USDA Rural Development (RD) provides funding and resources that can help foster and sustain this resilient and flexible business model in the Delmarva. RD Cooperative Services helps rural residents form new co-ops and improve the operations of existing ones in four important ways.
• Fostering Cooperative Development: USDA RD helps to fund Rural Cooperative Development Centers that offer technical assistance for those interested in forming new cooperatives or experiencing issues developing them.
This financing can be used to conduct feasibility studies, develop business plans, provide training and facilitate strategic planning.
These centers are also eligible to receive Socially Disadvantaged Groups Grants that can help them offer technical assistance for underserved audiences.
While the application window just closed for this funding, it’s still open for fiscal year 2023 Rural Cooperative Development Grants.
Visit www.rd.usda.gov/programs-services/rural-cooperative-development-grant-program for details.