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Kentucky ARC Flex-E-Grant (FEG) Program

Grants to Kentucky Nonprofits and Agencies to Enhance Economic
Development in Counties Distressed by COVID-19

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Center for Rural Development, Kentucky Department for Local Government (DLG), Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC)

Deadline Date:

10/20/20 5:00 PM EST - Emailed or Postmarked


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Grants of up to $7,500 to Kentucky nonprofit organizations and government agencies for activities that spur economic development in qualifying disadvantaged counties in the wake of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Funding is intended to support capacity building projects and planning activities that aid in preparedness and recovery over the course of, and following, the pandemic. Funded projects must benefit designated economically distressed Appalachian counties within the State.

Eligible Counties: 

Adair, Bath, Bell, Breathitt, Carter, Casey, Clay, Clinton, Cumberland, Elliott, Estill, Floyd, Harlan, Jackson, Johnson, Knott, Knox, Lawrence, Lee, Leslie, Letcher, Lincoln, Magoffin, Martin, McCreary, Menifee, Morgan, Owsley, Perry, Pike, Rockcastle, Russell, Wayne, Whitley, and Wolfe.

The Flex-E-Grant (FEG) Program, designed by the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), provides strategic investments in projects that build community capacity to mobilize local resources, gain leadership experience, and strengthen community institutions and networks. The Center, ARC and DLG seek to fund proposals that strengthen economic growth, development and recovery in Kentucky’s distressed Appalachian counties during this time of pandemic and post-pandemic. Proposals that build capacity through the promotion, support and advancement of economic development will have priority.

Competitive project proposals will advance the strategic investment goals of ARC’s 2016-2020 Strategic Plan (Investing in Appalachia’s Future: The Appalachian Regional Commission’s Five- Year Strategic Plan for Capitalizing on Appalachia’s Opportunities—2016-2020 see 

This cycle of Flex-E-Grants will focus on planning activities; particularly those that consist of pandemic recovery and/or preparedness. This cycle may be awarded for a variety of capacity building planning projects, which might include but are not limited to:

  1. Strategic planning and management processes for communities or non-profit groups;
  2. Addition of pandemic planning addendum to an existing community-based strategic plan;
  3. Training related to pandemic recovery and preparedness for citizen leaders, local officials, management and staff from non-profit community agencies as well as boards or commissions;
  4. Support for initiatives that enhance leadership, planning and management capacity for distressed counties, such as initiatives to increase collaboration, interaction and access to information;
  5. Use of professional services to assess a project's feasibility, to offer consulting advice on a strategy, to support application development, etc.

Project Categories (Areas of Focus):

  • Economic Development: Includes strategic planning, regional collaboration, entrepreneurial and business development projects.
  • Ready Workforce: Includes workforce education, retraining, recovery, and health projects.
  • Natural and Cultural: Includes tourism, natural resources and cultural opportunities that strengthen the local or regional economy.
  • Leadership and Community Capacity: Includes leadership development, youth engagement, planning, and training projects.

Although the primary intent of the program is to support efforts that help develop local capacity, eligible activities may also include collaboration among communities in support of existing and emerging regional development efforts. 

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 165873

Estimated Size of Grant:

Grants are subject to approval for up to $7,500.

Term of Contract:

Grants are to be completed within a four-month time frame.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Counties within The Center’s service area that were designated as economically distressed for fiscal year of 2018 are eligible to apply for the 2020 KY-ARC Flex-E-Grant Program. (See list of eligible counties in Description above.) Competitive planning grants are available for non-profit entities or units of government interested in implementing planning projects that build community capacity.

Flex-E-Grant funds may not be used for equipment purchase, construction costs, or administrative expenses or indirect costs.

Pre-Application Information:

The deadline for submission of proposals is 5:00 PM Eastern Standard Time, Oct. 20, 2020.

Completed applications must be postmarked or emailed no later than the deadline.

Awards will be announced in November 2020.

Proposals may be submitted to The Center for Rural Development. Digital files are preferred and may be emailed. Proposals are also accepted by mail.

Grants require a 20 percent match of total project costs.

All selected applicants will be required to fully participate in any formal evaluation process and to attend any mandatory technical assistance workshops or trainings.

Flex-E-Grant funds are made available on a reimbursement basis only.

Contact Information:

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

Email applications to:

Proposals are also accepted by mail at the following address:
The Center for Rural Development
Patti Simpson
2292 South Hwy. 27
Somerset, KY 42501

For questions, please contact:

Patti Simpson
(606) 677-6110

Grant Coverage Areas:

Eligible Counties Include:
Adair, Bath, Bell, Breathitt, Carter, Casey, Clay, Clinton, Cumberland, Elliott, Estill, Floyd, Harlan,
Jackson, Johnson, Knott, Knox, Lawrence, Lee, Leslie, Letcher, Lincoln, Magoffin, Martin,
McCreary, Menifee, Morgan, Owsley, Perry, Pike, Rockcastle, Russell, Wayne, Whitley, and

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

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