The Emergency Food and Shelter Program (EFSP) was created in 1983 to supplement and expand the work of local social service agencies, both nonprofit and governmental, to help people with economic emergencies (not disaster-related [i.e., fires of any kind, floods, tornadoes, etc.] emergencies). Therefore, EFSP funds are not to be used to provide emergency assistance for circumstances that are the immediate result of a disaster situation. EFSP funds may be used to provide economic assistance in the long term, even if the current circumstances may have been impacted by an earlier disaster occurrence. The EFSP funding is open to all organizations helping hungry and homeless people. EFSP funds must be used to supplement feeding, sheltering (including transitional sheltering) and rent/mortgage and utility assistance efforts only. ESFP provides Federal funding awarded through the Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The program is administered nationally by the United Way.
- 501(c)(3), non-profit agencies, or public agencies, providing food and/or shelter to homeless and low-income people.
- Agencies must not charge fees to clients for EFSP-funded services.
- Service providers must be supplementing existing food and shelter programs.
- Agencies must practice non-discrimination and not require religious participation.
- Agencies must be governed by a volunteer Board of Directors (except for government units).
- Agencies must have EFSP programs listed on 2-1-1 Big Bend.
- Agencies should be able to capture client counts and provide that information in reports as required.
- Not be debarred or suspended from receiving Federal funding.
- Have a checking account and sign up for EFT (cash payments are not allowed).
- Have a Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN).
- Have a Data Universal Number System (DUNS) number issued by Dun & Bradstreet (D&B) and provide along with other required associated information.
- Have a valid email address for program communication and electronic signature processes.
Board of Directors
The EFSP National Board governs the EFSP Program. The National EFSP Board is chaired by FEMA and consists of representatives from American Red Cross; Catholic Charities, USA; National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA; The Jewish Federations of North America, The Salvation Army; and, United Way Worldwide.
Our program is governed by a Local Board that represent the local counterparts of the National Board member agencies, as well as a range of service providers.
Criteria for Applying to EFSP
For a local agency to be eligible for funding it must:
- Be nonprofit or an agency of government currently providing service in the jurisdiction;
- Not be debarred or suspended from receiving Federal funding;
- Have a checking account and sign up for EFT (cash payments are not allowed);
- Have an accounting system or fiscal agent approved by the Local Board;
- Have a Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN);
- Have a Data Universal Number System (DUNS) number issued by Dun & Bradstreet (D&B) and provide along with other required associated information;
- Have a valid email address for program communication and electronic signature processes;
- Conduct an independent annual audit if receiving $100,000 or more in EFSP funds; conduct an annual accountant’s review if receiving $50,000 to $99,999 in EFSP funds;
- Conduct annual audit, if expending $750,000 or more in Federal funds, in compliance with the Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards at 2 CFR 200 of the Office of Management and Budget (Uniform Guidance);
- Be providing services and using its other resources in the area in which they are seeking funding;
- Practice nondiscrimination (those agencies with a religious affiliation wishing to participate in the program must not refuse services to an applicant based on religion or require attendance at religious services as a condition of assistance, nor will such groups engage in any religious proselytizing in any program receiving EFSP funds;
- Have a voluntary board if private, not-for-profit; and,
- To the extent practicable, involve homeless individuals and families, through employment, volunteer programs, etc., in providing emergency food and shelter services.
Ineligible Program Expenses (Partial List)
- Cash payments of any kind.
- Payments made in any form other than LRO check , LRO credit card, LRO debit card.
- Advances or reimbursements to staff, volunteers, or clients for program purchases.
- Payments made more than 90 days following the invoice or intake date.
- Reimbursements to other LRO’s or agencies.
- Bank fees, membership fees to food banks, shopping clubs, etc.
- Deposits of any kind.
- Administrative costs.
- Expenditures made outside jurisdiction’s spending period.
- No prepayment for expenses or services not yet rendered or incurred.
- Reserving or withholding funds in anticipation of a future need (e.g., holiday events, holiday baskets).
- Applicants not selected for participation may appeal, provided it is based upon Board violations of program regulations only. No appeals will be heard based on award level.
- A written appeal must be submitted within the timeline stated in the notification email (three business days).
- Appeals will be made to the Board or a committee of Board members. A written outcome will be provided within two business days.
The Big Bend EFSP is administered by America’s Second Harvest of the Big Bend, Inc.
Second Harvest of the Big Bend
4446 Entrepot Blvd.
Tallahassee, Florida 32310
(850) 562-3033, Ext. 217
For more information in the Emergency Food and Shelter Program, please visit: www.efsp.unitedway.org/efsp