July 13, 2023
Contact: Ashley Tenney
515.348.6224 / 800.308.5987

Planning & Pilot Grant Updated Funding Opportunity

Volunteer Iowa is pleased to announce the availability of extended deadlines to apply for AmeriCorps State planning grants for program year 2023-2024.

For this competition, Volunteer Iowa particularly seeks applications that address
the following priorities:

  • Programs with an intentional focus on member professional development, with plans to incorporate formal certifications/apprenticeship or pre-apprenticeship/college credit/etc. into the AmeriCorps program.
  • Programs that will address the new stakeholder priority areas listed in the new 2023-2025 Volunteer Iowa State Service Plan (see p. 4).
  • Programs that will replicate or expand upon successful, existing models in Iowa. Such proposals should indicate how the replication or expansion will build upon (and not compete with) existing Iowa programs.

Key Dates & Deadlines

Submission of the required Pre-Application is due no later than July 28, 2023.
Check the AmeriCorps State grants page on the Volunteer Iowa website for the full timeline and application details.

  • Planning & Pilot Grant Funding Opportunity Announcement & Pre-Application Instructions Published: July 13, 2023
  • Planning & Pilot Grant Pre-Application Deadline: July 28, 2023
  • Planning & Pilot Grant Final Application Deadline: August 25, 2023
  • Planning Grant Start Date: October 1, 2023
  • Pilot Grant Start Date: January 1, 2024

Iowa AmeriCorps State Funding Description

AmeriCorps State and National pilot grants provide funding to help organizations launch an AmeriCorps program, which involves recruiting, training, and supporting AmeriCorps members who to help the organization address a community need. Pilot Grants are awarded on a competitive basis to applicants who want to start smaller and get experience finalizing their program design. AmeriCorps projects may support organizational capacity-building, education, healthy futures, environmental stewardship, veterans and military families,
economic opportunities, public safety, disaster preparedness/response, and other identified community issues in Iowa. Successful programs utilize service as a strategy to meet community needs, while supporting the development and growth of the AmeriCorps members serving with the organization.

AmeriCorps State planning grants do not provide AmeriCorps member funding but instead provide organizations with funds to pay for the staff/consultant time needed to develop plans for and prepare to launch an AmeriCorps program.

An AmeriCorps member is an individual who engages in community service through an approved national service position. AmeriCorps members also mobilize community volunteers and strengthen the capacity of the organizations they serve. Members typically receive a living allowance and other benefits from the sponsor organization while serving. Upon successful completion of their service, members earn a Segal AmeriCorps Education Award from the National Service Trust that they can apply to qualified student loans or use to pay for higher education expenses.

Application Materials

Applicants for this funding will need to reference the complete application materials to be posted to the Volunteer Iowa AmeriCorps State grants web page, including the Volunteer Iowa Request for Applications (RFA), the Volunteer Iowa Pre-Application Instructions, the Volunteer Iowa Final Application Instructions, and the AmeriCorps Mandatory Supplemental Instructions. Applications will be accepted only from organizations seeking funding to plan or pilot a program wholly within the state of Iowa (multi-state applicants apply directly to

Disclosure: Publication of this Funding Opportunity Announcement does not obligate Volunteer Iowa or AmeriCorps to award any specific number of grants or to obligate any particular amount of funding. The actual level and timing of grant funding will be subject to the availability of annual federal appropriations.

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About Volunteer Iowa
Volunteer Iowa and its partner agencies work with organizations and individuals on three main fronts. The first is to help agencies develop quality programs that use service as a strategy to fulfill their missions and address Iowa’s greatest areas of need. The second is to help engage Iowans in their communities by promoting service and expanding the volunteer base. Finally, the third area of work is to connect individuals with appropriate service opportunities by building the volunteer infrastructure. More information is available at

About AmeriCorps
AmeriCorps, the federal agency for volunteerism and national service, provides opportunities for Americans to serve their country domestically, address the nation’s most pressing challenges, improve lives and communities, and strengthen civic engagement. Each year, the agency invests more than $800 million in grants for local nonprofit, community, tribal, and state organizations; places more than 250,000 AmeriCorps members and AmeriCorps Seniors
volunteers in intensive service roles; and empowers millions more to serve as long-term, short-term, or one-time volunteers.

AmeriCorps offers opportunities for individuals of all backgrounds to be a part of the national service community, grow personally and professionally, and receive benefits for their service. Learn how to get involved at