Digital Storytelling Training – Open call for proposals

U.S. Embassy to Italy

Call for Proposals
Digital Storytelling Training Workshops at the
American Corner Trieste
American Corner YouLab Pistoia


The U.S. Embassy to Italy announces an open competition for past participants (“Alumni”) of U.S. government-funded and U.S. government-sponsored exchange programs to submit applications to the call for proposals for Digital Storytelling Training Workshops. We seek proposals from Alumni that meet all program eligibility requirements below. Exchange alumni interested in participating in should submit proposals filling this form by Nov.10th, 2023.


The American Spaces and Alumni Engagement Program provide alumni of U.S. sponsored and facilitated exchange programs with funding to expand on skills gained during their exchange experience, to design and implement innovative solutions to global challenges facing the community of the American Corners YouLab Pistoia and American Corner Trieste.
The U.S. Embassy to Italy will accept public service projects proposed and managed by Alumni that focus on teaching the art of Digital Storytelling. The projects will be implemented either in the American Corner YouLab Pistoia or in the American Corner Trieste.

Announcement posted: 09/30/2023
Closing date for applications: 11/10/2023
Funding type: small grant awards
Decision date: no later than 11/30/2023

Expected size of individual awards:  Between $5,000 to $10,000

Program Performance Period: Proposed programs should be completed in 12 months or less, starting by January 15, 2024, and finishing by June 15, 2024.


Eligible Applicants
  • Applicants must be alumni of a U.S. government-funded exchange program (, or a U.S. government-sponsored exchange program (
  • Alumni who are U.S. citizens may not submit proposals, but U.S. citizen alumni may participate as team members in a project.
  • Alumni teams may be comprised of alumni from different exchange programs and different countries.
  • Applications must be submitted by exchange alumni. Not-for-profit, non-governmental organizations, think tanks, and academic institutions are not eligible to apply in the name of the organization but can serve as partners for implementing project activities.
  • Each applicant can present one proposal, to be implemented either at the American Corner Trieste, or at the American Corner YouLab Pistoia.
Cost Sharing

Inclusion of cost share is not a requirement of this opportunity.

Program Area

Proposals must address American Spaces and Alumni Engagement: To improve collaboration between the Alumni community and the American Spaces, the U.S. Embassy to Italy is accepting proposals from the Alumni Community for digital storytelling training workshops to be held at American Corner Trieste and/or at the American Corner YouLab Pistoia.  The primary goal of the training workshops will be to give participants the necessary technical and narrative tools to produce short multimedia stories (typically videos that combine a variety of media, such as audio, images, and videoclips, but also social media elements, interactive elements, infographics, etc.) about second-generation Italians, immigrants and refugees/in the areas of Trieste and Pistoia.  The digital stories will convey challenging or successful stories of inclusion; how second-generations Italians are perceived, how they see themselves, and how they interact in their communities.  The main target audience of the training workshops will be high-school and university students.  All project activities must take place in collaboration with and under the supervision of the American Corner Trieste and the American Corner YouLab Pistoia.  Proposals that do not address the theme as outlined above will be deemed ineligible.



The application form is available at

The budget template is available at here

Content and Form of Application Submission

Please follow all instructions below carefully. Proposals that do not meet the requirements of this announcement or fail to comply with the stated requirements will be ineligible.
Please ensure:

  • The proposal clearly addresses the goals and objectives of this funding opportunity
  • All documents are in English
  • The budget is in U.S. dollars and is submitted using the designated budget form




Evaluation Criteria
The U.S. Embassy to Italy, the American Corner Trieste and the American Corner YouLab Pistoia will use the criteria outlined below to review and evaluate all applications.

Relevance to Application Theme
The proposal provides sufficient information on how the activities will support the theme(s) of the competition. The narrative explains any relevant local context the D.C. Selection Committee may not be aware of in relation to this project.  Proposed project ideas must be public diplomacy in nature (i.e. not development or military).

Purpose and Summary, Description, and Implementation Plan
When developing the purpose, summary, description, and implementation plan, applicants should aim to make all descriptions clear, concise, and compelling.  Reviewers will judge the proposals based on the likelihood for the project to exert a sustained, powerful influence on the community where it is undertaken.  Does the project address an important gap of understanding or need?  If the aim of the project is achieved, how will existing knowledge or practice be improved?  What audience do the applicants hope to reach with this project?  How many will participate?  How will they be selected?

Participation and Support from Local Partners
The proposal demonstrates buy-in and support from the community where the project will take place. Local partner involvement is a strong sign that there is community support and that the project will engage a broad array of experts, such as subject matter experts, community centers, academic institutions, businesses, local/national government, non-governmental organizations, American Spaces, etc.

Evaluation and Impact of the Project 
A monitoring & evaluation (M&E) plan is pivotal to project implementation and important tracking progress towards the project’s objectives and goals.  An M&E plan should consider the data needed to effectively monitor progress toward specific outputs and outcomes as well as how that data collection will be accomplished.  Well-crafted indicators should be used to understand a program’s progress toward the desired results.  An M&E plan should be reviewed for the following:

  • Completion
  • Applicability and logic of objectives and indicators
  • Clear approach to monitoring
  • Adherence to SMART criteria (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-Bound)
  • Feasibility of baselines and targets
  • Data quality plan
  • Capacity to implement plan

Communication, Media, and Outreach Plan
The project should include a clear plan and timeline for how and when the team will share information about the project.  It is important to ensure that the U.S. Embassy gets recognition throughout the process, if circumstances permit.

Budget and Budget Narrative
The budget and narrative justification are sufficiently detailed. Costs are reasonable in relation to the proposed activities and anticipated results.  The budget is realistic, accounting for all necessary expenses to achieve proposed activities.  The results and proposed outcomes justify the total cost of the project.  Budget items are reasonable, allowable, and allocable.

: This notice is subject to availability of funding. The U.S. Embassy to Italy does not guarantee availability of funding by receiving applications under this announcement. Only successful applicants will be contacted.



Recipients will be required to submit financial reports and program reports.


Questions about the grant application process should be directed to: Raissa Brighi at