Friday, August 22, 2008

Implementing Guidelines Project Review, Screening and Approval

THE PONDO NG PINOY COMMUNITY FOUNDATION, INC.


Pondo ng Pinoy is both a Movement and a Community Foundation. As a movement, Pondo ng Pinoy aims to develop a Filipino culture rooted more deeply in love of God and neighbor, especially the poor, through little but repeated acts of compassion, solidarity and sharing, symbolized by the daily giving of 25 centavos. As a Community Foundation, Pondo ng Pinoy is tasked to manage the funds that will be accumulated from the daily contributions of people. These funds and whatever revenues may be gained from investing these funds shall be used solely to support socio-economic development programs or projects to be implemented for the Class D & E population in participating dioceses.

GENERAL POLICY GUIDELINES

1. Processing and approval of proposals shall be based primarily on need and availability of funds. Nonetheless, the Board shall formulate policies to rationalize allocation of funds per Diocese.

2. The Central Office shall process only proposals approved or endorsed by the bishop/s and priest/s of the site where the project shall be implemented. Proposals should be submitted to the Central Office quarterly.

3. Dioceses, the Diocesan Projects Review and Screening Committee of the PnP Desks in particular, and parishes shall be involved in the screening and evaluation of all proposals.

4. The Diocesan PnP Desks are given authority to approve project proposals up to PESOS: THREE HUNDRED THOUSAND (P300,000.00).

5. The Central Office shall respect existing systems, policies (criteria for assistance) and procedures of Dioceses in approving or recommending projects for approval. Nonetheless, these systems, policies and procedures shall be assessed by the Central Office for compatibility with the priorities and standards set by the Foundation. If necessary, Dioceses should be willing to adjust its systems, policies and procedures insofar as projects for PnP funding are concerned.

6. The Central Office shall disburse all financial support to approved proposals through the Diocesan PnP Desk, except for inter-diocesan projects, the funds for which shall be disbursed directly to the proponent; the Dioceses shall be advised on funds directly released to proponents. Release of funds shall be subject to Memoranda of Agreement executed between the proponent and the Central Office and/or the Diocesan PnP Desk

7. Dioceses should be willing to open a separate bank account and establish separate books of accounts for funds to be released by the Central Office.

8. The PnP Desk shall be responsible for reporting to the Central Office on the status of Diocesan-approved projects and how funds were used. The Bishop shall note all proponents’ reports on Diocesan-endorsed projects approved by the Central Projects Review and Screening Committee. Such notation presumes that these reports have been validated by the PnP Desk. All records/ documents pertinent to funds released and projects being assisted should be made available to the Central Office at all times.

9. All funded projects shall be subject to periodic and annual external financial, compliance, management and project-end social audit. The Central Office can withdraw or terminate its assistance at any time should the project proponent, after due process, is proven to have violated the terms and conditions of the assistance and to have failed to act on monitoring and audit findings.

POLICY OF ASSISTANCE

Project Types

The Foundation shall favor development-oriented programs or projects, poor families or communities can tangibly benefit from within three months-one year of project implementation. These programs or projects should:

1. Respond to the problems of poverty and deprivation;

2. Be viable, sustainable and replicable;

3. Have strong community participation;

4. With specific and measurable results;

5. Environment-friendly and gender-sensitive;

6. Build on the experience of the proponent in delivering the intended results.

Initially, programs or projects related to the following will be given priority:

1. Micro-finance - involves individual and group lending for livelihood or enterprise development.

2. Micro-enterprise – involves projects that could generate employment and income for the poor.

3. Housing- provides decent housing to poor families who have acquired security of land tenure but are unable to meet housing construction needs. Should funds be available, bridge-financing for land acquisition or purchase may also be considered.

4. Education- assistance to poor students to acquire formal education or to adults, to increase or enhance their skills for gainful employment or start a business enterprise.

5. Health- programs or projects designed for improved and sustained health condition in poor communities.

Priority Project Sites

Financial assistance shall be limited to programs or projects that will benefit the poor in the fourteen dioceses participating in the Pondo ng Pinoy. These dioceses are as follows:

1. Archdiocese of Manila

2. Diocese of Antipolo

3. Diocese of Cubao

4. Diocese of Daet

5. Diocese of Imus

6. Diocese of Kalookan

7. Diocese of Malolos

8. Diocese of Novaliches

9. Diocese of Parañaque

10. Diocese of Pasig

11. Diocese of San Pablo

12. Apostolic Vicariate of Puerto Princesa

13. Apostolic Vicariate of Taytay

14. Military Ordinariate

Project Proponent

Project proponents must be non-profit organizations such as social action centers, parish social service and development ministries, church-mandated organizations involved with the poor, parish cooperatives and other non-government and people’s organizations. The project proponent must also possess the following:

1. Capability to manage and implement proposed projects as proven by their track record and experience of at least two years in similar development projects.

2. Sound and functional management system as indicated by the presence of financial records and books of accounts, audited financial reports, set of financial systems, policies and procedures.

3. Clear vision-mission-goals as well as management structures and strong organizational leadership.

4. Credibility with the beneficiary community or organization.

5. Endorsed by the Bishop/parish priest of the site where the project will be implemented. If the project is to be implemented across parishes and/or dioceses, all the Bishops and parish priests of the sites involved should endorse the project.

Project proponents unable to fully meet the above requirements will still be considered for as long as the proponents are credible and can present strong proof of need for the project, are willing to be trained on skills that may be identified by the Central Office and accept technical assistance from organizations to be assigned by the PnP Desk or the Central Office.

Terms of Funding

PnPCF assistance shall be given either as loans or grants. It shall cover only direct project costs. Direct project costs refer to direct materials and labor to be incurred or revolving fund for lending to be used in providing the service or product to the community or sector. Institutional costs, e.g. salaries, staff development, equipment, and other management and overhead expenses, shall form part of the proponent’s counterpart.

A set of policies for assistance shall be formulated by the BOT for start up projects that may need assistance beyond direct project costs. Funds for training and formation needs of projects shall be considered on a case-to-case basis.

Technical assistance needs of supported projects or funding requirements of proposals exceeding the limits to be set by BOT shall be referred by the Central Office to its partner-organizations.

Submission of Proposals

A project proposal must be submitted by a qualified proponent endorsed by the parish priest, if for approval of the PnP Desk, and the Bishop of the community where the project will be implemented if for approval of the Central Office. Furthermore, projects requiring financial assistance of more than P100,000.00 should also be accompanied by the following:

Organization-related documents

1. Notarized Board Resolution or Pastoral Council Resolution, if the proponent-implementor is the Parish or the Diocese, indicating the following:

a. Intent of the organization to secure financial assistance from the Foundation.

b. Commitment to safeguard and properly use the Foundation’s financial assistance and to make available at all times their books of accounts and other documents pertinent to the supported project

c. Assignment of project assets in case of default in payment in the case of loans.

d. Willingness to participate in trainings and formations that may be required by the Central Office and to undertake all other necessary activities to improve projects implementation

e. Names of at least two authorized representatives who will sign all documents pertaining to the project

2. Copy of SEC registration. Copy of PCNC/CDA/DSWD registration/accreditation for proposals involving financial assistance of P500,000 and above

3. Copy of proponent’s Articles of Incorporation and By-Laws

4. Audited Financial Statements of Proponent for the last two years

5. Curriculum Vitae of the officers and management staff of the organization.

Requirement #s 2-4 are not applicable to proposals originating from the Parish or the Diocese.

Project-related documents

1. Location map showing project sites/areas

2. Detailed financial schedules of proposed budget, projected income statements, cash flow (including notes and assumptions). If project will be implemented across Parishes or Dioceses, the proposed budget should be broken down according to project sites.

Project-specific documents

1. Business Plan (if project is an enterprise)

2. Guidelines for Revolving Credit Funds (if applicable)

3. Documents showing proof of approved funding (if the project will use counterpart funds from other donors)

4. Plan, drawings, specifications for infrastructure, machinery and equipment, etc. (if applicable)

5. Training Design (if applicable)

It is important that the proposal discuss the issues of poverty in the community and how these are addressed by the proposed project. Guidelines for packaging a proposal according to the Foundation’s requirements shall be made available to interested proponents. Incomplete proposals shall be returned to the PnP Desk for completion by concerned proponents.

Proposals should be received by the Central Office two weeks before the end of a quarter to facilitate processing and release of funds at the beginning of the following quarter. Proposals received after the cut-off period shall be processed together with proposals received in the next quarter.

Processing of the Proposal

All proposals must undergo a screening and evaluation process.

1. Proposals originating from organizations at the parish level shall be pre-screened by an office or committee duly designated by the parish. All pre-qualified proposals together with all supporting documents shall then be endorsed by the Parish Priest to the PnP Desk for final screening and approval (or disapproval) or for further screening and endorsement to the Central Office in case of projects involving costs beyond P300,000.00 .

2. The PnP Desk shall then notify the Central Office in writing regarding approval of projects supported by a list and profile of projects approved to facilitate release of funds subject to the policy on cut-off for submitting proposals.

3. Each project involving costs beyond P300,000 shall be covered by an endorsement letter from the Bishop stating merits for endorsing the project. The endorsement letter should be sent to the Central Office together with all supporting documents.

4. The Central Projects Review and Screening Committee shall undertake final screening, evaluation and approval of projects involving costs beyond P300,000 but not to exceed P1 million. Projects requiring financial assistance of more than P1million shall be recommended by the Central Projects Review and Screening Committee to the Board of Trustees or the Board Executive Committee for decision.

5. The higher the amount involved, the more stringent the Central Office screening process will be. Additional information may be required by the Central Office to satisfy screening and evaluation requirements. Other professional development practitioners from the Diocese where the proposal originated may be tapped to further validate information contained in the proposal or provide feedback on the proposal.

The duration of the process from the Parish to the Diocesan will depend on circumstances obtaining in the Diocese such as efficiency of existing communication systems. Processing by the Central Office however should not take more than two months.

Release of Financial Assistance

1. All funds for approved projects shall be released to the PnP Account of the Diocese within two weeks upon receipt of notification letter or approval of proposals by the Central Office. The Dioceses shall be notified should there be any delay in the release of funds.

2. Initial release of funds to the PnP Desk shall be subject to a bank certification that an account has been opened to be used exclusively for transactions involving the Central Office’s funds.

3. It is strongly recommended that the PnP Desk release funds following the timeframe of critical activities or projected cash flow as per approved project proposal. The Central Office also requires that release of financial assistance be subject to the following:

a. Signed Memorandum of Agreement between and among all parties concerned.

b. A bank certification that an account has been opened by the proponent to be used exclusively for transactions involving the Foundation’s funds for projects involving P100,000 and above.

c. Separate accounting of funds in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles and standards.

4. Subsequent releases of funds shall be subject to the satisfactory performance of the project and the submission of the following:

a. Report on the use of funds.

b. Narrative report on project accomplishments vis-à-vis targets, problems encountered and what have been done in response to said problems, and plan for the next period, highlighting changes, if any.

Monitoring and Audit

1. All supported projects shall be monitored by the PnP Desk, the schedule of which shall depend on the project cycle and status of the project and the organization at the time of funding. Start up projects and projects to be implemented by proponents with less than two years experience shall be monitored more frequently.

2. All supported projects shall be required to submit quarterly progress and end-of- project narrative and financial reports to the PnP Desk. End-of-project financial reports for projects with financial support amounting to P100,000 and below should be supported by proofs of payments such as O.R.s, check vouchers, etc.

3. All projects, except those with financial support of P100,000 and below, shall be subject to an annual financial, compliance, management audit and project-end social audit to be undertaken by the Board Audit Committee.

Sanctions for Violating Terms and Conditions

The Central Office reserves the right to withdraw or terminate its assistance at any time should the proponent, after due process, is proven to have violated the terms and conditions of the assistance, as well as for failure to act on monitoring and audit findings and recommendations resulting to adverse effects on the project and project beneficiaries. The BOT shall formulate policies on sanctions for default in payment of loans.

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