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Grant Opportunity: AWE 2022 Statements of Interest
October 29, 2021

U.S. Embassy Malta’s Specific Notice for Statements of Interest on Academy for Women Entrepreneurs 2022:


What is the Academy for Women Entrepreneurs (AWE)? 

The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) launched the Academy for Women Entrepreneurs (AWE) in 2019 (https://eca.state.gov/awe), a program and an educational opportunity that provides prospective women entrepreneurs and early-stage business owners with the skills, resources, and networks needed to start and scale successful businesses.

AWE supports the U.S. Department of State’s goal to advance women’s economic empowerment globally and U.S. Embassy Malta’s local #BreaktheGlass initiative.  U.S. Embassy Malta implemented AWE in Malta for the first time in 2021.

Through AWE, emerging businesswomen participate in a facilitated Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) for entrepreneurship and business skills training, supplemented with localized content as well as networking and mentorship opportunities.  One MOOC that AWE utilizes is DreamBuilder (https://dreambuilder.org/), which comprises thirteen online modules covering the basics of starting a business and includes relevant topic areas, such as marketing, finance, and accounting (https://dreambuilder.org/programs/).  The course also includes testimonials from successful entrepreneurs who share their challenges and lessons learned from starting a business.  DreamBuilder was created through a partnership between Arizona State University’s Thunderbird School of Global Management and global copper mining company Freeport-McMoRan.

AWE also allows for a flexible framework that enables U.S. Embassies and Consulates around the world and their implementing partners to customize their programs and supplement DreamBuilder coursework with localized sessions.  This additional content should address country-specific topics relevant to the local entrepreneurial and business environment through additional engagements (e.g., speed mentoring, influencer talks, pitch competitions, conferences/forums).  With the support of U.S. Embassy Malta, localized content should include participation from AWE in Malta 2021 graduates and alumni from other U.S. Embassy Malta’s entrepreneurship programs.  These individuals can mentor and further impact AWE participants.

Key Objectives: 

–  To provide women entrepreneurs with the skills and resources needed to start and scale successful businesses through U.S-style online training with local guided facilitation.

– To foster networks that support the participants’ access to peer-to-peer mentorship, business partners, and scaling opportunities with businesses in the region.

AWE 2022 Timeline:

November 2021-January 2022  
  • By November 8, 2021, interested parties submit Statement of Interest to U.S. Embassy Malta: usembmalta@state.gov.
  • In November/December, U.S. Embassies and Consulates in 75+ countries submit AWE 2022 program proposals and budgets to ECA.
  • ECA evaluates proposals and budgets, communicating funding approval to U.S. Embassies and Consulates by January 31, 2022.
February-March 2022
  • ECA trains U.S. Embassy and Consulate representatives and AWE implementers and facilitators, including through best practices and guidance on recruiting AWE participants.
  • Teams finalize their AWE 2022 implementation plans and recruit women participants.
April-December 2022  
  • AWE teams implement AWE 2022 programs.
  • AWE participants graduate.
  • ECA collects monitoring and evaluation data from S. Embassies and Consulates, implementing partners, and facilitators.

What is U.S. Embassy Malta looking for? 

We are seeking an implementing partner (university, NGO, incubator, etc.) to support AWE in Malta from development through graduation.  This implementing partner will develop the AWE in Malta 2022 program, including identifying 15 to 30 prospective women entrepreneurs and early-stage business owners who will receive the AWE training and the facilitators who will guide these participants through the DreamBuilder coursework and deliver localized training.  Facilitators should understand the local entrepreneurial environment and supplement the course as discussion leaders and guides.  Participants should be women aged approximately 25 or over who are aspiring to start a business or who have recently started a business.  They must commit to the entire course of training.  The implementing partner will serve as a liaison with the embassy and AWE stakeholders, leading implementation, facilitating communication with all participants, encouraging the successful completion of the program by participants, monitoring and reporting on progress, promoting the program with the public, and amplifying the core goals of the initiative and the U.S. Embassy in supporting women, private enterprise, and economic prosperity in Malta.

What we need to know from you for you to be considered as implementing partner: 

  • Name of organization
  • Brief background of organization
  • Projected number of facilitators and their qualifications
  • Projected number of women participants and their general business profile (owners vs nonbusiness owners, levels of education, etc.)
  • Describe how you will recruit and select the women participants
  • List any local partners (NGOs, private sector, government) and describe how they will augment the experience for participants
  • Describe what country-specific sessions you will include in the course schedule to supplement the DreamBuilder modules, including components that engage U.S. Embassy Malta alumni (U.S. Embassy Malta will assist in identifying alumni from U.S. government exchange programs)
    Include the timeline of the training schedule
  • Where and how the training sessions will take place (online or in-person)
  • Describe how you will monitor progress and communicate with the women participants
  • Describe your communication plan and how you will promote the program and the partnership with U.S. Embassy Malta
  • Include the budget, listing program categories (e.g., rental of premises, promotional materials, honoraria to facilitators, seed money, social media publicity etc.)

Please send your Statement of Interest to:  usembmalta@state.gov

Deadline:  Thursday, November 11, 2021 (Deadline is extended.  New deadline is Monday, November 22, 2021)


(Note: U.S. Embassy Malta’s General Public Notice for Statements of Interest – https://mt.usembassy.gov/grant-opportunity-2020-2021-statement-of-interest/)