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Professional Development Grants

Grants to USA Individuals at IHEs, Nonprofits, For-Profits, and
Agencies in Multiple States for Training in Sustainable Agriculture

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE)

LOI Date:


Deadline Date:

10/20/20 5:00 PM ET


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Grants to USA individuals affiliated with IHEs, nonprofit organizations, for-profits, and municipal, federal, and state agricultural agencies in eligible states to develop the skills of service providers for the agricultural industry. Applicants must submit a preproposal prior to applying. Projects must take place within the Northeast region which includes Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, West Virginia, Vermont, and Washington, D.C.

The Northeast SARE Professional Development Grant program funds projects that develop the knowledge, awareness, skills, and attitudes of agricultural and non-agricultural service providers about sustainable agriculture practices to teach, advise, or assist farmers. An agricultural service provider is a professional who assists farmers as part of their work. Projects that develop the ability of non-agricultural service providers (e.g., real estate agents, bankers, or attorneys) to work with farmers are also eligible. These service providers then use their new knowledge, awareness, skills, and attitudes in their work with farmers.

The Professional Development Grant Program uses an outcome funding approach with a “performance target” to describe the changes in practices, behaviors, or conditions among beneficiaries (in this case, service providers) that are expected to result from the proposed project. 

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 171785

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Number of Grants:

It is estimated that 8 to 12 awards will be made.

Estimated Size of Grant:

Proposals funded typically range from $30,000 to $150,000.

Term of Contract:

Typical project length is 2 to 3 years. All projects must be completed by November 30, 2024.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Professional Development Grants are open to personnel at colleges and universities, Cooperative Extension, agricultural and community nonprofit organizations, municipalities, state departments of agriculture, federal agencies like NRCS, for-profit entities (such as private consultants, veterinary practices and other businesses that serve the farming community), and others who work with service providers.

Northeast SARE encourages projects submitted from or in collaboration with Minority Serving Institutions (including 1890s and other historically Black colleges and universities, Hispanic-Serving Institutions and tribal colleges and universities) and other organizations in the Northeast region that work with socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers. Projects are invited to include funding to specifically address or assess social dimensions of the proposed work.

Your organization must have the legal structure and financial capacity in place to receive and execute a Northeast SARE contract, including expending funds needed for the project prior to receiving reimbursements from Northeast SARE; advance payments are not possible.

Pre-Application Information:

Preproposals are required for the Professional Development Grant Program. The deadline for 2021 Professional Development Grant preproposals is Thursday, July 23, 2020. Invited full proposals will be due on October 20, 2020.

Grant Timeline:

- Online application system opens for submissions: May 5, 2020
- Preproposal submission deadline: 5 p.m. ET, July 23, 2020
- Applicants notified whether or not they are invited to submit a full proposal: August 24, 2020
- Feedback sent to applicants: September 2020
- Full proposal submission deadline: 5 p.m. ET, October 20, 2020
- Award decisions announced to applicants: Late February 2021
- Contract start date for awarded projects: March 1, 2021
- Pre-award conference calls with Northeast SARE staff: March 2021

Staff support to answer questions or deal with technical submission issues will be available until 5:00 PM ET on the preproposal due date.

Guide to Outcome Funding (video and pdf):

Grant overview:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Submit Preproposal Online:

Contact Katie Campbell-Nelson at or 403-834-1090.

Northeast SARE
University of Vermont
140 Kennedy Drive, Suite 201
South Burlington, VT 05403


URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Connecticut;   Delaware;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New York City;   New York;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   Vermont;   Washington, DC;   West Virginia

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