Federal Government Grants for Women
The federal government is somewhat limited in government grants for women, since the last few years an increase in women operated businesses and degree obtainment has occurred. There are still a few government grants just for women available. It is important to remember that women can apply for ALL types of government funding, since everyone is allowed to apply regardless of gender, race, etc.
The federal government does still offer government grants for women to increase the number of opportunities in business startup, postsecondary education, and training. The government grants for women also extend to businesses. To encourage women entrepreneurship within the United States, the federal government decided to offer an incentive, government grants for women, to women that hold over 51% ownership in a company. Before a business can apply for government grants for women, a WBE (Women’s Business Enterprise) application must be filled and approved by the appropriate government agency. Many women business owners do not apply for government grants for women due to the amount of paperwork involved with registering as a WBE. This process can be challenging and lengthy. Once the registration is completed, the challenge is identifying government grants for women. Some funding sources will only give government grants for women to not-for-profits or local governmental entities, who in turn utilize the funds to provide technical assistance to women.
For assistance in receiving government grants for women that deal with business startup or expansion, contact the Small Business Administration (SBA). The SBA does not give out government grants for women directly to small businesses or individuals, but they are willing to assist you with identifying government grants for women opportunities, financing, planning, and a variety of other needed activities. You will need a completed business plan before you will qualify for any government grants for women.
The important thing to remember is most grants are not just for women. You may receive additional consideration for being a woman, but others may be allowed to apply. Many times the woman will receive additional points during the scoring process of the grant application. For all grant opportunities, the best website to visit is www.grants.gov. This website serves as a search engine for individuals looking for government grants for women opportunities, since all federal agencies streamline their grants through this system. The registration process for www.grants.gov is lengthy and can take up to 90 days, depending upon how quickly you can obtain the needed information. There are also two other agencies that you will have to register with before you can complete the registration process – Dunn and Brad Street and Central Contractors Registration.
It is quickly becoming harder to obtain government grants for women. Women grants are becoming more widely sought, thus more competitive. With this in mind, make sure to follow all the guidelines and to write the application for your government grant for women compellingly and accurately.