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JAMS Mini-Grant 2019
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Program Overview

The JAMS Foundation and National Association for Community Mediation (NAFCM) are pleased to announce the sixth Community Mediation Mini-Grant Program (“Program”). Prison Re-entry and Re-integration: This is an opportunity to focus on conflict related to employment, education, family and community involvement for those who are recently released or scheduled to be released from the criminal justice system. These services should be able to be replicated by community mediators as a path for sustainability and growth for the field of community mediation, as well as to inform the development of training, evidence-based strategies, policy and research at the national level as well.

The Mini-Grant Program is designed to encourage creativity and variation based on research. Service strategies will be developed through the implementation of the “Listening for Action” Leadership Process and strengthened by at least one policy or procedure change developed and locally implemented over a two-year period. Mini-grant recipients will work together throughout the grant period anchored in the Learning Community. The Learning Community is a structured and collaborative peer working group facilitated by NAFCM. This structure serves as an incubator for innovation by aiding in the development of “good practices.” All written materials developed through these grants will be shared with community mediation centers and mediators across the continent. By distributing these materials, sharing programmatic resources, providing training, and developing national partnerships, NAFCM supports the replication of these service models and ensures the Program’s impact on an international level.

The learning community will meet twice a month for the first five months, and monthly thereafter using a specified on-line meeting platform. This community will follow the “Listening for Action” structured guidance offered by NAFCM that is intended to strengthen the unique work of each project as well as create an executive learning environment that allows the members to grow both individually and professionally.

2019 Solicitation of Interest (SI) Overview

Frequently Asked Questions (SI)

Frequently Asked Questions (RFP)

The 2019 Program selection process has two distinct phases.

Phase 1 begins with the release of this 2019 Solicitation of Interest (SI) protocol. This phase is open to any organization which works to incorporate the 9 NAFCM Hallmarks of Community Mediation and believes that this funding and technical assistance support opportunity is a good fit for the needs of their work and those with whom they work.

A community mediation center is an entity that works to achieve the following nine hallmarks of a community mediation center:

  1. A private non-profit or public agency or program thereof, with mediators, staff and governing/advisory board representative of the diversity of the community served.
  2. The use of trained community volunteers as providers of mediation services; the practice of mediation is open to all persons.
  3. Providing direct access to the public through self¬-referral and striving to reduce barriers to service including physical, linguistic, cultural, programmatic and economic.
  4. Providing service to clients regardless of their ability to pay.
  5. Providing service and hiring without discrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, gender, age, disabilities, national origin, marital status, personal appearance, gender orientation, family responsibilities, matriculation, political affiliation, source of income.
  6. Providing a forum for dispute resolution at the earliest stage of conflict.
  7. Providing an alternative to the judicial system at any stage of a conflict.
  8. Initiating, facilitating and educating for collaborative community relationships to effect positive systemic change.
  9. Engaging in public awareness and educational activities about the values and practices of mediation.

Phase 2 begins in May 2019 and is open only to those who submitted a SI during the prior phase and have been invited to submit a full proposal.

This 2019 Mini-Grant Program is for those Community Mediation Centers wishing to enhance or expand their present mediation services to include services that support prison re-entry and re-integration.

2019 Submission of Interest (SI)

Community mediation is community mobilization. Together, both nationally and locally, we must aggregate the wisdom of our work, amplify the voice of community members so each can be heard, and advance the transformative value of community mediation. To live out this mission, the selected Mini-Grant participants will participate in a learning community as described above.

Grants will be awarded by August 31st, 2019 for an initial twelve-month funding period and are renewable for an additional year of funding by the agreement of the Mini-Grant recipient, NAFCM, and the JAMS Foundation. Funding is intended primarily for staff time dedicated to program development activities, including participation in the learning community and the development of source materials.

There are two priority considerations in the Solicitation of Interest (SI)

Priority will be given to projects that, in addition to assisting individuals who are encountering conflict in such areas as employment or housing or education or domestic relations,


  • also seeks to develop collaborative community relationships to effect positive systemic change in regard to prisoner re-entry and re-integration (Hallmark 8); and,
  • also works to engage in public awareness and educational activities about the values of using community mediation for prisoner re-entry and re-integration (Hallmark 9).

Funding Parameters and Criteria for the 2019 Funding Cycle

  • Mini-Grants of $12,000 a year will be awarded to up to five organizations to be used as incentive funds to support the expansion of the Center’s work with issues confronted by former prisoners in the areas of employment, housing, domestic relations or education.
  • The funding for the projects may be up to two-years, but decisions on funding for a second year will be contingent on evidence of benchmark accomplishments at the end of the first year of funding.
  • Preference for funding is given to those applicants who have previously demonstrated an ability to bring projects to a level of scalability and sustainability.
  • Eligible organizations include nonprofit 501(c)3 organizations, educational institutions, and public or for-profit agencies working in conjunction with nonprofit institutions or organizations.

Funding Project Process Step 1 – Open to all now until April 2nd, 2019

  • Interested organizations are required to submit a 1-3-page Solicitation of Interest (SI) (using the guidelines on the following page) to NAFCM no later than 11:59 PM local time of the organization’s legal/main location, April 2nd, 2019 to
  • An informational conference call will be held on March 19th, 2019 at 4:00 PM Eastern Time. There is a limited number of spaces for this teleconference. To obtain the link for the conference please send a notice of interest to NAFCM at

Funding Project Process Step 2 – By invitation only

  • The NAFCM Grant review committee will notify applicants if they have been selected to develop a full proposal by May 1st, 2019. An RFP review webinar will be offered on May 7th, 2019 at 4:00 PM Eastern Time. The link for attendance will be sent to those applicants who are invited to submit a full proposal.
  • Full proposals (with a required application protocol provided upon notification) will be due to the NAFCM Grant review committee no later than 11:59 PM local time of the organization’s legal/main location on Monday, June 17th, 2019.
  • Notifications of the final decision will be made by August 31st, 2019.

Please address questions about grant program to D.G. Mawn, President, NAFCM, at

Solicitation of Interest (SI) Response


Proposal Descriptions must be submitted online. The subject line of the email must read: JAMS Foundation/NAFCM Grant – [Organization Name]. Applications must be submitted electronically by 11:59 p.m., local time of applicant on April 2nd, 2019 to

Cover letter: In the body of the email, please provide only the following information:

Include the following information about the submission:

  • the name and street address of the Community Mediation Center;
  • the website of the Community Mediation Center; and,
  • contact person for this submission including their name, email address and phone number.

The body of the email must also include the following language:

I commit that if we are invited to submit a full proposal, we agree to meet the following requirements:

  1. Identify one team member who will be responsible for the implementation of the Mini-Grant and who will participate in monthly Learning Community calls and web-based meetings.
  2. Implement program development activities including but not limited to:
    1. Reviewing research and past programmatic materials developed in the field;
    2. Conducting local needs assessment;
    3. Developing stakeholder and referral source relationships;
    4. Developing and implementing pilot programming and evaluation strategies;
    5. Training mediators; and,
    6. Cultivating local funding sources with a focus on sustaining the effort post JAMS Foundation/NAFCM funding.
  3. Assist in the development of program materials that will be shared with community mediation centers and mediators, including at least one NAFCM hosted webinar.
  4. Assist NAFCM in presenting at local, regional, and national ADR conferences and/or other on-line trainings.
  5. Maintain, or be working toward meeting, NAFCM’s hallmarks of a community mediation center.
  6. Maintain a NAFCM membership for the duration of the funding period.

The Proposal attached in Word

The proposed project description shall be no more than three pages, single spaced, 12-point font, 1-inch margins. The application must be submitted as a Microsoft Word document. Pages should be numbered consecutively from beginning to end so that information can be located easily during the review of the application. The information provided in your application must be sufficient for review. Following these guidelines will help ensure your application is complete, and will assist in the review of your application. Do not include any grids or charts.

In the body of the Proposal, please provide in no more than three pages the following information:

Applicant Information:

  1. Name and street address of the applicant;
  2. Contact Person (and necessary contact information) for this proposal; and,
  3. The applicants previous work living out the call of the 1964 Civil Rights Act to aid communities and individuals in resolving disputes, disagreements or difficulties relating to practices that impair the rights of persons in their communities and thereby threatening peaceful relations among them. (not to exceed 300 words).

Project Description:

  1. Describe the population to be served, the applicant’s access to that population and the issue the applicant will address that will help to meet the need of the described population. Please also provide a description of how you either already have access to those recently released or about to be released from the criminal justice system or will gain access to this population.
  2. Describe the nature of the proposed project and the need for this project (what are salient intended impacts and the important benefits to be obtained if the project is funded). Please reference in your response how this would help to embed Hallmark 8 and Hallmark 9.
  3. Describe the strengths of your agency and partner agencies if appropriate to address what you presented as responses to the first two questions.
  4. Discuss what benefits your agency in particular will hope to obtain from the participation in the NAFCM learning community as described herein or as you may otherwise know about the NAFCM learning community.

Questions regarding this Program and this SI can be directed to D.G. Mawn at

Please be aware that applications that do not include all of the above requirements are considered incomplete. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed for consideration.

Please also make sure that your proposal is clearly connected with prison re-entry and re-integration, the focus of this year’s Mini-Grant funding.

We look forward to your response to this Solicitation of Interest (SI).

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