America’s cities and states – and yes, it’s rural communities! – are in the midst of a once-in-a-generation opportunity to benefit from nearly $4 trillion in federal funds available for infrastructure, environmental, and clean energy projects.

Funding opportunities are rolling out at a dizzying pace, with many communities already implementing projects with awarded funds. There is much to learn from the funding that has flowed to date, including exploring the capacities needed to successfully and equitably receive and manage these dollars. Likewise, there are many learnings we know and hold pertaining to the myriad of challenges communities face in accessing the funding available at this moment.

Rural communities – particularly low-income and/or BIPOC populations – are at a disadvantage in accessing federal funds. Due to decades of divestment and extraction from these communities, many are not “shovel ready,” oftentimes operating with extremely limited capacity and infrastructure to be able to successfully track, pursue, receive, and manage these resources. And yet, rural communities reflect some of the most important and opportune communities for investment. We know these communities are at the frontlines of changing climate; whether coastal, mountain, or plains. They are also critical actors in America’s food and energy systems, not to mention their vital role as nuclei of culture, heritage, creativity, and more. It is imperative they have access to these opportunities because their impact will be felt for decades to come.

As funding opportunities continue to open up – and with the potential for November’s election to dramatically shift the availability of these funding streams – philanthropy must act. 

Join us on Thursday, July 25 from 2 – 3:30 p.m. ET (11-12:30 p.m. PT / 12-1:30 p.m. MT / 1-2:30 p.m. CT)  for The Latest: Leveraging Federal Funds & Building Community Capacity in Rural, the second in a series of quarterly calls focused on accessing and leveraging federal funds to build capacity and advance justice for frontline communities. The first hour will be panel-style webinar programming, followed by an optional 30 minute peer learning and sharing session to fully support and activate funders.

Speakers Include: 
Ann Lichter, Resource Rural
Kimber Lanning, Local First Arizona
Andrew Crosson, Invest Appalachia
Autumn Long, Appalachian Solar Finance Fund

Presented by the Health and Environmental Funders Network, Neighborhood Funders Group, and The Funders Network, this session will build upon the Thriving Communities regional convenings we hosted last fall in partnership with Communities First, which brought place-based and national funders together with federal agencies and community groups in the South, Northeast and Midwest regions.

Registration is open to funders only. If you have any questions about this event, please contact Lindsay Ryder, Director of NFG’s Integrated Rural Strategies Group at

Event Details


Jul 25, 2024

2:00 pm - 3:30 pm ET