Rural Business Development Grant
According to the United States Department of Agriculture, this program is a competitive grant designed to support technical assistance, training and other activities leading to the development or expansion of small and emerging businesses, in rural areas. RBDG funds must be used for projects benefiting rural areas or towns outside the urbanized periphery of any city with a population of 50,000 or more.
First Southwest Community Fund is always looking for ways to provide borrowers with the financial preparation necessary to ensure their businesses’ success. First Southwest Community Fund can submit applications on behalf of small businesses (less than 50 employees and $1 million in gross revenues) to acquire needed technical assistance that will enable them to grow their business, encouraging economic vitality in rural Colorado.
In 2019, First Southwest Community Fund successfully received a $25,000 grant for Stagecoach Organics - an egg producing facility headquartered in Saguache County - to complete a feasibility study. The feasibility study aims to bring egg packaging capabilities to the San Luis Valley, creating more local jobs and enliven the already rich local agricultural economy
In 2018, First Southwest Community Fund (FSWCF) received a Rural Business Development Grant for Colorado Quinoa, a unique business that sources its quinoa from a collective of small, organic and conventional quinoa farmers throughout the San Luis Valley.
In 2017, First Southwest Community Fund was successful in receiving a $30,000 technical assistance grant to help a promising dog nutrition company, Side by Side, create a marketing plan that will enable them to grow beyond their local markets and become a player on the national stage.