The application period has closed.
Grant announcements were made in July 2023.

The success of this project depends on reciprocal relationships between SDF and community partners with deep connections within San Diego’s food system.

This grant program addresses community informed priorities, including:

  • Increasing food sovereignty and community resiliency through projects that empower community choice through localized production, processing and distribution.
  • Supporting community-based, grassroots organizations to increase and sustainably expand food production through capacity building, technical assistance and capital investments.
  • Fostering collaboration and providing technical assistance to build resilience and promote equitable access to resources and support for navigating regulations.
  • Growing existing programming to mobilize funding and promote systems change.

The goals of this grant program are to:

  • Strengthen and scale community-led strategies to address food and nutrition insecurity with local solutions.
  • Build collaboration and support among local communities to share learnings, best practices and expand networks.
  • Improve community food environments, as described in the San Diego County Food Vision 2030, to increase access to healthy food and encourage local food production across low-income communities and communities of color.
Criteria Definition

Qualified Census Tracts

  • Designation calculated by U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Qualified Census Tracts for San Diego County can be found here and/or,
  • Healthy Places index Least Healthy Quartiles (identified visually as dark and medium blue areas) found here.
Low-income households and communities
  • Those with income at or below 185 percent of the Federal Poverty Guidelines for the size of the household based on the most recently published poverty guidelines by HHS or,
  • Income at or below 40 percent of the Area Median income for its county and size of household based on the most recently published data by HUD.
Households that qualify for certain Federal Programs

Qualifying Federal Programs from ARPA:

  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF),
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), also known as CalFresh,
  • Free-and Reduced-Price Lunch (NSLP) and/or School Breakfast (SBP) programs,
  • Medicare Part D Low-Income Subsidies,
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI),
  • Head Start,
  • Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC),
  • Section 8 Vouchers,
  • Low-income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP),
  • Pell Grants

Use of Funds

Grant funds may be used for personnel, supplies, equipment, capital purchases, administrative or indirect costs, and any other program cost tied to effectively executing the proposed program.

Indirect costs are overhead expenses incurred by the applicant organization as a result of the project but that are not easily identified with the specific project. Generally, indirect costs are defined as administrative or other expenses that are not directly allocable to a particular activity or project; rather they are related to overall general operations and are shared among projects and/or functions. Examples include executive oversight, accounting, grants management, legal expenses, utilities, technology support, and facility maintenance.

In the case that the applicant has a Negotiated Indirect Cost Rate Agreement (NICRA), SDF shall allow the documented NICRA in their project budget.

In the case that the applicant does not have a documented indirect cost rate, the applicant may use the 10% de minimis indirect cost rate for project expenses supported by this grant.

Important Dates

February 6, 2023 February 10 and 16, 2023 and March 8, 2023 February 6-March 31 March 31, 2023, 5:00 p.m. By April 28, 2023 May 1, 2023-December 31, 2024
Application Opens In-person workshops will be hosted at Olivewood Gardens, Coastal Roots Farm and the San Diego Foundation office. Register for workshops in English and Spanish. SDF staff will be available for Office Hours. Register for Office Hours in English or Spanish. Application Deadline Grant Funding Announcements Grant Period


Reporting will serve to provide insight into project progress and is not intended to be an added burden for grantees. Grantees will report quarterly on project progress, including accomplishments, barriers, and challenges, awarded project funds expended to date, and estimated number of clients served.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you have a question that is not answered in the pre-recorded forum, submit your question online in English or Spanish. Questions and answers will be updated weekly on Mondays.


Program Design

Budget and Financials



Food Distribution

Sharing food among a group of recipients. This can be done by small retailers, farmers markets, restaurants, and distributors among others.

Food Environment (OR Community Food Environment)

The physical, economic, political, and socio-cultural conditions in which people access food within their community. These conditions impact and shape how people make decisions about food.

Food Insecurity

“The USDA defines food insecurity as a lack of consistent access to enough food for every person in a household to live an active, healthy life. This can be a temporary situation for a family or can last a long time. Food insecurity is one way we measure how many people can’t afford food.” (Feeding America)

Food Production

The act of growing food or raising fish or livestock.

Food Processing

Planning or preparing meals or providing the space for someone to do so. Food processing can take place at community kitchens, commercial kitchens, and food commissaries among other places.

Food Sovereignty

“Food sovereignty is the right of peoples to healthy and culturally appropriate food produced through ecologically sound and sustainable methods, and their right to define their own food and agriculture systems. It puts the aspirations and needs of those who produce, distribute and consume food at the heart of food systems and policies rather than the demands of markets and corporations.” –Declaration of Nyéléni, the first global forum on food sovereignty, Mali, 2007

Source: San Diego County Food Vision 2030