Today Iowa Economic Development Authority & Empower Rural Iowa opened six competitive grants available for rural communities with a population under 20,000. Specifically, funding has been allocated to the following for the current fiscal year (FY) 2023 through FY 2024:
- Rural Innovation Grant Program – Provides up to $50,000 per grant for supporting creative, non-traditional ideas that focus on current issues and challenges faced by rural communities associated with the themes of community investment, growth and connection; the
- Rural Scale-Up Grant Program – Provides up to $20,000 per grant to support the replication and spread of creative solutions that are addressing current issues and challenges faced by rural communities; the
- Rural Enrichment Program – Provides up to $20,000 per grant to support small quality of life projects that will create meaningful results in rural communities. Developing quality spaces for people to want to live, work, play, and engage will support the vibrancy of Iowa’s rural places. Eligible projects must be open to the public and contribute to the vitality and engagement of the community; the
- Rural Housing Assessment Grant Program – Provides $10,000 per grant to support the use of publicly available online information through the “Profile of Iowa” tool and rural community efforts to interpret this hard data with supplemental information, as well as to implement changes to development codes, local ordinances and housing incentives specific to their community needs in partnership with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach; the
- Rural Child Care Market Study Grant Program – Provides $10,000 to support the use of data and analysis by rural communities to determine the specific needs and solutions for their area. Funding from the program will empower communities to assess their current childcare market environment and develop strategies; and the
- Rural Leadership Bootcamp Grant – Provides training, mentorship, and $1,000 in funding to rural communities and regions initiating leadership programs. This program targets rural communities that want to start a local leadership program and work to engage participants in community leadership roles. Grantees are required to participate in a two-day bootcamp resulting in a work plan and a one-year mentorship.
Guidelines, scoring rubrics, and informational webinars for all programs are available on the Center for Rural Revitalization’s website. Applications are accepted via iowagrants.gov and are due by September 1, 2022. Applications will be scored by volunteer panels that will include the Governor’s Empower Rural Iowa Initiative Task Force members and expert professionals. Successful applicants will be informed in early October.
Here are the links and dates for the informational webinars:
- Rural Scale-Up Grant Informational Webinar – Tuesday, July 12, 9 -10 a.m.
- Rural Innovation Grant Informational Webinar – Tuesday, July 12, 11 a.m. -1 p.m.
- Rural Housing Assessment Grant Informational Webinar – Tuesday, July 12, 3-4 p.m.
- Rural Enrichment Grant Informational Webinar – Wednesday, July 13, 9-10 a.m.
- Rural Leadership Bootcamp Grant Informational Webinar – Wednesday, July 13, 1-2 p.m.
- Rural Child Care Market Study Grant Informational Webinar – Wednesday, July 13, 3-4 p.m.