U.S. Embassy offers $1.5 million in grants

The U.S. Embassy announced that it is prepared to give $1.5 million to organizations that want to strengthen institutions to counter the effects of organized crime, up hold the rule of law, and protect human rights.

Application is not for amateurs. The grant requirements on the embassy webpage run to nearly 8,000 words.

This is another project using money from the Central America Regional Security Initiative, the program that has lavished millions in police and military equipment on Costa Rica as well as armored vehicles, patrol boats, coast guard stations and similar.

The embassy said the plan calls for issuing five grants not to exceed $1.5 million at the start of next U.S. fiscal year. That means the entire plan is subject to the budget cuts that the Donald Trump administration has presented to Congress for next year. However, the White House has appeared friendly to continuing the war on drugs.

The embassy announcement said that institution building is coupled with both prevention projects that dissuade at-risk youth from turning to crime and gangs and community policing projects that engage local communities on citizen security issues.

More specifically, the embassy announcement said: “Proposals should be oriented toward activities by civil society organizations working to improve, expand or complement the delivery of government services, particularly to vulnerable and/or marginalized communities and in areas outside of the Central Valley in an effort to help create strong, capable, and accountable governments.  Examples of potential activities include, but are not limited to, projects intended to improve the provision of government services, and projects that will improve the capacity of government transparency and e-government initiatives.”

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