American Indian Business Grants

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Grants to support Native American business enterprises are available through United States government agencies. Federally recognized Native American tribal governments and tribal organizations are generally identified as institutions eligible to apply for federal grants. Read each grant announcement carefully because it might identify Native American institutions as eligible applicants, but not highlight this in the announcement title.

Native American Business Enterprise Centers

Native American Business Enterprise Centers (NABECs) are operated in Arizona, California, Idaho, Washington and Oregon to assist both Native American tribal organizations and for profit enterprises. NABECs are the cooperative efforts of the U.S. Department of Commerce and the Minority Business Development Agency. Support includes assistance with loan and grant packaging, minority certification, procurement and business planning. Assistance might also support business development areas such as general management, marketing and human resources.

Environment and Economic Development

The Economic Development Administration offers i6 Green grants that can be used to support Native American business research efforts that examine the connection between environmental quality and economic development. This particular grant seeks to encourage clean economies, and applicants to similar grants should consider sustainable economic opportunities that remove or substantially address environmental problems within Native American communities.

Science, Math and Technology

Women and Minorities in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Fields Grant Program is a grant managed through the National Institute of Food and Agriculture. It is one type of science- and technology-focused business grant that supports collaborative research and extension initiatives. It aims to increase participation of rural area minorities and women in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math related to the United States Department of Agriculture’s identified priorities.

Criminal Justice and Community Development

Juvenile justice, criminal justice and legal and youth service social service enterprises may be eligible to apply for grants such as the Gang Field Initiated Research and Evaluation Program grant administered by the Office of Juvenile Justice Delinquency Prevention. These types of grants can support research and evaluation initiatives within Native American communities that develop field findings that can assist youth identified as at-risk for gang involvement or currently involved in gang activities. Search the Grants.gov website for active grants tailored to your organization's business goals and objectives.

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About the Author

Vanessa Cross has practiced law in Tennessee and lectured as an adjunct professor on law and business topics. She has also contributed as a business writer to news publications, including the "Chicago Tribune," and published in peer-reviewed academic journals. Cross holds a B.A. in journalism, a Juris Doctor and an LL.M. in international business law.

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