The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) invites grant applications for projects supporting economic and community development in rural areas. Grant funding is available to non-profits and public bodies through two programs: the Rural Community Development Initiative Program and the Community Facilities Technical Assistance and Training Grant Program.
“USDA Rural Development helps communities across Vermont and New Hampshire build their capacity to meet the needs of rural residents,” said Acting USDA Rural Development State Director for Vermont and New Hampshire Jon-Michael Muise. “By helping an essential community facility, such as a hospital, plan for an expansion, or supporting a housing non-profit in training residents on accessing safe and affordable housing, Rural Development’s programs invest in community led initiatives that will open economic doors across the two states.”
The Rural Community Development Initiative (RCDI) program grants help entities strengthen the rural economy. Qualified intermediary organizations receiving RCDI grants provide technical assistance and training to help nonprofit organizations and communities develop their capacity to undertake housing, community facilities or economic development projects. Applicants must have capacity-building experience for these types of projects and must provide matching funds at least equal to the RCDI grant. Grants range from $50,000 to $250,000. For more information, see the Notice of Funding Availability.
In 2016, Brattleboro Development Credit Corporation received a $230,000 RCDI grant to bolster economic development in 11 southern Vermont towns through providing technical assistance to local non-profits and long term strategic economic development planning for the region.
The Communities Facilities Technical Assistance and Training Grant program helps rural communities pursuing large projects develop applications for USDA Rural Development’s Community Facilities program. The grant provides up to $150,000 of support to entities to hire specialized personnel, pay for feasibility studies, and retain consultants to prepare financial assistance applications and identify and plan for long-term community needs. Application information can be found in the Notice of Solicitation of Applications published in the Federal Register.
Applications for both programs must be received by July 25, 2017. For more information on these grant programs, contact Eric Law, Vermont and New Hampshire Community Program Specialist, at (802) 828-6033 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, invests in housing, business and community infrastructure programs aimed at increasing economic opportunity and the quality of life in rural America. For more information on Rural Development visit the Vermont Rural Development website (www.rd.usda.gov/vt ) or contact USDA at (802) 828-6080.