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Outreach and Assistance for Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers (OASDFR)

Providing grants to educational institutions and nonprofit organizations that offer outreach, training and technical assistance to socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers

Program Basics
The Outreach and Technical Assistance for Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers program, also known as the "Section 2501" program after its farm bill section number, provides grants to Land Grant Institutions (1862, 1890, or 1994), Native American Tribal Governments and organizations, Latino-Serving Institutions, State Controlled Institutions of Higher Education, and community-based organizations and non-profits that work with minority farmers and assist them in owning and operating farms and participating in agricultural and USDA-specific programs.

The purpose of the OASDFR program is to assure that socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers have opportunities to successfully acquire, own, operate, and retain farms and ranches and equitably participate in all USDA programs.

The OASDFR program supports a range of outreach and assistance activities, including:

Applicants are also encouraged to coordinate with existing regional projects to complement pertinent and relevant cross-regional activities.

Project Examples

The Agriculture and Land-Based Training Association (ALBA) in Salinas, CA received $253,217 in FY 05 to enhance business management skills of socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers. ALBA has been successful in helping former migrant workers, some of which have never farmed before, become prosperous farm owners. With the help of this grant and other funding, ALBA has created several influential and thriving programs in agricultural training, business and marketing education, and leadership development which benefit a diverse group of farmers and ranchers.

Federation of Southern Cooperatives - In 2007, the Federation of Southern Cooperatives received $299,723, more than doubling its 2005 and 2006 grants, to strengthen the farm management and marketing skills of minority farmers in the southern region of the United States. The funding helped FSC to operate programs such as the Small Farm and Sustainable Agriculture Program, which helps farmers develop successful family farm businesses with technical assistance in farm management, setting farm goals, and financial analysis.

Eligibility Uses and Restrictions
Eligible recipients of OASDFR funding include Land Grant Institutions (1862, 1890, or 1994), Native American Tribal Governments and organizations, Latino- Serving Institutions, State Controlled Institutions of Higher Education, and community-based and non-profit organizations.

Application and Financial Information
The 2008 Farm Bill directed that OASDFR should receive $20 million annually. Matching funds from applicants are not required.

Website
www.nifa.usda.gov/funding/rfas/outreach.html

Contact Information
Dr. Dionne Toombs
National Program Leader
Competitive Programs
dtoombs@nifa.usda.gov
202-401-2138

Last Updated January 26, 2010

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