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Fund Purpose

From wildfires to drought to global pandemics, farming is risky business. This is even more true for smaller family farms and those from BIPOC, immigrant, and disadvantaged communities. Despite being the heart of our local food systems, these community-scale entrepreneurs too often fall between the cracks of traditional safety nets and government aid. That’s where we come in. The California Family Farmer Emergency Fund offers direct financial support to small-scale farmers impacted by disaster with the aim of helping them weather the storm. If you’re a farmer seeking assistance, read on. Or click here to donate.

Eligibility
  • Family farmers who are actively working the land, derive a portion of their income from their own farm business, and are involved in the day-to-day operations of the farm
  • Farmers whose operations make a minimum of $10,000 and a maximum of $400,000 in gross sales annually
  • Because of systems of historic oppression, the most vulnerable populations often bear the brunt of a crisis. For this reason, at least 50% of all grant funds will be awarded to farmers of color, immigrant farmers, and undocumented farmers.
  • WILDFIRE: Applicants are restricted to the following 18 counties: Alameda, Butte, Contra Costa, Fresno, Humboldt, Lake, Madera, Napa, Plumas, San Joaquin, San Mateo, Santa Cruz, Siskiyou, Solano, Sonoma, Trinity, Tulare, Yolo.  Applicants may have experienced impacts anytime between 2020 and present day.
  • DROUGHT: New well drilling is ineligible for funding. You are not eligible for this grant if you received a CDFA CUSP economic relief grant from CAFF, ABIRC, CCOF, or Peoples Land Stewardship Fund within the last 12 months.
HOW TO Apply & TIMING OF FUNDS

See below for the current status of our three fund categories, as well as instructions on how to apply. Grant applications will be reviewed after the application period closes. Distribution of funds may take up to a few months. Scroll down for Frequently Asked Questions or to learn more about how CAFF’s Emergency Fund is managed. 

COVID-19
Lee Xiong 2

Farm losses resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting economic disruptions, including sales, markets, sick leave, etc. 

Update: Our final round of Pandemic grants were distributed in May of 2022. If you have not heard from us, your application was not accepted. 

~ CURRENTLY INACTIVE ~

WILDFIRE
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Applies to farm losses in 2020, 2021, or 2022 from wildfires in eligible counties (Alameda, Butte, Contra Costa, Fresno, Humboldt, Lake, Madera, Napa, Plumas, San Joaquin, San Mateo, Santa Cruz, Siskiyou, Solano, Sonoma, Trinity, Tulare, and Yolo), including loss of property, equipment, crops, livestock, sales, etc. Funds are made available courtesy of the American Red Cross.

 

Applications closed. Some award funding remains and will reopen in early-mid October for a second round. 

*Las solicitudes están cerradas. Todavía quedan algunos fondos y se volverán a abrir a principios de octubre para una segunda ronda*

DROUGHT
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Farm losses resulting from the 2021-22 drought, including loss of crops, sales, unexpected expenses, well lowering or retrofitting, etc. Please read the application carefully for a list of fundable and non-fundable activities.

Update: If you applied in 2021 and have not heard from us, your application will remain on file and, pending more funding, could be awarded in the future.  Please check your Promotions or spam folder for an email from farmerfund[at]caff.org or baani[at]caff.org.

Applications closed August 15th

*Las solicitudes cerraron el 15 de agosto* 

FAQ

At this time we are not accepting applications from non-profit, educational or demonstration farms. 

This fund is specifically designed for farms in California only.

This fund is specifically for people who operate their own farm businesses. Employees who’ve lost work are encouraged to seek unemployment support. For workers who are undocumented, check out this link for a list of relief fund opportunities.

Yes! In fact, undocumented farmers will be prioritized, given their ineligibility for other federal funds.

Yes, you can apply. Please fill out the application and describe how your business plan and sales and/or plan for future sales have been impacted.

We will prioritize diversified food farming operations, but farmers of most crop types or ranchers raising any type of livestock are eligible to apply. At this time cannabis is not eligible.

This year, wildfire funds will be awarded as $5,000 grants per farm. Drought funds will be awarded at $5,000 or $10,000.

We know that people from all backgrounds are hurting during this crisis. We also recognize that historic and lasting inequities in the California food and farming system have left some groups more vulnerable. Despite facing significant hardships, undocumented farmers are not eligible for federal stimulus funds and other government resources. And as a result of long-standing inequities, farmers of color statistically have less access to savings, capital, healthcare and land-ownership to help carry them through an economic crisis. It’s for these reasons that we feel a responsibility to ensure that our fund reaches those needing the most support in this time of crisis, while still making a significant portion available to all farmers.

If you are a new farmer, or have another limitation, and cannot claim an income between $10K-400K from your farming operations, please describe your particular situation in the long form questions on the second page of the application in order to be considered for the grant award.

The advisory committee will be meeting after August 15. Award notifications can take up to one month. After September 15, if you think you were awarded but have not received notification, please check your spam folder for an email from farmerfund@caff.org or baani@caff.org.

You should receive a copy from <forms-receipts-noreply@google.com> when you apply.  Please check your spam or promotions folder because it may have landed there. If you did not receive a copy, please contact us at farmerfund[at]caff.org.

FUND MANAGEMENT

The Emergency Fund is a nonprofit-advised fund created by Community Alliance with Family Farmers (CAFF) and housed at the Sacramento Region Community Foundation. Funds will be distributed by CAFF to grantees. 

GRANT REVIEW COMMITTEE 
We’ve assembled Grant Review Committees to oversee the selection process. Members are from several farmer-serving organizations and represent racial, cultural and geographic diversity to inform the best decision-making. Members will meet at the close of the grant period to  select proposals to be awarded. 
 
SUPPORT THE EMERGENCY FUND
This fund is made possible through a combination of private foundations, public funding, and individual donations. Your donation directly supports farmers to get the financial support they need to keep farming when disasters strike. 

SPECIAL THANKS TO A FEW OF OUR
GENEROUS RAINMAKER DONORS

COVID-19 relief and drought relief is made possible through the California Underserved and Small Producers (CUSP) program