Published On: Wed, Dec 28th, 2011

SOMALILAND-USAID: The Partnership Fund Grants Program


Funding Opportunity Title: The Partnership Fund Grants Program

Funding Opportunity Number: 0001

Grant Type: Small Grant or GDA (please specify)

Submit Concept Papers to:


Issuance Date: 28 December 2011

Questions from Applicants Due By: 11 January 2012

Responses to Questions Sent to Applicant: 18 January 2012

Deadline for Submission of Concept Papers: 02 February 2012

Notification of Short-Listed Applicants: 11 February 2012

To Interested Applicants:

The Partnership for Economic Growth program (‘Partnership program’) which is funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is making a special call for concept papers to implement activities that strengthen the Somali private sector and generate employment. The purpose of this Annual Program Statement (APS) is to solicit applications for funding under two grants mechanisms, namely: – (i) The Partnership Funds Small Grants program (Small Grants) and (ii) the Global Development Alliance (GDA) program:

The Partnership Fund Small Grants program (Small Grants) – Activities under this program will be small in scale and require a minimum cost share contribution from the applicant equal to 25% of the Partnership program’s contribution.

Global Development Alliance (GDA) – The GDA program activities will be larger in scale (compared to the Small Grants) and require the applicant to provide a one-to-one (1:1) match in cost share contribution in comparison to the Partnership program’s contribution;

The Partnership program anticipates awarding between 10 and 20 grants under the Small Grants and 3-5 grants under the GDA program to fund selected applications submitted in response to this APS. All concept papers should be submitted by 2 February 2012 for review. The Partnership program reserves the right to issue other APSs after this date depending on available funding. The number of awards and amount of available funding is subject to change and the Partnership program reserves the right to make no awards as a result of this APS.

This APS is seeking creative and effective approaches to strengthen the Somali private sector and generate productive employment as outlined in the Section I below. Applicants must demonstrate success in addressing the Partnership program’s development objectives as well as well as in managing socio-economic considerations in Somaliland. Awardees will be expected to share evaluation results and key lessons, and periodically disseminate activities and outcomes with the broader community.



The USAID-funded Partnership for Economic Growth program (Partnership program) is being implemented by DAI. The Partnership Fund Grants Program (the ‘Fund’) is a flexible, competitive mechanism through which the Partnership program encourages co-investments from Somali businesses, nonprofits, and institutions thus forging partnerships to strengthen the Somali private sector and improve Somaliland’s business environment. The goal of the fund is to emphasize and strengthen partnership with the Somali private sector to cultivate ownership and share risks. Co-investment will also allow the Partnership program to pilot innovative investments and reach a broader range of sectors.

All investments will be aligned with the core objectives of the Partnership program, which are to strengthen the Somali private sector and generate employment. The Fund is open to applicants from any sector of the economy (e.g. activities that strengthen value chains, such as horticulture, livestock, dairy, energy, etc.) and awards will be based on a proposal’s economic growth impact, technical feasibility, financial viability and cost effectiveness, analysis of market supply and demand, business management and technical experience, and amount of cost-share contribution.

Overall Program Objectives

Co-invest in Somali businesses, nonprofits, and institutions through a grant mechanism to support innovative approaches to strengthen the Somali private sector and generate employment, while ensuring shared risk by encouraging a cost-share with award recipients.

Major Criteria for Evaluating Concept Papers:

  • Economic growth impact: What are the expected impacts on employment and income; opportunities to improve employee skills; impact on women and youth; and increased markets access for suppliers?
  • Technical experience and technical feasibility: Does the applicant demonstrate an understanding of the subsector and/or proposed venture (including required capital and equipment, industry best practices, innovativeness, etc.)?
  • Financial viability and cost effectiveness: Does the applicant have realistic business plan and clearly demonstrate that the funds requested cannot be obtained from other sources?
  • Analysis of market supply and demand: Does the applicant demonstrate an understanding of the demand (customers, prices, etc.); supply (accessing local and imported materials, etc.); and competition in the market?
  • Business management experience: Does the applicant(s) demonstrate strong experience as a business manager?
  • Amount of cost-share contribution: For the Small Grants program, the cost-share minimum expected of the grantee is 25% of the Partnership program’s contribution. For the GDA grantees are expected to contribute an amount equal to the contribution of the Partnership program (i.e. a 1:1 cost share). However, a higher cost share will give the grantee an added advantage.

SECTION II- Estimated Funding Level

The total amount of funding currently available in the Partnership Fund is approximately $900,000. The Partnership program anticipates issuing multiple awards under this Fund in the range of $20,000 to $50,000, for Small Grants, and $50,000 – $100,000 for GDA grants. However the Partnership program reserves the right to consider awards outside of this range.



(1) Types of Entities that May Apply

This APS is issued as a public notice to ensure that all interested and qualified organizations have a fair opportunity to submit applications for funding. Eligible organizations could include, but not limited to:

  • Private companies
  • Local non-governmental organizations (NGOs)
  • Faith-based organizations (FBOs)
  • Community-based organizations (CBOs)
  • Academic institutions
  • Business / professional associations
  • Consortiums of the above.

The Partnership for Economic Growth requires that any organization applying for the Partnership Fund is officially registered or works through an organization that is officially registered and based in Somaliland. If applicants are not currently registered with the Government in Somaliland, they must include a plan to complete registration before the disbursement of any co-investments of Partnership Fund resources.

Applicants should also show evidence that they can maintain a sound accounting system and have internal controls in place to support the financial management of the grant. They should also show that they are maintaining a transparent business. Short-listed candidates will be asked to provide proof of the financial viability of the proposed activity.

(2) Types of Entities that May Not Apply

  • Any entity whose name appears on the “List of Parties Excluded from Federal Procurement and Non Procurement Programs”
  • Any public international organization / multi-lateral organization (e.g. UN)
  • Any third country non-governmental organizations
  • Any foreign government or government agency
  • Any entity that is currently affiliated with USAID on a similar activity or affiliated with DAI or any of its directors, officers, or employees
  • Any militia or military organizations
  • Any political party organization

(3) Cost Share Details

For the Small Grants, grantees are required to contribute resources from their own private or local sources valued at no less than 25% of the Partnership program’s contribution. For the GDA, grantees are required to equally match the Partnership program’s contribution (i.e. contribute 100% of the amount that the Partnership program will put in). Applicants’ proposed cost share will be evaluated as part of the overall cost effectiveness of the activity. The cost share can be cash or in kind. In kind contributions include land, labor, production/office space, and equipment to be used for the proposed business activity – all of which must be quantified using an appropriate market price, and be independently verified.

  • Cash contribution as part of cost-share: If the applicant proposes cash as part of their cost-share, the awardee is expected to invest the cash in a manner that can be independently verified (through receipts, etc.). Applicants should briefly explain how cash contributions will be invested to support the activity.
  • In-kind contribution: Cost-share examples for the proposed business activity include:
  1. Newly leased, purchased, or gifted land for proposed business activity;
  2. Newly leased, purchased, or gifted building / room(s) for proposed business activity;
  3. Newly leased, purchased, or gifted equipment/machinery for proposed business activity;
  4. Newly leased, purchased, or gifted vehicle for proposed business activity;
  5.  Newly purchased stock or supplies for expanding proposed business activity;
  6. Planned or newly hired staff/labor for proposed business activity.


Funds from other sources: Funds from non-US Government entities (i.e. other donor funds excluding USAID) that are invested or granted to the applicant can be used towards calculating cost share.

Table 1 and 2 below give an illustrative list of the minimum amount of cash or in-kind contributions expected from the grantee based on the maximum contribution of the Partnership program, for the two grant types.

Table 1: Small Grants program

Illustrative Examples of Cost Share Arrangements under the

Partnership Fund Small Grants program*

Maximum Contribution from the Partnership


Minimum cash or in-kind contribution by


$20,000 $5,000
$30,000 $7,500
$40,000 $10,000





*Grants are not limited to the values noted in the table

Table 2: Global Development Alliance (GDA) program
Illustrative Examples of Cost Share Arrangements under the

Partnership Fund GDA Program*

Maximum Contribution from the Partnership


Minimum cash or in-kind contribution by


$50,000 $50,000
$100,000 $100,000

*Grants are not limited to the values noted in the table


(1) Application Process

In the first stage of the application process, applicants must first submit a concept paper directly to the Partnership program. The Partnership Fund Review Committee will review all concept papers. Papers that are judged to meet the selection criteria will be included on the Committee’s short list. Short-listed applicants will then be requested to submit a full Application for consideration; this marks the second stage of the application process. Further detailed instructions on submitting a full Application will be sent later to all short-listed applicants.

Please note that: (i) each entity can only apply for one type of grant at a time (either Small Grant, or GDA) but not both types, and (ii) only short-listed applicants will be requested to submit full applications.

2) Concept Paper

Concept papers will be no longer than five pages consisting of a cover page, technical approach, and supporting information, that is specific, complete and concise. Concept paper details are discussed below

Concept Paper Instructions

The concept paper must be submitted in English and in size 11 Times New Roman Font, and must include page numbers.

Prepare the application for the concept paper according to the structural format set forth below:

1- Cover Page (no more than one (1) page). The cover page must include:

a. the APS number and Name (“APS No. 0001: The Partnership Fund – Grants Program”):

b. Grant type being applied for: i.e. Small Grant, or GDA;

c. Physical location and address of business / organization;

d. Type of organization (e.g., for-profit, non-profit, institution, university, etc.);

e. Contact point (lead contact person’s name; relevant telephone, e-mail information);

f. Names of other organizations ( as well as any other USAID projects) to whom you are submitting and/or have submitted the application and/or who are funding the proposed activity (if any); and

g. Signature of authorized representative of the applicant.

2-Technical approach (no more than three (3) pages): This section should briefly provide:

a. An organizational profile (products and/or services offered, years in existence, size of organization);

b. An outline of the applicant’s business idea and encompass in as much detail as possible, various sections outlined in the “Major Criteria for Evaluating Concept Papers” section above.

3-Supporting information (no more than (1) page):

a. Present a brief estimate of main cost items for your business idea, including estimates of your cost share for:

  1. Equipment
  2. Cash
  3. Technical assistance

b. Brief description explaining why the applicant is not able to receive the requested amount of funds from another source, including shareholders, where applicable.

Geographic Distribution of Awards

The Partnership program strongly encourages applicants from all parts of Somaliland to apply.

Questions for Concept Papers

All applicants can submit technical and clarification questions to no later than the deadline on the cover page of this APS or subsequently announced deadlines if additional reviews are announced. Responses to all relevant questions will be emailed to all applicants by the date stated above.

Oral explanations or instructions given before award of a grant will not be binding. Any information given to a prospective applicant concerning this APS will be furnished promptly in writing to all other prospective applicants as an amendment of this APS, if that information is necessary in submitting applications or if the lack of it would be prejudicial to any other prospective applicants.


The point of contact for this APS and any questions regarding the APS process are:

  • Partnership for Economic Growth office, Kodbuur District, Hargeisa, Somaliland -next to FAO Office
  • Office Telephone Number: 252.2.523050/51/52
  • Primary email for APS questions:


Issuance of this APS does not constitute an award or commitment on the part of the Partnership program, nor does it commit USAID to pay for costs incurred in the preparation and submission of an application.

The Partnership program reserves the right to fund any or none of the applications submitted. Further, USAID / Partnership for Economic Growth reserves the right to make no awards as a result of this APS.

Displaying 32 Comments
Have Your Say
  1. Abraham says:

    This is an amazing program and a real opportunity for Somaliland's entrepreneurs and organisations to grow and succeed. However, given the financial nature of this program, there will surely be the usual corrupt moral less souls who would try anything to abuse the system and spoil our reputation in the process. As such the government of Somaliland must leave no stone unturned to thoroughly investigate all those who apply to register with them and rout out the fraudsters. Thank you America for your help.

  2. Kayse says:

    Good call by USAID. We support your initiatives and this will only benefit the region's private enterprises.

  3. I Jama says:

    Go green for peace. This is an opportunity to start off with business that will enable Somaliland to invest in technology and promote efficiency. Such as battery powered cars, solar energy, wind energy etc. Investment in these business will give back as well as ensure greater Independence for future generations.

  4. ComeAgain says:

    NICE! Also the government should make sure that whoever applies is actually from Somaliland and not walawayne. For Somaliland citizens or those of their decent in the diaspora.

    I Jama ever watch the movie Gattaca? I loved that movie especially those retro battery powered cars. This amount seems small though to fund such large projects. But this could be used to build libraries, small stores, small factories etc…tutoring etc….

    • Abraham says:

      There should be no discrimination or nepotism in our country. The funds should go to anyone who lived in Somaliland for a number of years and has an established business there. However, the government should never register a new business or an organisation whose owner/s have just moved to Somaliland to avoid attracting fraudsters.

  5. I Jama says:

    Could you imagine battery powered airplanes on our new solar powered airports in Hargeisa and Berbera. That would be amazing. Somaliland the new silicone valley. Brilliant.

    • ComeAgain says:

      I Jama that would be amazing or high speed rail instead of cars to connect our cities and ports. I am sure the local business men of Somaliland, Government and development agencies could really work something out. Being soo close to Asia and the Middle East it would make perfect sense!

  6. ComeAgain says:

    Sorry Abraham I believe that since we are starting out the government of Somaliland should do everything possible to encourage that all opportunities are available to Somaliland citizens and their decendents. Every country has laws that allow those that live in it legally (citizens) to take advantage of benefits to make sure that its citizenry is well established, educated, healthy etc. Why should Somaliland be any different?

    Isnt this what we fought so hard for to have opportunities for our citizens? Just like how I cant just apply for jobs if I am not a citizen of the us or a green card/i94 holder then Somaliland should have such law!

    I am not hating anyone just making sure that OUR citizens and people have the best chance at advancement while those that perhaps wish us ill and talk smack about us dont take advantage of what is given to us.

  7. Ridwan says:

    The terms such as Walawayn are already racist and discriminatory. We want Somaliland to become a haven of justice and equality, anybody who conforms to the rules and regulations of the country should be given the chance. After, we care about our country, not anything else.

  8. Abdi Basha says:

    I appreciate Abraham's position that Somaliland should be no place where Somalis are categorized into their regional/ affiliation, hatred or ethinc discrimination. Only through safeguarding these basic humane principles, could Somaliland prevail and become a hub for investments and tolerance
    Dr abdi Basha

  9. Botan,Mohamed says:

    it is a great help. we need extension.

  10. ali ali says:

    so many rebels

  11. muxsin jama says:

    well done

  12. omer Elmi says:

    good idea to help economic growth in somaliland in terms of income generating and employment for target beneficiaries. There is a need to emphase on the productive because a nation is build from the bottom. it is the productive sector specifically farming and livestock that need improvement.

  13. Musa Noor says:

    I am sure Somaliland Citizens and government will appreciate this funding opportunity to improve the economic growth of Somaliland and the region.

    However, opportunities must be shared in fairness and this is public funds and should be safeguarded, strong monitoring and end project evaluation mechanism should be in place, every beneficiary organisation should shows clearly on how they spend the money and provide evidence on what they spend the money on. Without this there will be funding misuse.

    Musa Noor
    Certified Accountants

  14. Abdisalan Moahmed says:

    it is good opportunities for the community, and we are appreciating any agencies interesting to grow our local economy.
    but, it must be strong to following up released projects and assured in the sector of job opportunities for the community, conditioning to all grantees, according to their project proposals to made and submit agreement between their business and their works indicating salary payments, overtime allowances & wrights etc. registered by the concerning Government institutions, and supervised by the funding agencies.

  15. Abdirahman says:

    I am very happy this great opportunity for somaliland citizens will be so happy because it will encourage Somaliland citizens to utilize available opportunities in economic growth

  16. FARAH says:


  17. garyaqaan ahmed says:

    it is big chance in somaliland

  18. mohamed says:

    am sure Somaliland Citizens and government will appreciate this funding opportunity to improve the economic growth of Somaliland and the region.

  19. hussein says:

    I am not sure Somaliland Citizens and government will appreciate this funding opportunity to improve the economic growth of Somaliland and the region but i fear only one thing that is it to steal ro corpte this oppotunity


  20. omar qayaad says:

    i am very happy to help usaid for smail business in somaliland

  21. ahmed indho jacayl says:

    its good chance
    i need
    partnership fund

  22. Ifraaxbaashemaxamed says:

    it is a great opportunity for all somalilanders

  23. abdiwadudkhadarabdi says:

    it is a great opportunity for all somalilanders and am very proud of it so many people need help and i think u will help them insha allah

  24. Jama A. Samater says:

    It is good someone is helping small businesses in Somaliland.
    I had submitted an application for a grant almost a year ago, but had no response at all.
    Could I assume it is being rejected? Getting more information now from your website, it could be possible that I missed to supply the relevant information.
    Could you look into this ?
    Jama A. Samater,

  25. m.o.gafane says:

    fadlan waxan rabnaa form-ka la buux-buuxinayo ee mashaariicdan labaad

  26. m.o.gafane says:

    pleace i want the concept pepar

  27. asad abdalle says:

    Is this funding specific to Somaliland or other parts of Somalia could also benefit from it such as Puntland?

  28. i.isman says:

    where would i get an application or how would i apply for funding?

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