Northeast SARE's Partnership Grant program funds projects conducted by researchers, educators and agricultural service providers working in direct partnership with farmers to encourage design and implementation of innovative solutions to current sustainability challenges related to production, marketing and/or household and community well-being in Northeast farming and food systems, or to strengthen working partnerships between farmers and agricultural service providers to advance sustainable agriculture.
Grants may be used for: research to improve production practices, marketing approaches, or farmer, farmworker or community well-being; education and training programs to increase knowledge and improve decision-making about sustainable practices; on-farm or in-market demonstrations of new techniques; and developing new farm management and community development approaches that support sustainable agriculture outcomes.
Northeast SARE funds a broad range of projects; there are no set restrictions on the topics that Partnership Grants may address so long as the projects lead to new information or working relationships that are consistent with our outcome statement and address the program’s review criteria. In the past, Partnership projects have experimented with new crop and production methods, addressed farm management challenges, developed unique machines and tools, explored innovative pest control and grazing strategies, tested new ways of marketing agricultural products, and more.
Please note that this program requires an explicit connection to the needs, interests and expertise of farmers and farming partners in the Northeast. It is not designed to support educational programs for the non-farming general public, food donation efforts, general public awareness campaigns about agriculture and nutrition, or community and school gardening initiatives.
Partnership Grants are capped at $30,000 and typically run for one to two years. One-year projects with funding requests well under the cap are encouraged. Proposals with relatively high funding requests should clearly justify the need for a more robust budget. This justification may include: 1) enlisting multi-institution or multi-disciplinary collaboration, 2) exploring more complex subject matter, or 3) taking longer to document results or changes.
Northeast SARE’s Administrative Council has approved a one-year pause in four of our seven regional grant programs, including the Partnership Grant Program. The purpose of the pause is to increase our capacity to work on implementation of Northeast SARE's Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Justice (DEIJ) strategic plan. You can read more about the pause here.
Partnership Grants are open to anyone who works with farmers, including personnel at nonprofit organizations, colleges and universities, Cooperative Extension, municipalities, state departments of agriculture, federal agencies like NRCS, and for-profit business entities that provide agricultural consulting, veterinary services, etc.
Northeast SARE encourages projects submitted from or in collaboration with women, the LGBTQ+ community, and Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC). Additionally, we encourage projects submitted from or in collaboration with Minority Serving Institutions (including 1890s and other historically Black colleges and universities, Hispanic-Serving Institutions, and tribal colleges and universities) and other organizations in the Northeast that work with historically underrepresented communities.
As a project leader, you must have the skills needed to oversee and carry out the proposed work. Your organization must have the legal structure and financial capacity in place to receive and execute a Northeast SARE contract, including expending funds needed for the project prior to receiving reimbursements from Northeast SARE; advance payments are not possible.
Applications are limited to one per individual per year. While you may only submit one proposal in a year, other individuals from your organization may also apply. Current grant recipients who are behind in their reporting cannot apply. Projects must take place within the Northeast region that includes Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, West Virginia, Vermont, and Washington, D.C.
Applicants and host organizations may be located outside of the Northeast region if the project activities and the farmers served are located within the Northeast region. Northeast SARE will not fund proposals that appear to duplicate work that has been approved for funding by another grant program (within or external to SARE).
Northeast SARE is committed to accessibility for all eligible applicants. We encourage you to reach out to us regarding any challenges you experience as you plan and submit your preproposal. To do so or to specifically request a disability-related accommodation, please contact Northeast SARE as soon as possible at 802-651-8335 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Depending on the type of request it may take our team two or more weeks to provide accommodations. We appreciate advance notice when possible so we have time to effectively address your request.