Thursday, July 18, 2013

Rural Development Community Facilities Program

“Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food” (KYF2) is a USDA-wide effort to create new economic opportunities by better connecting consumers with local producers.  It is also the start of a national conversation about the importance of understanding where your food comes from and how it gets to your plate.  The “Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food” initiative includes supporting local farmers and community food groups, strengthening rural communities, enhancing direct marketing and farmers' promotion programs, promoting healthy eating, protecting natural resources, and helping schools connect with locally grown foods.

Consider the USDA Rural Development Community Facilities Program
·       Offers direct and guaranteed loans and grants designed to finance the development of over 80 different types of essential community facilities serving rural areas.
·       Facilities include, but are not limited to, hospitals, elderly care facilities, child care centers, fire and rescue stations, vocational and medical rehabilitation centers, schools, public transportation infrastructure, and projects that support local and regional food systems.
·       Eligible applicants include rural communities and non-profit organizations.
·       Loans are made at below-market, fixed interest rates.
·       Grants are limited to projects with high financial need that serve low income communities.
·       Eligible expenses include land acquisition, construction of facilities, necessary fees, and equipment.
·       Community must be under 20,000 in population.
·       Grants range from 15%-75% and require matching funds.

Eligible projects that support local and regional food systems include but are not limited to:
·       Food Banks/Shelves – purchase building and equipment, purchase vehicles for food delivery, renovations, and new construction
·       School Cafeterias – purchase equipment, renovations, and central processing and distribution centers.
·       Farmers Markets – purchase building, renovation, and new construction.
·       Community Gardens – purchase real estate and infrastructure to connect to the water sources and/or provide irrigation.
·       Community Kitchens – purchase equipment, renovations, or new construction.

Ineligible projects include:
·       Purchase of small tools.
·       Individual market stalls, tables, or signage for individual farmers.
·       Flea markets.

Contact Information:
For your local USDA Rural Development contact click here.


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