The U.S. Department of State’s U.S.-Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI) seeks to reduce economic barriers to women in the MENA region and boost their ability to participate in the political process. Applications must address only one of the two priority areas, which are:

Priority Area A: Strengthening Women’s Political Leadership and Effectiveness                                                                                             Applicants should work with female political leaders, advocacy groups, elected officials or policymakers to strengthen their skills, influence and effectiveness. Applicants can focus on, but are not limited to:

  • Improving constituent relations and outreach
  • Enhancing and expanding women’s role in political parties
  • Making party governance more inclusive
  • Establishing women’s coalitions across political lines
  • Augmenting public advocacy, negotiation and media skills of female leaders

Priority Area B: Advocacy for Legislative Reforms to Reduce Economic Constraints for Women                                                                     Applicants should increase women’s economic opportunities, inclusion and prosperity through locally led advocacy campaigns. Proposals can include, but are not limited to:

  • Reforming constraints to the establishment of women operated and owned businesses
  • Ensuring tax rates and employment laws apply to both genders equally
  • Calling for equal treatment of women in inheritance matters
  • Pressing for labor laws that give equal pay for equal work
  • Addressing harassment of women in the workplace

Successful applications in both areas must explain how their project fills a gap in their selected area, propose at least one concrete partnership with a local organization and improve the lives of women in both rural and urban areas. Awards are estimated to range between $250,000 and $1.5 million, with a project period of 12-36 months. Applications are due April 22, 2013. For more information, see the link below: