$1.25 billion in COVID-19 ‘Rapid Response Program’ funding available via CDFI Fund; apps due March 25

A Treasury program has $1.25 billion available for awards to certified community development financial institutions (CDFIs) to help them support, prepare for, and respond to the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to an announcement Thursday.

The funding will be provided under the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021 by the Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund Rapid Response Program. A notice on the availability of the funds is slated for publication Friday in the Federal Register.

And the response will be rapid indeed – as all applications must be received no later than March 25, the fund said.

Fund awards will be in the form of grants and can range from a minimum of $200,000 to a maximum of $5 million, the fund said in a published program overview. The fund said it expects to make an estimated 1,000 awards averaging $1.2 million each, with at least $25 million of the total to be awarded to benefit Native Communities.

“CDFI Rapid Response Program grant funds may be expended for eligible activities such as financial products, financial services, loan loss reserves, development services, capital reserves, and certain operational activities as defined by the NOFA (notice of funds availability),” the CDFI Fund said Thursday’s release.

Only institutions that have received CDFI certification by Feb. 26 (the planned publication date of the Register notice) are eligible to apply to this particular funding round.

Release: Apply NOW for COVID-19 Stimulus Funds: CDFI Rapid Response Program

Notice for Federal Register

CDFI Rapid Response Program – eligibility, program overview, application process, etc.