There are many cases of vulnerable persons in society. Both mental and physical disabilities have rendered a good many of the members of the society unable to function normally hence the need for them to get special assistance from organizations that are interested in taking care of the need for such persons. Despite the goodwill of such dedicated organizations in society, it is clear that funding is the most significant challenge that ought to be addressed. Such organizations are profit-making, and for this reason, they rely more on grants and donations from well-wishers by all the standards of assessment. Governments and other organizations sharing the same vision often find it easy to fund such entities for them to be able to discharge their mandate of helping the vulnerable in society. The organization in question is focused on enlightening the citizens on matters of health by providing them with information and also offering medical care where necessary. Through such initiatives, the burden of medical costs has been eased by a significant margin. Quality health is a basic need though the poor and vulnerable in society find it difficult to access quality health. As such, the organization under consideration is out to make sure that the weaker members of the society who are the poor have their medical needs properly attended to. The non-governmental organization partners with tertiary learning institutions, governments both locally and abroad, and other organizations that share the same interests. The grants that the entity receives from the donors are accounted for properly in the spirit of accountability. The leading objectives of the non-governmental organization include the following;
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Promotion of robust policies as well as systems that respect the rights of both physically and mentally disabled persons in society. These are in line with the understanding that these persons are the most vulnerable, especially during times of severe pandemics such as Covid-19 that continue to wreak havoc all over the world. The second objective of the program is to ensure easy access to healthcare services, including mental health, to the disabled and other vulnerable cases in society. Quality health has become the most important basic need hence the need for ease of access to be facilitated so that nobody feels to be left out. The third aim of the organization is to make sure that there is no discrimination against people with disabilities, including mental health cases. Such persons often face severe stigma owing to their mental and physical status hence the need for such dedicated organizations to stand in the gap and fight such vices. This is in line with the understanding that society should be the epitome of equality where all people should feel respected and valued irrespective of their appearance or physical formations. The three above-mentioned objectives are the pillars that inform the activities and decisions of the organization, and as such, they drive its agenda without making any compromises. Disabled persons have for a long time been neglected to the extent that their rights and privileges have been violated, something that should not be tolerated in the postmodern world where all people should be treated with absolute equality and without any iota of discrimination.
It is on the strength of the three objectives that the non-governmental organization has escalated its range of activities to try and address the effect of the Covid-19 pandemic on not only the people living with disabilities, including the mental health cases, but also the entire society. Such high-level activities are meant to make sure that the information concerning this illness that has crippled the global economy is in circulation so that people can be on guard. The primary target, however remains to be the persons living with both physical and mental disabilities.
Background to Call for Proposals
Ever since the cases of Covid-19 broke out in Africa, the governments have tried to put in place measures that have the capacity to curb the spread of the pandemic. The month of March 2020 was the breaking point since most countries on African soil reported their first cases. The high level of unpreparedness in many African countries made the disease spread virally in one way or the other to the extent that most of the people ignorantly contracted it. Preventive measures continue to be fronted by the government through the big question is whether there is compliance from the members of the general public and also whether there are enough or adequate resources that are necessary for curbing the spread of the pandemic. There are few nations with ventilators in Africa, with some nations having one piece of such important equipment at this time of great need. At the same time, it is on record that the healthcare systems in Africa are a sham, with most countries lacking even the basics of the medical drugs that are supposed to fight common diseases. There are gaps all over that are making it difficult for the governments to be able to cushion their people from the menace of Covid-19 despite the frantic efforts by all the standards of assessment.
It is on this backdrop that a good many of the profit-making organizations have come up to try and stand in the gap and help the vulnerable people from falling victims to the coronavirus. To this date, most of the measures undertaken are centered on the emergency or relief phase of Covid-19, with little or no focus on the resilience and recovery phases. The ultimate effect of this approach is that those who have contacted the virus are left to die since there is little or no help that can be accorded to them owing to the dire medical health situation that characterizes the country. There is no hope for recovery due to the lack of isolation centers, ventilators, and other special equipment to handle the cases of the Coronavirus. It is little, or no room for recovery since the victims of the disease are shunned and left to die, something that should never be the case in this time and era. It is as though the government has been overwhelmed owing to the ever-increasing human cases of Coronavirus. The resources have been overstretched to the limit, and as such, there is no other option left than to rely on the relief aid and grants from the first world countries of Europe and America that have equally been hit by this global pandemic that no nation can claim immunity over.
The agency under consideration is thus focused on ensuring that the Covid-19 pandemic is put under absolute control in the country and without leaving anything to chance. Ever since the pandemic broke out, there have been massive job losses not only in the country but also in the world at large. Companies have closed and some industries, such as tourism being fully shut down. Many people continue to succumb to the illness as others recover from it altogether. The organization is thus making every effort to make sure that there is proper and adequate circulation of information related to Covid-19 and that the masses with specific attention being paid to the people living with disabilities. The preventive measures in the sense of what the people should do to stay safe and to a greater extent what steps should be taken when one tests positive for the virus are the major activities that preoccupy or rather dominate the activities of the organization under consideration. It is improper for anyone to think that such initiatives can be accomplished without having adequate funds. For this reason, the organization is out to put in place measures that have the capacity to raise funds and resources that have the full propensity of sustaining the activities on the ground. With the help of the governments and other interested institutions or organizations, the entity is looking up to raising the necessary funds to sustain its drive of combating the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic in the entire country. With such a focus, it is more than possible for the organization to raise the necessary financial resources if practical measures are put in place to accomplish this purpose.
The stakeholders in the country have raised significant concerns regarding not only the economic impact of the pandemic but also the effects that the virus has on disabled persons in society. such reports are echoed all over the world since most people inc,luding disabled persons continue to be ignorant of the virus and for this reason, continue to succumb to its left to right and center. The stakeholders are thus justified in their quest to find measures that will help in combating the pandemic by way of educating the masses and mitigating its effect on society as a whole. In as much as the Covid-19 pandemic continues to be a threat to all and sundry in the society, the persons living with disabilities including those with mental incapacitations are vulnerable to the pandemic hence the need for such a wholesale approach to tackling the entire spread of the virus. Institutional, environmental and attitudinal barriers regenerated in the Covid-19 response are responsible for such a phenomenon. As such, the organization at hand is under an obligation to save the lives of the people instead of letting the disease to wipe them off. For proper coordination of the activities, adequate funding is a requirement if the organization is to be able to achieve its mandate of making sure that the war against Covid-19 in the country is won by all means.
Objectives and priority focus of the call
The overriding objective of this organization is to make sure that the people who have fallen victims or rather tested positive for Coronavirus receive the necessary medical and psychosocial support. The primary aim of this is to mitigate the negative effects of the pandemic not only to the people living with both physical and mental disabilities but also to the entire society since no person or group can claim immunity over the effects of this deadly disease that has completely shut down the nations of the world. The high-risk populations such as the health workers who are at the forefront of providing medical help to those who have tested positive for the disease are also to be at the center of the activities of the organization owing to the sacrifice that they are offering to the people. Ever since the pandemic broke out, it is evident that many nurses and doctors involved with the victims have succumbed to the disease and this calls for the organization to support such groups so that they may have confidence and feel the social support around them. For this reason, the specific objectives of this call involve the following.
To support the people who are at the greatest risk of negative mental health outcomes that derive from coronavirus; to support the groups that are at risk with recovery and resilience building, to encourage the community groups to be at the forefront of this particular initiative or program to the extent of entrenching the mental health support within the society and lastly to complement the information, economic in addition to the other social measures put in place by the government and the other stakeholders as far as the war against Covid-19 is concerned. Such overriding objectives are to define the activities that are to be funded, considered to be funding, and those which fall squarely outside the eligibility criteria. There is to be no variance from the above-mentioned objectives since this will be considered to be the benchmarks that are to guide the entire assessment process that will be used to establish whether the program is successful or still falling way below the expected outcomes in the fight against the pandemic.
The donors are thus supposed to evaluate the performance of the organization strictly based on whether or not the above-mentioned objectives have been met or not. To be precise, the target groups for the initiatives include those who have tested positive for Covid-19 and those who have recovered from the pandemic. The two groups are victims of stigmatization in addition to the anxiety that befalls people who contract the virus and the related social distancing and isolation measures. The second target group is that of the health workers and their families. Increased stressors that derive from working with people who are Covid-19 positive and some of the healthcare workers who have entered into self-quarantine to the extent of isolating themselves from the rest of the family members for fear of infecting them.
Lastly is the group of people living with disabilities or existing mental health disabilities since such persons constantly face marginalization as well as the possible fear of discrimination in treatment as well as multiple stigmatizations. Such groups are the most vulnerable in this era of Covid-19 and to this extent, they require special attention to make sure that they are not wiped out by the pandemic or remain to be permanently affected. There should be no relenting in making sure that the sensitization of the masses on Covid-19 goes on smoothly since there is no vaccine that can be used to treat the affected persons or even shielding them from contacting the disease. At this hour preventing measures and taking care of the people who have already tested positive and the groups that are at high risk of contracting the disease is the priority of the entire initiative.
Summary of Call for Proposal
Principles and approach
In terms of the funding dogmas, various parameters are going to be the benchmarks to characterize all these principles as far as the funding of the organization is concerned. In this regard, the first element is that of participation. The entity is going to make it easy for the interested people to partake in the funding of its activities without any discrimination of making it difficult for any party willing to participate in the financing of the organizational activities to do so. With such open participation, it will be easy for the organization to be in a position to raise enough funds from multiple donors or sources. The beauty of this is that the non-governmental organization will also be able to invite both individual persons and institutions including governments to participate in the funding without locking any willing party out for whichever reason. There should be no cases where legal persons and individuals are indiscriminately locked out of the funding process.
The second element under the founding principle is that of knowledge building. This will involve the sensitization of the masses regarding the existence of the organization, its agenda, and what it stands for in the war against Covid-19 in the society. This is in line with the understanding that for people to be able to support any agenda or an organization, then they must be equipped with the necessary information. One can only act based on the information given to them. This is the reason why it is more than necessary for the organization to go out and spread the word regarding its activities and its role in fighting the pandemic that is fast ravaging the globe both from the economic and social standpoints. Knowledge building is thus at the center of the activities of the organization as far as the raising of the necessary funds is concerned.
The third parameter is that of collaboration. The war against Covid-19 is a matter of collective responsibility by all the standards of assessment. People and organizations must pull together through the exchange of ideas and raising of resources to make sure that the goal at hand is perfectly achieved. Collaboration is also an aspect that enables people to own both the process and the initiative hence making it easy for their support to be won. Covid-19 is a real threat to the existence of humanity and as such, it is necessary and important for all the stakeholders to pull in the common direction if the efforts to contain the pandemic are to be successful by all standards. There should be no person or entity locked out in the war against Covid-19 and this is why collaboration is a necessary approach for the organization to pursue.
The last parameter in this respect is that of adaptability and in this regard, the organization will be able to adapt to the changes and circumstances that have been created by the pandemic ever since it broke out. Adaptability is also significant since the war against the pandemic is unique since there is still no vaccine that has been proven and tested to cure this pandemic anywhere in the world. For this reason, all the efforts to fight the pandemic are directed towards preventive measures and nothing more than that. For this reason, the organization is under an obligation to adapt adaptable measures that will guarantee the raising of sufficient funds that can sustain its operations. This is also necessitated by the need for the entity to engage a multi-dimensional approach in the raising of the funds meant for the war against Covid-19.
The first funding approach will be inclusion and diversity management. With such an approach, it will be necessary for the organization to make sure that the stakeholders are brought on board without any form of discrimination. With such inclusivity, the organization will have the advantage of enjoying the support of all and sundry both in terms of financial and non-financial contributions to the entity. In terms of diversity management, the organization does not discriminate against the people who should join in the efforts to fight Covid-19. All and sundry are free to participate in the activities of the entity without anyone being left out for whichever reason. It is upon this basis that the non-governmental organization is all out to make sure that people from all races and cultures are allowed to participate in the activities of the organization without being subjected to any unnecessary conditions. Diversity curbs all incidents of conflicts of interests and any form of resistance.
Scope and eligibility
This involves the people who will directly benefit from the activities of the organization, the thematic areas of funding, the geographical scope, and the eligible organizations. In terms of the targeted end, users or the people who will ultimately stand to benefit from the activities of the entity include people with physical disabilities, those with mental disabilities, healthcare workers, and persons with Covid-19, and lastly those who have tested victims of Covid-19. With such a broad category of the target population, it is evident that the organization will have its activities impact the lives of a greater majority of the members of the society who have fallen victims to Covid-19. With such a multidimensional approach, it is evident that the organization will be able to circulate all the necessary information that the masses need to know as far as the Covid-19 pandemic is concerned. The people need to comprehend the symptoms that are associated with the virus, the preventive measures that they can apply, and lastly where they can get help if they test positive for the virus. The entire society must be given an equal chance to learning on the ways of preventing themselves from the prevalence of this pandemic and access to medical treatment whenever they test positive altogether. The recovery process of the Covid-19 process is costly since expensive or costly equipment is involved in this case. As such, the organization should have all the above-mentioned targeted people covered and assured of the necessary support as far as the war against the pandemic is concerned.
The thematic areas of funding will be the sensitization of the masses or circulation of information concerning the coronavirus to the masses, the medical treatment of the people who have tested positive, and the psychosocial support for Covid-19. The thematic areas of funding are precisely defined and for this reason, it will be easy for the division of the raised funds to be accomplished based on the areas of priority and also for easy accountability to the donors who must be assured that their donations are being or have been spent well by the organization. This phenomenon also eliminated all the accusations of fraud since there are clear and proper records on how the funds have been spent.
In terms of the geographic scope, the organization will centralize most of its efforts in the communities that have recorded the Coronavirus cases this is to make sure that the pandemic in such areas is contained by enlightening the residents therein to engage in preventive measures as opposed to walking around carelessly with the high risk of either contracting or spreading the pandemic. The activities of the organization will also be extended to the entire country since all the people are vulnerable to the disease hence the need for preventive measures to be engaged in real-time before the situation gets out of hand. All the people in society ought to be sensitized regarding the coronavirus and how they should prevent themselves from contracting the virus. There should be no one left behind since the severity of the disease should not be underrated by any standard. All the people in the society should be made aware of how the disease spreads and those who are already victims of the pandemic be accorded the necessary medical attention so that they may recover and get back to their normal lives. With such wide geographical coverage, it is clear that the spread of the disease will be fundamentally curbed and have the society prevented from being wiped out by the pandemic.
Not all the organizations are eligible for making contributions to the financial kitty that will be used in the war against Covid-19. Such restrictions to the eligible organizations are meant to ensure that there is absolute order in terms of participation so that questionable entity is not allowed to make their financial contributions. For this reason, the eligible legal persons that will be allowed participation include the following; the disabled people’s organization, self-help groups, women’s rights organizations, other civil society organizations, and the foreign governments with goodwill towards the war against Covid-19. The eligibility criteria for the kind of organizations that should be allowed to participate were arrived at after serious consensus among all the stakeholders who are involved in the initiative. Such select organizations have a history of being in support of matters of public interest such as education, healthcare, and the general well-being of the society without any compromises. Adequate contributions from the above-list of eligible organizations are enough to supply significant funds that can be used to adequately fight the war against the coronavirus in the country.
Despite the dire need to raise funds for the initiative and combat the prevalence of covid-19 in society, there are some exclusions. This is to the extent that there are some entities and activities that will not be tolerated since allowing such may hurt the objectives and agenda of the non-governmental organization that is at the heart of the operations. To this extent, the exclusions include all the activities that do not by all standards meet the eligibility criteria, activities that may result in civil disobedience, activities which stand to discriminate against other groups in terms of gender, race, religion, or color among others, activities that are totally funded by other courses and the funding from illegal organizations such as terrorist organizations among others. The integrity of the activities of the organization should be kept intact and this is the reason why such exclusions have to be executed to the maximum. There should be no cause for making the donors withdraw their support by all standards. The entire process should be guarded and kept foolproof.
Resources and duration
As a matter of fact, the financial estimates that the organization is supposed to work with must be definite. With such clarity, the entity will be able to raise the funds, plan for them, and account for every coin without casting any aspersions as to how the expenditures are done. For this reason, the available funds for the whole grants call stands at $500,000. In terms of the key financial details, the small grants are up to $100, 000. All the grants are capped at 60% of the annual turnover of the organization. 10% of the grants are to cover the overhead expenses of the entity with no match fund required as it may not be necessary based on the planned activities of the organization under consideration. With such financial plans, it is easy for the organization to be in a position to properly account for all the grants and eliminate any accusations of corruption and embezzlement of funds. Clear record keeping helps the organization to gain the trust of the donors hence the need for such measures to be pursued at all costs. For small grants, the duration will be up to six months.
The grant application mechanism
Special grants or fast track process is the mechanism that is to be applied in this respect. This is an off-cycle call for a proposal that aims at addressing very urgent needs or a need that is of great public interest and severe consequences if not addressed. The Cov-19 pandemic is an abrupt phenomenon with astronomical effects that no one had ever planned for. No government or entity can claim to have prepared itself to combat this menace by all the standards of assessment and this is what gives the fast track process the best mechanism or approach of seeking assistance both financial and non-financial in addressing the issue at hand. It is material that people and other interested organizations pull together and assist in salvaging the people who have already fallen victims of the pandemic and prevent the spread of the pandemic in the global society. In as much as the fast track process does not in any way end up in immediate assessment, the application window is significantly reduced to a maximum of two weeks since immediate action is what is necessary with the absolute goal of saving the lives of innocent people. All the applications that are made through the fast track process are deemed to be standard processes as they aim at addressing urgent and unforeseeable situations. Such applications must however be checked against the eligibility criteria that have been established and then subjected to the established assessment criteria as well.
Nothing is left to chance since adherence to the established standards is a mandatory requirement and at the same time, the preservation of the integrity of the entire process is adhered to by the people involved in the entire initiative. There can be no way that an urgent need can be handled carelessly since there is no donor that may offer grants to establishments that are not sensitive to the established standards and procedures since this may be an indicator of the absence of accountability in the future. The organization is thus set out to make sure that it applies the fast track process without deviating from the predetermined eligibility procedure as well as the assessment standards that are to be used as the benchmarks by the donors or target groups and personalities that are supposed to support the initiative for the objectives to be met. It is also imperative to underscore the fact that the organizations that are set to pass the eligibility criteria must be resident in Ghana unless there are the international non-governmental organizations that are renowned for fighting for human rights such as the United Nations and Amnesty International to mention but a few. The foreign governments willing to offer grants for the initiative are also welcome as long as there are no strings attached to the funds donated. The grant application is to be a transparent process that is verifiable and that which can be fully accounted for by the organization at the center of the entire operations. Such high standards are supposed to be observed without being compromised to boost the trust and the faith of the people and other entities involved in the funding.
What will be considered to be funding
The organization is dedicated to supporting projects which offer evidence-based psychosocial support to the above-mentioned target groups where the kind of envisaged support does not presently exist. This approach is to make sure that there is no duplication of activities in areas that are already experiencing the same assistance from other organizations and philanthropists in society. The grey areas which need help are thus to be the primary target of the organization so that a wider population may be reached. This is even though for now, no part of the country or world can claim immunity from the Covid-19 pandemic meaning that the areas to be covered by the initiative are huge. With the ever-increasing poverty index in the country, the massive ignorance, and the healthcare system that from time immemorial has remained to be in shambles, there is no doubt that the initiative needs to be heavily funded by a sizeable number of people to be attended to or rather directly benefit from the initiative altogether. For this reason, the examples of projects that will be considered to be funding include the following. First is the mental health counseling initiatives for the persons who are in most cases affected by the Covid-19 pandemic with the inclusion of the health practitioners already working in the healthcare organizations who are already victims to increased stress and anxiety owing to the increased demands that derive directly from the effects of coronavirus.
Secondly, the buddy system support initiatives. The projects that are aimed at enlightening people or rather circulating information relating to the Covid-19 pandemic right from the symptoms and preventive measures that people must be engaged in if they have to stay safe from contracting the pandemic in their lives. Community-led cycles or sub-groups that are providing support to the people who have already tested positive for coronavirus. The initiatives that are aimed at building the capacity of the community leaders who are at the forefront in the war against the Covid-19 pandemic. Nothing should be left to chance by all the standards of assessment since with such training and equipping of the people, the war against the spread of the pandemic can be a success.
Inclusivity is imperative owing to the understanding that this is a matter of collective responsibility meaning that the community leaders must not only be equipped but also directly involved in the entire initiative without any one of them feeling to be left out. This also makes such personalities or leaders own the process hence bringing down any form of resistance that may hamper the initiative to the detriment of the innocent members of the society. only the above-mentioned activities will be deemed or qualify to be funding and anything less than what has already been predetermined will be out of what the organization will be targeting to achieve. The donors in terms of individual persons or organizations that may develop an interest in participating in the war against Covid-19 should thus focus their assistance on the above-named activities without any deviation to avoid being locked out despite their motives being positive or rather in the affirmative.
What the organization will not fund
Based on the preamble, the objectives of the organizations as far as the war against Covid-19 are clearly predetermined. This is to the extent that there are some connected initiatives of activities that the entity will not fund since doing so will be acting outside the leading objectives something that may lead to unplanned expenditures. The success of the entity is to be pegged on the achievement of the set objectives as provided for. Some of the activities that the organization will not fund include the following. The activities which do not conform to or meet the eligibility criteria, the logistics support needed by the psychiatric health centers, general public education, long-term bereavement support or supporting the family of those who has died from the pandemic for a considerable period of time, behavioral change or media sensitization and providing support to the children who are below the majority age or 18 years. Such activities are excluded from the funding program of the organization since they are capital intensive and may require that the entity seeks more grants and this may not be practical or achievable given the understanding that the pandemic is global and other related organizations are seeking the same support. As such, the precision of what is to be considered for funding is to make sure that the predetermined objectives are met and that the funds are applied with absolute prudence as far as the war against Covid-19 is concerned. There should be no acting outside the primary aims as this may discourage the donors who are always interested in seeing positive results of what their financial contributions are doing to society through the said organization.
The assessment and evaluation criteria
Every project must be subjected to an effective assessment. The process must be verifiable and with the full ability to exude transparency, as this is the only way through the allegations of fraud and corruption, can be fought. It is also through the assessment and evaluation process that the organization can be able to look back and see whether the set objectives have been achieved and also whether the strategies applied have been effective in meeting their mandate. The success of the initiative will thus be based on ascertaining whether the objectives have been met or not. The evaluation also aids in improving the strategies being implemented and in some cases getting rid of those which have been significantly ineffective by all the standards of assessment. Since the organization is set out to wage war against the spread of the Coronavirus in the society within the defined geographical regions, the assessment and evaluation criteria are definite and with the full capacity of establishing whether success has been achieved by examining the state of the target groups since they are properly defined without leaving any gaps. The project by all the standards of assessment presents a great value for the money or grants that will be raised since it is aimed at addressing an issue that is of great public interest. The Covid-19 is a disease that has caught the world by storm and as such, any efforts that are geared towards combating it are welcome and are in the greater public interest. The grants are to be accounted for since there is no way through which donors can have the urge of making contributions when they cannot be made to see the value of their grants. All the strategies that are to be involved are to be piloted to test their effectiveness to make sure that the exercise does not collapse or is not termed to be an exercise in futility in the long run. There should be absolute regard to the values of integrity, transparency, and accountability without making compromises that may bring down the entire primary objective of the project under consideration. The people are sensitive to such programs and this is what informs the need for the stakeholders involved to be articulate in ensuring that everything works towards the key objectives without any deviations.
In the final analysis, the proposal represents a project that is of great public interest. The war against Covid-19 is a matter of collective responsibility and as such, all the people and relevant stakeholders must lean forward and advance in strategies that address that have the capacity of saving the population from the ravages of this great pandemic. The objectives of the organization are well set out with absolute clarity, the eligibility criteria for the organizations, and persons that can advance their grants, and the groups that are to be attended to. The assessment and evaluation procedures have been duly established pointing towards the commitment of the stakeholders that are involved in this program. The values of transparency, accountability, and integrity are at the center of the operations or activities of this project hence the need for the donors to come forward and help in the raising of the said grants. The government and the people at large are more than happy to support such efforts since they are of greater public interest lest society is vanquished by the Covid-19 pandemic.
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