BOLD Workshop Program 2022

Deadline: April 15, 2022

The Public Diplomacy Section (PDS) of the U.S. Embassy in Belgrade announces an open competition for organizations to submit applications for the BOLD Workshop Program.

The BOLD (Balkanski omladinski lideri, Young Balkan Leaders in English) network is a project of PDS that seeks to develop the leadership capacity of young Serbians by empowering them to implement projects for positive change in their communities in two thematic areas: civic engagement and economic development.  Anyone age 18-35 in Serbia can join the BOLD network where members have access to three main types of competitive opportunities:

  1. BOLD Academic Fellowships: Two in-depth leadership training experiences in the United States for 5-6 weeks, one on each BOLD theme.
  2. BOLD Workshops: Two workshops, one week to 10 days long, on leadership and project management, each on one of the BOLD themes.
  3. BOLD Small Grant Competition: An annual competition, open to all BOLD members, for funds up to $15,000 to implement projects in the areas of the BOLD themes over the course of a year.

Program Objectives:

The BOLD Action Workshop Program consists of two workshops to take place in Serbia for one week to 10 days each, one on the theme of civic engagement and one on the theme of economic development. Workshops should be scheduled in accordance with school/academic calendars. Applicants may propose implementation of either one of the workshops, OR implementation of two workshops.  If the proposal is for one workshop, please indicate in box “c” of the application form if the theme will be civic engagement or economic development.

The proposal should contain a detailed day-by-day schedule for each workshop, and other necessary information that makes it clear to anyone not familiar with it how the program will meet the stated objectives and projected outcomes.The primary outcome desired by PDS is for workshop participants, either individually or in groups, to design a civic or economic project to be implemented in their communities over the course of the following year.  By the end of the workshop, participants should complete a basic draft of their project designs in the form of a project proposal or business plan, which will be competitive for funding from the Embassy or other donors.

Participants will be eligible to submit their proposals in a BOLD small grant competition that will take place later in the year. To prepare them for this, a representative from the PDS grants team should be invited to present during the workshop on the basics of applying for a grant with the U.S. Embassy. In accordance with the Executive Order on Advancing Racial Equity and Underserved Communities, proposals should demonstrate how the program advances equity with respect to race, ethnicity, religion, income, geography, gender identity, sexual orientation, and disability. The proposal should also demonstrate how the program will further engagement in underserved communities and with individuals from underserved communities. Proposals should demonstrate how addressing racial equity and underserved communities will enhance the program’s goals and objectives, as well as the experience of participants.

In light of social distancing measures, and to limit the spread of COVID-19, we welcome proposals that utilize video conferencing, distance learning tools, etc.  If your proposal includes in-person activities, please consider the inclusion of contingency plans, just in case the health situation requires that social distancing measures be implemented during the grant period.  How might you switch your project from an in-person to a virtual format? It is the obligation of the applicant to ensure that workshop participants’ information about themselves, their experience in the workshop, and/or their project ideas are shared and publicized on social media platforms of the BOLD network so that others can see their leadership examples and be motivated by their experience in the workshop.

Program Themes:

  • CIVIC ENGAGEMENT. This workshop should create opportunities for active participation and civic engagement of young leaders in their communities with special emphasis on the development and implementation of their own projects to address a particular social need in the community.  The workshops should provide a broad foundation of skills needed to succeed in the civil society sector, including, but not limited to, the fundamentals of project management, innovative civic engagement project design, project-based collaboration, leveraging assets within the BOLD network to ensure project success, strategies to overcome apathy and skepticism, and how to work with other like-minded individuals or groups to lead the broader community toward positive change.
  • ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT. This workshop should develop the skills of young leaders to create opportunities for economic development in their communities through developing and/or launching their own business plan or developing projects in support of entrepreneurship. Special emphasis should be placed on innovative business model design, project-based collaboration, and leveraging assets within the BOLD network to ensure project success. Content can include, but is not limited to, the ideas for starting and running a small business in the region, market research and pitching business ideas, organizational development and management, innovation, emerging markets and risk analysis, strategic business planning, corporate social responsibility, overcoming obstacles and failure, gaining entrepreneurial skills that will better prepare them for the 21st century market, or an idea about enhancing existing enterprises.

Participants and Audiences:

Each workshop should be designed for at least 40 participants, who will be derived from the membership of the new BOLD Network as well as from the recruiting efforts of the applicant. Each workshop should be composed of at least 25 participants from across Serbia, 10 from Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), and 5 from Montenegro.  Priority should be given to qualified applicants from outside the capital city in each country. The age range of BOLD members is 18-35, but the applicant may limit the age range of participants in either workshop, to best fit the proposed workshop’s theme and objectives. Each participant should only attend one workshop.

The applicant should propose a regionwide recruitment plan to reach workshop participants from all parts of the three countries that goes beyond a public call for applications to include targeted outreach to appropriate youth audiences. PDS will coordinate with Embassies in BiH and Montenegro to assist with recruitment through BOLD networks there. The applicant should select and vet workshop participants and present the final list of participants for each workshop to PDS for review before they are notified of their selection.

Information Session

PDS will hold a virtual information session on February 23, 2022, at 16:00 (4 pm) CET to discuss this funding opportunity and to answer questions from potential applicants.  Please contact PDS at BOLDSerbia@state.gov for details.

For all the information and detailed instructions on how to apply, please download and read BOLD Workshop Program Notice of Funding Opportunity 2022. Please follow all instructions below carefully. Proposals that do not meet the requirements of this announcement or fail to comply with the stated requirements will be ineligible.