VLS Grant Cycle 2020-2022

VLS Grant Cycle 2020-2022


***The March 6, 2020 grant deadline has been extended to April 15, 2020. The VLS Grant Application has been updated below.


Jan. 6, 2020 (Lincoln, Neb.) – The Nebraska Department of Correctional Services released the application (see below) for the forth Vocational & Life Skills (VLS) grant cycle.  

The grant cycle begins July 2020 and runs through June 2022. The entire annual allocation of $3.5 million is available each year of the two-year grant period, subject to appropriation.

This solicitation is a continuation of the work being done inside NDCS facilities, which creates a bridge for the individual to successfully return to the community. To fully achieve comprehensive reentry services and planning, community providers must be involved. These programs aid the department in increasing public safety, effectively reducing recidivism, providing meaningful vocational and life skills training, and facilitate the successful reentry as individuals return to their communities. 

Per state statute, applicants are limited to community-based organizations, community colleges, federally recognized or state recognized Indian tribes, or nonprofit organizations that provide vocational and life skills programming and services to adults while incarcerated, serving a period of supervision on probation or parole and for up to 18 months following discharge.

Applications and supporting documentation must be submitted to Pimpicha Tubsuwan, VLS Coordinator, at pimpicha.tubsuwan@nebraska.gov no later than April 15, 2020.

VLS Grant Application PDF

VLS Grant Application Word

VLS Frequently Asked Questions



Q: Will grant awards be ‘all or nothing’?

A: No, if the grant review committee were to determine the full amount requested was not available or not appropriate, discussions would be held with the applicants to determine if the program could operate with a lesser amount.

Q: Can a non-profit submit more than one grant for different programs/different partners?

A: Yes

Q: Is there a minimum/maximum threshold (amount awarded) per grant?

A: No, there are no set minimum or maximum amounts per grant award. All grant amounts awarded will be based on the applicant’s proposal and the agreed upon amount between NDCS and the service provider and the funds available.

Q: Does the program of service provided need to serve statewide?

A: No, submissions may be to provide services either statewide or local.

Q: Will providers have access to any assessments completed during incarceration or will they need to develop their own assessment?

A: No, per state statute, a signed release is required for NDCS to release any inmate specific mental health or medical information. Release of any inmate assessment information or other information contained in the inmate file including the Strong R can be done by a court order only.

Q: How many grants will be awarded?

A: The number of grants awarded depends on the applicant’s ability meeting the requirements and the funds available. There is no set limit.

Q: What is the grant time frame?

A: The grant time frame will be from July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2022. The grant cycle starts in July 2020 and runs through June 2022. The entire annual allocation of $3.5 million is available each year of the two-year grant period subject to appropriation. Total grant funding is contingent upon appropriation in FY 20, FY 22. 

Q: Is there a limit to the number of pages for applications?

A: No. The expectation is the application will be as long as necessary to provide all relevant information.

Q: When will the grant start?

A: The grant will start July 1, 2020.

Q: Is there a specific indirect rate to be used when applying for a grant?

A: There was no specific direct cost rate identified as the intent is for items normally associated with indirect costs to be listed under other costs.

Q: Are there required software programs for tracking data/record keeping?

A: Yes, training will be provided on the data collection procedures and data will be submitted on an ongoing or monthly basis as needed by the evaluators. Programs will be provided a user subscription (at no cost to the grantee) to an online data management system (Quickbase) where required participant data is to be submitted.

Q: What separate justification is required for a sole source contract in excess of $50,000?

A: The justification for a “sole source” consultant/contract should explain the uniqueness of service that the consultant/contractor can provide and why the contract rate would be competitive.


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