Tennessee invests in innovative solutions to serve families

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Nashville, TN – The Tennessee Department of Human Services (TDHS) is accepting applications for Families First Community Grants through February 4, 2022. These grants will make up to $122 million in funding available to public and private organizations that can demonstrate family-centered solutions that help Tennessee residents overcome economic, social and development and to embark on the path of self-sufficiency.




the Families First Community Grant Program was created by the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Act (TANF) adopted in May 2021. This is the second grant phase of this initiative and will provide short-term grants to small, community-based organizations that share TDHS’s vision of fundamentally changing the way low-income families are served.

TDHS believes that vulnerable families should be served in ways that grow them beyond a basic survival life, free them from dependence on public support, and empower them to create their own unique version of the American dream.

“We are here to ensure that all state residents have the opportunity to reach their full potential as active members of our community,” said TDHS Commissioner Clarence H. Carter. “For too long, government programs have focused on outcomes rather than the outcomes of the lives of those served. Our goal is to change the way vulnerable Tennesseans are served by partnering with public and private organizations that recognize that public support should be a milestone in a life’s journey, not a destination in and of itself.

TDHS encourages willing neighborhood organizations to play a central role in designing and implementing programs that address the unique issues of low-income families in their communities and encourages at least one of the federal TANF objectives submit a request for Families First Community Grant. Additional information on the grant process can be found in the Families First Community Grant Application Guide. Applications can be submitted online here until 5:00 p.m. CT on February 4, 2022.

Learn more about the additional work done by the Tennessee Department of Social Services and how your organization can get involved. www.tn.gov/humanservices. We can Transform Tennessee Together!

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