Assets for Independence

Posted by U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on May 11, 2015

The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) Office of Community Services (OCS) will be accepting applications for grants to administer projects for the Assets for Independence (AFI) demonstration program.

AFI grantees administer projects that provide individual development accounts (IDAs) and related services to low-income individuals. Participants open an IDA and save earned income that is matched by project funds. The combined participant savings and project matching funds will be used for an allowable asset: a first home, a business, or post-secondary education or training. Projects also assist participants in obtaining the skills and information necessary to achieve economic self-sufficiency. Grantees are encouraged to tailor the strategies and services they offer to the needs of their project participants and the opportunities in their community. Examples of activities in this area include financial education, asset-specific training, financial coaching, credit-building services, credit/debt counseling, and assistance with tax credits and tax preparation.

AFI projects must be funded with a combination of the federal AFI grant and cash from non-federal sources. The amount of cash from non-federal sources must be at least equal to the federal AFI grant amount. Applicants must provide documentation of commitment of non-federal funds in their application. Specific requirements for this documentation will be included in the funding opportunity announcement.

Awards are up to $1 million and a 1:1 non-federal cost share is required; existing scholarship streams may be leveraged for the cost share. If you are interested in learning more about AFI and IDAs, contact the AFI Resource Center by calling 1-866-778-6037 or email

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