Grants, Loans & Other Funding Opportunities
Funding opportunities are listed in chronological order by the application deadline. Please scroll down to view additional opportunities, or jump to ongoing opportunities that are available throughout the year, which are listed at the bottom of this page.
Generally, it takes significant advance planning to write a successful proposal. Therefore, please make sure to set aside enough time to thoroughly review the application instructions, conduct any background research you may need, write the proposal and and have at least one person review it prior to submitting.
Carrot Project Seeks Farmer Research Partners
Availability Opens January 2013
The Carrot Project are looking for farm businesses to participate in a three-year study of farm profitability and success. Project participants will receive free services to help improve their farm businesses, including business counseling, financial management assistance, business/industry advice, and referrals. Learn more by downloading this one-page description of the initiative.
Vermont Farm Fund
A collaborative effort of the Center for an Agricultural Economy and Pete's Greens the Vermont Farm Fund is a revolving community loan fund established in 2011. Since its inception, the VFF has given seventeen zero or low interest loans to farms and food businesses, ranging from $5,000 to $10,000, both for innovation and expansion as well as in the wake of disaster. To learn more about the Vermont Farm Fund, visit the website at http://vermontfarmfund.org or call 802-472-5362.
Vermont Farm Women's Fund Scholarships
Deadline: Ongoing until funds are disbursed.
The Vermont Farm Women's Fund (VFWF) provides scholarships to help women to improve their businesses and/or become more involved in agricultural policy development.
Deadline: Submissions accepted monthly
The Carrot Project offers financing for farm, food processing, forestry and fishery businesses in Maine, Massachusetts and Vermont. Loan applications are accepted on a monthly basis. Contact Benneth Phelps at email@example.com or 617.674.2371 for more information.
USDA MicroLoan Program
A new microloan program from USDA is designed to help small and family operations, beginning and socially disadvantaged farmers secure loans under $35,000. The microloan program will also require a simplified application process in comparison to traditional farm loans. Producers interested in applying for a microloan may contact their local USDA Farm Service Agency office.
Community Capital Management Assistance Program (MAP) Grants
Deadline: Rolling until funds are fully disbursed
Thanks to a $99,000 USDA Rural Development Business Enterprise Grant (RBEG), Community Capital is pleased to launch its Management Assistance Program (MAP). Visit http://communitycapitalvt.org/images/Forms/map%20application.pdf. Businesses located in one of the following eight Vermont counties can apply for up to $2,500 and formal or informal groups of businesses can apply for up to $5,000 to purchase consulting services that advance their individual or shared business goals. Eligible counties include: Addison, Caledonia, Essex, Franklin, Grand Isle, Lamoille, Orange and Washington. There are match requirements, so read the application carefully to find out how you can meet those requirements. Applicants can expect a 2-week turn around time on their application provided it is complete when submitted. All decisions are made by staff.
Growth Stage Technical Assistance and Access to Capital
The Vermont Agriculture Development Programis seeking existing Vermont-based agricultural enterprises with at least $250,000 in gross sales that are expanding their market presence and could benefit from assistance in preparing growth-stage operational plans and obtaining the right match of capital for their growth. Although a Program Director has not yet been hired, Nancy Wasserman of Sleeping Lion Associates will be working with the Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund (VSJF) and the Farm Viability Program at VHCB to help identify and pre-screen potential applicants. Once selected, clients will be matched with appropriate staff, consultants, peer advisors and/or mentors (which could include VT-SBDC staff) needed to help these agricultural businesses find the right match of capital needed to take their business to the next stage of growth. Eligible applicants include value-added producers, processors and distributors of Vermont-grown food and fiber and agricultural infrastructure businesses such as cheese aging, on- or off-farm processing, composting, marketing or distribution. If you know of a business or entrepreneur that could benefit from VADP services, please let us know and feel free to pass on this VADP Expression of Interest Form along to them. To learn more about this new program, please visit http://www.vsjf.org/project-details/18/vermont-agriculture-development-program.
Micro Business Development Program
The statewide Vermont Micro-Business Development Program helps low-to-moderate income Vermonters who want to gain the skills and knowledge needed to start , expand, or enhance a micro business. A micro business is considered to be the smallest of small businesses: one that employs fewer than five people and generates less than $250,000 in annual revenue. Micro loans generally range from $500 to $25,000.To find out more, contact you Community Action Agency (http://dcf.vermont.gov/community_action_agencies).
NOFA-VT Revolving Loan Fund
The Northeat Organic Farming Association of Vermont's (NOFA-VT) Revolving Loan Fund was jointly established in 1994 by NOFA Vermont and Chittenden Bank's Socially Responsible Banking Fund (formally Vermont National Bank). NOFA Vermont manages the $90,000 fund. In 2007 funded through Chittenden Bank, NOFA Vermont, in conjunction with its Technical Assistance Program for dairy farmers, established a second loan fund program, the NOFA Vermont Energy Loan Fund. Through this pilot program loans are available at 4% interest specifically for energy efficient technologies. Loans are available to: farmers within Vermont;farmers who farm with sustainable agricultural practices; organic farmers; farmers who are interested in making the transition to sustainable management practices; farmers who are interested in making the transition to organic management.For more information, visit http://nofavt.org/programs/farm-financial-resources/revolving-loan-fund
Presbyterian Committee on the Self Development of People (SDOP)
Deadline: Applications may be submitted through the year
The Presbyterian Committee on the Self-Development of People (SDOP) participates in the empowerment of economically poor, oppressed, and disadvantaged people who are seeking to change the structures that perpetuate poverty, oppression, and injustice. SDOP currently supports groups in the United States who are oppressed by poverty and social systems, want to take charge of their own lives, are organizing to do something about their own conditions, and have decided that what they are going to do will produce long-term changes in their lives or communities. Supported projects must be presented, owned, and controlled by the groups of people who will directly benefit from them and must address long-term corrections of the conditions that keep people bound by poverty and oppression. Grants of up to $20,000 are provided. Applications may be submitted throughout the year. Visit the SDOP website to review the grant criteria.
The Awesome Foundation
The Food Chapter of the Awesome Foundation supports efforts to further food awesomeness in the universe through $1,000 microgrants given out once (or so) a month. Anyone can apply and they accept applications on a rolling basis. They interpret food in its broadest possible way, so use your imagination. The questions are simple and direct. This is how they describe projects they are likely to fund..."Awesome projects are not strictly defined, but tend to challenge and expand our understanding of our individual and communal potentials. They bring communities together, casting aside social inhibitions and boundaries for a moment. They spark an instant of joy and delight and inspire a long-term hope for a more Awesome future." http://www.awesomefood.net/
A program of the community action agencies, Individual Development Accounts programs can help you improve your financial picture by learning about budgeting and household finances while you save a part of your earned income for a first time home purchase, developing a small business, or post-high school education and training. Savings are matched 2:1 on $500 savings for up to two years in a special bank account or IDA (Individual Development Account). You save regularly to reach your goal and attend financial education training as well as homeownership training, career counseling, or business counseling to improve your success in owning your new asset. To find out about the program and apply, contact your local community action agency. More info at http://dcf.vermont.gov/community_action_agencies.
Vermont Student Assistance Corporation: Adult Non-Degree Grants
Available on a first-come, first-served basis July 1- June 30 each year.
Vermont residents enrolled in a non-degree (non-matriculated) course that will improve employability or encourage further study is eligible to apply for a Vermont Non-Degree grant. An applicant may receive a Non-Degree grant for up to two enrollment terms per financial aid year (July 1 – June 30), and a total of six terms of Non-Degree grants in a lifetime. Classes can be taken at any of the following in Vermont or out-of-state: a college, an educational institution such as a high school or technical center that offers a continuing education program, and/or a private organization that offers training courses. The Vermont Non-degree Grant year begins 7/1 and ends 6/30. VSAC encourages students to apply as soon as possible after July 1st. Vermont grants are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis as long as funding is available. If you receive requests for additional information to determine your grant eligibility, please respond to those requests promptly.
Last modified April 29 2013 11:23 PM