News Flash

County Administrative Office

Posted on: January 11, 2019

Get Your Idea for Local Job Growth Off the Ground with a Grant from the Headwaters Fund

Headwaters Fund Logo  showing a forest and river

If you have a great idea that could promote local business growth or job creation, consider applying for a grant award through the Humboldt County Headwaters Grant Fund. Applications for Fiscal Year 2018-19 will be accepted from Feb. 1 through Mar. 29, with awards anticipated to be announced in May.

The Headwaters Grant Fund supports projects that benefit “industry clusters” with the ultimate goal of increasing private-sector jobs. Industry clusters are businesses that are related, either by similar services they provide, geography, shared workforce needs, transportation issues, or other factors. Some industry clusters, named the “Targets of Opportunity,” have been singled out for their potential to provide good jobs, send exports outside the region, and produce growth over time.

The Targets of Opportunity are:

· Diversified Healthcare
· Specialty Food, Flowers & Beverages
· Building and Systems Construction
· Investment Support Services
· Management and Innovation Services
· Niche Manufacturing

Funding Focus
The primary funding focus of the Headwaters Grant Fund is to support projects that are consistent with the county's overarching economic development strategy, Prosperity! 2018 This strategy identified industry clusters and major industries in the county as priorities for economic development going forward. Information from the Targets of Opportunity Report, from the California Employment Development Department, was used to create Prosperity! 2018.

Major industries based on Prosperity! 2018 are:
· Forest Products
· Tourism
· Arts & Culture
· Alternative Agriculture (Cannabis)

Eligibility and Amount Available

Non-profits and government agencies are eligible to receive grant funding. Private businesses cannot receive grants directly but can partner with a non-profit or government agency. If you are a business with an idea for a project please contact staff for connections to potential collaborators from the public or non-profit sectors. When available, funds are awarded annually based on a competitive application process.

There is currently $130,000 available with a maximum grant amount of $65,000. Last fiscal year there were three grant awards. They were: $30,000 to the Sequoia Park Zoo Foundation to develop a feasibility study and marketing for donor recruitment; $19,625 to Humboldt State University-Sponsored Programs Foundation for a workshop on government procurement; and, $24,932 to the North Coast Small Business Development Center to develop a business succession program for local businesses.

The Headwaters Fund Board anticipates making additional funding available in this next fiscal year. Awards from the Headwaters Grant Fund are typically in the $20,000 to $30,000 range.  The Headwaters Fund Board also provides $20,000 annually for its Mini-Grant Program for grants up to $1,500.

You can pick up an application on the Headwaters Grant Fund web page, and submit the completed application via email or in person to: Headwaters Fund, 520 E Street, Eureka, CA 95501.

For more information on both grant programs, contact Kenneth Spain at 476-4809 or kspain1@co.humboldt.ca.us.

Headwaters Grant Fund web page
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