PA FFFI Application Process & Timeline
There are 2-3 application deadlines throughout the year, roughly every 4-6 months. Dates will be published on this page when the next deadline is announced. We anticipate another round of funding in fall 2023 contingent on the availability of funds.
The full application process, from the application deadline to the dispersal of funds, can take 4-6 months. We offer hands-on assistance throughout the process to make it as easy as possible for the applicant to navigate. Please see the outline below for more details on each step of this process.
For more information on eligibility requirements and more information about FFFI, please review the guidelines posted below:
Step 1: Apply
The first step in the process is for the applicant to complete an application, which can be completed as a fillable PDF or online form.
Step 2: Eligibility Determination
The Food Trust will use the application to determine whether the proposed project aligns with the PA FFFI’s goals and objectives of serving a low-to moderate-income, under-resourced community, fitting community needs and preferences, and improving food access. Programmatic eligibility criteria are outlined here.
Timeline of Application Review Process:
- Application deadline closes
- Within 4-6 weeks, The Food Trust will set up calls with the applicant to hear more about their project. At this stage, applicants should be prepared to speak about these topics:
- Total requested grant and loan amounts
- Specific uses for requested PA FFFI funds
- Their project’s financial sustainability and/or other funding secured
- Their community’s need for more affordable and healthy food options
- Further, these documents will be requested ahead of the call, if they are available:
- If the project serves multiple locations, a list of all the addresses of their sites
- A budget for the requested grant funds
- Any recent sales data, such as total monthly gross sales and total monthly SNAP sales for the last 3 months
- If the project is new, some form of financial projections indicating the project’s sustainability
- 2-3 references: they can include existing customers, community organizations, or community members that understand the needs of the community being served (if you have not already provided them)
- Within approximately 6-8 weeks after the applicant call, the applicant will receive an eligibility determination indicating whether or not their project meets the program eligibility criteria.
- At that point, if a loan was requested in addition to a grant, the approved applicants will be connected to a partner Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) in their region for information on potential loan financing, and/or technical assistance.
Step 3: Grant Award Determination and Formal Budget Approval
- The Food Trust will set up a “grant determination” follow-up call with approved applicants to finalize application information that will help determine the amount of grant funding they qualify for (within approximately 2 weeks of eligibility determination).
- Applicant will be notified of final grant award amount (Within approximately 1 week of grant determination call).
- At this point, applicants are asked to provide:
- An updated formal budget totaling the grant award amount
- Quotes for each item listed in their budget. Examples include: quotes from contractors or vendors, web links or screenshots of products to be purchased online, etc
- A copy of their W-9 Form
- A copy of their electronic deposit “ACH” information from their bank
- The preferred email for payment communications
- The name of the authorized signer in their organization for the contract
Step 4: Funding Disbursement and Quarterly Reports
After all above documents have been received, an agreement is drawn stating the terms of the grant, and is signed by both parties. Funding will then be disbursed within approximately 30-60 days of contract execution. After funding is received, applicants must be prepared to submit 4 quarterly status reports to The Food Trust over the following year.