Call for bids: support for British detainees overseas facing the death penalty

FCO Consular Directorate welcomes bids from organisations with relevant expertise in death penalty cases.


FCO project proposal form

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In support of our aim to deliver a consistently high quality consular service for British nationals in detention overseas, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office works in partnership with other organisations to provide specialist assistance to British prisoners in death penalty cases. This supports a long-standing UK policy to oppose the use of the death penalty in all circumstances.

There are currently 13 British nationals on death row in Africa, South Asia, Asia Pacific and the Americas.

There are 31 British nationals at risk of the death penalty in South Asia, South East Asia, the Caribbean, the Middle East and the Americas.

Proposals are invited from organisations with relevant expertise to form a partnership with the FCO to help deliver our policy aims.


To support Consular Directorate in our objective to deliver consistently high quality consular assistance for British nationals in detention overseas facing the death penalty and to work to avoid British nationals being executed.

We welcome bids from organisations that can support this aim.

Examples of appropriate support include but are not limited to: assistance in finding a local lawyer; working in partnership with local lawyers; securing expert opinions e.g. medical assessments; consultation with detainees/their families on case strategies.

Consular Directorate provides impartial support. Our partners should demonstrate how they will deliver support to British nationals consistently, ensuring that all cases receive due attention.

Proposal design

The anticipated maximum budget for this work is £110,000 per annum. Bids are welcomed for a proportion of this funding or for the total amount, dependent on whether organisations have the expertise and resources to deliver support regionally or globally.

Potential partners are encouraged to submit realistic but ambitious proposals, including where this would require a higher total amount of funding.

Proposals should identify in which countries the partner is able to deliver effective support. If an extension of existing networks could be achieved through a higher level of funding, or through dedicated staffing, this should be explained and will be considered. Funding will not, however, be provided to cover organisational overhead costs not directly attributable to the support of British nationals’ cases and the objectives of Consular Directorate.

Who can bid?

Project proposals are welcomed from organisations with experience of providing support to prisoners or defendants facing capital punishment overseas. Organisation should be in possession of all relevant licences and permits to enable delivery of the requirements in the countries where the services will be delivered.

We are looking for organisations which can demonstrate some or all of:

  • legal expertise
  • regional expertise, including knowledge of and access to local legal networks
  • experience of working with British nationals
  • experience or understanding of productive working with government
  • capacity to deliver assistance in challenging contexts

Criteria for assessing project proposals

The Board will consider projects against the following criteria:

  • Strategy, outcomes and impact:
    • Closeness of fit with Consular Directorate’s objectives
    • Co-ordination with, and support to other Foreign and Commonwealth Office human rights objectives, such as ensuring British nationals receive treatment and access to justice in line with international norms or working to set global trial, sentencing and detention standards;
    • Evidence of sustainability and scalability;
    • Past delivery of implementer;
  • Design of proposal:
    • Clarity;
    • Coherence and relevance of purpose, outputs, activities and indicators;
  • Evidence of wider stakeholder support and engagement;

  • Detailed budget breakdown and value for money;

  • Monitoring and evaluation planning to demonstrate delivery against objectives.

Guidelines for submitting a project proposal

Proposals must be submitted on the standard FCO project proposal form (ODT, 34.1KB) . These should be submitted in full and in accordance with the guidance provided. Incomplete proposal forms will not be reviewed. If any aspect of the form requirements is unclear to applicants, we strongly recommend consultation with the Prisoner Human Rights Team

Key points to note are:

  • Language used should be clear and succinct.

  • Part A should include both qualitative and quantitative milestones, which should be referenced in reporting.

  • Part B of the form should be completed by the FCO. Proposals submitted by external partners should however include annexed evidence of previous experience delivering similar projects.

  • In addition to the requirements outlined above, proposals must provide details of how the work will be monitored. Monitoring methods should be robust, transparent and include scope for beneficiary input. The methods identified should be designed to give a meaningful assessment of impact. The FCO places a strong emphasis on evaluation. Proposals for delivery valued £100,000 and over may be independently evaluated.

  • Proposals must demonstrate a full assessment of project risks. Partners should identify any risks which might apply to the project, what steps will be taken to mitigate those risks, and how risks will be reviewed during the delivery cycle. The partner must have an internal due diligence process in place to monitor these risks. Proposals will not be approved without realistic risk assessments, including duty of care to staff.

  • Projects should be budgeted in Pounds Sterling and demonstrate value for money and should be ex-VAT. Budgets should give a detailed breakdown of cost per activity per month and unit costs for staff where possible. Travel and accommodation costs incurred should be in line with FCO guidance.

  • Strong proposals will spread the cost throughout the year, avoiding where possible spend in the final quarter.

Terms of contracts

Agreements will be subject to FCO standard contract terms:

  • Payment will be made quarterly in arrears for quarters 1-3, and monthly in arrears for the final quarter.
  • The financial year runs from 1 April 2015 – 31 March 2016. We intend to contract on a yearly cycle, renewable for up to three financial years.
  • Quarterly reports should be submitted to the FCO on the standard FCO template. This should make clear how funds have been allocated to and used to support, the cases of British nationals.
  • Draft copies of our standard T and Cs are available on request


Proposals should be submitted to the FCO Prisoner Human Rights Team by 1700 GMT 06 March 2015 at


Eleanor French 0207 008 0144

Published 17 February 2015