FEMA EFSP grant program


The Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) has allocated $66,992 to supplement emergency food and shelter programs in Southwest Louisiana during Phase 41. 


Funding Application

To be eligible to apply for this funding opportunity, an organization must:

  • Be a 501(c)(3) non-profit or agency in good standing with the IRS
  • Be eligible to receive Federal funds
  • Have a qualified accounting system with annual audits
  • Have a valid Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN)
  • Have a valid Unique Entry ID Lookup (UEI) Number
  • Practice non-discrimination (agencies with a religious affiliation, will not refuse service to a client based on religion, nor engage in religious proselytizing or religious counseling in any program receiving Federal funds)
  • Have the capacity to deliver emergency food and/or shelter programs
  • Have an unpaid voluntary board that meets at least semi-annually.
  • Eligible organizations may request a minimum of $1,000 per organization.

EFSP funds must be used to supplement or expand existing resources. The local EFSP funds will be used for Served Meals, EFSP funds are distributed on a reimbursement basis and require specific documentation for proof of purchase.


The Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) began in 1983 with a $50 million federal appropriation. The program was created by Congress to help meet the needs of hungry and homeless people throughout the United States and its territories by allocating federal funds for the provision of food and shelter.

The program is governed by a National Board composed of representatives of the American Red Cross; Catholic Charities, USA; The Jewish Federations of North America; National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA; The Salvation Army; and United Way Worldwide. The national board is chaired by a representative of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

Funds from EFSP are distributed to each county/parish in the United States based on its current population size, unemployment rate and poverty rate.

United Way of Southwest Louisiana facilitates a local board of community volunteers who decide how the funds from EFSP are distributed each year.

For more information about EFSP, go to https://www.efsp.unitedway.org/efsp/website/index.cfm.

Congress appropriates the money to help expand the capacity of food and shelter programs in high-need areas. United Way provides the administrative staff and distributes the money. This grant is not in response to natural or national disasters.

The Calcasieu Parish Jurisdiction was designated by a national board of volunteer organizations chaired by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Criteria for funding requires organizations to be a non-profit, have a qualified accounting system and conduct annual audits, practice non-discrimination and show they are capable of administering these programs. Private voluntary organizations must also have an unpaid board. Calcasieu Parish designates a local board which awards funding based on our parish needs.

Phase 41 Calcasieu Parish  - $66,992 The minimum funding amount is $1,000.

The intent of this program is for the purchase of food and shelter, to supplement and expand current available resources, and not to substitute or reimburse ongoing programs and services or to start new programs. Consequently, the Local Board will only consider fully operational agencies to receive funds to supplement and expand eligible on‐going services and will not fund agencies in anticipation of a needed service (i.e., fire victims, floods, tornadoes, etc.) nor for singular or special celebratory/holiday baskets, etc. The Local Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) Board will not consider applications for funding due to budget shortfalls or reductions in other funding sources.

United Way of Southwest Louisiana will coordinate with the Local EFSP Board to manage the process for reviewing and  scoring applications. This is a competitive process with limited funding available, and submission of an application does not guarantee funding. The Local EFSP Board reserves the right to award partial or full funding requests.

Applicants will receive funding notification by May 3, 2024.

Phase 41 Calcasieu Parish  - $66,992 The minimum funding amount is $1,000.

Applicants may apply for funds in the following categories: 

A.    Served Meals - This category pertains to basic, nutritional, hot, or cold prepared meals that are served by the Local Recipient Organization (LRO) or delivered to clients. Food costs for meals served in a shelter should be included here. The per meal rate of $3.00 may be used for agencies serving congregate meals.

B.    Other Food - This category includes food vouchers for food orders, food boxes, or food purchased by food

C.    Mass Shelter (on-site) - This category pertains to funds to provide shelter within the LRO’s own facility. Food served in a shelter is not included here. LROs may use a per diem rate of $12.50 for housing clients in their facility.

D.    Other Shelter – This category pertains to funds to provide any reasonable hotel/motel or non-profit acting as a vendor; actual charge by vendor, per night; 90-day limit.

E.    Supplies/Equipment – This category pertains to Mass Feeding: pots, pans, toasters, blenders, microwave, utensils, paper products, any item essential to the preparation of food, shelving. Diapers; Mass Shelter: cots, blankets, pillows, toilet paper, soap, toothpaste, toothbrushes, cleaning materials, limited first-aid supplies, underwear/diapers. Emergency repair of essential small equipment ($300 limit for both mass feeding and mass shelter).

F.    Rent/Mortgage - This category pertains to funds to provide clients with rent/mortgage assistance (3 months only per client/family).

G.    Utilities - This category pertains funds to provide clients with utility assistance (3 months only per client/family/per utility).

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