Hardship Assistance

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The Bricmont Hardship Assistance Fund

The Bricmont Hardship Assistance Fund gives direct financial disaster assistance of up to $5,000 to organic producers. In 2022, we have partnered with the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) to administer drought relief grants up to $10,000 to producers in California.

The Bricmont Hardship Assistance Fund has a long history of giving grants to organic producers recovering from natural disasters like wildfires or floods, unforeseeable life events, and other difficulties that can be challenging to any business. As climate change, the pandemic, and economic instability continues to impact farming communities, the Bricmont Hardship Assistance Fund is part of an important support network helping organic businesses survive uncertain times. 

Bricmont Hardship Assistance Fund – Grants for Organic Producers

Receive financial assistance to help cover losses from natural disasters, personal hardship, or other unplanned emergencies.

Grant Amount: Up to $5,000

Bricmont Hardship Assistance fund applicants must: 

  • Be a certified organic operation in good standing
  • Provide a valid organic certificate
  • Demonstrate severe economic loss experienced in the current calendar year 
  • Submit a complete description of hardship endured
  • Submit supporting evidence and financial documentation of economic loss resulting from the hardship 
  • Submit a receipt for organic certification fees paid in 2022 (by any accredited certifier) 
  • Submit a final progress report at the end of the award year

Grantees from previous years are welcome to re-apply for additional funding

Deadline: Applications are closed for 2022. Please check back here in Spring 2023. 

Drought Relief Grants for Producers in California

CCOF has partnered with CDFA to administer drought relief grants to producers in California. These funds are reimbursement grants for expenses incurred as a result of drought. Funding is prioritized for applicants from underserved (socially disadvantaged) communities as described in CDFA’s Farmer Equity Report.** 

Grant Amount: Grant amounts range from $1,000 – $5,000 for economic relief, and up to $10,000 for drought relief.

Eligibility:

Examples of covered expenses can include but are not limited to:

  • Increased electric utility bills of 50 percent or more due to increased electricity rates
  • Surface water costs if increased from year prior
  • Cost of hauling water for livestock
  • Lowering ag well pumps if a primary source of water is lost
  • Emergency upgrades to irrigation system (paired with conservation) if not covered through CDFA OEFI programs or USDA programs and for other emergency scenarios.
  • Decreased crop yields/crop loss due to less water available or having to fallow land

Expenses that are not covered:

  • Drilling a new well
  • Upgrading pump to a larger size which would draw more water

Producers are not eligible for this grant if they have received a CDFA CUSP economic relief grant from CAFF, ABIRC, CCOF, or the People’s Land Fund within the last 12 months. 

Applications must be filled out completely to be eligible for consideration.

Deadline: Applications are closed for 2022. Please check back here in Spring 2023.

**CDFA definition of socially disadvantaged groups: “AB 1348 states that a socially disadvantaged farmer or rancher is a farmer or rancher who is a member of a socially disadvantaged group. A “socially disadvantaged group” means a group whose members have been subjected to racial, ethnic, or gender discrimination. These groups include the following: African Americans, American Indians, Alaskan Natives, Hispanics, Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders, Female farmers and ranchers of color.”

Even Changemakers Need Help at Times

Chris and Dana Laughlin grow organic fruit, vegetables, and herbs at Sea to Sky Farms, with farm sites in the redwood forests and along the Pacific coastline. When the CZU Lightning Complex fires swept through the Santa Cruz mountains last year, they lost their fruit orchard, equipment, and farm facilities. Our goal is to make recovery just a little bit easier for farmers like the Laughlins with financial assistance from the Hardship Assistance Fund. 

"At a time when our farm needed it the most, following the CZU Lightning Fire Complex, we were granted relief funds from CCOF's Foundation. Those funds helped us rebuild from the fire, which damaged critical infrastructure at the farm,” explained Chris. 

Community support is at the heart of the CCOF Foundation, and we’re here to support you, too. Apply for hardship assistance support or email Cassie Kent at ckent@ccof.org.