First Nations Development Institute: Native Agriculture & Food Systems Initiative – Keepseagle Fast Track Grants
The First Nations Development Institute (First Nations) recognizes that Native food systems are important assets to Native communities. As a result, First Nations has long supported Native communities as they fortify traditional food systems, seek to increase access to healthy and fresh foods, increase awareness of and involvement with where food comes from, and expand knowledge of the linkages between foods, Native cultures, and/or contribute to tribal economic growth and development of entrepreneurially related food ventures.
The Food Systems Initiative (NAFSI) will support organizations in Native communities with the goal of growing and/or expanding programs that serve or directly collaborate with Native American farmers and ranchers. Grant support is made possible through the Native American Agriculture Fast Track Fund (NAAFTF). The Keepseagle settlement was the result of a class action lawsuit that sought to hold the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) accountable for discrimination against Native American farmers and ranchers in US DA loan servicing, processing, outreach, and technical assistance.
Priority will be given to projects aimed at expanding community access to shared equipment made available to Native farmers, ranchers, and producers who are increasing capacity, revenue, and other positive farm outputs that will grow farmer capacity and Native farms and ranch operations. Moreover, this project will give priority to organizations that can assist and contribute to capacity-building, and to training activities that will grow the human capital and organizational capacity and increase the long-term sustainability and self-sufficiency of Native farmers and ranchers; and increase the growth/sustainability of the economy and agricultural sector in Native communities.
Amount: A total of 10 grants averaging $10,000 each are expected to be awarded.
Eligibility: U.S.-based, Native American-controlled, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations, tribal organizations, Native §7871 organizations, or Native American community-based groups that further Native American farming and ranching activities, in a manner designed to assist individual Native American farmers and ranchers. Organizations that are collaborations of Native farmers and ranchers, and/or cohorts of Native farmers and ranchers that have not been formalized as a nonprofit, are encouraged to apply through a fiscal sponsor.
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