Request for Proposals: EmPower: Innovation & Capacity Building

The Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (“MassCEC”) is introducing the EmPower Massachusetts Program (“the Program”). The EmPower Massachusetts program is an initiative for the exploration, development, and implementation of innovative program models or projects that will provide access to the benefits of clean energy or reduce energy burden for previously underserved or vulnerable populations in the Commonwealth.

MassCEC is seeking applications for two distinct funding opportunties under the program:

  • Innovation and Capacity Building: Through the Innovation and Capacity Building Request for Proposal (RFP), MassCEC seeks applicants for Innovation and Capacity Building Grant funding from community-based organizations, individuals, and other groups with a history of working with underserved or vulnerable populations. This opportunity will provide “seed” funding for the exploration of innovative ideas for potential program models or projects and to allow applicants to build organizational capacity to support future program models or projects. The goals of each program model or project should be increasing access to the benefits of clean energy and/or reducing energy burden to underserved and/or vulnerable populations.
  • Implementation: Through the Implementation Request for Proposal (RFP), MassCEC seeks applicants for Implementation Grant funding from community-based organizations, individuals, and other groups with a history of working with underserved or vulnerable populations. This opportunity will provide funding for the implementation of innovative program models or projects. The goals of each program model or project should be increasing access to the benefits of clean energy and/or reducing energy burden to underserved and/or vulnerable populations.

 


Expected Timeline:

Release of both RFPs

May 18, 2021

Questions due to MassCEC via email to empower@masscec.com

July 30, 2021

Questions with Answers Posted to MassCEC Website

Please note that MassCEC will answer questions directly until the deadline.

August 6, 2021

Proposals Due for both RFPs

*Please note that there will be a second application review window for the Innovation and Capacity Building Grants in the late Fall of 2021. See RFP for full details

August 18, 2021*

Interviews of Applicants

August 2021

Notification of Award

August/September 2021

 

As noted above, the first deadline for responses to both RFPs has now passed. There will be a second application review window for the Innovation and Capacity Building Grants on November 10, 2021.


To Apply:

  1. First, review both RFPs to develop an understanding for the program and opportunities.
  2. Review the template grant agreement & contact MassCEC with questions or request for assistance in finding a co-applicant for purposes of receiving funds.
  3. Reach out to MassCEC to discuss your idea(s), need for capacity building funding, or your ideas for program or project implementation.
  4. (Optional, but encouraged) Attend our workshops, review our overview videos and Q&A, and/or utilize all resources offered. Applicants new to clean energy are encouraged to review our Clean energy 101 primer.
  5. Complete the appropriate EmPower grant application, each are linked below.
  6. Complete Attachment 1: Signature and Acceptance Form, found on p. 13 of each respective RFP.
  7. Submit the form by email to the EmPower team at empower@masscec.com with “Innovation & Capacity Building Grant Application” or “Implementation Grant Application” in the subject line.

Complete application submissions will be accepted through 5:00 PM on August 18, 2021. Successful applicants will be notified within 1-2 months of application.

As noted above, the first deadline for responses to both RFPs has now passed. There will be a second application review window for the Innovation and Capacity Building Grants on November 10, 2021.


Application Forms and Supplemental Documentation:

Innovation and Capacity Building Grant Funding:

Implementation Grant Funding:


 

Program Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's):


Application Support Offered:

EmPower Workshops:

Slack Channel: 

  • Sign up for our EmPower slack channel here. We'll best hosting information on programmatic announcements, Q&A, introductions (introduce yourself to others), and networking/relationship facilitation.

Office Hours:

We're offering drop-in office hours to provide a variety of times to answer questions on the program, application, or even facilitate introductions. Whenever possible, please register ahead of time, but you can also join day-of using the below links.

Office Hours Schedule 8.29-9.11.21:

Informational Resources:

If you have a suggestion towards other types of support we can offer, let us know!


Accessibility:

If accessibility to computer, internet or software may prohibit you from submitting an electronic application, in general, or by any deadline, or if there are other challenges with accessibility such as language or writing barriers, our team is available to discuss alternative options such as video application. Please call Lisa Dobbs at 617-315-9367 or email empower@masscec.com.