Federal Grants Process, Foundation Grant Resources, and Non-profit Coalition Resources

Rep. Johnson walks you through the federal grant application process




Labor Department announces up to $20M in grants to expand

summer job programs into ‘Career Pathways for Youth’ opportunities

Initiatives seek to open doors to employment for young Americans


The U.S. Department of Labor is working to address the employment needs of young people with the announcement of up to $20 million in funding to support demonstration projects for youth in high-crime, high-poverty communities. These  “Summer Jobs and Beyond: Career Pathways for Youth Demonstration Grants” will provide resources to Local Workforce Development boards to expand and enhance existing summer employment programs and work experiences throughout the year for eligible youth and to implement innovative practices.

The grants intend to strengthen the alignment of partnerships under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act to encourage partners to collaborate and expand their capacity to serve youth entering the workforce in their local community. The grants will require partnerships between Local Boards and local summer employment programs, employers, local education agencies, and re-engagement centers to expand summer into year-round employment and work experience programs for eligible youth.

“Our economy and our nation are stronger when young people are given meaningful opportunities to contribute,” said U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez. “Having a summer job can make all the difference in the world to a young person who doesn’t have many other opportunities, or didn’t have the easiest start in life. Research shows that meaningful employment opportunities can help reduce violent, risky behavior and keep kids out of the criminal justice system.”

This grant competition is part of a number of concrete actions and budget proposals announced by the White House this morning to help open doors for young Americans to start their careers. These steps build on President Obama’s My Brother’s Keeper Initiative, which is closing the opportunity gaps that too often strangle hope for young people of color, helping them rise above adversity and drawing out their unique gifts and talents. They are also closely aligned with the U.S. Conference of Mayors’ efforts to help give young people their first meaningful work experience – outlined at the organization’s 84th Winter Meeting in January 2016, where Secretary Perez spoke about talent development and student access to careers.

Projects will serve youth and young adults between the ages of 16 and 24 who have no or limited work experience, and will promote career pathway entry through participation in existing and expanded community summer job programs. Program components will include: subsidized and unsubsidized work experience opportunities, individual service strategies or comparable learning plans, assessments, work readiness training, financial literacy training, career exploration, case management mentoring and supportive services. Up to $2 million each will be awarded to 10 or 11 Local Workforce Development boards.

The department is particularly interested in learning from these projects how best to serve in-school youth through innovative partnerships between the workforce system and school districts. In addition, the Department is interested in learning how the workforce system, local education agencies and re-engagement centers can work more effectively reach out-of-school youth and assist them in obtaining summer into year-round employment. Finally, the department is interested in learning how to best leverage local summer and year-round employment programs to support better program integration among those serving this population and improve performance outcomes in high-crime, high-poverty communities that offer limited economic mobility opportunities for youth.

The grants are aimed at communities suffering from high youth unemployment rates, high poverty rates, high violent crime rates, and low graduation rates. Target communities that have received federal designation as a Promise Zone will receive priority consideration.

The grants will be funded through the Dislocated Worker National Reserve Account, which allows for up to 10 percent of the account to be used for demonstration projects such as these.

The Funding Opportunity Announcement, which includes information about how to apply, is available at http://www.grants.gov/


Grants and Benefits Resources

Grants Process Information


Guidance and key resources to help eligible grantseekers find information on federal grants, loans, and nonfinancial assistance, as well as on private funding.



How Best to Find Information


  1. Find out Who is Eligible for a Grant? Other government websites may be more suitable forpersonal needsstudent loanssmall business assistance, or other business opportunities such as government contracting. The website Government Benefits, Grants, and Financial Aid may also be of help.
  2. If eligible, search for programs in the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (CFDA). Includes grants, loans, business and nonfinancial help.
  3. Contact federal office given in CFDA program description: if state or local office is indicated, check Regional Agency Offices at top of CFDA website for addresses.
  4. Go to federal websites given in each CFDA program description for more information and for state administering agencies responsible for managing funding.
  5. Check current federal grants opportunities at Grants.gov, obtain a Dun and Bradstreet(DUNS) number, register with System for Award Management (SAM), and apply online (links and instructions given at the website). Additional notices appear at FedConnect.
  6. Search foundations for project funding: use the Foundation Center website or Foundation Center Cooperating Collections in libraries to identify national, state, and community foundations.
  7. Learn how to write grant proposals: follow CFDA's Developing and Writing Grant Proposals, or take the free online Foundation Center Proposal Writing Short Course.

Key Federal Funding Sources


Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance (General Services Administration)
The CFDA, issued annually and updated continuously on the Web, describes some 1600 federal grants and non financial assistance programs. Grantseekers can identify programs that might support their projects and can learn the program's objectives, requirements, application procedures and contacts. Includes a detailed subject index; browsable listing of programs by applicant eligibility; and Appendix VI, Developing and Writing Grant Proposals. Appendix IV gives state, local and regional offices of federal agencies: if the CFDA program description refers to a state or regional Information contact, grantseekers should contact them before applying for funding to obtain the most up-to-date information. For current notices of funding availability, see Grants.gov or FedConnect.

Grants.gov (managed by Dept. of Health and Human Services)
Federal website that allows eligible grantseekers (see Who is Eligible for a Grant?) to find and apply for current competitive grant opportunities from ALL federal agencies. Grantseekers can check on notices of funding availability (NOFAs) posted in the last 7 days; access an RSS feed of grant opportunities; and apply for federal grants through a unified process by downloading the application and submitting online. The website guides grantseekers in obtaining a Dun and Bradstreet (DUNS) number, registering withSystem for Award Management (SAM), and registering with Grants.gov to apply and to track applications. For full federal program descriptions, see CFDA below. See also website FedConnect for additional grants and contracts opportunities.

State Single Points of Contact (Office of Management and Budget)
Under Executive Order 12372, some states require federal grants applicants to submit a copy of their application for state government level review and comment. The state offices listed here coordinate federal financial assistance and may direct federal development.  For help in identifying state-level grants, other state government agencies websites may be found at State and Local Agencies by Topic

CFDA in Local Libraries (Government Printing Office)
Although the Catalog is available full-text on the Internet, some may prefer a print edition. However, only the Web Catalog is continuously updated-- the published volume is annual with no supplements. TheCatalog is available in all states in Federal Depository Libraries.

Related Federal Resources


A-Z Index of U.S. Government Departments and Agencies  (General Services Administration)
To better develop a grant proposal, search a department or agency's Home Page to learn more about its programs and objectives. The site USA.gov also links to Government Benefits, Grants and Financial Aid.

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (Department of Energy)
Grants are EERE's primary funding vehicle for businesses, industries, universities and others. Most EERE grants are awarded on merit on a competitive basis. EERE financial assistance opportunities are listed in the Financial Opportunities by Audience database and on Grants.gov or FedConnect. For state-by-state information on state, local. utility, and federal incentives that promote renewable energy and energy efficiency, search DSIRE (Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency). 

Grants Funding State, Local and Tribal Governments (Dept. of Homeland Security)
Most Homeland Security non-disaster grant programs are designated for state and local governments and specific entities such as colleges, etc. Unsolicited applications from individuals are generally not accepted. Includes Urban Area Security Initiative, Citizens Corps, Medical Response System, Operation Stonegarden (border security), Infrastructure Protection. Contact homeland security State Offices. Programs for firefighters may be found at Assistance to Firefighters.

USA.gov for Business  (GSA)
Includes contracting with the federal government, international trade and exporting, and small business. See also financial assistance links at the Small Business Administration website.

USA.gov for Nonprofits  (GSA)
Links to federal department and agency information and service for nonprofit organizations, including fundraising and outreach, grants, loans and other assistance, laws and regulations, management and operations, online services, registration and licensing, and tax information. The White House Office of Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships includes information on Grants and Resources.

Student Aid on the Web (Department of Education)
Financial assistance for education beyond high school is generally "needs-based" and often includes loans and work-study, in addition to some grants. College and university applications, websites, and brochures usually include financial aid information for prospective and incoming students.

Benefits.gov (via Department of Labor)
Government grants are not direct assistance to individuals, but fund state and local programs providing help to those in need. This online screening site can be used to identify state and local government benefits and how to apply. Covers direct payments, loans, insurance, training, or other services.  

FTC Consumer Alert (Federal Trade Commission)
The FTC warns consumers to beware of paying "processing fees" for information that is available free to the public. Ads claiming federal grants are available for home repairs, home business, unpaid bills, or other personal expenses are often a scam.

OMB Grants Management  (Office of Management and Budget)
OMB establishes government-wide grants management policies and guidelines through circulars and common rules.  OMB Circulars  are cited in Catalog program descriptions and may be printed out fulltext.

Private and Corporate Funding Sources


The Foundation Center
Gateway to information about private funding sources, the grantseeking process, guidelines on writing a grant proposal, addresses of state libraries with grants reference collections, and links to other useful Internet websites. The Center maintains a comprehensive database on foundations; produces print and electronic directories and guides; conducts research and publishes studies in the field; and offers a variety of training and educational seminars.

Grants Resources by State (Grantsmanship Center)
Click on state map to find links to information about a state's foundations, community foundations, corporate giving programs and the state's home page.