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Frequently Asked Questions: RAFI Beginning Farmer Stipends 2024

  • What additional information will RAFI need from me besides the application? 
    • Top candidates will move on to the next step in the process which involves due diligence. If you are selected, please be prepared to submit documentation that you have access to the land you are farming on (deed, lease, etc) and proof of your farm as a legal entity (LLC certificate, FSA report of commodities, filed Schedule F form, etc).
  • Will I receive all my stipend funding at once? 
    • We distribute stipends in two parts – 85% of your grant upfront, and the remaining 15% upon completion of your project and submission of a final report.
  • Why didn’t I receive the full grant amount I requested?
    • In some cases, we granted less than applicants requested. This may be because you had items in your budget that were not eligible or another reason. Please be in touch if you have questions about your grant amount. 
  • Can you send the grant funds to my personal or to my business account? 
    • We can pay individuals OR businesses; you decide which works best for you. Whichever you decide, please ensure that your W-9 information matches your selection. 
    • For example, if you wish to be paid to your personal account, please submit a W9 with your name and social security number. If you wish to be paid as a business, please submit a W9 with your name, business name, and business EIN. Please consult your tax advisor if you have questions about which to choose. 
  • How will I receive my grant payment? 
    • We pay grants via Bill.com, a secure online payment system that can directly deposit your grant funds into your account when you enter your information.
    • The process for getting your grant payment is:
      • Fill out your grant agreement. 
      • Within one week, we will process your request for payment. 
      • You will receive an email directly from Bill.com, via RAFI, prompting you to enter your payment information. 
      • Enter your payment information in Bill.com within 24 hours to set up direct payment. If you prefer to be paid by check, please let Sabine know. 
      • If you do not enter your payment information within 24 hours, we will mail you a physical check to the name and address we have for you. 
      • Once you have entered your payment information, you do not need to do anything else to request payment. 
  • Are grants considered taxable income?
    • Yes. Please discuss this with your tax professional if you have additional questions.
  • When will I receive my grant money? 
    • We anticipate beginning to request checks in July.
    • In order to distribute your grant money, we need your signed grant agreement, a short bio, and a photo. Once you have submitted your grant agreement, please give us one week to process your payment request and send you an invitation to Bill.com. Once you complete your Bill.com information, it will take a few business days to send funds. 
  • How long do I have to complete my project? 
    • Final reports for 2024 grants are due by December 31, 2024. Please plan to complete your project within this calendar year. Upon completion of your final report, we will send the second grant payment of the other 15% of the grant amount.
  • What do you ask in the final report? What do I need to keep track of? 
    • We work to make sure our final report is simple and clear. Here is a copy of the final report questions that we will ask you at the end of your project: 2024 RAFI BFS Final Report Questions 
    • Please keep track of your expenses throughout your project. You can do this by keeping hard copies of your receipts/invoices, taking photos of receipts or downloading online receipts. 
  • What if I have changes, setbacks, or have a problem with my project? 
    • Let us know! We are here to be a resource and a partner. If you do have a problem, setback, or change with your project, please get in touch so we can problem-solve together and so we know the status of your project.  
ANNOUNCEMENT: 2024 Beginning Farmer Stipends are Here! APPLY NOW!