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2022 U.S. Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation Competition Announcement
November 1, 2021

The U.S. Embassy is pleased to announce the launch of the U.S. Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP) 2022 Competition. Vietnamese non-commercial entities may submit proposals ranging from $10,000 to $500,000 for projects with the main objective of preserving cultural heritage in Vietnam.  Proposals (in English) are due to the U.S. Embassy Hanoi by November 30, 2021.

Application guidelines:

  1. Grants information

Project applicants can submit applications for AFCP Grants from $10,000 to $500,000.

  1. Competition format

Eligible implementers are invited to send their concept notes to the Embassy by November 30, 2021.  The U.S Embassy will use a two-round selection process.  In Round 1, U.S Embassy will review concept notes and select proposals that focus on public diplomacy objectives.  Shortlisted proposals will be invited to participate in Round 2 to flesh out the technical aspects of their proposed projects and submit a full application.

  1. Eligible Project Implementers

Eligible project implementers are defined as reputable and accountable non-commercial entities that can demonstrate they have the requisite capacity to manage projects to preserve cultural heritage.  Eligible implementers may include non-governmental organizations, museums, educational institutions, ministries/ departments of culture, or similar institutions and organizations, including U.S.-based educational institutions and organizations subject to Section 501(c)(3) of the tax code.  The AFCP will not award grants to individuals, commercial entities, or past award recipients that have not fulfilled the objectives or reporting requirements of previous awards.

Project implementers must be registered and active in the U.S. government’s System for Award Management (SAM) at SAM.gov to receive U.S. federal assistance.  Further information on how to register will be provided to shortlisted implementers upon notification.

  1. Funding areas

The AFCP Grants Program supports the preservation of archaeological sites, historic buildings and monuments, museum collections, and forms of traditional cultural expression, such as indigenous languages and crafts.  Appropriate project activities may include:

  1. Anastylosis (reassembling a site from its original parts);
  2. Conservation (addressing damage or deterioration to an object or site);
  3. Consolidation (connecting or reconnecting elements of an object or site);
  4. Documentation (recording in analog or digital format the condition and salient features of an object, site, or tradition);
  5. Inventory (listing of objects, sites, or traditions by location, feature, age, or other unifying characteristic or state);
  6. Preventive Conservation (addressing conditions that threaten or damage a site, object, collection, or tradition);
  7. Restoration (replacing missing elements to recreate the original appearance of an object or site, usually appropriate only with fine arts, decorative arts, and historic buildings);
  8. Stabilization (reducing the physical disturbance of an object or site).


  1. Sites and Objects that have a Religious Connection

The establishment clause of the U.S. Constitution permits the government to include religious objects and sites within an aid program under certain conditions. For example, an item with a religious connection (including a place of worship) may be the subject of a cultural preservation grant if the item derives its primary significance and is nominated solely on the basis of architectural, artistic, historical, or other cultural (not religious) criteria.

  1. Funding priority

Proposals for projects that meet one or more of the following criteria will receive consideration in FY 2022:

  • Directly support U.S. treaty or bilateral agreement obligations
  • Directly support U.S policies, strategies and objectives
  • Support disaster risk reduction for cultural heritage in disaster-prone areas or post-disaster cultural heritage recovery
  • Support conflict resolution and help communities bridge differences
  • Partner, connect with, or feed into other U.S Government’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) or public diplomacy programs.
  1. Project Design Assistance

During the month of November 2021, the Cultural Heritage Center is offering project design webinars for both applicants on the topics of heritage and climate change (November 9, 9:00 a.m. EST or November 9, 9:00 p.m. Vietnam time), engaging communities through heritage (November 16, 9:00 a.m. EST or November 16, 9:00 p.m. Vietnam time), and heritage and sustainable development (November 19, 9:00 a.m. EST or November 19, 9:00 p.m. Vietnam time). Recordings of these webinars and their resource materials will be available in late November. To register for one or more of these webinars, follow the registration links in the AFCP 2022 Webinar PDF here.

The Center has also prepared project design tips, a glossary of terms, and other materials for self- guided learning and identifying best practices when undertaking certain kinds of projects such as the conservation of objects and interpretation at small rural museums. The design tip sheet and other materials are available here.

  1. Ineligible Activities and Unallowable Costs

AFCP will NOT support the following activities or costs, and applications involving any of the activities or costs below will be deemed ineligible:

  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 application;
  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 (newspapers, newsreels, radio and TV programs, etc.);
  5. Preservation of published materials available elsewhere (books, periodicals, etc.);
  6. Development of curricula or educational materials for classroom use;
  7. Archaeological excavations or exploratory surveys for research purposes;
  8. Historical research, except in cases where the research is justifiable and integral to the success of the proposed project;
  9. Acquisition or creation of new exhibits, objects, or collections for new or existing museums;
  10. Construction of new buildings, building additions, or permanent coverings (over archaeological sites, for example);
  11. Commissions of new works of art or architecture for commemorative or economic development purposes;
  12. Creation of new or the modern adaptation of existing traditional dances, songs, chants, musical compositions, plays, or other performances;
  13. Creation of replicas or conjectural reconstructions of cultural objects or sites that no longer exist;
  14. Relocation of cultural sites from one physical location to another;
  15. Removal of cultural objects or elements of cultural sites from the country for any reason;
  16. Digitization of cultural objects or collections, unless part of a larger, clearly defined conservation or documentation effort;
  17. Conservation plans or other studies, unless they are one component of a larger project to implement the results of those studies;
  18. Cash reserves, endowments, or revolving funds (funds must be expended within the award period [up to five years] and may not be used to create an endowment or revolving fund);
  19. Costs of fund-raising campaigns;
  20. Contingency, unforeseen, or miscellaneous costs or fees;
  21. Costs of work performed prior to announcement of the award;
  22. International travel, except in cases where travel is justifiable and integral to the success of the proposed project or to provide project leaders with learning and exchange opportunities with cultural heritage experts;
  23. Individual projects costing less than US $10,000 or more than $500,000;
  24. Independent U.S. projects overseas.
  1. Application and Submission Information

Project implementers must complete the application form and send an electronic version of your proposal (in English) along with other required documents (see part 10) to the U.S. Embassy Public Affairs Section via email by November 30, 2021 with email subject line “Application for AFCP 2022 – [PROJECT NAME]”

Applicants residing from Quang Tri and north, please email to NguyenNTM@fan.gov

Applicants residing from Hue to the south, please email to TAYL@fan.gov

For further inquiries, please contact us at the emails above.

  1. Application Requirements

All submitted documents must be in English. Project applications must include:

  1. Full and complete Application Form
    Note: all information in the Application Form must be filled in including DUNS Number, and SAM registration status, as applicable
  2. Full and complete Application for Federal Assistance (SF-424), including Budget Information for Non-Construction Programs (SF-424A), Assurances for Non- Construction Programs (SF-424B)
  3. Detailed project Budget Form that lists all costs in separate categories (Personnel, Fringe Benefits, Travel, Equipment, Supplies, Contractual, Other Direct Costs, Indirect Costs)
  4. Proof of official permission to undertake the project from the office, agency, or organization that either owns or is otherwise responsible for the preservation and protection of the site or collection
  5. Supporting documents including, at a minimum and required, five (5) high quality digital images (JPEGs preferred) or audiovisual files that convey the nature and condition of the site, object, or form of expression and, in the case of a site or object, show the urgency or need for the proposed project (e.g., collapsing walls, water damage, worn fabric, broken handle), any historic structure reports, conservation needs assessments, and other planning documents compiled in preparation for the proposed project.

Application Form and all Budget Forms can be downloaded at: https://tinyurl.com/AFCP2022Vietnam

  1. Performance and Deliverables

AFCP 2022 award recipients must submit performance progress reports, federal financial status reports, and final reports on a timely manner.  Upon completion of an AFCP project, the Embassy will also ask implementers to respond to provide additional surveys on the impact of AFCP project, supporting data, quotes, or anecdotes, as appropriate.