- Educational Institution
- Economic Development
- Technical Assistance
Reserved for Energy
This program is provided through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Business-Cooperative Service. Its focus is to establish centers to provide technical assistance, training, applied research, and data collection and interpretation for the purpose of cooperative development.
What does this program do?
The Rural Cooperative Development Grant program improves the economic condition of rural areas by helping individuals and businesses start, expand or improve rural cooperatives and other mutually-owned businesses through Cooperative Development Centers. Grants are awarded through a national competition. Each fiscal year, applications are requested through a notice published in the Federal Register and through an announcement posted on grants.gov.
Who may apply for this program?
Nonprofit corporations and institutions of higher education are eligible to apply for this program. Public bodies, for-profit business and individuals are NOT eligible.
What is the matching fund requirement?
Twenty-five (25) percent of total project costs (5 percent for Native American tribally-controlled colleges and universities that were granted land-grant status under an Act of Congress in 1994).
How may the funds be used?
Grant and matching funds can be used for developing and operating a Rural Cooperative Development Center. Examples of technical assistance and other services the Centers provide are:
- Conducting feasibility studies
- Developing business plans
- Providing leadership and operational improvement training
- Facilitating strategic planning
A Center can be located in any area, but the individuals and business assisted must be located in an eligible rural area.