Welcome.US | Grants

Welcome Fund’s ‘All of Us’ RFP:

Expanding Community Engagement to Welcome Afghan Newcomers

Due to COVID impacts, the deadline for this RFP has been extended by one week to January 28th at 3pm EST.

The Welcome Fund was created by Welcome.US to ensure Afghans and others fleeing their homelands are supported and connected to welcoming communities across the United States.

Welcoming our new Afghan neighbors will take an all-hands-on deck approach, and community leaders and organizations across the country are stepping up to fill the diverse set of needs -- housing, transportation, employment, legal, education, English language training, community orientation and integration, wellness, and many other aspects of resettlement and inclusion. Afghan, diaspora, veteran, faith-based, and community organizations are working creatively to tap the outpouring of support from their fellow community members.

Following our first round of grants to address immediate housing and relocation needs, the Welcome Fund launches its first round of request for proposals (RFP), which will commit at least $3 million dollars to support innovative community-based work that broadens community participation in resettlement. This RFP is for national, regional, and local efforts, outside of the resettlement agencies/affiliates, that are engaging community members to address the needs of Afghan newcomers.

The Fund will provide general operating grants to efforts that:

  • Operate in a U.S. community that will receive Afghan newcomers (defined as including Afghan refugees, parolees, SIVs, or evacuees).
  • Led by a 501(c)(3) organization or have a fiscal sponsor.
  • Are willing to participate in 3 facilitated peer learning and information meetings with Welcome.US and engage in the Welcome Fund community listserv.
  • Engage and broaden involvement of community members to address the needs of Afghan newcomers
  • Track impact and report results to the Welcome Fund.

The Welcome Fund will accept proposals from December 13, 2021 until January 28th at 3 pm EST. Awardees will be notified on a rolling basis through February/March 2022. We hope to launch a second round in spring 2022.

The Welcome Fund is making at least $3 million available for this RFP round. We expect to distribute at least half of the funds through this RFP in community-based grants of between $10,000 and $50,000. We will also make substantially larger grants for organizations mobilizing large-scale community participation at regional or national levels.

Applicants and proposed programs will be evaluated on: a) potential impact on positive outcomes for Afghan newcomers; and b) commitment and capacity to engage community members in welcoming and assisting Afghan newcomers. Organizations with leadership and/or staff with lived, or other affinity, experiences should indicate this in the RFP.

The grant period will be for one year; a final report will be due upon drawdown of all funds.

Grantees must be prepared to begin program implementation within 45 days upon receipt of funds.

This RFP builds upon the work of the “Mobilizing America for Refugees Fund” which launched in October with the support of the Schultz Family Foundation, Stand Together Foundation, and The Starbucks Foundation, in partnership with Welcome.US.

Please note that you will be unable to save your answers to the RFP to complete at a later time. For this reason, you are encouraged to copy the questions into a separate document while you work to answer them, and then copy the answers into the form to submit.

Frequently Asked Questions

(This list will be regularly updated to reflect questions we receive.)

When are grant proposals due? We will receive proposals until 5pm EST January 21, 2022, however we encourage you to submit as soon as possible.

When will I be notified if my organization will receive funding? We will notify approved applications on a rolling basis throughout February/March 2022.

Does the Welcome Fund give grants to individuals or businesses? No. We only award grants to nonprofits with 501(c)(3) status, or organizations with a nonprofit fiscal sponsor.

How long is the duration of the grant? The grant period is for one year from the date of the grant agreement.

What can funds be used for? Funds can be used for project activities to support community engagement and volunteer coordination, general operating expenses for the proposed project activities, and for related direct support to arriving Afghan newcomers.

What is meant by ‘lived, or affinity, experience’? We are asking here for organizations to highlight if they have leadership and/or staff that have first hand experiences they can bring to the work of supporting Afghan newcomers, e.g. Afghan diaspora, refugee, language, cultural, faith, or other experiences held in common.

Where do I send my questions? If you have questions about this RFP, please email [email protected]

Will this RFP support Sponsor Circles? Grants to Sponsor Circles are outside the scope of this RFP however we encourage you to learn more about this important avenue for supporting Afghan newcomers and refugees at: www.sponsorcircles.org

In addition to the RFP, the Welcome Fund is eager to learn about innovative work supporting Afghan newcomers that (1) can be replicable across communities; (2) result in a more integrated and efficient refugee support infrastructure; and/or (3) address an urgent community challenge.

Please send a summary to us at [email protected]