Native Nonprofit Human Service Focus (opportunity)

First Nations Issues 2014-15 RFP for Urban Native Nonprofit Human Service Focus

First Nations Development Institute (First Nations) and the National Urban Indian Family Coalition (NUIFC) are accepting applications from nonprofit organizations that increase the availability and effectiveness of comprehensive community programs in urban Indian centers and communities.  The project also supports new and expanded activities in urban Indian environments with the goal of improving opportunities that can be attained in all Native American urban communities. 

With Kresge Foundation support, First Nations and NUIFC will work directly with three urban Native American nonprofits to help them improve their management and leadership skills.  Capacity building grants will be awarded to organizations whose core mission is to serve and engage with urban American Indian populations through a mix of housing, child welfare, employment, food bank, workforce, youth development, cultural, language, financial education, recreation, and commercial amenities. 


First Nations receive many proposals from qualified organizations than it is able to fund, therefore, the application process is highly competitive.

When making funding decisions, First Nations prioritizes organizations that exhibit these characteristics:

  • Actively engages American Indian community members in future changes to the urban environment
  • Capacity, ability and interest in providing, or expanding on existing integrated asset building programs that include Native American-controlled Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs), housing programs, Individual Development Account (IDA) programs, financial education programs and financial service programs (e.g. Earned Income Tax Credit and Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA)) that are conduits for building their communities’ ability to improve management of and access to (primarily financial) assets
  • Serve as information center and resource for the community while realizing cultural preservation and leveraging cultural assets
  • Engages American Indian community members in thinking about long-term outcomes and the way in which to engage productive process to hold institutions accountable to best practices and policy as the urban landscape grows and changes
  • Highlight the urban experience and expertise of your nonprofit and act as a good model of good planning, infrastructure, community organizing and leadership
  • Name up to ten individuals/leaders to engage in an organizational assessment and/or on-site training, and share practices, exchange information, and explore strategies with other American Indian urban projects/centers/nonprofit organizations thorugh First Nation’s Leadership Academy. These leaders will have interest and ability to discuss, debate, and analyze the current and future social, political, cultural, economic, and environmental landscape in the urban environment
  • Offer innovative programs and services that reflect evidence-based solutions, and/or that represent creative, effective approaches to addressing persistent needs or challenges
  • Support of additional local and/or regional partner organizations and leaders
  • Receive support from other foundation and corporate funders
  • Ability to meet the specific needs of partners and funders
  • Ability to carry out the logistical and practical preparation for a two-day meeting (secures facility for the meeting, provide audio-visual equipment, arrange for field trip or tour).
  • Intention and readiness to implement actions emerging from training and technical assistance activities.

The greater the number of these characteristics that describe your organization, the more competitive your application will likely be.

To be eligible, nonprofit organizations must be recognized as tax exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.  Applicants can be national urban American Indian centers or Native nonprofits based in urban settings.