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Department of Agriculture: Rural Community Development Initiative

Deadline: March 22, 2021

The Rural Community Development Initiative will award grants to qualified intermediary organizations that provide a program of financial and technical assistance to help develop the capacity of community based organizations located in eligible rural areas to undertake projects related to housing, community facilities, or community/economic development in rural areas. The recipients of the grantees’ services will, in turn, provide programs to their communities. Capacity-building financial and technical assistance may include, but is not limited to training to conduct community development programs; organizational development; instruction on how to develop and implement a strategic plan; instruction on how to access alternative funding sources to increase leveraging opportunities; and staffing. The overall goal of the program is to help improve life in rural America. Applicants are encouraged to consider projects that provide measurable results in helping rural communities build robust and sustainable economies through strategic investments. Key strategies include:

  • Achieving e-Connectivity for Rural America
  • Developing the Rural Economy
  • Harnessing Technological Innovation
  • Supporting a Rural Workforce
  • Improving Quality of Life

Grantees must provide a program of financial and technical assistance to one or more of the following:

  • A private, nonprofit community-based housing and development organization
  • A low-income rural community
  • A federally recognized tribe

A nonexclusive list of eligible grant uses includes the following:

  • Provide technical assistance to develop recipients’ capacity and ability to undertake projects related to housing, community facilities, or community and economic development
  • Develop the capacity of recipients to conduct community development programs
  • Develop the capacity of recipients to provide the technical assistance component for essential community facilities projects
  • Purchase of computers, software, and printers, limited to $10,000 per award, at the recipient level when directly related to the technical assistance program being undertaken
  • See solicitation for more examples of eligible and ineligible uses of funds

Special consideration will be given to applications that seek to reduce the morbidity and mortality associated with Substance Use Disorder (including opioid misuse) in high-risk rural communities by strengthening the capacity to address one or more of the following focus areas at the community, county, state, and/or regional levels:

  • Prevention: reducing the occurrence of Substance Use Disorder among new and at-risk users, as well as fatal substance-related overdoses through community and provider education, and harm reduction measures;
  • Treatment: implementing or expanding access to evidence-based practices for Substance Use Disorder treatment;
  • Recovery: expanding peer recovery and treatment options that help people start and stay in recovery.

Amount: Awards will range from $50,000–$250,000, for a three year period of performance.
Note: Recipients of the grant will be required to provide a 1:1 match of funds.

Eligibility: Qualified private organizations, nonprofit organizations (including faith-based and community organizations and philanthropic foundations) and public (including tribal) intermediary organizations. See solicitation for definitions.

Note: The intermediary organization must have been legally organized for a minimum of 3 years, and have at least 3 years prior experience working with private nonprofit community-based housing and development organizations, low-income rural communities, or tribal organizations in the areas of housing, community facilities, or community and economic development.

Link: https://www.grants.gov/web/grants/view-opportunity.html?oppId=330821

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