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Broadband Funding Opportunities

ARPA Build Back Better Regional Challenge 

Due: 10/19/2021

US Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administration

Eligible Applicants: A lead institution or coalition member may include a district organization, (consortium of) Native tribe, State, (consortium of) county, city, or other political subdivision of a state, (consortium of) institution of higher education, public or private non-profit organization or association acting in cooperation with officials of a political state subdivision

Award Range: $200,000-$500,000

This grant aims to assist communities in recovery from the coronavirus pandemic in a sustainable way through building “economic diversity and resiliency to mitigate impacts of future economic disasters” and strengthening workforces and residents through the creation of high-quality jobs with increased wages and revitalized communities.

CFDA Number: 11.307


Small Business Innovation Research Program (Phase 1)

Due: 11/03/21

United States Department of Agriculture

Eligible Applicants: Small Business Concerns

Maximum Award: $125,000

This program is designed to support small businesses in creation of technologies and services that will have significant societal impact, including in rural and community development.

CFDA Number: 10.212


Broadband READY Community Technology Center Grant

Due: 11/08/2021

Illinois Office of Broadband

Eligible entities: Public hospitals, libraries, park districts, and state educational agencies, local educational agencies, institutions of higher education, senior citizen homes, and other public and private nonprofit or for-profit agencies and organizations

Maximum Award: $50,000

This program is designed to promote development of Community Technology Centers in pursuit of eliminating the digital divide.


Turning Technology Grants

Due: 11/19/2021

Eligible Applicants: K-12 schools, Institutions of Higher Education, businesses, and non-profits

Award: Hybrid learning software package valued at $5,000

This grant is to help teachers and trainers have the resources to conduct equitable, evidence based, and engaging learning in a hybrid environment.


Connecting Minority Communities Pilot Program

Due: 12/01/2021

National Telecommunications and Information Administration

Eligible Applicants: Historically Black colleges or universities (HBCUs), Tribal colleges or universities (TCUs), Minority-serving institutions (MSIs)

Award Range: $500,000-$3,000,000

The program is designed to address the lack of broadband access, connectivity, adoption, and equity at HBCUs, TCUs, and MSIs, and in their surrounding communities, and to expand education instruction and remote learning opportunities, spur economic development, and create opportunities for employment and entrepreneurship by building digital capacity.

CFDA Number: 11.028


ARPA Economic Adjustment Assistance Program

Due: 03/31/2022

US Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administration

Eligible Applicants: District organizations, Native tribe/consortium of Native tribes, State, county, city, or other state political subdivision, Institution of higher education/consortium of IHEs, Non-profit or association acting with officials of a state political subdivision

Award Range: $100,000-$10,000,000

The program is designed to provide financial assistance, for a wide range of construction and non-construction projects, to communities as they respond to, and recover from, the economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic.

CFDA Number: 11.307


USAC Telecommunications Program

Open: 12/01/2021 – 4/01/2022

Universal Service Administrative Co.

Eligible Applicants: Non-profit rural healthcare providers (RHCP)

The program will subsidize the difference in cost for telehealth and telemedicine services between urban and rural areas. The RHCPs develop a list of services they require and open it up to bids from service providers, the USAC then funds the difference of the winning bid.



Emergency Broadband Benefit Program

Eligible Households: If it has an income at or below 135% of the federal poverty guidelines, or at least one household member qualifies for Lifeline benefits, participates in Tribal specific programs, experienced substantial loss of income during the pandemic, received a federal Pell Grant in the current year, gets free or reduced-price lunch at school, or is eligible for a low-income program through participating ISPs

Apply to receive discounted broadband services through eligible providers, or online/through the mail with USAC.


Ameren Cares Program

Request application online

Eligible Applicants: Non-profits within the Ameren Illinois service area

Program Focus Areas: Arts and Culture, Civic and Community, Environment, Health and Human Services, Youth and Education


Cisco Product Grant

Eligible Applicants: 501(c)(3) non-profits

Award: $25,000-$50,000 list price of equipment

Program Focus Areas: Education, Economic Empowerment, Critical Human Needs

Awards cisco products to non-profits that need new/more technology to increase their capacity to deliver services.


Geico Philanthropic Foundation

Open yearly January 1 – November 30

Eligible Applicants: 501(c)(3) Non-profits

Program Focus Areas: Education, Engaging the Community, Promoting Equity


Michael and Susan Dell Foundation

Not related to Dell Technologies

Eligible Entities: Non-profits

Does not fund more than 25% of a project’s budget

The foundation funds projects that directly serve children or youth from low-income communities in the areas of education, health, and family economic stability.



Eligible Entities:  Non-profits

Sony aims to give its funding to projects focused on education in the areas of art, culture, technology, and the environment.


Stay connected K-12

Spectrum Enterprise

A program which allows schools to offer internet to students and teachers at their home, and easily add and take away households on the network as needed.


T-Mobile Project 10Million

Eligible Applicants: Parent/guardian of a student enrolled in the National School Lunch Program

Award: 100GB of mobile data/year for five years, mobile hotspot, low-cost devices

Separate program for school administrators – must fill out online form



Find Federal Grants

NTIA Broadband USA


Stay Informed

Illinois Office of Broadband

Benton Institute

Find Affordable Internet in Your Area



For questions about broadband grants and other resources please contact Mary Gay at mary@leadershipcouncilswil.com


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