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Speaker Shekarchi, Senate President Ruggerio, state leaders, Rhode Island Foundation announce nonprofits can apply for $20M in grants to address housing, hunger and behavioral health
House Speaker K. Joseph Shekarchi, Senate President Dominick J. Ruggerio, Governor Dan McKee, Lt. Governor Sabina Matos and the Rhode Island Foundation today announced a new $20 million grant program for nonprofits working on food insecurity, housing instability and homelessness prevention, and the behavioral health needs of Rhode Islanders.
The Rhode Island ARPA Support Grants Program targets organizations that that experienced negative economic impacts as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The state’s nonprofits are a lifeline for Rhode Islanders most in need. This federal funding gives these organizations the resources to provide the crucial assistance necessary to keep people housed and healthy as they bounce back from the pandemic,” said House Speaker K. Joseph Shekarchi.
Senate President Dominick J. Ruggerio said, “A priority for the Senate in the state budget was to provide relief for Rhode Islanders struggling with inflation after more than two years of the pandemic. These grants address services that often overlap for the impacted Rhode Islanders: hunger, housing, and behavioral health; and the Rhode Island Foundation is a valuable partner in the effort to get these funds where they are needed efficiently and effectively.”
The program was created in the FY 2023 budget approved by the General Assembly in June using funding from the state’s $1.1 billion share of the federal American Rescue Plan Act allocation.
“Supporting local nonprofits that are working on housing, homelessness, hunger and behavioral health is crucial to maintaining Rhode Island's momentum – that's exactly why we created this program in our FY 2023 budget,” said Governor Dan McKee. “These grant dollars will serve nonprofits that are in our communities across the state and are doing crucial work each and every day. I thank the Rhode Island Foundation for managing the program and the Speaker and Senate President for their partnership.”
“Our nonprofits are the first line of defense in addressing issues of inequity and economic insecurity; they move quickly to distribute immediate aid while government works to create long-term solutions,” said Lt. Governor Sabina Matos. “This funding recognizes their importance and empowers them to provide even more services to Rhode Islanders. We're fortunate to be able to collaborate with the Rhode Island Foundation in order to distribute these grants where they will have the greatest impact.”
The Foundation is accepting applications on a rolling basis until the funding is gone. Grants are expected to range from $50,000 to $150,000. This is the single largest grant program in the Foundation’s 106-year history.
“We will begin immediately to get this funding into the hands of the organizations that are doing the boots-on-the-ground work. We appreciate state leaders having confidence in our ability to provide this funding as these grants will give nonprofits across Rhode Island the resources to help their communities recover from COVID-19's continuing impact on their daily lives," said Neil D. Steinberg, the Foundation’s President and CEO.
The Foundation will give priority to community-based nonprofits that are located in federally designated low-income neighborhoods.
Applicants must have a federal Employer Identification Number (EIN) and must submit a copy of their most recent IRS Form 990, 990EZ or 990N; and their 501(c)(3) IRS determination letter with their application if it is not already on file at the Foundation.
The Foundation plans to schedule an information session for nonprofits that are interested in applying. For more information about applying for a grant or registering for the info session, visit
Since 2020, the Foundation has distributed more than $11.5 million in federal pandemic relief funding in partnership with the state.
The Rhode Island Foundation is the largest and most comprehensive funder of nonprofit organizations in Rhode Island. Working with generous and visionary donors, the Foundation raised $98 million and awarded $76 million in grants last year. Through leadership, fundraising and grant-making activities, often in partnership with individuals and organizations, the Foundation is helping Rhode Island reach its true potential. For more information, visit
IN PHOTO: From left, House Speaker K. Joseph Shekarchi, Gov. Daniel McKee, Rhode Island Foundation President and CEO Neil D. Steinberg, Senate President Dominick J. Ruggerio and Lt. Gov. Sabina Matos.
For more information, contact:
Meredyth R. Whitty
State House Room 20
Providence, RI 02903
Lt. Governor's Office
Secretary of State
Link to Public Records Request