Outreach and Assistance for Socially Disadvantaged and Veteran Farmers and Ranchers


The overall goal of the 2501 Program is to encourage and assist socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers, veteran farmers and ranchers, and beginning farmers and ranchers with owning and operating farms and ranches and in participating equitably in the full range of agricultural, forestry, and related programs offered by USDA. In partnership with the OPPE, eligible entities may compete for funding on projects that provide education and training in agriculture, agribusiness, forestry, agriculturally related services, and USDA programs, and to conduct outreach initiatives designed to accomplish those goals. This partnership includes working closely with OPPE, attend OPPE-led events in your proposed service territory, and collaborate with USDA Service Centers located in your state (Farm Service Agency, Natural Resources Conservation Service, and Rural Development).

General information about this opportunity
Last Known Status
Program Number
Federal Agency/Office
Usda, Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement, Department of Agriculture
Type(s) of Assistance Offered
B - Project Grants
Program Accomplishments
Not applicable.
Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990, Section 2501, Public Law 115-334, 7 U.S.C. 2279
The Agricultural Act of 2014 further expanded the program to include outreach and technical assistance to veterans.
Consolidated Appropriations Act 2021, Section 754
Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act
Who is eligible to apply/benefit from this assistance?
Applicant Eligibility
Organizations that may apply: Any community-based organization, network, or coalition of community-based organizations with documented evidence of working with and on behalf of socially disadvantaged and veteran farmers and ranchers during the 3-year period preceding this application cycle and does not or has not engaged in activities prohibited under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986; an 1890 or 1994 institution of higher education (as defined in 7 U.S.C. ? 7601); a Hispanic-Serving Institution of higher education (as defined in 7 U.S.C. ? 3103); American Indian tribal community colleges and universities and Alaska Native cooperatives colleges; other institutions of higher education with documented experience in providing agricultural education or services to socially disadvantaged or veteran farmers; Indian tribes or national tribal organizations with documented experience in providing agricultural education or services to socially disadvantaged or veteran farmers; organizations or institutions that received funding under 7 U.S.C. ? 2279(a) with respect to projects that the Secretary considers similar to projects previously carried out by the organization or institution under this subsection.
Beneficiary Eligibility
A farmer or rancher who is a member of one or more of the following groups whose members have been subjected to racial or ethnic prejudice because of their identity as members of a group without regard to their individual qualities: African-Americans, American Indians, Alaskan Natives, Hispanics, Asians, and Pacific Islanders. Beneficiaries also include military veterans. The Secretary of Agriculture will determine on a case-by-case basis whether additional groups qualify under this definition.
Funds will be awarded to eligible entities that have documented knowledge of and experience with USDA programs and experience in providing agricultural education or other agriculturally related services to socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers or veteran farmers and ranchers during the 3-year period preceding the submission of an application. The Secretary shall give priority to nongovernmental and community-based organizations with demonstrated history of serving socially disadvantaged and veteran farmers and ranchers. An applicant MUST be an entity or organization. Individuals and for-profit organizations do not meet the eligibility criteria. Community-based organizations and non-profit organizations should provide a current certification of non-profit status in accordance with section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 and have dated Articles of Incorporation for at least 3 years prior to application.
What is the process for applying and being award this assistance?
Pre-Application Procedure
Preapplication coordination is required. This program is eligible for coverage under E.O. 12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs." An applicant should consult the office or official designated as the single point of contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.
Application Procedure
This program is excluded from coverage under 2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards.
Award Procedure
Eligible entities whose proposals meet the threshold criteria stated in the Funding Opportunity Announcement will be reviewed. Proposals will be reviewed and evaluated by a Review Panel which rates the qualification of applicants and the merit of proposals. Funding decisions will be based on the Panel's ranking scores of each proposal. Final funding decisions will be made by the designated approving official.
Please review the Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) for application submission deadlines.
Approval/Disapproval Decision Time
From 30 to 60 days. Proposals must be received by the deadline indicated on the Funding Opportunity Announcement posted on www.grants.gov. Proposals received after the posted deadline will not be considered for funding.
Grant-making decisions are not appealable.
From 30 to 60 days. For renewals, a new Funding Opportunity Announcement will be posted on grants.gov. Extensions must be requested at least 45 days before the end of the Period of Performance.
How are proposals selected?
Criteria are dependent upon identification of specific project requirements and program priorities developed by the Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement (OPPE), in consultation with collaborating agencies and organizations. Contact OPPE for additional information. Please review the Funding Opportunity Announcement on www.grants.gov for more explicit information on selection criteria.
How may assistance be used?
2501 organizations extend OPPE’s outreach efforts to connect with and assist socially disadvantaged and veteran farmers and ranchers. They play a critical role in identifying and addressing the factors and challenges experienced by socially disadvantaged groups while also providing training, education, and technical expertise. These organizations help to ensure socially disadvantaged groups and veterans are able to equitably participate in the full range of USDA programs in an effort to help improve their ability to start and maintain successful agricultural businesses.
What are the requirements after being awarded this opportunity?
Not applicable.
Not applicable.
Per 2 CFR 200.333, Grant records shall be retained for a period of 3 years from the day the recipient submits its final expenditure report. If any litigation, claim, negotiation, audit, or other action involving the records has been started before the expiration of the 3-year period, the records must be retained until completion of the action and resolution of all issues which arise from it, or until the end of the regular 3-year period, whichever is later. Grant records include financial and program/ progress reports, support documents, statistical records, and other documents that support the activity and/or expenditure of the recipient or subrecipient under the award.
Other Assistance Considerations
Formula and Matching Requirements
Statutory formula is not applicable to this assistance listing.

Matching requirements are not applicable to this assistance listing.

MOE requirements are not applicable to this assistance listing.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
Per the Funding Opportunity Announcement posted on Grants.gov, grants are awarded for a period of three years. Successful applicants will be notified by the OPPE via telephone, email, and/or postal mail that its proposed project has been recommended for award. The notification will be sent to the Project Manager listed on the SF-424, Application for Federal Assistance. The grant agreement will be forwarded to the recipient for signature and must be returned to the OPPE Director, who is the authorizing official. Once grant documents are executed by all parties, authorization to begin work will be given.
Who do I contact about this opportunity?
Regional or Local Office
None/Not specified.
Headquarters Office
Benjamin Chan
Office of Partnerships and Public Engagement
1400 Independence Avenue SW, Stop 0601
Washington, DC 20250-9600 US
Phone: 202-720-6350
Website Address
Financial Information
Account Identification
(Project Grants) FY 23$27,600,000.00; FY 24 est $22,500,000.00; FY 25 est $25,000,000.00; FY 22$28,750,000.00; FY 21$34,400,000.00; -
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
Up to $750,000 per award over a 3-year period. Maximum funding amount each year is $250,000.
Regulations, Guidelines and Literature
7 U.S.C. ? 7601; 7 U.S.C. ? 3103; 7 U.S.C. ? 2279, 7CFR 2500 and 2 CFR part 200 "Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards"
Examples of Funded Projects
Fiscal Year 2020 Please see our website for examples of projects funded in previous years: https://www.usda.gov/partnerships/socially-disadvantaged-farmers-and-ranchers
Fiscal Year 2021 For projects funded from 2014 through 2022, See "Funded Projects" on USDA OPPE's website: https://www.usda.gov/partnerships/socially-disadvantaged-farmers-and-ranchers


Federal Grants Resources