The U.S. Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP) 2017


Public Affairs Section
U.S. Embassy, Skopje, Macedonia 

Summary: The U.S. Embassy in Skopje and the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State are pleased to announce the 2017 call for proposals for the Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation.

The Fund was established to help countries preserve their cultural heritage and to demonstrate U.S. respect for other cultures. Since its inception in 2001, the Fund has helped preserve cultural sites, practices, and objects that are historically or culturally significant in Macedonia and around the world. Project proposals are due on December 20, 2016.

FUNDING AREAS:  Through the AFCP Program, the Department of State supports projects to preserve cultural heritage in the following three areas:

A. CULTURAL SITES include (but are not limited to) historic buildings and archaeological sites.

Examples are restoration of an ancient or historic building, preservation of an archaeological site, or documentation of cultural sites in a region for preservation purposes.

B. CULTURAL OBJECTS AND COLLECTIONS from a museum, site, or similar institution include archaeological and ethnographic objects, paintings, sculpture, manuscripts, and general museum conservation needs. Examples are conservation treatment for an object or collection of objects; needs assessment of a collection’s condition and strategies for improving it; inventory of a collection for conservation and protection purposes; the creation of safe environments for storage or display of collections; or specialized training in the care and preservation of collections.

Top priority is given to project activities that are appropriate and in keeping with international standards for the preservation of cultural heritage. An appropriate preservation activity is one that protects the values of the site, object, or collection, or form of traditional cultural expressions as they are understood by stakeholders. Stakeholders may include national, regional, or local cultural authorities, the local community, and others with vested interests in the site and the outcome of a project. Note that only Macedonian entities, such as non-governmental organizations, museums, Ministry of Culture, or similar institutions and organizations are eligible to apply for the Fund.

The Fund can NOT be used to support the following: 

(1)  Preservation or purchase of privately or commercially owned cultural objects, collections, or real property, including those whose transfer from private or commercial to public ownership is envisioned, planned, or in process but not complete at the time of proposal submission;
(2) Preservation of natural heritage (physical, biological, and geological formations, paleontological collections, habitats of threatened species of animals and plants, fossils, etc.);
(3) Preservation of hominid or human remains;
(4) Preservation of news media (newspaper, newsreels, radio and TV programs, etc.);
(5) Preservation of published materials available elsewhere (books, periodicals, etc.);
(6) Archaeological excavations or exploratory surveys for research purposes;(7) Development of curricula or educational materials for classroom use;
(8) Archaeological excavations or surveys for research purposes;
(9) Historical research, except in cases where historical research is justifiable and integral to the success of the proposed project;
(10) Acquisition or creation of new collections for new or existing museums;(11) Construction of new buildings or permanent coverings (over archaeological sites, for example);
(12) Commissions of new works of art or architecture for commemorative or economic development purposes;
(13) Creation of new or the modern adaptation of existing traditional dances, songs, chants, musical compositions, plays, or other performances;
(14) Creation of replicas or re-creation of cultural objects or sites that no longer exist;
(15) Relocation of cultural sites from one physical location to another;
(16) Removal of cultural objects or elements of cultural sites from the country for any reason;
(17) Digitalization of cultural objects or collections, unless part of a larger clearly defined conservation effort;
(18) Conservation plans or other studies, unless they are one component of a larger project to implement the results of those studies;
(19) Cash reserves, endowments or revolving funds; funds must be expended within the grant period (up to five years) and may not be used to create an endowment or revolving fund;
(20) Costs of fund-raising campaigns;
(21) Operating expenses, i.e., expenses incurred during the day-to-day operational activities of an organization, such as office rent, utilities, license fees, and other costs for administrative time, services, or materials not directly related to performing project work;
(22) Contingency, unforeseen, or miscellaneous fees;
(23) Costs of work performed prior to announcement of the award;
(24) International travel, except in cases where travel is justifiable and integral to the success of the proposed project, which will be considered on a case-by-case basis;
(25) Travel or study for professional development;
(26) Individual project costing less than US$10,000; or
(27) Independent U.S. projects overseas.

AWARD INFORMATION: Funding Instrument Type: Grant (Program Authority: Fulbright Hays Section 102(b)(5), as amended). Floor on Amount of Individual Awards: US $10,000 per project. Ceiling on Amount of Individual Awards: $200,000 per project. In FY 2016, awards ranged from US $32,500 to US $200,000.

HOW TO APPLY:  guidelines for proposal preparation and information to be provided are here. Each project proposal must be in English and should be emailed to

APPLICATION RATING CRITERIA: Using a point-based system, the Embassy will rate all applications based on the program funding priorities; the quality, soundness, and comprehensiveness of the proposed project and budget; the urgency of the proposed project;; and the quality and quantity of supporting materials, such as resumes of the key project participants, images of the resource, and notices of official permission from the responsible resource steward, such as a ministry of culture.

PERFORMANCE AND DELIVERABLES: AFCP 2017 award recipients must submit performance progress, federal financial status reports, and final reports on time as specified in the Notice of Award.

DUNS NUMBER AND SAM REGISTRATION: Applicants requesting $25,000 or more in federal assistance must have a Dun & Bradstreet Universal Numbering System (DUNS) number, a NATO Commercial and Government Entity (NCAGE) code, and be registered in the System for Award Management (SAM) prior to submitting an application.

NOTE:  This process can take weeks/months, especially for non-U.S. applicants.

Applicants may acquire DUNs numbers at no cost by calling the dedicated toll-free DUNs number request line at 1-866-705-5711 or by requesting a number online at

Non-U.S. based applicants may request a NCAGE code at

SAM is the official, free on-line registration database for the U.S. Government. Registration in SAM is free:

COST SHARING AND OTHER FORMS OF COST PARTICIPATION: There is no minimum or maximum percentage of cost participation required for this competition. When cost sharing is offered, it is understood and agreed that the applicant must provide the amount of cost sharing as stipulated in its proposal and later included in an approved agreement.  The applicant will be responsible for tracking and reporting on any cost share or outside funding, which is subject to audit per 2 CFR 200.  Cost sharing may be in the form of allowable direct or indirect costs.

DISCLAIMER: Explanatory information provided by the U.S. Embassy that contradicts published language is not binding. Issuance of this Notice of Funding Opportunity does not constitute an award commitment on the part of the U.S. Government. The U.S. Embassy reserves the right to waive program formalities and to reduce, revise, or increase proposal budgets in accordance with the needs of the program and the availability of funds. Awards made will be subject to periodic reporting and evaluation requirements as specified above and in the Notice of Award.

For more information, please contact Ms. Borka Taneska, Cultural Affairs Assistant, U.S. Embassy, at tel. 02-310-2121 or