Farm Grants Available For Females Application – Females face great challenges in the agriculture sector compared to their male counterparts especially when it comes to accessing land and capital. While loans are available to all eligible farmers throughout the country, grants are free monetary assistance that does not require any repayment so they are an attractive option for a lot of farmers.
Grants for women in the farming sector help to fund education, agricultural infrastructure projects and conference expenses. Female farm grants provide funding to help farmers establish new farms, sustain current operations or expand their existing ones. Statistics prove that female farmers are one of the most underrepresented groups in the agricultural field lately so the USDA and other organizations provide guidance and financial assistance to protect the interests of women farmers. This guide will provide an overview of available farm grants for females.
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Highlights of this Post
What are Farm Grants for Women?
Farm grants for women can provide financial assistance to women to improve their agricultural careers. The main benefits of receiving a farm grant for women include the following: –
- Gaining access to more affordable agricultural inputs and equipment
- Developing new farming methods or expanding an existing business
- Growing crops and livestock on the farm
- Accessing mentorship and resources from local farmers or agriculturists
- Improving quality of life on the farm.
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What Are The Eligibility Criteria To Qualify For Farm Grants For Females?
Following is the list of the eligibility criteria to qualify for the farm grants for females.
- Applicants must be female farmers or ranchers owning an equal or large stake in a qualifying business that is majorly for instance 51% or more owned, operated or controlled.
- Applicants should be a citizen of the United States or permanent residents and have income within a particular threshold
- Must demonstrate that a majority of your income comes from farm-related activities
- Provide proof of your race, ethnicity and/ or gender on the grant application
- The farm must be operated in the United States of America.
- Applicants must fulfill the limitations set on the number of employees employed on the farm or ranch
- Applicants must have a registered farm or ranch
- They must be a practicing farmer or rancher in the United States of America
- Must not be a delinquent on government debt
- Must prove you are operating or having an existing business based in the United States of America. Your farm or ranch should be engaged in the United States.
- Most use the grant award for the particular purpose mentioned by the program and demonstrate the robust need for grant funding
- All the taxes must be correct and in good standing and the agribusiness must not have any outstanding tax liens or legal judgments unless exempt.
- Applicants must prove they are currently operating an active female-owned or operated farm or ranch.
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What Are The Documents Required To Qualify For Farm Grants For Females?
The specific documentation that you need to submit may vary depending on the program you are applying to, the organization providing you the grant and other factors. Following are the commonly requested official documents to apply for female farm grants.
- Personal identification documents like state ID, passport, Social Security card
- Proof of income such as tax return forms, bank statements, recent pay stubs
- Balance sheet, profit and loss statement and cash flow statement.
- Tax ID or EIN IRS letter for reference
- Business debt schedule if applicable
- Most recent business tax return
- Business certificate along with permits, licenses, legal business documents, articles of incorporation etcetera.
- Complete business plan for instance a detailed description of the type of business you are running, the structure, the service or products, the marketing plan, business management and financial projections.
- A detailed budget showing how you are planning to use the grant for your farm and ranch
- A completed application or resume.
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Government Farm Grants And Financing Options For Females
The REAP program is also known as the Rural Energy for America Program. This grant is designed for offering financial aid to renewable energy development. For example, when women are thinking of converting an existing farm or beginning an organic farm, they can receive this funding for energy efficient sources to heat or cool down greenhouses or offer clean energy for their operations.
As per the merger of international agricultural cooperative development and volunteers in overseas cooperative aid, the new name stands for ACDI / VOCA. In the beginning, both of these organizations worked as nonprofits in the United States that focused on boosting the economy of agriculture. Washington D.C based new organization is known for farm grants to women with a hope that this will upgrade female communities, improve their way of life, as well as boost the economy.
The VAPG (Value Added Producer Grant) program is applicable to those who are farmers, ranchers, and independent producers. A competition determines who gets the funds. Young farmers and smallholders benefit from a competitive advantage. The applicants must have a strategy for investing in agricultural activities with added value, like the production of organic crops or locally sold agricultural products.
You may be eligible for farm grants ranging from $80,000 to $260,000, depending on the kind of project you have. However, keep in mind that you will be required to pay at least half of the project’s total cost. You can use this money towards research, marketing, planning activities, and other business related activities.
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Small Business Innovation Research and Technology Transfer Programs (SBIR/STTR)
Small and medium-sized farm grants for females are provided by the Small Business Innovation Research Scholarship Program of the US Department of Agriculture.
This farm grant for women aims to create new farm organizations that are centered around certain farming fruits or products.
New female agricultural workers learn ways of creating the board instruments to boost farm productivity, scale farm tasks to small cultivate proficiency, utilize the farms’ normal assets proficiently, and get other marketing strategies for the creative new items it produces. The farm grants for females ranges between $70,000 to $100,000.
SARE or the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education grants apply to the young professionals. These grants are centered around funding, demonstrations, marketing, and research projects that later can be shared among other people in this farming field. SARE Grants can range in price from $10,000 to $200,000.
Every year only seven to ten projects get financial aid. One thing common in all SARE grants is that they all have a vision for sustainable farming.
The Farm Service Agency is a division of the United States Department of Agriculture that sets a portion of its Direct Farm Ownership Loan funds, direct operating, guaranteed loan funds, youth loans and Microloan funding to underserved farmers and ranchers in America including female farmers.
To apply for the Minorities And Women Farmers And Ranchers Loan Program you need to belong to a socially disadvantaged group and volunteer your race, ethnicity and/or gender on your loan application. The exact requirements, purposes and amount may vary depending on the program.
The USDA Farm Service Agency works in collaboration with nonprofit organizations and state government entities to offer financial assistance via farm operating grants for females. Besides, FSA also provides women with other resources such as Farm Storage Facility Loan Programs and Farm Credit options.
The Beginning Farmer And Rancher Development Program is not restricted to female farmers however is an amazing initiative designed by the United States Department of Agriculture to help beginning farmers and ranchers including women obtain technical assistance and agricultural training.
The program helps men and women who are interested in starting agricultural operations and provides support for female-led farm enterprises. The grant program offers training, mentorship, financial analysis, business planning, enterprise development, market research analysis and access to capital.
This program also supports a wide array of professional development activities for ranchers, new farmers, US veterans, and female farmers who have been entering the agricultural industry for 30 years.
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The Women And Minorities In Science, Technology, Engineering And Mathematics Fields Grant Program offers aspiring female farmers the opportunity to boost their skills and knowledge in STEM fields that are relevant to USDA objectives. The grant program empowers females to become successful business entrepreneurs in the agricultural industry.
The funding helps female farmers to better equip themselves to start their businesses, gain skills and knowledge, launch new agricultural products and thrive in the agricultural industry. You can get funding opportunities for education, research, and extension activities in the training, outreach and mentoring of underrepresented minorities and women from rural areas in the STEM field.
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The USDA provides micro-loans to meet the requirements of small to midsize farmers and niche farmers. The program also covers individuals who are involved in organic, non-traditional farming methods and direct marketing. You can obtain $50,000 in loan programs.
Even though it is not exclusively reserved for women it can be a good source of funding if you’re unable to qualify for free grant programs. The USDA runs the Farm Service Agency to offer financial assistance to beginning farmer ranchers, small farmers, veterans and women farmers so that they can purchase livestock, and equipment and cover the expenses of farming operations for instance supplies, equipment, improvement to building, covering cost for water and land development.
The Farm Labor Housing Loans And Grants Program provides funding opportunities to female farmers to cover the cost of land and housing construction for laborers.
The grants help female farmers to pay for seasonal or year-round housing for their workers and build facilities on the ground such as dining halls and laundry rooms.
The USDA funds this program and makes it available to local and state government entities and other nonprofit organizations.
With workers having a reliable and safe place to stay near the farm female farmers need not worry about their farm workers commuting to work every day. You just need to make sure you are citizens of the United States or lawful residents and belong to low-income groups to qualify.
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Private Farm Grants For Female Farmers
Established in 1974, American Agri Women (AAW) provides its members with small grants and agricultural grants. The organization helps minority women farmers to have access to the resources they need in order to succeed.
They are also known for hosting events for the industry, interactive online sessions, conferences, and webinars for women entrepreneurs who are interested in agriculture. By offering numerous scholarships AAW helps you to boost your career and develop a successful business. The AAW Gail McPherson Fly-In Scholarship, for instance, is open to women of all ages.
Funded by the National Young Farmers Coalition the Young Farmer Grant Program aims to assist young farmers who want to build lucrative careers in the field of agriculture industry.
The Young Farmer Grant Program provides nearly 75 grants each of $5000 including membership to the National Young Farmers Coalition. The recipients of the program can use the funding opportunity to cover the expenses of starting a farm operation including running and growing the operation with no stringent eligibility criteria.
Nearly 50% of the organization grants are reserved for black, people of color and indigenous farmers while 50% are available to female-identifying, trans and non-binary farmers.
Fund-a-Farmer Grants is sponsored by the Food Animal Concerns Trust which aims to improve farm animal welfare and support the expansion of human farming practices. The Food Animal Concerns Trust organization has provided nearly 600 grants worth $1.11 since 2012.
Female farmers can use the funding opportunities for capital as well as operation work associated to support their career goals and the projects can include fencing, access to share, watering systems, mobile animal shelters, cattle scratching stations etc.
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Women who are involved in organic farming can apply for assistance simply through the Organic Giving Fund Program. The program helps farmers create organic products like sauce, spice, baking supplies etc.
The organization distributes a percentage of its income for grants in the form of a Simple Organic Giving Fund. This fund covers organic farmers including female farmers who are working to remove food insecurity in America.
Founded in 2012 The FruitGuys Community Fund provides grant opportunities to US-based agricultural nonprofit organizations and small farms. The grants provide funding up to $5000 and can help to improve the farm operations.
Even though applications are specific to the project the organization looks for business plans that help to improve sustainability and strengthen the local community for instance natural pest control, drip irrigation, energy efficiency and soil health.
Individuals must be an agricultural nonprofit or operator owner of the farm. Those who have legal access to agricultural land can also get assistance through this program. Applicants must make sure their farm is small to medium-sized and is working for a minimum of one year before applying.
The University of Vermont extension provides scholarship opportunities to women in the form of the Vermont Farm Woman’s Fund.
The grant award helps female applicants to cover the cost of attending and registering for educational courses, classes and conferences. The objective of the grant is to fund education expenses that are related to the improvement of women-owned farms.
The scholarship funding is kept at $150 and the fund helps women who own, operate or work on farms situated in Vermont. It is important to demonstrate that a majority of your income comes from farm-associated activities in Vermont.
Amber Grants for Women is not geared particularly towards women coming from the field of agriculture however it supports a lot of women-owned businesses throughout the year. The foundation was set in 1998 in the honor of a young girl named Amber who died at the age of 19 without fulfilling her business goals.
The objective of the foundation is to help women attain their business engineers. The foundation distributes $10,000 monthly including business category and startup grants programs.
At the end of every year, one of the 12 lucky monthly winners will be selected to get an additional grant of over $25,000. Female entrepreneurs can also apply for assistance in this foundation if they’re 18 years old and have citizenship in the United States or Canada. Your business must be at least 51% woman-owned to qualify.
The foundation provides amazing resources for eligible women entrepreneurs coming from different fields including the agricultural industry. The nonprofit organization Tory Burch was established in 2009 to provide programs and resources to promote women’s entrepreneurship.
Women-owned small businesses including those who own small farms and wish to become successful farmers can apply for capital programs and fellows programs funded by the foundation.
Eligible candidates can receive assistance up to $5000 from this foundation. The grants and programs of the foundation are open to all female entrepreneurs who are owning a majority stake in their business and plan to use the benefits of the program to grow their business.
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Statistics state that female farmers are mostly underrepresented in farming and agricultural fields. They also earn less income compared to their male counterparts. Fortunately, the government and nonprofit organizations recognize this discrepancy and aim to level the playing field by providing tons of farm grants for women. The aforementioned farm grants for females will help you to cover the cost of fertilizer, seed, labor, equipment, farm associated education programs/ seminars, capital investment in agriculture buildings or machinery and marketing assistance. You can expand your existing farm, establish new forms or sustain the current farm operations by becoming eligible for the grants.
Learn more about government grants and financial assistance programs at our Get Government Grants’ section today. We will guide you in times of your need and help you with the right resources.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are there any farm grants for women?
Yes, there are a handful of farm grants specially designed for women to support their farmland and also to assist them in purchasing land and other equipment. But remember you need to meet the eligibility requirement to qualify for the farm grants.
How much does the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education grants offer?
Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) offers grants in different locations. However the grant amount ranges from $10,000 to $200,000.
What is the REAP Program?
REAP stands for Rural Energy for America Program that offers financial support with renewable energy development. If you are looking to start an organic farm and are required to set up energy efficient sources then you can get assistance from the REAP program.