Friday, July 21, 2017

RFA: Requesting Applications from Qualified Applicants for the Implementation of a Youth Employment Project

EDC Rwanda
Huguka Dukore – Youth Employment Project
Request for Applications (RFA)
July 21, 2017
Implemented by Education Development Center (EDC)
Funded by The United States Agency for International Development (USAID)
General Information
Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC) is requesting applic
ations from qualified applicants for the implementation of a youth employment project in the following, but not limited, districts: Kicukiro, Nyarugenge Gasabo, Kamonyi, Muhanga, Rugango, Nyanza, Huye, Rwamagana, Kayonza, Nyagatare Bugesera, Musanze, Huye, Rubavu andNyabihu. Applicants are encouraged to propose districts other than those highlighted above, provided that they can substantiateexisting employment and entrepreneurship opportunities in specific value chains for youth as well as conditions or partnerships to deliver the proposed youth training and support packages in that district.
This RFA is open to all registered Rwandan organizations with demonstrated experience implementing medium and large-scale employment skills training programs for Rwandan youth. This includes, but is not limited to, NGOs with the capacity to partner with private sector companies to run trainings and place youth into work-based learning, jobs placementand business start-up programs, accredited technical and vocational training institutions, private sector education and training providers, micro-finance institutions, associations, cooperatives, and private businesses.All queries about this RFA announcement should be directed by email to the Chief Of Party at
Applicants will have no relationship with USAID under the terms of any subaward resulting from this RFA; all questions regarding this RFA must be directed to EDC as described below.
Please send your RFA questions to by July 28, 2017 close of business.Answers to questions will go out to all applicants who have registered and collected the RFA documents.

EDC will only consider applications submitted electronically by email to:  Chief of Party at All applications will be acknowledged by email back to the sender.
EDC may award one or more subawards resulting from this RFA to the Applicant(s) whose application(s) conforms to this RFA and offer the greatest value. EDC may also (a) reject any or all applications, (b) accept other than the lowest cost application, (c) accept more than one application, (d) accept alternate applications, and (e) waive formalities and minor irregularities in applications received (f) request applications be revised to accommodate requested modifications.
The selected organization(s) will receive funding in the form of a subaward from EDC. Applicants must document a commitment of 10% of the total requested funding/awardas cost share to implement the project.
All costs for the preparation and submission of an application are at the applicant's expense. Application preparation costs are not reimbursable.
  1. Purpose of the RFA
Education Development Center (EDC) is one of the world’s leading nonprofit research and development firms. Established in 1958, EDC designs, delivers and evaluates innovative programs to address some of the world’s most urgent challenges in education, health, and economic opportunity. Our services include research, training, educational materials, and strategy, with activities ranging from seed projects to large-scale national and international initiatives.
Building off of the 7-year Akazi Kanoze project‘s results (2009 – 2016), EDC has launched a followon Youth Employment Project/Huguka Dukore, funded by USAID to expand the employability and employment opportunities to Rwandan youth.
The USAID Rwanda Youth Employment Project / Huguka Dukore is a 5-year project (2017-2021). Huguka Dukore activity will provide 40,000 vulnerable youth (women and men) with employability skills by scaling up successfully proven Akazi Kanoze interventions, across 19 (of 30 total) districts countrywide, using a series of inclusive innovations that will invite more youth -particularly women, youth with disabilities and other vulnerable groups -to participate in Rwanda’s historic transformation. Recognizing the diversity of youth backgrounds and goals, we will offer multiple program pathways including: i) employment preparation; ii) individual and cooperative youth microenterprise start-up; iii) business development for existing microenterprises; and iv) continuation onto additional formal TVET training.Appendix 3 includes a graphic of these program employment pathways.
A key mechanism for the project’s implementation is the issuance of subawards to localorganizations working in Rwanda that are capable of supporting young people’s acquisitionof employability skills,jobs opportunities, business start-ups and expansion and continuation of formal education - TVET and high school).

This RFA is open to NGOs, for-profit businesses, cooperatives, education and training providers, and government agencies. This RFA aims to select6 - 10 local partners to train and provide work experience/training linkages to youth between 16 and 30 years old.  Eligibility criteria are listed in Section 3. Please note that while commercial and for-profit organizations are eligible to apply, profit cannot be paid under the subgrants resulting from this RFA. 
2. Cost Share
One critical element of the Huguka Dukore project, and therefore a prime objective of this RFA, is the leveraging of existing organizational capacities in a way that maximizes opportunities for young people as theybecome employable, access jobs, start small businesses and/or pursue training. Thus, one selection criteria will be an organization’s ability to leverage its resources to provide 10% minimum cost share of the total requested subawards amount.
3. Implementing Partner Eligibility Criteria
In order to qualify under this RFA, Implementing Partners must demonstrate:
  • An ability to provide a 10% minimum cost share of the total requested subaward;
  • An ability to recruit accredited trainers.  For technical trainers, this may be demonstrated by WDA approved certificates or internationally recognized certificates; while for Work Readiness and Entrepreneurship, trainers must be Akazi Kanoze certified.
  • Familiarity with selecting program participants based on the program participant eligibility criteria outlined in section 5b.  Familiarity with program eligibility criteria may be demonstrated by listing 2 – 5 similar programs that include selection criteria for enrollment of beneficiaries.
  • Demonstrated capacity to conduct local labor market assessments identifying in-demand training areasand link youth into employment and business start-ups as well as accompaniment or coaching. Applicants will demonstrate previous experiences in linking youth with employment, business opportunities in emerging value chains, market facilitation, entrepreneurship development, etc. Such opportunities must lead to sustainable livelihoods for youth participating in the Huguka Dukore program.
  • Applicant must demonstrate the capacity to train youth in demand driven vocational training, and/or providing additional services that may supplement the training, i.e. contributing to acquisition of skills, jobs and business start-ups or growth. Applicant must demonstrate that any proposed complementary training/service is informed by market demand as well as the GOR and districts sector priorities.
4. Scope of Work Overview
Each applicant must propose, at a minimum, to offer services to 500youth in response to this RFA. At a minimum, services must include
  1. Delivery of the 100-hour Work Ready Now! Curriculum;
  2. Market driven complementary technical skills training and/or services;
  3. Bridging/linking youth into employment and self-employment
  4. Internships/work based learning experiences leading into job placements, business start-ups and micro enterprise development and/or continuation of further education.
Further details about the program are described in the following section.
Length of the proposed activities:  The proposed activities (including training and working with the youth to transition to further training or employment and self-employment) must be implemented within a maximum of 12 months. Selected implementing partners must launch activities by October 2017, unless a justification to start at a later date is provided.
5. Key factors to Guide Applicants
This section describes the minimum requirements and limitations of the RFA. All award recipients will be expected to fulfill the following items.
  1. Identify and hire potential Work Ready Now!(WRN!)and EntrepreneurshipTrainerswho meet the eligibility criteria described in below sections for 10-15 day training of trainers (TOT) following applicants selection and coaching during WRN! rollout at youth level. Applicants are also encouraged to use existing experienced Akazi Kanoze WRN! and Entrepreneurship trainers forbetter leverage. HugukaDukore recommends therefore  that applicants reach out to Akazi Kanoze Access for list and contacts of WRN! trainers at:
Selected trainers will thereafter deliver the 100-135 hour WRN! and Entrepreneurship training to the recruited youth.
Interested applicants must demonstrate that theirproposed WRN!trainers meet the following criteria:
  • Minimum education completion of secondary school;
  • English proficiency;
  • Strong facilitation and organizational skills;
  • Excellent communication skills;
  • Experience working in employment preparation or business start-ups a plus.
For budgeting and management purposes, applicants should assume that at least two trainers per 30 youth maximum are needed to deliver the WRN!
  1. Enroll youth participants: Applicants should demonstrate capacity and strategies to recruit500 youth at minimum per the following eligibility criteria. In addition, applicants must demonstrate their ability to engage local leaders to identify and recruit participants/youth, ensuring that the government socio economic classification – Ubudehe is followed.
Huguka Dukore program youth participant eligibility criteria include:
  1. Gender: Men and women, out of school, aged 16-30. Selected subrecipients are encouraged to strive for a gender balance, unless their organizational mandate expressly focuses on one gender in particular.
  2. Education: Youth with an education level of at least P6 (Primary) and below Nine Years Basic Education. Enrolled youth must have dropped out from school for last 3 years at minimum.
  3. Socio-economic status: unemployed youth and/or with an informal type of job or underemployed earning less than 1,200 RWF per day. Applicants will demonstrate their capacity working with local leaders, and follow the “Ubudehe” classification/category to meet these eligibility criteria.
  4. Youth who are both motivated and have the minimal skills to succeed. Selected subrecipients will be expected to adopt recruitment and an intake process that will ensure selected youth display proper motivation and have the minimum literacy and numeracy skills to follow the HD training packages designed to respond to workforce demand.  The applicants should assess logistical challenges individuals face and ways youth propose to overcome them. e.g. youth who have to travel some distance but have a system of getting to training, childcare coverage, etc.
  5. Social inclusion: Applicants must demonstrate a social inclusive approach to recruiting, training, job placements and other transition services opportunities of youth with disabilities, women, and other vulnerable groups.
  6. Deliver the WRN! Curriculum. All participating youth will be expected to complete the full WRN! training course. WRN! contains modules on topics such as: Personal Development, Communication, Work habits and Professional Conduct, Leadership, Safety and Health at Work, FinancialLiteracy, Workers and Employer Rights and Responsibilities.
  1. Identify and link each youthto at least one paid work experience opportunity that leads to either an employment opportunity or to further training or education through specialized trainings. For instance, after completing work experience, a youth could be placed in training in hairdressing, supplemented by an English business communication course; or a youth interested in agribusiness may be placed in additional training in marketing and/or packaging or savings and internal lending communities (SILC), access to capital facilitation for business start-ups. Appendix 3provides a graphic of potential pathways.
Illustrative Examples of specialized trainings:
  • Based on identified opportunities in growing sectors, i.e. agribusiness value chains, additional support could mean training youth on improved production of specific crops, packaging, processing and linking with existing markets/buyers
  • Based on clearly identified economic opportunities. Example: a company is looking to hire hotel staff. Training could be needed in English language, housekeeping, etc.
  • Based on growing economic sectors. Training will be offered either by existing vocational/technical training institutions or by private sector partners themselves in form of in-house trainings. Example: short term specialized construction training as the demand for workforce is identified and needed for specific construction work to be done.
  • Based on identified new market opportunities. Youth could participate in training in entrepreneurship and benefit from mentorship/coaching services as they start their businesses.
  • Based on specifically identified youth needs. Example: additional support for a specific group such as orphans and vulnerable children.

  1. Provide Transition Support to further livelihood opportunities (either work, entrepreneurial resources or training—vocational, formal or non-formal education, or other specialized training) for each youth that completes the Huguka Dukore program. The applicant will need to demonstrate in its response to this RFA how it intends to work with the youth in either placing them in longer term paid internships, jobs, coaching for business start-up, linking to financial services, and/or further training or return to formal schooling.
  2. Track and report youth results. Selected subrecipients are expected to track youth who enter the program, carefully document youth progress and where youth continue after they complete the program. The tracking will include gender, age, education, economic and social status, disability type where applicable and other variables.  In particular, organizations through this RFA process will be expected to assess all youth who complete WRN! training. Youth who pass will receive work readiness certification. Huguka Dukore will provide a Monitoring and Evaluation training and the selected applicants will be expected to adhere to the Huguka Dukore project reporting guidelines as instructed in the related training to be provided by EDC.
  1. Demonstrate sound financial management capacity. All selected implementing partners will be expected to adhere to internationally accepted accounting practices, to demonstrate sound financial management capacity, and to be prepared for unannounced site visits during which project-related accounting practices will be checked, and onsite coaching will be provided as necessary. Selected applicants/organizations will be expected to participate in a financial management workshop provided by the Huguka Dukore project prior the launch of activities.
  1. Roles and Responsibilities of EDC and Subrecipient
As the prime implementing organization of Huguka Dukore - EDC will:
  1. Provide financial support to selected partners through subawards to accomplish proposed project activities.
  2.  Monitor and supervise training, mentoring, internship, apprenticeship and job placement processes of the partnering agency.
  3. Provide sub award monitoring and capacity building in management.
  4. Facilitate the certification of select aspects of the program by communicating with the Workforce Development Authority and by convening necessary stakeholders.
  5. Review and approve/provide feedback on applicant’s proposed training programs.
  6. Provide guidance in select technical areas.
  7. If deemed necessary by EDC, conduct short Training of Trainers courses on employability skills training, mentoring, identification of placement opportunities for youth.
  8. Assist in building support and cooperation among businesses and NGOs for the program.
Subrecipients will be responsible for:
  1. Meeting all minimum requirements as described in section 3 above.
  2. Submitting monthly progress reports to EDC. Depending on length of subaward, quarterly and end-of-project progress reports may also be required.
  3. Submitting all required financial documentation monthly to EDC to secure funds to implement the project. 
  4. In some cases, if justified as needed by youth target group and/or identified economic opportunity, can also provide additional specialized training.
  5. Complying with all terms and conditions of the subaward.
  1. Application Information

All costs for the preparation and submission of an application are at the applicant's expense. Application preparation costs are not reimbursable.
All applications must include the components listed below. Incomplete applications will not beconsidered.
  1. Application Cover Sheet: Name of the applying organization; location and telephone of the office; name and contact information of the President or Owner or Executive Director; name and contact information for routine correspondence regarding the application, and name and contact information for the Treasurer or other Authorized Representative who is the person legally responsible for receiving subaward funds should such an award be made; List of Board of Directors.
  2. Summary Explanation – Describes the proposal (1page maximum)
  3. Organization History and Capacity (1page maximum plus form):
  1. Complete and submit the form in the Appendix of this RFA
  2. Provide a narrative description of the organization’s mission, history, capacity and main activities: Describe the organization’s history and capacityin youth development; livelihood support; particular industries; management and financial; and other relevant topics as deemed relevant by applicant.
d. Implementing Partner Eligibility Criteria (provide supporting documentation/description of how your organization meets the implementing partner eligibility criteria (5 pages maximum).  The Implementing Partner Eligibility Criteria listed in section 3 are copied below for clarity.
    1. An ability to provide a 10% minimum cost share of the total requested subaward;
    2. An ability to recruit accredited trainers.  This may be demonstrated by WDA recognized certificates in case of technical trainers and certified by Akazi Kanoze in case of WRN!
    3. Familiarity with selecting program participants based on the program participant eligibility criteria outlined in section 5b.  Familiarity with program eligibility criteria may be demonstrated by listing 2 – 5 similar programs that include selection criteria for enrollment of beneficiaries.
    4. Demonstrated capacity to conduct local labor market assessments identifying in-demand training areas and link youth into employment and business start-ups. Applicants will demonstrate previous experiences in linking youth with employment, business opportunities in emerging value chains, market facilitation, entrepreneurship development, etc. Such opportunities must lead to sustainable livelihoods for youth participating in the Huguka Dukore program.
    5. Applicant must demonstrate the capacity to train youth in vocational training, and/or providing additional services that may supplement the training, i.e. contributing to acquisition of skills, jobs and business start-ups or growth. Applicant must demonstrate that any proposed complementary training/service is informed by market demand.
  2. Proposed Activity Description / program components (5 pages maximum)
In 5 pages maximum, the applicant should describe its proposed activities. The applicant should include the following sections:
  1. Youth recruitment approach. Applicants must describe their recruitment process; districts and sectors of interventions and describe how youth they intend to serve willmeet the eligibility criteria (age, gender, levels of education, current social and economic situation, etc.); social inclusion approach for youth with disabilities.
  2. Approach to Training youth. Applicants must describe the training schedule: WRN! vs. Complementary training/services; how the applicant will select the trainers, the training facilities, how quality assurance will be conducted, curriculums and trainings materials if not provided by Huguka Dukore, any additional information.
  3. Approach to work experience/training placement:  Describe how,and with whom, (either specific partners or types of industry/sector)you plan to place all trainees in a work/training experience. Work experience can take place either as an internship or as part of a paid job. Applicants will be rewarded for providing as much detail as possible regarding the existence or pursuit of collaborative relationships with potential work/training experience providers.Applicants must also describe in general or specific terms the duration and skills emphasized through the experience.
  4. Youth transition support approach. Describe what (include when and with whom) you will do to secure at least one follow on opportunity (in work, entrepreneurship or training) to each youth who completes the Huguka Dukore program. Specifically:
  • If they transition to further training: what type? How do you ensure placement?
  • If they go into employment: How will you secure youth placement in job or paid internship?
  • If they go into cooperative or business creation, describe what support will be provided at start-up, grow business and market facilitation, any linkages with financials services providers, demonstrate how youth will be helped to success after the start-up phases.

a. Sustainability Plan: Describe if and how you propose to continue similar work after funding from Huguka Dukore ends (1page maximum). Any plan to expand to other districts or more beneficiaries?
b. Management and Staffing Plan (1 page maximum)Explain who will manage the project and staffing/positions involved in the project
c. Timeline/Implementation Plan(2 pages maximum) for all proposed activities the organization will undertake under this project. State the planned activity and the proposed dates and length of time each activity will take. Be specific.  

  1. Budgeting and costing approach. (No page limit)

  1. Costing
The project cost per head/participant is estimated at a ceiling of one hundred thousand (100,000) RFW. An applicant can only propose to provide services to 500 youth at minimum at fifty million (50,000,000) RFW ceiling of financing requested, excluding applicant cost share. Applicant cost share will make part of the financial reporting requirements, therefore selected applicants will be required to make a proper documentation. EDC will however provide guidance on cost share in orientation meeting on dates proposed in RFA timeline below. Applications will be reviewed to compare efficiencies of reaching a number of youth participants with a quality program with the necessary amount of trainer contact time to ensure impact and success.  Huguka Dukore expects these subawards will enhance, expand, or introduce new components of existing activities rather than finance an entirely new activity. The applicant is encouraged to look for complementary funding/and or in-kind contributions.
2. Budget
Please see budget template provided in Appendix 1. Applicants can use this template or submit something similar that provides the same information. The budget must be in RWF [Rwandan Francs] and must include the following:

  • A breakdown of all costs for the planned activities strictly related to the project being proposed.  Each expense will have to include the following breakdown: cost per unit, number of units, total amount. Examples: (1) cost per unit could be cost of a training manual, number of units would be number of manuals projected to be used, total amount would be cost per unit times number of units; (2) cost per unit could be hourly/daily rate of trainer; number of units would be number of hours/days (units) of training that will be delivered; total amount would be cost per unit times number of units.

  • Indirect or general costs as a percent of total budget will not be covered. Administrative costs that are directly related to this program may be proposed. These costs must be detailed as noted above.  3. Budget Narrative
This is a description of what each line item is and will be used for and the basis of the estimated unit cost. The narrative must state assumptions and all information that will show exactly how an amount was arrived at. Failure to provide sufficient detail here may disqualify or delay consideration of the proposal.
4. Cost share
As highlighted above, applicants must demonstrate an ability to meet a 10% minimum cost share requirement to support the Huguka Dukore project delivery.  Cost share may be provided as cash, and/or in-kind resourcesgenerated by the applicant.All proposed contributions must be clearly identified and all in-kind costs must be reasonable, in accordance with prevailing open market conditions. Examples of cost share could include but are not limited to: staff/volunteer time, donated equipment, office space and materials. The proposed cost share must be clearly explained in the budget narrative and will strengthen the quality of the proposal. EDC will provide more details and guidance on cost share tracking and reporting systems during the RFA orientation meeting, per the proposed date under the RFA timeline section.
  1. Extra supporting material (no page limit)
  • A recent institutional financial report that illustrates the operating budget of the organization(s).
  • Official List of Board of Directors (certified by relevant government agency)
  • A completed copy of the Capacity Statement Form attached in Appendix 2

8. Timeline
Timeline for the RFA Process:
Date and Time
Date of Releasing detailed RFA
July 21, 2017
Deadline for receiving written Questions [via email to contact above]
July 28, 2017 @ 5PM
Meeting - Orientation Session on the RFA Document
August 2, 2017– 9am-12pm
Date of Distribution of Responses to Questions
August 4,2017 – 5PM
Deadline for Submission of Applications
August 21, 2017 – 12PM
Intended Date for Notification to Applicants on Application Status*
September 8, 2017

*Following the notification to applicants informing applicants whether or not their proposal has been selected for funding and approval from USAID, EDC will issue a subaward to the selected applicants.
Applications for this subaward must follow the guidelines below. The application has to be in English. Applications must be in soft format – Word. Applications must include all the information listed in Section III.
9. Selection and Rating Criteria
The criteria represented below will guide the selection process. The total maximum points for each category are in the right column. A total of 100 points is possible. The applications will be evaluated in accordance with the evaluation criteria set forth below in four (4) categories.  The proposed costs of all acceptable applications will be reviewed andcosts will be evaluated for general reasonableness and allowability.

Criteria Category
Maximum Points
Training and Organizational Capacity
  1. Demonstrated institutional capability and experience in relevant project activities.
  2. Demonstrated leveraging of existing resources, partnering, or capacities related to youth livelihood.
  3. Identification and availability of qualified trainer(s)/instructor(s)
  4. Strength and clarity of proposed management plan and organizational structure
  5. Capacity and adaptability to social inclusion
Program Description
  1. Clarity, balance, and responsiveness to the RFA
  2. Merit of proposed plan for program implementation, including youth engagement and recruitment strategy, training curricula, learner “contact time” with instructors and in work experience, placements, accompaniment and mentoring, certification, among other functions
  3. Merit of the proposed strategy for working with businesses, governmental and non-governmental organizations, agencies and other organizations working with youth to ensure on-going coordination of implementation efforts to achieve the proposed results.
  4. Reasonableness of the cost of the activity.
Potential Impact
  1. Merit of approach to securing job, business start-up and growth, sustainable livelihoods/employment
  2. Number of jobs, internships and apprenticeships firmly identified for youth placements
  3. Responsiveness of training to market needs
  4. Strength of accompaniment and mentoring strategy
  5. Number of youth effectively reached through programming.
Contribution to the Overall Project
  1. Quality model yields best practices and lessons to be shared with EDC and other subrecipients (if applicable) for overall program enhancement and learning
  2. Ability to bring expertise to the project that may not be available otherwise
  3. Sustainability strategy is well stated and relevant
Appendix 1
Budget Template
Use Separate Excel Sheet sent with these guidelines.

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