Friday, August 3, 2012

FW: Publications, Tools, Learning, and Funding

USDA has provided a wide-variety of resources, tools and funding opportunities spanning rural housing, underserved banking regions in rural America, reports on the earned income tax credit and payday lending, and more!  Check out the information below:


From: Agans, Suzette - RD, Washington, DC []
Sent: Friday, August 03, 2012 8:53 AM
Subject: Publications, Tools, Learning, and Funding




CFED Releases Head Start Integration Guide - CFED releases the first in a series of guides exploring how the delivery of services that emphasize asset building can be integrated into other types of human and social service delivery programs. Getting a Head Start on Financial Security, co-authored by Leigh Tivol and Jennifer Brooks, examines a range of strategies that stakeholders in the Head Start community can use to engage asset-building practitioners in their work to strengthen the overall household financial security of the families they serve.

Because Head Start reaches nearly one million children annually, it is a logical venue for connecting low-income families with programs and services that improve long-term economic prospects. Built on this notion, Getting a Head Start on Financial Security is broken down into seven main categories that correlate to the activities around which Head Start and asset-building practitioners can collaborate. Specifically, these communities should work together to inform and empower children and adults through financial education, facilitate family access to public benefits, link families to EITC and free tax preparation, get families banked, encourage savings by matching deposits, help families buy and keep homes, and advocate for policy change at the state and federal levels.

To read more about how asset-building approaches can be integrated into Head Start service delivery, visit CFED's Knowledge Center and download Getting a Head Start on Financial Security today.


Price impacts of 2012 drought expected to be larger in 2013 for most foods

Overall food prices remain on track to increase by 2.5 to 3.5 percent in 2012, but are forecast to increase 3 to 4 percent in 2013. Food price inflation in 2013 is expected to be higher than normal due to the ongoing drought in the Midwest. The drought has driven up commodity prices, particularly field corn, used as animal feed and a food ingredient. Higher feed costs are expected to push up retail prices for beef, pork, dairy products, and eggs in 2013.  ERS expects poultry prices to increase more in 2012 than in 2013, as feed costs impact prices for smaller animals faster. Price inflation for packaged and processed foods (other foods) is forecast to be in the 3.5 to 4.5 percent range for 2013, as higher corn prices are transmitted over the coming year into higher prices for corn flour and corn syrup-common ingredients in processed foods. More expensive high fructose corn syrup is expected to boost non-alcoholic beverage prices in 2013 as well. More information on food price changes and forecasts can be found in the Food Price Outlook data product on the ERS website, updated July 25, 2012.


"The Effects of State EITC Expansion on Children's Health" is a brief examining the impact of state-level adoption of Earned Income Tax Credits (EITCs) on a set of health-related outcomes for children, including: (1) health insurance coverage, (2) use of preventive medical and dental care, and (3) health status measures including maternal reports of child health and body mass index. It also considers the possibility that the effect of the EITC on these outcomes may vary depending on where a child lives. Get the brief here.

Rural poverty resources. Housing Assistance Council has released a decennial rural poverty map (get it here), and a Rural Research Note on "Poverty in Rural America" (available here).  It has also posted a recording of a recent webinar on the subject which you can listen to here.


The Pew Charitable Trusts has published a brief on payday lending titled "Who Borrows, Where They Borrow, and Why" that answers questions about what drives people to borrow money, and why they use payday loans. To download a copy of the report, click here.


Community has launched Evergreen Cooperatives website, a resource for community wealth building efforts in many localities. The site contains information about the overall Evergreen strategy as well as detailed information on individual Evergreen companies. Visit the website here.

Philanthropy and Voluntarism. While people between the ages of 20 and 35 tend to interact with nonprofit organizations in impulsive, immediate ways, they also value authentic, personal connections with the nonprofits they support, a report from Achieve and Johnson, Grossnickle and Associates finds. Download the report here.  


The Community Transportation Association of America has published "Putting Transit to Work in Main Street America: How Smaller Cities and Rural Places Are Using Transit and Mobility Investments to Strengthen Their Economies and Communities". This paper describes how small and rural communities are using public transportation investments and partnerships to help address the challenges of limited resources, populations both shrinking and growing older, industrial decline and the loss of farmland. To get a copy, click here.  


A mixture of trees and open area is most appealing

The attractiveness of an area as a place to live and work depends partly on how land is used. Landscape preferences research confirms that water and varied terrain are attractive features, but also shows that scenery with a mix of forest and open country is attractive to people, much more so than scenery that is either largely treeless or extensively forested. Rural migration patterns suggest that people have followed these preferences in choosing where to live.  The population of the typical nonmetro county with between 60 and 70 percent of its land are covered by trees grew more than other nonmetro counties over the 1970-2010 period-increasing by nearly 50 percent. The chart is from the Natural Amenities topic page on the ERS website, updated May 26, 2012.


Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City's Newsletter - Indicators of economic and financial conditions in the Tenth Federal Reserve District's low- to moderate-income (LMI) community show little change in the second quarter following two quarters of substantial gains.





Quick Fes􀆟val Survey to Measure Economic Impact - CEDIK has put together a simple survey you can use to measure the economic impact of your county's fair or festival.

Visit our website to download the postcard:  Page 2 of this newsletter explains more - 


The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation have released the 2012 list of distressed or underserved nonmetropolitan middle-income geographies, in which bank revitalization or stabilization activities will receive Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) consideration as "community development". The criteria for designating these areas, and the list of geographies are available on the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) website here.  





Webinar: Brownfields Area-Wide Planning Grants: Opportunities for Local Governments and Nonprofits, August 9, 2012, 3:00-4:00 Eastern - Conducted with the Office of Brownfields and Land Revitalization, this webinar will focus on the benefits of area-wide planning for brownfields development and a new grant opportunity for local governments and nonprofits. The webinar will feature Drew Curtis of the Ironbound Community Corporation in Newark, NJ and Jim Gulnac of Sanford, ME, who will discuss pilot projects and lessons learned in their communities. AICP members can earn Certification Maintenance credits for this activity.

To join this webinar, click on No pre-registration is required.

No phone call is required. Participants will be able to hear the meeting audio through their computer speakers.

  • Please test your computer prior to attending a meeting at
  • The Connection Test checks your computer to make sure all system requirements are met. If you pass the first three steps of the test, then you are ready to participate in a meeting.
  • If you do not pass the test, perform the suggested actions and run the test again.


Webinar: Essential Smart Growth Fixes: Ideas for Rural Communities, Thursday, August 16, 2012, 2:00-3:00 Eastern - This webinar will focus on tools and strategies that can help rural communities spur economic growth while maintaining their rural character. Presenters Ben Herman (FAICP and Principal of Clarion Associates, a national land use firm) and Dean Severson (AICP and Principal Agricultural and Rural Planning Analyst for the Lancaster County, Pennsylvania Planning Commission) will highlight zoning strategies from EPA's recent publication, "Essential Smart Growth Fixes for Rural Planning, Zoning and Development Codes," and provide tips for implementation. Download the report from  AICP members can earn Certification Maintenance credits for this activity. Please note this is a repeat of the webinar held on July 19.

No pre-registration is required.

No phone call is required. Participants will be able to hear the meeting audio through their computer speakers.

  • Please test your computer prior to attending a meeting at
  • The Connection Test checks your computer to make sure all system requirements are met. If you pass the first three steps of the test, then you are ready to participate in a meeting.
  • If you do not pass the test, perform the suggested actions and run the test again.


Webinar: Bringing Microenterprise Resources to Your State with the Self-Employment Assistance Program, Tuesday, August 14, 2012, 3:30 - 4:30 pm EDT.  Presented by CFED's Federal Policy Team.  Small businesses not only drive the economy and job growth, they also provide a pathway for business owners to join America's middle class and build wealth. In the current economic environment, entrepreneurship is, for many unemployed workers, the best opportunity to recover. Indeed, starting a business allows them to create their own new jobs.

The federal Self-Employment Assistance (SEA) Program allows unemployed workers who are interested in entrepreneurship to receive unemployment insurance benefits while they get their businesses started and participate in training to help them succeed. This webinar will review the recent expansion of SEA and explain how microenterprise and asset-building organizations can effectively advocate to state legislators, governors, and economic development and employment agencies. Presentations will be followed by a Q&A session.

Presenters will include:

  • Katherine Lucas-Smith - Senior Policy Analyst, CFED
  • Claudia Viek - CEO, California Association of Microenterprise Organizations (CAMEO)
  • Martin Burrows - Assistant Director, Employment Department, State of Oregon
  • Teresa Lemmons - Executive Director, Washington State Microenterprise Association


Click here to register now!  Did you know you can listen through your computer? Connect your speakers or a headset to your computer. For more information, contact Katherine Lucas-Smith


Virtual Incubation Network Toolkit Series of Webinars – On the webpage below is a schedule of webinars to discuss each of the tools in the Virtual Incubation Network(VIN) Toolkit. Each webinar will feature interactive discussion time with AACC, NACCE and the VIN schools to help you discover which tools can work best on your campus and in your community.


Webinar: Social Enterprise, August 23, 2pm EDT - Bank of America will host a webinar in its Nonprofit Impact Series on Thursday, August 23rd at 2 p.m. (EDT). Renee Baiorunos (Community Wealth Ventures) will present a program entitled "Social Enterprise" to help leaders think in new ways about how to diversify their funding stream by generating their own revenue. The presentation will provide an introduction to social enterprise, outlining why and how organizations pursue social enterprise and providing an overview of the process for developing a social enterprise. To register, click here.


Webinar offered by the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities on August 8, 2012 at 1 pm ET. The webinar will discuss the new program and RFP announced in a blog on this site last week (click here for more information on the RFP). For more on the webinar, click here


Webinar: Engagement 3.0: New Frontiers in Public Participation Thursday, August 9, 2012, 4-5 PM EDT

If you're serious about engagement, you stopped expecting people to just come to your meetings a long time ago. And if you're really serious about engagement, you know that even social media and block parties can't help you reach all the people in your community. Join us to explore the next frontiers in innovative public engagement, which include everything from games to placemaking to flash mobs - and perhaps most critically, combinations of methods old and new, high-tech and low-tech, creative and everyday.



  • Larry Schooler, Community Engagement Consultant for the City of Austin and US President-Elect of the International Association of Public Participation (IAP2)
  • Eric Gordon, Associate Professor of Visual and Media Arts at Emerson College and Director of the Engagement Game Lab

We'll hear how Larry has combined brand new methods with the tried-and-true to engage Austin citizens in unprecedented ways, and about the range of participation techniques currently showing up in communities across the country. And we'll dive into the exciting new discipline of engagement games with Eric, and hear how he's built digital and low-tech games to engage a wide range of residents in conversations about the future of their communities.  Read more on our blog and register now!





THE DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION is offering grants to nonprofit and public agencies to prepare, motivate and assist military veterans in the development of academic and other skills necessary for acceptance into and success in a program of postsecondary education. Deadline to apply: 8/9/2012. For an application, click here.


USDA has re-issued a NOFA from 2011 for the Section 515 Multi-Family Housing Preservation Revolving Loan Fund: Demonstration Program because it did not receive enough applications to utilize all available funds. Grants may be used to carry out a demonstration program to provide revolving loans for the preservation and revitalization of low-income multi-family housing in rural areas. Deadline: 8/17/2012. Click here to read the NOFA.


THE TD CHARITABLE FOUNDATION is offering grants to nonprofits working to provide transitional housing and homeless shelter services to low- to moderate-income individuals or families in communities where TD Bank does business. Deadline: 8/31/2012. To learn more, visit the Foundation's website here.  


THE DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY Community Development Financial Institutions Fund has issued a notice of allocation availability inviting applications for the CY 2012 Allocation Round of the New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) Program. Deadline: 9/1/2012. To go to the CDFI website, click here.


THE OPEN MEADOWS FOUNDATION is a grant-making organization seeking projects that promote gender/racial/economic justice. The projects must be led by and benefit women and girls, particularly those from vulnerable communities. Deadline to apply: 8/15/2012. For more information, click here.


THE HEINEMAN FOUNDATION has funding available to provide seed money to nonprofit organizations in eight states for start-up projects and new projects for a maximum of three to five years. The deadline to apply: 9/1/2012. The Foundation's areas of interest include programs that enable economically challenged women to enter and remain in the workplace; on-site day care centers for women in the workplace, job training programs, etc. For an application, click here.


THE CALVIN K. KAZANJIAN ECONOMIC FOUNDATION offers funding to nonprofit organizations for programs that increase economic literacy. Deadline: 9/15/2012. To learn more about this organization, click here.


THE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE Rural Housing Service has issued a NOFA for Section 514 Farm Labor Housing Loans and Section 516 Farm Labor Housing Grants for Off-Farm Housing for Fiscal Year (FY) 2012. Pre-application deadline: 9/17/2012. These loans and grants are for the construction of new off-farm housing units and related facilities for domestic farm laborers and for the purchase and rehabilitation of existing non-farm labor housing. To read the Federal Register notice, click here.


Resources for helping children succeed - The W.K. Kellogg Foundation accepts applications year-round for grants for projects within the framework for educated kids, healthy kids, secure families, racial equity, and civic engagement.

Seed grants to jump-start your efforts - Looking for some funding to get started on your action ideas? Check out seed grants from Here are the judging criteria for these grants: youth driven, measurable change, community focus, long-term problem-solving, creativity, and diversity.


Institute of Museum and Library Services Accepting Applications for the Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program - Matching grants of up to $500,000 are available to government entities and nonprofit organizations, including libraries, academic institutions, and library associations, for projects to address the education and training needs of library professionals.... Deadline: September 17, 2012


Fitch Charitable Foundation Offers Project Grants to Mid-Career Professionals in Preservation and Related Fields - Grants of up to $15K will be awarded to mid-career professionals working on preservation-related projects in a range of fields, including landscape architecture, urban design, environmental planning, decorative arts, and architectural design/history.... Deadline: September 15, 2012


Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Invites Applications for New Connections: Increasing Diversity of RWJF Programming Midcareer Consultant Program
As many as three grants of up to $100K will be awarded to scholars who have between 10 and 15 years of experience and who are from historically disadvantaged and underrepresented communities to address RWJF program priorities over a twelve-month period.... Deadline: August 29, 2012 (Brief Proposals)


THE WELLMARK FOUNDATION is offering funding to nonprofits in Iowa and South Dakota to improve the health of their communities. Deadline: 8/14/2012. For an application, click here.


Suzette M. Agans
Rural Development | Community and Economic Development
U.S. Department of Agriculture
1400 Independence Ave., S.W. Stop 3254 | Washington, D.C. 20250
Phone: 202.401.1922 | Fax: 202.401.7311

"Committed to the future of rural communities"
"Estamos dedicados al futuro de las comunidades rurales"


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