Both HUD and the Department of Agriculture offer programs and services that may help you in your work.
HUD's nonprofit web page for Grantees and Nonprofits
HUD has a number of grant programs for which you can apply. The grants are awarded on a competitive basis. They are announced annually in HUD’s Notice of Funding Availability.
These are some of the grant programs often used by faith and community-based organizations, educational institutions, and housing authorities to serve the needs of colonias residents.
Rural Housing & Economic Development (RHED)
What is it? This grant program is designed to build capacity for planning and implementing rural housing and economic development strategies to support innovative housing and economic development activities in rural areas.
Who can apply? Rural nonprofits, community development corporations (CDCs), state housing finance agencies (HFAs), state community and/or economic development agencies, and federally recognized Indian tribes
What is it? Youthbuild teaches young people skills in building homes while creating affordable housing for low-income and homeless people in their communities. Students learn through a combination of classroom education, job skills development, and on-site training in a construction trade.
Who can apply? Public and private non-profit organizations, (such as community-based organizations, community action agencies), state or local housing agencies, community development corporations, and other entities including States and units of general local government that are eligible to provide education and employment training.
Self-Help Homeownership Program (SHOP)
What is it? A sweat equity and volunteer-based homeownership program for low-income persons and families. SHOP provides funds for eligible nonprofit organizations to purchase home sites and develop or improve infrastructure.
Who can apply? National and regional non-profit organizations or consortia with experience in using volunteer labor to build housing.
What is it? Housing Counseling grants are designed to expand homeownership opportunities and improve access to affordable housing by funding agencies providing any of a wide range of counseling activities: pre-home purchase homebuyer counseling, post-purchase counseling, HECM (Home Equity Conversion Mortgage) counseling, delinquency counseling, and anti-predatory lending.
Who can apply? HUD-approved local housing counseling agencies (LHCAs), HUD-approved national and regional intermediaries, and state housing finance agencies (SHFAs). Learn how to become "HUD-approved."
Fair Housing Initiatives Program (FHIP)
What is it? FHIP provides assistance to individuals who believe they have been victims of housing discrimination. Grantees identify government agencies that can help and conduct preliminary investigation of claims by sending testers to properties suspected of practicing housing discrimination. There are 3 FHIP initiatives: Fair Housing Organizations Initiative (FHOI), Private Enforcement Initiative (PEI), and the Education and Outreach Initiative (EOI).
Who can apply?
FHIP-FHOI: Qualified fair housing enforcement organizations with at least two years of experience in complaint intake, complaint investigation, testing for fair housing violations, and meritorious claims in the three years prior to the filing of their application.
FHIP-PEI: Fair housing enforcement organizations that meet certain requirements related to the length and quality of previous fair housing enforcement experience.
FHIP-EOI: State or local governments, qualified fair housing enforcement organizations (those with at least 2 years of experience), other fair housing organizations, and other public or private nonprofit organizations representing groups of persons protected by the Fair Housing Act.
Current FHIP Grantees
Section 202 Supportive Housing for the Elderly
What is it? Section 202 provides interest-free capital advances for the construction or rehabilitation of rental housing with support services for very low-income elderly. The program also provides rental assistance for project residents.
Who can apply? Private non-profit organizations that can, among other requirements, submit a resolution that they will provide a minimum capital investment equal to 0.5 percent of the HUD-approved capital advance, up to a maximum of $25,000 for national sponsors or $10,000 for other sponsors. Public entities are not eligible for funding under this program.
Section 811 Supportive Housing for Persons With Disabilities
What Is It? Section 811 allows very low-income adults with disabilities to live as independently as possible by increasing the supply of rental housing that provides supportive services. HUD provides advanced interest-free capital to nonprofit sponsors to help them finance the development of rental housing with supportive services for persons with disabilities. The program also provides rental assistance for project residents.
Who can apply? Non-profit organizations with a Section 501(c)(3) tax exemption from the IRS that can also submit a resolution that a minimum capital investment equal to 0.5 percent of the capital advance amount, up to a maximum of $10,000 will be provided.
Hispanic-Serving Institutions Assisting Communities (HSIAC)
What is it? HSIAC is designed to help Hispanic-serving colleges and universities expand their role and effectiveness in addressing community development needs. HSIAC funds grantees to carry out projects designed primarily to benefit low- and moderate-income residents, help prevent or eliminate slums or blight, or meet an urgent community development need in the community where the Hispanic-serving institution (HSI) is located
Who can apply? Non-profit Hispanic-serving institutions of higher education that meet the definition of an HSI established in Title V of the 1998 Amendments to the Higher Education Act of 1965.
Housing Opportunities for Persons With Aids (HOPWA) What is it? Addresses the needs of persons living with HIV/AIDS and their families. Grant projects must benefit low-income persons medically diagnosed with HIV/AIDS. HOPWA funding can also provide housing assistance and related supportive services. Funds are awarded from one of three HOPWA programs: the Formula Program, Competitive Program and the National Technical Assistance Funds
Who can apply? Local communities, states and nonprofit organizations.
Lead-Based Paint Hazard Control Grant Program
What is it? Aims to reduce the exposure of young children to lead-based paint hazards in their homes - whether homes are privately-owned, low income owner-occupied or rental housing. Evaluation and hazard control activities must be conducted by trained and/or certified individuals. Grants are managed by the state or local government entity. Grantees frequently partner with local community-based organizations to accomplish program activities.
Family Self-Sufficiency Program (FSS)
What is it? Encourages communities to develop local strategies to help assisted families who receive Section 8 housing vouchers obtain employment that will lead to economic independence and self-sufficiency. Public Housing Authorities (PHAs) work with welfare agencies, schools, business, and other local partners to develop a comprehensive program for FSS participants. Families that are selected to receive a voucher or who currently receive assistance through the housing choice voucher programs should discuss participation in the FSS program with their local PHA
Resident Opportunities for Self-Sufficiency (ROSS)
What is it? Links public housing residents with services and resident empowerment activities to assist residents in becoming economically self-sufficient. ROSS incorporates three basic funding categories: Technical Assistance/Training Support for Resident Organization, Resident Service Delivery Models, and Service Coordinators
Who can apply? Public housing agencies, site-based resident associations, intermediary resident organizations, and non-profit entities operating as association or networks that administer programs benefiting public and assisted housing residents.
USDA Rural Development - Rural Housing Service
U. S. Department of Agriculture
USDA Rural Development - Florida State Offices Information
Direct Loan Program (Section 502) - These loans are primarily used to help low- and very low-income individuals or households purchase homes in USDA designated rural areas. Funds can be used to build, repair, renovate, or relocate a home, or to purchase and prepare sites, including providing water and sewage facilities.
Loan Guarantee Program (Section 502) - Rural Housing Service is able to guarantee loans made by private sector lenders.
Mutual Self Help Program (Section 523) - Using the Sweat Equity method, this loan program allows low- and very low-income families in USDA designated rural areas to reduce the cost of their homes by providing at least 65% of the construction labor. Interest rates for the loans can be as low as 1%.
Self-Help Technical Assistance Grant - These are grant funds that assist non-profits who are providing technical assistance to families building their homes using the Sweat Equity method. The grant funds can be used to fund a variety of administrative expenses.
Farm Labor Housing Program (Section 514/516)- provides low interest loans and grants to public or non-profit agencies or individual farmers to build affordable rental housing for farm workers
Multi-Family Housing - Rental Assistance (Section 521) - provide rental subsidies to tenants in rural rental or farm housing complexes.
Rural Rental Housing Guaranteed Loan Program (Section 538) - guarantees loans for affordable rural rental housing made by eligible conventional lenders and serves low to moderate-income tenants.
Housing Preservation Grant Program (HPG) (Section 533) - a competitive grant program allowing sponsoring organizations to repair or rehabilitate low- or very low-income housing. The funds are very competitive and sponsor-applicants must supply housing need data as well as demonstrate their ability to combine HPG funds with other program funds (leverage the money).
Rural Housing Repair and Rehabilitation Loans and Grants (Section 504) provide low interest loans of up to $20,000.00 to rural owner/occupants of homes in need of repair. Grants of up to $7,500.00 are available to residents over age 62 to address health and safety issues, or to make the dwelling accessible for a disabled resident.
Rural Rental Housing Loans (Section 515) are direct, competitive mortgage loans made to provide affordable multifamily rental housing for very low-, low- and moderate-income families, the elderly, and persons with disabilities. This is primarily a direct mortgage program, but its funds may also be used to buy and improve land and to provide necessary facilities such as waste and waste disposal systems.
Community Facilities - Community Programs can make Grants, Direct Loans and Guaranteed Loans to municipalities, counties, special-purpose districts, non-profit corporations and tribal governments to develop essential community facilities in rural areas and towns of up to 20,000 in population.
USDA - Rural Utilities Service
Water and Environmental Programs (WEP) provides loans, grants and loan guarantees to public bodies, non-profit organizations and recognized Indian tribes for drinking water, sanitary sewer, solid waste and storm drainage facilities in rural areas and cities and towns of 10,000 or less.
Telecommunications Programs provides various financing programs for four programs: broadband and other advanced services, Distance Learning and Telemedicine, Broadband Pilot Program and the Weather Radio Grant Program.
The Electric Program provides capital to upgrade, expand, maintain, and replace rural electric infrastructure through direct loans and loan guarantees to electric utilities to serve customers in rural areas.
Other Federal Resources
USA.gov for Nonprofits
U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) Information on Grants & Funding
Information on HHS Center for Faith-Based & Community Initiatives
U.S. Department of Labor, National Agricultural Workers Survey
Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) Money Smart Program - a training program helping adults outside the financial mainstream enhance money skills and create positive banking relationships.