Frequently Asked Questions

At this time, we are not accepting applications for 2017 funding. Check back for updates. 

Q:     Can I apply for a grant if I am not applying for a USDA Community Facilities Relending Program loan?

No. Uplift America Fund resources are tied directly to the USDA Community Facilities Relending Program.


Q:     The "Information Overview” form asks for “rural communities served.” What specific information do you want here?

We are not asking for the names of specific communities but want to get a sense of how many rural communities your are directly serving and where they are located, e.g. “Our CDFI serves 28 rural counties in eastern North Carolina.”


Q:     Do I have to get a guarantee from Bank of America to be eligible for a grant?

No, but you do have to meet the USDA requirement to have a Letter of Credit or guarantee from a financial institution. 


Q:     Do we need to have a Letter of Credit/Guarantee secured by the July 25, 2016 UAF deadline?

No, but the CDFI needs to be in process for a Letter of Credit with a financial institution when it applies to the UAF for grant funding on July 25th. All UAF needs is the name of the financial institution and date requested; no final letter of intent is needed. However, you will need a letter from a financial institution describing a letter of credit or guarantee for the application to the USDA on August 8th.


Q:     How will a grant from the Uplift America Fund and a guarantee interact?

If you intend to apply for an Uplift America Fund grant, communicate that to your potential guarantor. If you ask for and receive a grant to build your unrestricted net assets, one of the two eligible purposes of a grant, a potential guarantor will likely consider a higher guarantee amount contingent on the grant.


Q:     Where can I get a guarantee?

Bank of America is one source. It has committed $100M toward supporting the new USDA Community Facilities Relending Program. Contact Susan Greene:, 415-913- 3752. It may also be worth communicating with one of your current lenders. 

Bank of America recently conducted this webinar about the process of obtaining a guarantee and letter of credit.


Q:     Can the cost of the Letter of Credit or guarantee be included in expenses to be paid for by an Uplift America Fund grant?



Q:     Do you prefer each attachment be submitted individually or can we combine them into PDF documents?

We are happy to take them either way. All of them can be combined into a single, or even several PDFs, except the Excel spreadsheet, of course. That needs to stay an Excel spreadsheet. They can also come as separate attachments to one email as long as they are clearly labeled.


Q:     I still have questions about the Community Facilities Relending Program.

Click here to read USDA Rural Development's Frequently Asked Questions about CFRP. If you still need answers, send your questions to USDA is checking that email account daily.