Evaluating USDA AMS Grant Programs

Successes and Challenges

With Focus on Socially Disadvantaged Communities

The USDA Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) has partnered with Florida A&M University and the University of Maryland Eastern Shore on a project that works with socially disadvantaged individuals and communities, centering their voices and learning from their experiences.

Project Objectives

The project will:

  1. evaluate barriers to AMS grant opportunities for socially disadvantaged communities;
  2. invest in building trust and confidence between these communities and the USDA; and
  3. take action to rectify inequalities in program access through targeted outreach, training, and technical assistance.

Project Team

The Project Team will conduct nationwide listening sessions and evaluate the AMS grant application and review process from the view of socially disadvantaged groups in cooperation with a vast network of universities, community organizations, and food system practitioners.

Project Participants

Project participants will share their experiences and discuss their needs along with any barriers they have faced. The knowledge gained from these discussions will be used to develop training materials, technical assistance programs, and other resources.

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