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Section 4 Capacity Building Grants - Rural and Native American Initiative (RNAI)

Grants to USA Nonprofit Community Housing Organizations Serving
Rural and Native American Populations to Strengthen Capacity

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Enterprise Community Partners

Conf. Date:


LOI Date:


Deadline Date:

09/09/19 11:59 PM EDT


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Grants starting at $25,000 to USA nonprofit community development and housing organizations, Tribes, and Tribal housing entities and authorities serving rural areas to strengthen capacity to implement housing programs for low-income residents. An LOI must be submitted prior to applying. Funding is intended to help organizations create and execute affordable housing initiatives; coordinate on place-based and cross-programmatic approaches; and facilitate knowledge sharing. The purpose of the Section 4 program is to enhance the technical and administrative capacity of community development corporations (CDCs) and community housing development organizations (CHDOs) to carry out community development and affordable housing activities.

Priority will be given to applicants applying in an area of persistent poverty. The continued persistence of poverty is most evident within several predominantly rural regions and populations such as Central Appalachia, the Lower Mississippi Delta, the southern Black Belt, the Colonias region along the U.S.-Mexico border, Native American lands, and migrant and seasonal farmworkers. Persistent poverty counties are defined as counties that have had poverty rates of 20% or greater for at least 30 years. To determine if the area where grant activities will take place is in an area of persistent poverty, confirm your county here:

Enterprise is soliciting applications that address CDC and CHDO capacity building in the following seven Program Areas. Applications may address more than one Program Area; however, Applicants must select one (1) Program Area that most closely aligns with proposed activities.
- Program Area 1: Rental Housing Preservation
- Program Area 2: Native Homeownership
- Program Area 3: Community and Economic Development
- Program Area 4: Economic Mobility
- Program Area 5: Health and Housing
- Program Area 6: Equitable Climate Resilience
- Program Area Seven: Organizational Capacity Building

For further information about these program areas, see:

Organizational capacity building should result in stronger, more financially viable and diverse organizations that are better positioned to fulfill their missions and remain a voice for their community. Common examples of activities that Enterprise may fund under this Program Area include:
- Operations and staff funding
- Improving board oversight and governance
- Improving back office functionality/accounting systems
- Improving controls for increased capacity for new development and preservation of affordable housing
- Improving asset management systems
- Leadership development and staff development

Grant funds may be used for predevelopment assistance or other financial assistance to CDCs and CHDOs to carry out community development and affordable housing activities that benefit low-income families and persons. For a list of allowable costs and activities, see:

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 186268

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Estimated Size of Grant:

Enterprise anticipates making awards that range from $25,000 to $100,000. Average award is expected to be $50,000.

Term of Contract:

Periods of performance will begin on the first of the month following the execution of the grant agreement.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligible Applicants are CDCs and CHDOs as defined by the HUD Section 4 program definition performing work in rural areas. Other eligible organizations, determined by Enterprise, may include organizations serving Native American Populations with a defined mission that includes affordable housing such as Tribes, Tribally Designated Housing Entities (TDHEs) or Tribal Housing Authorities (THAs).

Enterprise seeks to support eligible organizations that have been in existence for ten (10) years or less, have an annual budget of $500,000 or less, are the only housing or community development organization working within their community and are working on increasing overall organizational development capacities.

Section 4 Capacity Building grant funds are limited to CDCs and CHDOs as defined by the Section 4 program. A CDC is a nonprofit organization that undertakes eligible Section 4 Capacity Building Program activities and that meets these qualifications:
- Is organized under federal, state or local law to engage in community development activities (which may include housing and economic development activities) primarily within an identified geographic area of operation;
- Is governed by a board of directors composed of community residents, business, and civic leaders -- this includes faith-based community development corporations;
- Has as its primary purpose the improvement of the physical, economic or social environment of its geographic area of operation by addressing one or more critical problems of the area, with particular attention to the needs of persons of low income;
- Is neither controlled by, nor under the direction of, individuals or entities seeking to derive profit or gain from the organization;
- Has a tax exemption ruling from the Internal Revenue Service under section 501(c)(3) or 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (26 CFR 1.501(c)(3)-1);
- Has standards of financial accountability that conform to 24 CFR (Code of Federal Regulation) 84.21, Standards for Financial Management Systems;
- Is not an agency or instrumentality of a state or local government;
- For urban areas, “community” may be a neighborhood or neighborhoods, city, county or metropolitan area; for rural areas, it may be a neighborhood or neighborhoods, town, village, county or multi-county area (but not the entire state).

A CDC that does not qualify under the definition above may also be determined to qualify as an eligible entity if:
- It is an entity organized pursuant to section 301(d) of the Small Business Investment Act of 1958 (15 U.S.C. 681(d)), including those which are profit making; or
- It is a Small Business Administration (SBA) approved Section 501 State Development Company or Section 502 Local Development Company, or a SBA Certified Section 503 Company under the Small Business Investment Act of 1958, as amended: or
- The recipient demonstrates to the satisfaction of HUD, through the provision of information regarding the organization’s charter and by-laws, that the organization is sufficiently similar in purpose, function, and scope to those entities qualifying under definition above.
- It is a State or locally chartered organization; however, the State or local government may not have the right to appoint more than one-third of the membership of the organization’s governing body and no more than one-third of the board member may be public officials or employees of the State or local government entity chartering the organization. Board members appointed by the State or local government may not appoint the remaining two-thirds of the board members.

A Community Development Housing Organization (CHDO) is defined in the HOME Investment Partnerships Program (HOME Program) regulation at 24 CFR 92.2. The HOME Program is authorized by the HOME Investment Partnerships Act at title II of the Cranston-Gonzalez National Affordable Housing Act, as amended, 42 U.S.C. 12701 et seq.

Additional information about CHDOs and obtaining CHDO status can be found at

The Rural and Native American Initiative will serve CDCs and CHDOs located across the nation. A rural area is a statistical geographic entity delineated by the Census Bureau that does not meet the definition of an urbanized area contained in the Office of Management and Budget’s 2010 Standards for Delineating Metropolitan and Micropolitan Statistical Areas, 75 FR 37252 (June 28, 2010). That is, a rural area is an area that is NOT a statistical geographic entity delineated by the Census Bureau, which would consist of densely settled census tracts and blocks and adjacent densely settled territory that together contain at least 50,000 people.

To determine if the area where grant activities will take place qualifies as rural, enter the zip code or city here to confirm eligibility: Areas shaded pink are not eligible geographies.

Enterprise also requires that Applicants have appropriate and demonstrated staff capacity to successfully perform the proposed activities. Demonstrated Staff Capacity is defined as Staff – either full-time, part-time and/or contract employees – must have experience relevant to the proposed project or program and are responsible for the day-to-day organizational duties for the project and beyond. An Applicant may not rely solely on volunteers, donated staff, board members or consultants to meet the capacity requirement.

For a list of ineligible costs activities, see:

Pre-proposal Conference:

An LOI Q & A webinar for rural and Native American applications will take place on June 27, 2019, 2:00 - 3:00 PM, EDT.

Enterprise will host a question and answer webinar to review the Rural & Native American LOI requirements. The session will be recorded and posted on the website.

Register here:

Market Q & A:
- Chicago - June 27 from 10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. CDT
- Link:

- Gulf Coast - June 28 at 10:00 a.m.
- Register:

- Mid-Atlantic - June 27 from 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. EDT
- Register:

- New York - June 26 from 10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. EDT
This is an in-person Q&A session at 1 Whitehall Street, 11th Floor, New York, NY 10004. Written questions to be answered during the session may be submitted at least two business days prior to the meeting (see email below).

- Southeast - June 28 at 2:00 p.m. EDT
- Register:

Pre-Application Information:

LOI submission deadline is July 15, 2019, 11:59 PM Eastern Daylight Time (EDT).

Eligible organizations must apply through SlideRoom, the application portal for this funding opportunity. Applicants must register for an account in SlideRoom prior to submitting the application. This funding opportunity is a two-step application process consisting of an LOI and a Request for Proposals (RFP). Applicants who pass the LOI round will receive a formal invitation to submit a full proposal. Applicants may not submit a full proposal unless they are invited by Enterprise.

An updated LOI FAQ will be updated and posted on Enterprise’s website. Questions will not be posted after July 11, 2019.

Important dates:
- LOI Issue Date: June 17
- Rural & Native American Applicant Q&A Webinar - June 27, 2019; 2:00 - 3:00 p.m. EDT
- Submission Deadline for LOI Applications: July 15, 11:59 p.m. EDT
- Email notification to submit full proposal: week of August 8
- Submission Deadline for full proposal: September 9, 11:59 p.m. EDT
- Expected date for selection notifications: October 15

Applicants may submit only one (1) application to either the National LOI or the Rural and Native American LOI, but not both.

The Section 4 program requires Enterprise to raise match from private sources for every dollar of Section 4 funds spent. Enterprise in turn requests that Grantees demonstrate their ability to provide matching dollars at a 3:1 ratio to assist Enterprise in meeting this requirement.

All grants are awarded on a cost reimbursement basis; grant disbursements occur after expenses have been incurred.

All organizations receiving federal funds are required to obtain a DUNS number, and be registered in SAM:

Census Bureau website:


Contact Information:

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

Register and Apply Online:

Submit technical questions to:

Submit Q & A questions to:

For questions on the Section 4 grant opportunities, please email:

Programmatic questions may be directed to Sarah Torsell, Program Director, at

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Alabama;   Alaska;   Arizona;   Arkansas;   California;   Colorado;   Connecticut;   Delaware;   Florida;   Georgia;   Hawaii;   Idaho;   Illinois;   Indiana;   Iowa;   Kansas;   Kentucky;   Louisiana;   Maine;   Maryland;   Massachusetts;   Michigan;   Minnesota;   Mississippi;   Missouri;   Montana;   Nebraska;   Nevada;   New Hampshire;   New Jersey;   New Mexico;   New York City;   New York;   North Carolina;   North Dakota;   Ohio;   Oklahoma;   Oregon;   Pennsylvania;   Rhode Island;   South Carolina;   South Dakota;   Tennessee;   Texas;   Utah;   Vermont;   Virginia;   Washington, DC;   Washington;   West Virginia;   Wisconsin;   Wyoming

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