Renew America's Nonprofits Grant Program

An illustration of people on a busy street

Do you represent a 501(c)(3) nonprofit serving disadvantaged persons in the Kansas City region? 

Do you own the building you use to provide services and need energy conservation improvements?

The U.S. Department of Energy, through the Office of State and Community Energy Programs, selected MARC as one of nine recipients of a Renew America’s Nonprofits grant to implement energy efficiency building upgrades for nonprofit organizations in the Kansas City region.

The grant provides funds to support projects that reduce energy use and costs in buildings owned and operated by nonprofits. 

In addition to the federal funds, four local foundations have provided an additional $1.5 million to meet federal match requirements and provide additional funds to support the program. The four foundations are Hall Family Foundation, Marion and Henry Bloch Charitable Foundation, Sunderland Foundation and the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. 

Partner organizations

Submit an application

The program application process is now open. The deadline to submit applications is Aug. 23, 2024. 

Program eligibility

Eligible nonprofits are encouraged to apply for funds beginning in June.

Eligible organizations

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has outlined specific eligibility criteria. Eligible organizations must be 501c3 nonprofit organizations with documentation from the IRS. Eligible nonprofits must own the buildings to receive funds for energy conservation improvements and be able to provide documentation to MARC and DOE. The name of the building owner must match the IRS nonprofit name.

In alignment with the federal government’s Justice40 Initiative, the nonprofit organization must provide support and services to disadvantaged people and communities within or from the building proposed for energy efficiency upgrades. Justice40 communities are defined as low-income census tracts (where more than 65 percent of households are at or below twice the federal poverty level) that also experience at least one other environmental, economic or health burden.

Program service area

The service area is limited to MARC’s nine-county region (Cass, Clay, Jackson, Platte and Ray counties in Missouri, and Johnson, Leavenworth, Miami and Wyandotte in Kansas). 

There is a preference for buildings that are located in or provide services to disadvantaged people living in Justice40 or environmental justice areas. See map.  Another mapping tool that identifies communities faced with significant burdens is the Climate and Economic Justice Screening Tool

Eligible projects and activities

Eligible energy conservation improvements may include, but are not limited to:

  • HVAC system replacement or upgrades to high performing units
  • LED Lighting
  • Energy system controls to regulate energy use within the building.
  • Window and door replacement
  • Building insulation
  • All proposed project activities and equipment funded from the SCEP – Renew America’s Nonprofits Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) Number: DE-FOA-0003066 must be among those listed in the National Environmental Policy (NEPA) determination letter. (while solar is listed as eligible by DOE, it is NOT eligible through this grant program.)

Other Improvements may be considered. The energy conservation measures will be determined by the building owner and through energy audits that confirm any improvements made will help achieve an annual energy savings of at least 15%. 

Renewable energy improvements such as solar are not eligible. The program will not support projects that require ground disturbance, and all buildings must meet any applicable national historic preservation requirements.

The Community Advisory Board may identify additional selection criteria to assist in identifying the non-profit organizations with the greatest need and potential to benefit from energy improvements.

Selection criteria

The Community Advisory Board will use criteria to select the nonprofit organizations for energy conservation assistance. The criteria includes requirements set by the U.S, Department of Energy and additional criteria important for the Kansas City area program. View selection criteria. 

Get email updates

Sign up for email updates from MARC regarding the Renewing America's Nonprofits program. 

Layer Title
Application timeline
Date Event
June 2024 Application opens for project submissions
June 26, 2-3 p.m. Pre-application webinar
July 10, 10-11 a.m. Pre-application webinar
TBD Pre-application webinar
Wednesday, July 17 10 - 11:15 a.m. Metropolitan Energy Center webinar*
Monday, Aug. 5, 10-11:15 a.m. Metropolitan Energy Center webinar*
Friday, Aug. 23, 2024 (by 5pm CST) Application deadline

Upcoming Trainings and Registration

Energy Star Portfolio Manager Training

*  The Metropolitan Energy Center will assist nonprofit organizations to use the free EPA Energy Star Portfolio Manager software system. The software program will help your organization set a benchmark for energy use and identify possible projects to achieve energy savings. Information about the Energy Star Portfolio Manager program may be found at Benchmark Your Building With Portfolio Manager | ENERGY STAR

Two trainings have been scheduled to support your use of the software for this grant program. Register for one of the sessions that best meets your schedule.

Wednesday, July 17| 10-11:15 a.m. | Register here>>
Monday, Aug. 5 | 10-11:15 a.m. | Register here>>

Webinar Resources

Selection Process

A Community Advisory Board (CAB) composed of representatives from the community, private funders, local governments and technical organizations has been formed and developed the selection criteria. The CAB will review applications from eligible non-profit organizations and identify 25-30 non-profit organizations to receive assistance.

  • After an initial determination of eligibility by MARC and project partners, all eligible applicants will receive an initial energy assessment or Level 1 ASHRAE energy audit. Project partners Custom Engineering and Entegrity Energy Partners, along with Evergy, will conduct the assessments and audits.
  • The CAB will review eligible applications, including energy audit information, and make recommendations for the buildings to receive assistance.
  • Recommended buildings will receive a Level 2 ASHRAE Energy Audit to confirm that energy savings of at least 15% could be achieved. Following the Level 2 Energy Audit, a final selection of nonprofit organizations and buildings will be made. The Level 2 Energy Audit will help the building owner identify those improvements that are most cost-effective.
  • A portfolio of at least 25 nonprofit buildings will be submitted to the DOE for approval.


Please contact MARC for additional information about this program. 

This program is supported by the U.S. Department of Energy’s State and Community Energy Program (SCEP) under the Renew America’s Nonprofits Program and 2022 Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) for Energy Improvements at Nonprofits Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) Award Number DE-SE-0001001.

State and Community Energy Programs logo
Mid-America Regional Council logo