Request for Proposals

For a Survey of Organizations Engaged in Delaware River Watershed Conservation​

Deadline for Questions:  September 19th by 5:00 PM  Eastern Time
Full Proposal Due Date:   October 3rd by 5:00 PM  Eastern Time​


The National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) invites full proposals for performing the following work: design and implement a knowledge diffusion and behavior change survey of organizations engaged in Delaware River watershed conservation. The successful Offeror will be selected through a single stage competitive process. Only one award will be made for this contract.


Through the Delaware River Restoration Fund, NFWF and its partners in the Delaware River Watershed Initiative (DRWI) invest in agriculture-related conservation, green stormwater infrastructure, and innovative projects to improve the water quality of the Delaware River. Since 2014, the Delaware River Restoration Fund has awarded over 40 grants totaling roughly $6 million. Grants were awarded to member organizations of 5 “cluster” teams that are distributed throughout the watershed (see map here​). Cluster members include nonprofit organizations, local governments and educational institutions that implement on-the-ground restoration to improve water quality and habitat (see members here). To date, cluster members have implemented over 5,000 acres of best management practices to improve water quality, and restored over 80 acres of wetlands and 6 miles of riparian habitat. 

Delaware River Restoration Fund investments are guided by NFWF’s Delaware River Watershed Business Plan and the Action Plans for the DRWI developed by each of the eight clusters. While the primary purpose of those plans is to guide restoration within the targeted implementation areas of each cluster, it is our hope that information about those restoration activities spreads throughout the entire cluster and even extends beyond cluster boundaries, eventually leading to adoption of those activities across in the Delaware River Watershed. To foster dissemination and adoption, each cluster has engaged in various degrees of outreach and education activities since the inception of the DRWI in 2014. Together with its DRWI partners, NFWF would like to conduct a survey to determine whether information about the funded practices is indeed reaching people beyond the clusters’ targeted implementation areas and if that awareness leads to subsequent adoption.  


The goal of the survey is to assess knowledge diffusion and behavior change. Specifically, the survey should determine whether information about restoration practices implemented by cluster members is reaching non-cluster members and whether those non-cluster members adopt similar practices as a result. NFWF’s long-term goal is to repeat this survey in later years to see if knowledge diffusion and behavior changes increase over time. This contract covers the initial survey development and first round of implementation only.

Survey population includes:

  • Member organizations for the eight clusters (~50 organizations)
  • Similar non-member organizations working within the clusters’ geographic boundaries
  • Similar non-member organizations working beyond the clusters’ geographic boundaries  

NFWF will provide the selected Contractor with the following information: 

  • First draft of a survey questionnaire (developed internally by NFWF)
  • Information about each of the eight clusters including:
    • ​Map of cluster geographic boundaries and the targeted implementation areas within each cluster
    • List of cluster member organizations and contact information 
    • 8 action plans for the DRWI (1 per cluster) 
    • Metrics clusters are using to track progress
  • Records of grant awards made by NFWF and other DRWI funders to cluster members 
  • The DRWI logic model, aka “strategy model” 
  • NFWF’s Delaware River Watershed Business Plan

The selected Contractor will be tasked to:

  1. Design, pre-test and implement one online survey to be administered to cluster members and non-members
  2.  Identify the population of non-cluster organizations to be surveyed and obtain contact information for them
  3. Identify the geographic boundary for surveying non-cluster members (the survey area could encompass the entire Delaware River watershed or a subset of it)
  4. Analyze and interpret survey results, identifying important patterns and drawing reasonable conclusions
  5. Summarize survey results in a written report for NFWF and its DRWI partners
  6. Present survey results to NFWF and DRWI partners in at least two presentations, one for NFWF staff and one for NFWF and DRWI partners
​The final contract deliverables will include a written report and two presentations to NFWF and DRWI partners. The reports and presentations should include survey results as well as key learnings from them. The deliverables are intended for a general audience and should be tailored appropriately. There is also a possibility that the Contractor will be asked to deliver a presentation at the annual DRWI Winter Gathering in February 2019 in Macungie, PA. Because this meeting will occur before the survey has been completed the focus would be on the survey goals, questions and a high level description of methods. 


Proposals will be evaluated and scored on the following criteria. Statements should be single-spaced in Word format or a searchable PDF, with a minimum 11 point font, and should not exceed the indicated page or word limits. Contact information should be clearly stated and include primary contact person, company name, mailing address, phone number, email address, website, Federal Tax ID and DUNS number.

Offerors should organize their proposals based on these sections:

  • Technical Approach.  The proposed technical approach for conducting the survey should clearly describe the proposed process you will use to develop and implement the survey and analyze its results. The section must demonstrate that the approach is robust and appropriate and addresses any areas of complexity or uncertainty. Section 3 (above) describes the information and available resources NFWF will provide to the Contractor.  
​Page limit: 2 pages. Weight: 15%
  • Qualifications of Proposed Personnel.  The section should clearly describe which tasks each member of the team will conduct and how their training and experience provide the requisite experience to do so successfully. The proposal should describe relevant professional experience in the following areas:  
    • Designing and implementing surveys, including experience developing questionnaires, conducting online surveys, and identifying and contacting survey populations 
    • Analyzing and interpreting survey data
    • Watershed restoration(sufficient familiarity with restoration and management practices for writing informed survey questions and interpreting the results)
    • Presenting complex information to a non-technical audience both in writing and verbally
    • Conducting and disseminating research involving humans as subjects
    • Working with federal, state, and local governmental agencies, conservation districts and nongovernmental organizations involved with watershed conservation

​​​​​Page limit: none. Weight: 30%

  • Contractor’s Past Performance.  The proposal should include information on the primary investigator(s)’s past performance conducting surveys for NFWF or other organizations. Include a copy of a survey questionnaire developed by the proposed team. If sub-contractors are to be used, information should be provided that demonstrates their past performance as well.  Describe how that past performance is applicable to this contract. Include contact information for three references. 
​Page limit: none. Weight: 20%
  • Budget. The proposed budget should itemize work in sufficient detail to enable reviewers to evaluate the appropriateness of the entire funding request. Please include the cost of the possible February presentation in Macungie, PA as a separate task. You must use the Contractor Budget Template provided with this RFP. You may add columns to the template for additional tasks if needed, but should not make any other changes. 
​​Weight: 25%
  • Schedule.  The Contract Period of Performance is targeted for November 1, 2018 through May 31, 2019 (preliminary). In order to avoid schedule over-runs we are asking Offerors to propose a project schedule that is appropriate to complete the tasks outlined in the RFP. The schedule should delineate work on key tasks and identify draft and final deliverable dates.  
​Page limit: none. Weight: 10%
  • Corporate Capability. The Offeror shall provide proof of financial stability in the form of an income statement and balance sheet for fiscal year 2017.


A successful survey will require significant ongoing communication with NFWF staff. Although this RFP provides our thinking to date on the general scope of work to be addressed by the survey, the design needs to remain flexible to address additional questions that will emerge through consultation with program stakeholders. Therefore, significant collaboration between the Contractor and NFWF will be required throughout the contract. To facilitate this, the Contractor should plan for bi-weekly or monthly meetings with NFWF’s Senior Evaluation Officer and other members of the program team. 

NFWF will also review and provide feedback on draft versions of the survey questionnaire, analysis plan, report and presentations. 


Eligible offerors are institutions of higher education, other nonprofits, commercial organizations, international organizations, and local, state, and Indian tribal governments.  Only one award will be made for this project.  If multiple institutions are involved, they should be handled through sub-contracts.

By submitting a Statement of Qualifications in response to this solicitation, the offeror warrants and represents that it does not currently have any apparent or actual conflict of interest, as described herein.  In the event an offeror currently has, will have during the life of the contemplated contract, or becomes aware of an apparent or actual conflict of interest, in the event an award is made, the offeror must notify NFWF in writing in the Statement of Qualifications, or in subsequent correspondence (if the issue becomes known after the submission of the Statement of Qualifications) of such apparent or actual conflicts of interest, including organizational conflicts of interest.  Conflicts of interest include any relationship or matter which might place the Contractor, the Contractor’s employees, or the Contractor’s subcontractors in a position of conflict, real or apparent, between their responsibilities under the award and any other outside interests, or otherwise.  Conflicts of interest may also include, but are not limited to, direct or indirect financial interests, close personal relationships, positions of trust in outside organizations, consideration of future employment arrangements with a different organization, or decision-making affecting the award that would cause a reasonable person with knowledge of the relevant facts to question the impartiality of the offeror, the offeror’s employees, or the offeror’s future subcontractors in the matter.  Upon receipt of such a notice, the NFWF Contracting Officer will determine if a conflict of interest exists and, if so, if there are any possible actions to be taken by the offeror to reduce or resolve the conflict.  Failure to resolve conflicts of interest in a manner that satisfies NFWF may result in the proposal not being selected for award.  

By submitting a Statement of Qualifications in response to this solicitation, the offeror warrants and represents that it is eligible for award of a contract resulting from this solicitation and that it is not subject to any of the below circumstances:

Has any unpaid Federal tax liability that has been assessed, for which all judicial and administrative remedies have been exhausted or have lapsed, and that is not being paid in a timely manner pursuant to an agreement with the authority responsible for collecting the tax liability, where the awarding agency is aware of the unpaid tax liability, unless the agency has considered suspension or debarment of the corporation and made a determination that this further action is not necessary to protect the interests of the Government; or

Was convicted (or had an officer or agent of such corporation acting on behalf of the corporation convicted) of a felony criminal violation under any Federal or State law within the preceding 24 months, where the awarding agency is aware of the conviction, unless the agency has considered suspension or debarment of the corporation and made a determination that this further action is not necessary to protect the interests of the Government; or

Is listed on the General Services Administration’s, government-wide System for Award Management Exclusions (SAM Exclusions), in accordance with the OMB guidelines at 2 C.F.R Part 180 that implement E.O.s 12549 (3 C.F.R., 1986 Comp., p. 189) and 12689 (3 C.F.R., 1989 Comp., p. 235), “Debarment and Suspension, ” or intends to enter into any subaward, contract or other contract using funds provided by NFWF with any party listed on the SAM Exclusions in accordance with Executive Orders 12549 and 12689. The SAM Exclusions can be found at


A panel of NFWF and partner staff will review the proposals and evaluate them according to the criteria outlined in Section 4. Interviews will be conducted with selected finalists. Offerors may be asked to modify objectives, work plans, or budgets prior to final approval of the award.  Only one award will be made for this project.  If multiple institutions are involved, they should be handled through sub-awards and sub-contracts.

Submission Deadlines

Sept. 5, 2018              Request for Proposals released.

Sept. 19, 2018           Deadline for questions about the RFP to NFWF. 

​​Offerors should submit questions regarding this RFP via email to Annamarie Lopata ( Individual answers will not be provided. NFWF will post all the questions and responses to all questions on the Delaware River Restoration Fund website so that all Offerors have access to them at the same time. 

​​In order to provide equitable responses, all questions must be received by NFWF no later than 5:00 PM EDT on September 19, 2018.

Oct. 3, 2018               Deadline for proposals

  Proposals must be emailed to Annamarie Lopata ( by 5:00 PM EDT on October 3, 2018.

​October 2018            Interviews with selected finalists and contract awarded.





Annamarie Lopata,  Senior Evaluation Officer, 202-595-2613


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