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Deadline: May 7, 2014

Administration for Children and Families: Assets for Independence

The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) requests applications for grants to administer projects for the national Assets for Independence (AFI) demonstration of Individual Development Accounts (IDAs) and related services. Grantees use the AFI grants to administer projects that provide IDAs and related services to individuals and families with low incomes. Participants open an IDA and save earned income in the account regularly with the goal of accumulating savings to acquire an economic asset that will appreciate over time. Specifically, participants use their IDA savings to purchase a first home, capitalize or expand a business for self-employment, or attend higher education or training. Participants also receive training and other supports such as financial education training and coaching, and guidance on issues including family budgeting, consumer issues, debt and credit counseling, using mainstream financial products, accessing refundable tax credits, and accessing other benefits and services.

Grantees must use at least 85 percent of both the AFI grant and non-federal matching funds to match participant IDA savings. Grantees then also expend the remaining 15 percent on costs such as: general program administrative costs (program management, reporting, recruitment and enrollment, and monitoring); nonadministrative functions (financial education and related costs for participants opening an AFI-funded IDA); and data collection.

Eligibility: Eligibility is limited to organizations that are: Non-profit organizations with 501(c)(3) status; State, local, and tribal government agencies; or financial institutions that are designated as a low-income credit unions or community development financial institutions.

To be eligible, participants must:

  • Be members of households that are eligible to receive support under the federal TANF program when they apply for enrollment in an AFI Project, or
  • Individuals who meet both of the following criteria: 1) Their household adjusted gross income is either less than twice the federal poverty line (based on HHS Poverty Income Guidelines) or within the federal Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) limits when they apply for enrollment in a AFI Project; and 2) Their household net worth is less than $10,000 at the end of the calendar year (that preceded the day they applied for enrollment in an AFI Project). The primary dwelling unit and one motor vehicle owned by a member of the household are excluded from consideration when determining the net worth of the household.

Amount: Up to $12,500,000 in awards will be made. Awards will range from $10,000-$1,000,000 over a 5-year project period.

Grantees are required to finance their projects with a combination of the federal AFI grant and cash from one or more non-federal source(s). The federal AFI grant must comprise no more than 50 percent of the total project budget. The total budget for the project is the sum of the federal AFI grant and cash funding provided by one or more other source(s).

Note: There is a second deadline on July 14, 2014.

Link: http://www.acf.hhs.gov/grants/open/foa/view/HHS-2014-ACF-OCS-EI-0774

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