Initiative Foundation seeking applicants for grant program

Published 5:25 pm Tuesday, June 25, 2024

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Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation is accepting applications for its Inclusive and Equitable Entrepreneurial Communities Grant program. Nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations, units/agencies of government or public institutions in SMIF’s 20-county region are eligible to apply for this program. Requests of up to $10,000 will be considered.

The purpose of this grant program is to support organizations which are providing direct resources and services to start and expand business opportunities within diverse and/or traditionally underserved populations in southern Minnesota. Businesses are not eligible for this grant program.

SMIF seeks applications which foster communities to build inclusive, welcoming entrepreneurial environments to advance equitable entrepreneurship opportunities in the lives of all people.

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Examples of initiatives may include the creation of an entrepreneurial education program for diverse and/or traditionally underserved populations, organized community dialogue to build inclusivity around entrepreneurship, expanded access to business resources for all community members; the development of systems to advance equitable entrepreneurial activity and reduce the wealth gap among entrepreneurs of diverse and/or traditionally underserved populations.

“This grant program is an opportunity for organizations to support entrepreneurs who have been historically underserved,” said Pam Bishop, vice president of entrepreneurship at SMIF. “We hope to see grant applications which will remove barriers and build inclusive entrepreneurial environments in our communities.”

Applications are due to SMIF by Aug. 5. For application and guidelines, visit or contact Jennifer Heien, entrepreneurship administrative coordinator, at 507-214-7040 or