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Federation EIL is currently seeking research proposals!


1. Summary and Background

With over 80 years of experience, Federation EIL: The Worldwide Network of the Experiment in International Living (FEIL) is currently inviting proposals from organizations and individuals within the field of international and cross-cultural education and international exchange to survey and collate best practices and information in defined areas of its activities.

The aim of this survey is to validate and inform the Federation’s plan to create worldwide standards and develop a global certification process to verify service levels of organizations operating within this field, for the benefit of both providers and users of services.

Following the receipt of proposals, FEIL will conduct a fair and extensive evaluation based on criteria listed herein, and select the organization/candidate who best meets its established evaluation criteria.

For more information about Federation EIL and its members, please see
About Federation EIL

The mission of the Federation EIL is to facilitate its member organizations in the lifelong involvement of individuals in intercultural learning experiences. This process helps develop understanding of and respect for people throughout the world:

§ Members aim to bring together people of different cultures, ages, and backgrounds for distinctive educational opportunities that encourage a more diverse participation;

§ Members seek to reduce the likelihood of intercultural conflicts;

§ Members commit to maintain and assure the highest principles and standards in all their activities;

§ Members seek to respond to a constantly changing world.

The Experiment in International Living (EIL), founded in 1932, was one of the first programs of its kind to engage individuals in intercultural living and learning. The Federation for the Experiment in International Living was started more than 60 years ago as a worldwide network of organizations that send and receive students to each other around the world. These member organizations are committed to the highest standard for exchange programs and provide the highest quality coordination of youth exchange programming in their respective countries.

Originating in the United States, The Experiment introduced the ‘homestay’ concept to the world by carefully preparing and placing “Experimenters” in the homes of host families abroad for a firsthand exposure to culture and language.

Since the time Founder Donald B. Watt took the first group of Experimenters to Switzerland, tens of thousands of individuals of all ages and backgrounds have shared experiences, languages and customs with others from different cultures and traditions. Together they have broadened horizons, gained lifelong friends and helped to advance the goals of peace and understanding.
Enriching Lives ~ Inspiring Global Citizenship

With eight decades of national and international leadership in cultural exchange, EIL programs are distinguished by the core values and guiding principles which include the organization’s not for profit status, its commitment to the safety and wellbeing of participants and its endorsement of the principles of equality, inclusiveness, sustainability and diversity.

Based on principles of experiential learning, programs developed and implemented by FEIL member organizations are designed to provide tools to learn and thrive in another culture or in a different language; to foster personal development; to build communication and leadership skills; and to be active citizens in an interdependent world.

Many programs are focused on the most important themes of the day – the environment, education, social justice as well as the art and culture of each host country.

At all times FEIL members set and strive to achieve the highest standards and to employ best practices in the industry of intercultural exchange.

2. Proposal Guidelines

This Request for Proposal represents the requirements for an open and competitive process. Proposals will be accepted until May 17, 2016. Any proposals received after this date and time will not be considered.

If the individual or individuals submitting a proposal must outsource or contract any work to meet the requirements contained herein, this must be clearly stated in the proposal. Additionally, all costs included in proposals must be all-inclusive and note any outsourced or subcontracted work. Any proposals which call for outsourcing or subcontracting work must include a name and description of the organizations being subcontracted.

All costs must be itemized to include an explanation of all fees and costs.

Contract terms and conditions will be negotiated upon selection of the winning bidder for this RFP. All contractual terms and conditions will be subject to review and will include scope, budget, schedule, and other necessary items pertaining to the project.

3. Scope of Work and Deliverables

This project will be broken in to two phases, Phase 1 and Phase 2. This request for proposal will be for Phase 1, and must include projected costs for Phase 2, as well as a recommendation if the organization should move forward on to Phase 2. Phase 2 will be thorough research and recommendations for the best standard in each of the five research topics described in Appendix A.

Phase 1:

Federation EIL is requesting that a survey is created and conducted worldwide to look at the following topics:

§ Homestays

§ Program Development

§ Monitoring, Learning and Evaluation

§ Safety, Risk Assessment and Crisis Management

§ Responsible Practice

Appendix A gives further information on the scope of the proposed certification process for each of these areas.

The surveys must answer the following questions through the associated deliverables:

1. Market Analysis: What other organizations around the world are certifying and/or have standards relating to the above five topics. Report on process and analysis/recommendations, not to exceed five pages.

2. What value can Federation EIL add to service providers in the field?

3. Business Plan: Is it recommended that Federation EIL move forward in creating standards and a certification in each of the five areas; i.e. is there a market? Deliverable named “Business Plan”, not to exceed ten pages.

4. Who are the organizations that have stringent standards in any of the above five areas with whom Federation EIL could partner at the local level, in country or in region? Provide a clearing house of local and global partners for:

a. Capacity building

b. Training

c. Site verification of best practices

d. Certification administration

e. Others?

5. Surveys should be done in local language if possible, so that the result is a multi-lingual, multi-cultural summary.

The results of the survey and subsequent recommendation would prepare the Federation EIL to move to Phase 2, i.e. the creation of the standard in each of the five below areas, in order to certify internal and external organizations through a certification process. This would include extensive research in to each of the five areas, collating the best practices around the world and then recommending the best standards that would work at the global and local level.

This research would need to be from providers, universities and organizations around the world, taking in to account cultural norms and expectations. With this information, Federation EIL will offer organizations and universities to be trained in the best guidelines and practices from around the world through online offerings. Organizations and university programs can then be vetted and certified in the above designations.

Federation EIL would like to see proposals that include when and how information will be collected, with special attention to the scope and breadth around the world. Federation EIL seeks proposals from a diversity of experiences and backgrounds.

FEIL’s overall timeline in defining and implementing Certification Project:

Task Name

Start Date

End Date

Request for Proposal: Phase 1



Phase 1



Contact Funders to Implement Phase 2



Request for Proposal: Phase 2



Phase 2



Phase 1: Research must be undertaken with a comprehensive and international scope, with check-ins with the Federation EIL leadership on a weekly basis. There must be survey results from the following regions, with a minimum of 5-8 organizations surveyed in each region:

· North America

· Latin America

· Australia

· Asia

· Africa

· Middle East

· Europe

4. Request for Proposal and Project Timeline

Request for Proposal Timeline:

All proposals in response to this RFP are due no later than May 17, 2016.

Evaluation of proposals will be conducted from May 18, 2016 until May 31, 2016. If additional information or discussions are needed with any bidders during this two-week window, the bidder(s) will be notified.

The selection decision for the winning bidder will be made no later than May 31, 2016.

Upon notification, the contract negotiation with the winning bidder will begin immediately. Contract negotiations will be completed by June 8, 2016.

Notifications to bidders who were not selected will be completed by June 8, 2016.

5. Budget

All proposals for Phase 1 must include proposed costs to complete the tasks described in the project scope. Costs should be stated as one-time or non-recurring costs (NRC) or monthly recurring costs (MRC). Pricing should be listed for each of the following items in accordance with the format below:

Project Initiation and Planning



Survey creation



Homestay Research



Program Development Research



Monitoring, Learning and Evaluation Research



Safety, Risk Assessment, and Crisis Management Research



Final Report



NOTE: All costs and fees must be clearly described in each proposal. Additionally, the final summary of the project must include projections of cost for Phase 2. Bidders can choose to only bid to complete Phase 1; there will be a second Request for Proposals for Phase 2.

6. Bidder Qualifications

Bidders should provide the following items as part of their proposal for consideration:

Description of experience in surveying and research
Experience within the international education and exchange field
How he or she plans to move forward with the project, if selected
Testimonials from past clients and/or professors
Resumes or Curricula Vitae of all contributors and supporting staff
Listed past research conducted

7. Proposal Evaluation Criteria

Federation EIL will evaluate all proposals based on the following criteria. To ensure consideration for this Request for Proposal, your proposal should be complete and include all of the following criteria:

Overall proposal suitability: proposed solution(s) must meet the scope and needs included herein and be presented in a clear and organized manner
Organizational Experience: Bidders will be evaluated on their experience as it pertains to the scope of this project
Previous work: Bidders will be evaluated on examples of their work pertaining to international education and exchange, specifically in terms of research
Value and cost: Bidders will be evaluated on the cost of their research based on the work to be performed in accordance with the scope of this project

Each bidder must submit his or her proposal to: by May 17, 2016.

Appendix A:


This certification / capacity building module will confirm / address, among others, the following components:

· Safety

· Selection of participants / hosts

· Support / Emergency support

· Orientation and Training

Program Development

This certification / capacity building module will confirm / address, among others, the following components:

· Educational objectives and educational content

· How to establish measurable learning objectives

· Assessing needs

· Role of Group Leader, etc.

Monitoring, Learning and Evaluation

This certification / capacity building module will confirm / address, among others, the following components to include:

· Tools (including self assessment tools) to measure:

o Reflection

o Learning

o Impact

o Outcomes

Safety, Risk Assessment and Crisis Management

This certification / capacity building module will confirm / address the following components, to include:

· Group Leaders

· Risk Mitigation

· 24 hours x 7 days

Responsible Practice

This certification / capacity building module will confirm / address the following components (across all program areas) including:

· Volunteering

· Respect for host culture

· Comprehensive orientation

· Selection of participants, hosts and projects or schools (including appropriate matching process)

· Group leaders

· Sustainability: Carbon footprint / Protecting environment

· Marketing