GCDD Announces New NoFA for COVID Vaccine Access

21FEDCOVID-2: Vaccine Access for Individuals with Disabilities

Through this Notice of Funds Available, the Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities (GCDD) seeks to support local and statewide efforts that result in increased access to COVID-19 vaccines for people with disabilities. Grant projects funded through this open call for proposals must be used for organizing and conducting culturally and linguistically competent outreach, education, and/or vaccination events and providing needed supports for people with disabilities, including individuals with diverse identities and/or individuals who are underserved. Grant projects may also indirectly benefit individuals with disabilities by targeting other groups such as family members of people with disabilities, direct support workers/providers, personal care attendants, and other support staff.

Grant amount is $75,000. Applications for this grant are due by October 22, 2021. This notice was posted on September 21, 2021. The start date is November 15, 2021 and the end date is September 15, 2022.

Objectives and Target Population:

Projects should also be designed to build capacity, by expanding and improving the ability of individuals with DD, their families and support networks, to promote and enhance self-determination, independence, productivity, and integration and inclusion in all facets of community life.

Proposed projects must focus on the ability of people with disabilities, in particular, to access COVID-19 vaccines. Submissions may also choose to support the ability of their support networks, as a secondary target population, to access COVID-19 vaccines.

Projects that will be Considered for Funding

Background: People with disabilities may have an increased risk for contracting COVID-19 based on where they live and/or the services they receive. People with disabilities may require close contact with direct service providers, including personal care attendants or other support staff. Additionally, many people with disabilities may have underlying health conditions that increases the risk of severe illness due to COVID-19. It is therefore critical that people with disabilities have access to the COVID-19 vaccine and associated resources.

Barriers to information about COVID-19 vaccines and access to the vaccines can vary depending on where a person lives in Virginia and other individual factors, such as available natural supports, access to the internet, accessibility of the information, and mobility. Additionally, some people with disabilities may be hesitant to get the vaccine because they are afraid of needles or need a sensory friendly environment. According to a survey conducted in March – April 2021 by the American Association on Health & Disability, people with disabilities are also hesitant to get the vaccine due to concerns about how the vaccine would interact with their underlying health conditions.

Funding provided through this RFP can be used to support time, supplies (including sensory and other support needs), provision of transportation or other supports to access vaccines, marketing materials, developing accessible information1 (preferred language, plain language), non-cash stipends to participants in exchange for proof of vaccination, etc. An example of an allowable participant stipend would be a $10 or $25 gift card in exchange for taking someone to be vaccinated and sharing a picture or taking a survey on why they got vaccinated, or a stipend for a person with a disability or family member to share their vaccination story during an outreach or educational event.

Schedule of Events

This Request for Proposals will be governed by the following schedule:
• September 22, 2021 RFP posted on DD Suite and GCDD Website
• October 6, 2021 Deadline for Written Questions
• October 22, 2021 Applications Due in DD Suite by 11:59 PM
• October 22 - November 5, 2021 Application Review and Evaluation
• November 8, 2021 Finalist Notified, Notice of Intent to Award Posted
• November 8-14, 2021 Contract Negotiations with assigned program staff
• November 15, 2021 - Earliest Start Date

Eligibility & Requirements

Applications must be submitted online via https://www.ddsuite.org, prior to the published deadline. No hard copies will be accepted. Applicants must have or create a DD Suite user account and an organization account in order to submit an application. Go to https://www.ddsuite.org and click on "HELP TAB" for detailed instructions on creating DD Suite user and organization accounts.

Proposal applications must be received electronically in the DD Suite system by Midnight EST on or before the due dates listed in the above. Late submissions will not be accepted for any reason. The Work Plan must demonstrate how the proposed objectives and activities align with the reporting requirements described in the “Grantee reporting” section such as number and type of people served, and the number and type of people vaccinated as a result of the project.

Applicants must submit a completed and signed Federal W-9 with their application. Upload the form in DD Suite as an attachment. See attachment section.

There will be no debriefing for applicants who are not selected. All applicants who respond to this NOFA will be notified of the outcome of their application (awarded, application modifications requested, or denied) by email through DD Suite.

Restrictions on Communication

Applicants are restricted from communicating with GCDD staff and Council members during the competitive NoFA process (on matters concerning this NoFA). All questions concerning this NoFA must be submitted in writing by email to . Only written questions will be accepted. No response other than written will be binding upon the State.

All questions about this NoFA must be submitted in the following format:
Organization/Individual Name
1. Question
    Citation of relevant section of the NoFA
2. Question
    Citation of relevant section of the NoFA

The DD Council

The Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities (GCDD), is one of 56 entities of its type in the United States and territories that report to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the Administration for Community Living. It is authorized under Public Law 106-402, the Developmental Disabilities Assistance and Bill of Rights Act Amendments of 2000.

Our activities are governed by a 27-member board, appointed by the Governor and comprised of at least 60 percent individuals with developmental disabilities and family members. Other members include policymakers that represent various agencies and organizations having a vested interested in persons with developmental disabilities.

GCDD serves as an advocate for all persons with developmental disabilities. We are charged with creating systems change for people with developmental disabilities and their families by increasing opportunities for independence, inclusion, integration, productivity and self-determination. Activities include public policy research and analysis, reform, project demonstrations, education and training.

The GCDD is a state agency, attached to the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities (DBHDD) for administrative purposes.

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