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U.S. Department of Treasury: Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund – FY 2016 CDFI Prize Competition

Deadline: July 29, 2016

The FY 2016 CDFI Prize Competition seeks to stimulate innovation that will build capacity to expand CDFI investments and increase access to capital in underserved rural areas, particularly those that are characterized by persistent poverty. The CDFI Fund will reward innovative proposals that: (1) identify and promote new ideas and practices, thereby facilitating their implementation by CDFIs that serve rural areas; and/or (2) create value during and after the competition by encouraging CDFIs that serve rural areas to develop new skills or practices that may have beneficial effects on the rural areas they serve.

The CDFI Fund envisions there will be two types of applicants:

  • An innovative idea or strategy, implemented within the past two years, that helped increase CDFI investments and access to capital in underserved rural areas
  • An innovative idea or strategy that has not yet been implemented, but is reasonably expected to increase CDFI investments and access to capital in underserved rural areas

A “rural area” is defined as a county or counties that are considered non-Metropolitan Areas under the CDFI Program’s regulations (12 CFR 1805.104). An area that is characterized by “persistent poverty” is defined as any county or Native community that has had 20 percent or more of its population living in poverty over the past 30 years, as measured by the 1990, 2000, and 2010 decennial censuses. Data is available at the Rural Area and Persistent Poverty Lookup Tables.

Amount: A total of $1,000,000 is expected to be divided among approximately four winners. Judges may also select entries for Honorable Mention in order to highlight and promote success stories and best practices. Applicants listed as Honorable Mention will not be awarded a financial prize. The winning entries, and Honorable Mention applicants, will be recognized on the contest and CDFI Fund websites. The CDFI Fund may invite contest winners and honorable mention applicants to participate in post-award events or communications.

Eligibility: Applicants must be a certified CDFI, a collaboration of CDFIs, or a non-CDFI partnering with a certified CDFI. Applications must propose or present ideas or solutions that have been implemented or are proposed to be implemented in rural areas; bonus points shall be given to ideas or solutions that have been implemented or are proposed to be implemented in rural persistent poverty areas.

Link: https://www.challenge.gov/challenge/2016-cdfi-fund-prize-competition/

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