Private Nonprofits, Including Houses of Worship, May Apply for FEMA Public Assistance Grants

Release Date Release Number
NR 025
Release Date:
October 27, 2020

MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Alabama private nonprofit organizations, including houses of worship and other faith-based organizations, may be eligible to apply for federal assistance to help recover from damage suffered from Hurricane Sally.

FEMA’s Public Assistance (PA) Program provides grants to certain kinds of nonprofits:

  • Those that provide critical services, such as hospitals and other medical treatment facilities; utilities, including water, sewer and electrical systems; private schools that provide elementary or secondary education or institutions of higher education.
  • Those that provide non-critical, essential services, such as senior citizen and community centers, food programs, educational enrichment activities, custodial and day care services, disability residential services, assisted living and low-income housing, homeless shelters and rehabilitation services, performing and community arts centers.
  • Houses of worship owned or operated by a private nonprofit organization. These organizations must have sustained damage from the hurricane and must provide a non-critical, but essential service open to the public. They must provide state or U.S. Internal Revenue Service documentation of tax-exempt status, pre-disaster charter and other documentation.

Houses of worship can learn more about applying for PA from their local or county emergency management agency.

Organizations that provide services of a non-critical, essential governmental nature must apply for a low-interest disaster loan from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) in order to be considered for PA grants. Grants for some repair or replacement costs may be available to those organizations that SBA loans do not cover. Houses of worship may apply to FEMA’s PA program while they are awaiting response from SBA.

For more information about PA for houses of worship, visit Public Assistance Fact Sheet: Private Nonprofit Houses of Worship For the latest information on Hurricane Sally, visit

Last updated March 18, 2021