  In 2018-2019 they studied the institutional problems of the High School of Justice, monitored the recently introduced electronic case assignment system, explored the legal and institutional  framework of the Supreme Court, problems of execution of the European Court decisions, limitations of freedom of expression in relation to the dignity of judges and data collection problems preventing implementation of the Council of Europe Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence against Women and Domestic Violence. In 2020 the Coalition members have been studying the judicial disciplinary system’s operation, court transparency and barriers to access to justice in Georgia. They also monitored the operation of courts during the pandemic. Many of the recommendations proposed by the Coalition in these studies were reflected in legislative changes or practices of various institutions.  

Beyond the Coalition, PROLoG has also supported research and advocacy related to due process rights and anti-discrimination, in the realm of labor rights and beyond. The initiatives covered a broad range of issues, including the problems of application of preventive measures, fundamental flaws of the outdated Code of Administrative Violations, prevention of discrimination in workplaces and violations of rights of ethnic, religious and racial minorities.    

The terms of this competition build on the RFAs published in years 2015, 2017, 2018, and 2019. For the first time, the competition is open to actors beyond the Coalition to include other civil society organizations and groups of individuals with relevant professional experience. PROLoG is looking forward to fund targeted advocacy projects with clear outputs and clearly expected/visible outcomes that will further the objectives of PROLoG.

 

Problem Statement

 

Since 2013, the Georgian government initiated and implemented a series of justice sector reforms. The legislative changes were carried out in several waves. Most recently, the Parliament adopted a package of recommendations aimed at reforming the system of disciplinary liability of judges, rules of operation of the High Council of Justice (HCOJ), and reform of the High School of Justice (HSOJ) (so called Fourth Wave of Reform) as well as new rules of Supreme Court judicial selection and appointment. The Coalition contributed to these processes through developing recommendations, monitoring their implementation in practice, and carrying out public awareness campaigns. The legislative changes have also been made in the area of labor rights and non-discrimination.

 

Despite these changes, the Georgian justice sector faces several fundamental problems and challenges, such as 1) the problems of judicial independence, competence, and impartiality, 2) alleged internal and external influences affecting   fairness of the process of adjudication and democratic nature of court administration; 3) institutional problems of the court system and other entities responsible for the administration of justice (Prosecutor’s Office, Ministry of Interior, State Inspector’s Office)  that have not been solved despite several waves of legislative reforms; 4) problems associated with the protection of human rights, including due process rights (e.g. the problems of the Administrative Violations related legislation and practice); 5) the problems in legislation and practice related to equality and non-discrimination, including specifically in the area of labor rights. The critical importance of these problems has made them top priorities on the agenda of political parties thereby creating a window of opportunity for advocacy work in the post-election period.

 

 

Grant Program Goals and Objectives

 

The goal of the program is to assist effective advocacy initiatives with an aim of increasing judicial independence and transparency, protecting human rights, including due process rights, and promoting equality and non-discrimination. The initiatives may be aimed at exploring problems of implementation of already initiated reforms; carrying out advocacy to address institutional issues that have not been reflected in legislative changes and /or have not yet been rooted in practice; empowering individual judges; monitoring and assessing high-profile cases that can have political implications; carrying out advocacy work on justice sector-related issues of heightened importance in the post-election environment; carrying out advocacy related to equality and anti-discrimination; and other initiatives meeting general objectives of PROLoG.

 

The activities may include studies, monitoring, and advocacy campaigns. The aim is to achieve tangible improvements in law and practice as well as institutional strength of the justice system.   

 

As mentioned above, the Coalition members and other PROLoG grantees have carried out research and advocacy in some of the listed areas, jointly or individually. The proposals have to demonstrate a linkage with previous activities, novelty of proposed approaches and the added value of continued research in the areas previously covered. 

 

Selection Criteria

 

Grants will be awarded to projects exhibiting the following:

  • Innovative, results-oriented, and feasible action plans;
  • A solid research methodology for projects with a research component. Applicants may consider engaging international experts in developing research methodologies and validating results of their analyses.
  • For proposals aimed at monitoring high-profile cases, applicants shall provide an outline of the approach to the monitoring and assessment, including case selection criteria, a strategy for engaging with the parties, and an analytical framework for assessing cases.
  • Clear public communication strategies including plans for media campaigns if such are considered; and
  • Strategies for engaging the relevant government agencies and institutions, such as Parliamentary committees, Ministries, Public Defender’s Office, State Inspector’s Office, judicial institutions, and political parties, including strategies for communicating results of studies and case analyses.  

 

The following general criteria will also be used to assess the projects:

  1. Degree of compliance with the objectives and requirements of the competition;
  2. Scope and relevance of the project’s impact;
  3. Effectiveness of project methodology;
  4. Cost-effectiveness of the project;
  5. Effectiveness of the monitoring and evaluation plan;
  6. Sustainability of the project (please note that sustainability can refer to activities, structures, knowledge, and outcomes that result from the project implementation);
  7. Capacity to implement the project as demonstrated by: (a) the relevant qualifications of involved personnel and/or experts and (b) past successful experience in the field; (c) capacity of the responsible organization to manage finances effectively.

 

Selection Process

To ensure an objective selection process, proposals will be reviewed in accordance with the rules and procedures of PROLoG.  The grant award decision will be made by PROLoG, with the approval of USAID.

During the review process, additional information may be requested.  The applicant will be asked to present all the requested additional information within five working days.

PROLoG anticipates multiple awards under the competition. PROLoG reserves the right to fund any or none of the applications submitted. PROLoG reserves the right not to make any awards, and all costs associated with preparing proposals are the sole responsibility of the organization submitting the proposal, and neither EWMI nor USAID will reimburse organizations for costs incurred in preparing proposals.

 

Grant Funds

The   grant award for each proposal is $15,000-25,000 for 5-7 months projects.

Grant funds may be used for the following:                                                          

  1. Expenses related to the collection of data;
  2. Direct costs for project-related events;
  3. Communication between partner organizations, e.g. phone, e-mail;
  4. Pro-rated portion of salaries for key participants, e.g. director, accountant;
  5. Purchase of a limited amount of equipment (e.g. computer, software) and stationery;
  6. Other expenses directly related to project implementation.

Grant funds may be used only for the activities directly related to the implementation of a grant project. Grant funds cannot be used for covering an organization’s on-going expenses, construction expenses, the purchase of real estate, or covering an organization’s debt.  A clear justification must be provided for project staff salary levels and percentage of hours dedicated to project activities.

 

Applicants should    provide a cost share in the amount of 5% of the funds requested from PROLoG. Higher contributions are welcome.   

The following program activities cannot be supported by PROLoG:

  • Support for or lobbying on behalf of a particular political party;
  • Religious activities;
  • Humanitarian activities;
  • Theoretical research;
  • Individual and/or group travel grants; or
  • Capital construction projects for commercial purposes.

 

Eligibility

The competition is open for NGOs as well as unregistered citizen groups. Applicants may team up with other organizations (Coalition members or organizations that are not the members of the Coalition) and submit joint proposals.  

 

Proposal Submission Process

The applicants must present the following documents to PROLoG:

  • A proposal in English to be written according to the application form;  
  • A detailed, itemized budget, as instructed in application form;
  • Budget notes;
  • Unregistered groups shall additionally submit a memorandum of understanding or other document demonstrating the participants’ commitment to take part in the project and indicating a project manager.

 

A proposal can be conditionally approved, with applicant being required to submit a more detailed work-plan.

Proposals submitted to the competition must be the original and sole work of the applicant organization/group.  Any plagiarism will result in the immediate disqualification from the competition.

PROLoG will retain all materials and documents submitted through the competition in our records. PROLoG does not use information presented by applicants for purposes other than review and does not provide this information to any outside persons or institutions, except when required by Georgian law or requested by donor.

 

Competition Timeline

Competition Announcement: November 12, 2020 

Submission of questions in writing: November 23, 2020

Answers to question provided:  November 26, 2020

Applications shall be submitted by the following deadline: December 10, 2020

Applications and questions have to be sent electronically to the e-mail address below. The applicants will be informed about the results of the proposal review process within   5 weeks of their proposal submission.  

 

Contact Information

PROLoG is located at 5 Marjanishvili Street 0102 Tbilisi, Georgia, Tel/Fax (995 32) 2505404. The contact person for this competition is Anna Jobava to be reached at ajobava@ewmi.org. Please indicate ‘Advocacy Grants’ in the e-mail subject line.   

USAID
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