Help Starting a Business

Publication Date: December 15, 2014

NOTE: No funds were appropriated for the Assets for Independence (AFI) program for federal fiscal year 2017. Therefore, the Administration of Children and Families (ACF) will not be making new grant awards for the AFI program.

AFI grants awarded in FY 2016 and before are not affected by the FY 2017 appropriation, as the total award amount was obligated for those grants at the time that they were made. Organizations operating AFI projects with existing grants are responsible for continuing to operate those projects for the funded project period indicated on the notice of grant award.

Programman cutting red ribbon

Assets for Independence (AFI), a Federal program administered by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) enables nonprofits and government agencies to implement and demonstrate an assets-based approach that improves the economic status of working individuals and families.

Services Available

AFI projects help participants save earned income in special, matched savings accounts called Individual Development Accounts (IDAs). Every dollar in savings deposited into an IDA by participants is matched (from $1 to $8) by the AFI project. AFI project participant/families can use their IDA savings, including the matching funds, to achieve any of three objectives, one of which is starting a business.

How to Receive Services/Assistance

To locate an AFI IDA program near you, please go to AFI Project Locator.

The AFI program does not award IDAs/matched savings directly to individuals.

Current as of: