Monday, August 27, 2012

FW: Publications, Tools, Learning, and Funding

From our friends at the USDA, below are numerous tools, development and funding opportunities to benefit your community and/or organization!




Partnerships between Regional Development Organizations and Community Foundations

The NADO Research Foundation has released a new report, Collaborative Leadership: Partnerships between Regional Development Organizations and Community Foundations. In an era of tightening government budgets, regional planning and development organizations need to think creatively about developing and funding initiatives that improve communities’ quality of life. One way that communities have diversified their strategies is by working with community foundations in dynamic partnerships. Through these partnerships, both regional development organizations and foundations have leveraged community and external funds, accessed knowledge and skills beyond their own areas of expertise, broadened their networks, and aligned work programs to best meet community needs. This report explores the strategies and rewards behind eight partnerships, with case studies from Alabama, Iowa, Minnesota, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Virginia. These stories demonstrate how foundations and regional development organizations can help each other leverage resources, expand their toolkits, broaden their networks, and align their work programs. Read the full report here.


Locating American Manufacturing: Trends in the Geography of Production

The Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C. released the above titled report in May 2012. According to a study, an analysis of data on employment, earnings, and the number of business establishments engaged in U.S. manufacturing finds that: 

·         Metropolitan areas, especially large metropolitan areas and central metropolitan counties, contain the great majority of manufacturing jobs and nearly all very high-technology manufacturing jobs, reflecting the advantages they provide to manufacturing in general and very high-technology manufacturing in particular. In 2010, metropolitan areas contained 79.5 percent of all manufacturing jobs, 78.6 percent of moderately high-technology manufacturing jobs, and 95 percent of very high-technology manufacturing jobs.

·         For the rest of the findings - here


Homeownership in Rural America - Fifth document in a series of Rural Research Notes discussing homeownership in rural America using data from the 2010 Census and American Community Survey (ACS). Organization: Housing Assistance Council  Date: 07 / 2012


Poverty in Rural America - Sixth document in a series of Rural Research Notes presenting data and findings from the recently released 2010 Census and American Community Survey (ACS).
Organization: Housing Assistance Council.  Date: 06 / 2012


Rural Economies and Industry - Seventh document in a series of Rural Research Notes presenting employment data and maps that highlight the similarities, and differences, between rural America and more densely populated regions. Additionally, the effects of large agribusiness are explored within the context of small family farming.
Organization: Housing Assistance Council. Date: 07 / 2012


A New Mexico Experiment Aims to Fix the Doctor Shortage – No New Doctors Required
Aug 9, 2012 -- Washington Post, (DC) article reports that a physician in New Mexico started an experiment in medical learning collaboratives that rethinks how health care can best be delivered from a distance that is now used by everyone from the Department of Defense to the Brazilian health-care system.


FCC Seeks Further Comment on Proposed Rule for Rural Health Care Program
Jul 24, 2012 -- The Federal Communications Commission will accept additional comments through Aug. 23 on a 2010 proposed rule to reform its Rural Health Care program, which uses universal service fees to support expanded broadband access in rural areas.





The Province of Ontario has an excellent tool called TREIM, which is a tourism economic impact modeling system. You enter the inputs (ie: attendance, if people stay overnight, etc.) and the system does the rest. You can find it at


Fundraising and Next Generation Giving - Shared by EDA Consulting (Free)


Evaluation - If you're new to program evaluation and have a program that's never been assessed, read Practical Assessment, Research and Evaluation's article Thinking about Evaluating Your Program? These Strategies Will Get You Started. Community Solutions Planning & Evaluations has shared Evaluation Do's and Don'ts for Program Managers, which is full of helpful advice for beginners. They have shared many other creative and inspiring documents on evaluation, including a Reporting Cube Template, for an innovative way to display your program's results.





·         Webinar:  Green Business Development for Native American and Latino Entrepreneurs, Thursday August 30th at 2:00 pm EDT/1:00 pm CDT/11:00 am

sponsored by the Academy for Green Microenterprise Development


Reserve your Webinar seat now at:  


How are small business CDFIs helping Native Americans and Latinos capture opportunities in the Green Economy? We'll visit with the Latino Economic Development Center in Minneapolis, M.N. and Four Bands Community Fund in Eagle Butte, S.D. Both organizations have developed innovative approaches for "green" entrepreneurial training, technical assistance and access to capital. Join us as we walk through how they designed and developed these programs; their challenges and initial results!    

Host: Jason Friedman, Friedman Associates

 Guest Presenters:   

Lakota Mowrer, Assistant Director, Four Bands Community Fund and  

Matt Kazinka, Green Initiative Coordinator, Latino Economic Development Center.


This webinar is provided by Access to Capital/Georgia Green Loans and Friedman Associates and funded by the U.S. Small Business Administration PRIME Program.     


·         WEBINAR: Building Food Value Chains: Midwest Lessons Learned for Wealth Creation, Thursday September 20, 2012 from 1:00 PM to 2:00 PM EDT

Rich Pirog and Nick McCann will be sharing lessons from their long-term work in Iowa and new work in Michigan. Deb Markley
Center for Rural Entrepreneurship.  919-932-7762
Registration -

·         Webinar: First Impressions, October 2, A.M. 11 a.m. Central Time

First Impressions was a program developed in Grant County 21 years ago to help the communities determine how visitors perceived the communities in that County. It had humble beginnings, but has now been used by hundreds of communities in many states and several countries.

On Tuesday, October 2, from 11 a.m. to noon, there will be doing a free webinar for the North Central Regional Center for Rural Development on the topic of First Impressions with Myra Moss at Ohio State and Kelly Nix at West Virginia. For more information on this free webinar, please see:

The manual and materials for the program were written in a way that would allow just about anyone to carry out the program. However, over the past few years, we have really not provided any training or information about the program. For those that are new to the program, the following information on the recently revamped CCED blog might be helpful:

I would also encourage you to join us on October 2. You could consider inviting representatives from your local Chamber of Commerce, Main Street program, or Economic Development organizations to join you. For those of you that have used the program, this would also be an opportunity for you to learn how other states have been using the program. Myra Moss, for example, has a version for Main Streets, and Kelly Nix will be sharing the findings from her recent evaluation of the program in West Virginia.

·         WEBINAR: Matchmaker, Matchmaker... : Finding and Vetting Network Partners, Thursday, August 30, 3:30-4:30 pm EDT / 12:30-1:30 pm PDT

IDA Network programs present an opportunity to increase outreach to more low-income households while simultaneously increasing efficiencies and easing the fundraising burden for local organizations. They are, however, complex to implement and require a good match between network administrator and partners.

Whether you are or want to be a network administrator, are currently a network partner or are searching for a network to join, this webinar will help you to better understand the different types of relationships that exist between network administrator and partners, what the “getting to know you” process can look like, and best practices for maintaining a successful partnership.

The hour-long webinar will cover:

  • What are the types of organizations networks partner with? What are the different models for these partnerships?
  • What are network administrators looking for in their partnerships?
  • How do network administrators measure the success of the partnership?
  • What happens when things go wrong? What are the opportunities to get back on track?

Presenters include:

  • Leigh Tivol, AFI Resource Center (moderator)
  • Martha Wunderli, State Director, Utah IDA Network; AAA Fair Credit Foundation
  • Jacqueline Troy, Savings & Financial Capabilities Manager; Director, Indiana HELPs - Indiana Housing and Community Development
  • Toby Berry, Community Development Director, Community Action Agency of Jackson, Michigan

Click here to register now! The webinar is free to all interested participants. In advance of the webinar, please send any questions you would like our panelists to address during the session to Kate Griffin, or call 202.207.0117.


·         WEBINAR:  Heritage Tourism for the North Central Region, September 20, 2012 (2:00 PM – Eastern Time)

This initial webinar will overview the Heritage Tourism Initiative, discuss the seven heritage tourism modules, and focus on Module 1. This first session will introduce heritage tourism as a new concept, the importance of heritage tourism, and regional approaches. There will be a brief introduction of the Heritage Tourism resources (coming soon via web), ways to network and share resources, and a question and answer session. This is the first module in a series of 7 modules.


About the Speakers:

Julie Avery, cultural community and economic development specialist with Michigan State University Extension and curator at the MSU Museum has worked with cultural as a strategy for rural communities in community and economic development; curriculum development; and project coordination. Her museum work is focused on rural life and culture.

Francis Boggus, principal of Francis O. Boggus & Associates, LLC, provides direction and assistance for community planning and development. Francis led Iowa's Great Places Initiative at the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs for five years before establishing his own firm.

Larry Dickerson, community development specialist with the University of Missouri Extension, Boone County, has 40 years’ experience working in community, economic and organizational development in Alaska and Missouri.  Larry is co-author/editor of "Building A Strong Community" to be published by University of Alaska Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Press, fall of 2013.


Registration:  There is no registration and no fee for attending this webinar. 


To join the webinar go to, “enter as a guest” is by default already chosen. Type your name into the text box provided, and click on “Enter Room”. You are now in the meeting room for the webinar.  The webinar will be recorded and archived at  To receive these announcements directly, or to correct errors in our distribution list, please email





USDA Rural Business-Cooperative Service Accepting Applications for Value-Added Producer Grants

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Rural Business-Cooperative Service (RBS) has announced the availability of grants through the Value-Added Producer Grant Program for fiscal year 2012.  Approximately $14 million in competitive grant funding is available to help agricultural producers enter into value-added activities.  Awards through this opportunity may go to economic planning or working capital activities related to the processing or marketing of value-added agricultural products.  The maximum grant amount for a planning grant is $100,000 and the maximum grant amount for a working capital grant is $300,000 and there is also a matching funds requirement.  Applications are due by October 15.  Complete information about this announcement can be found here.


2012 Hunger Champions Award Program - Application deadline: Aug 31, 2012
Honors local county assistance offices that provide exemplary service in assisting eligible clients to obtain benefits from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).


Job Access Mobility Institute Call for Community Teams - Application deadline: Aug 31, 2012
Funding for communities to join a team-based research, design, and implementation process to develop and test transportation services as it relates to employment.


Public Works and Economic Adjustment Assistance Programs Opportunity - Application deadline: Sep 14, 2012
Grants for rural and urban communities to support the implementation of regional economic development strategies.


Section 514 Farm Labor Housing Loans and Section 516 Farm Labor Housing Grants for Off-Farm Housing - Application deadline: Sep 17, 2012
Loans and grants to increase the number of available housing units for domestic farm laborers.


AARP Foundation InnoCentive: Drive to End Hunger - Elimination of Food Deserts - Application deadline: Sep 20, 2012
Awards for innovative solutions to the challenge of eliminating and reducing areas where low cost, healthy food is not easily obtained.


AARP Foundation InnoCentive: Drive to End Hunger - Sustainable Solutions - Application deadline: Sep 20, 2012
Awards for innovative solutions to the challenge of preventing older adults from experiencing food insecurity.


Planning Program and Local Technical Assistance Program - Application deadline: Applications accepted on an ongoing basis.
Provides grants to assist in the creation of regional economic development plans, designed to increase the economic development efforts of a community or region.


Wells Fargo Homeownership Grant Program - Application deadline: Applications accepted on an ongoing basis.
Provides funding to local nonprofit housing organizations to create sustainable homeownership opportunities for low-to-moderate-income people.


National Environmental Education Foundation Announces America's Great Outdoors: Connecting Youth to the Outdoors Grant Program
Grants of up to $20,000 are available to Forest Service or Bureau of Land Management units and nonprofit organizations, academic institutions, or tribal groups that partner with these agencies for youth programs on public lands.... Deadline: September 19, 2012


Abe Fellowship Offers Support for International Multidisciplinary Research on Topics of Pressing Global Concern
Fellowships provide between three and twelve months of support over a twenty-four month period to enable scholars and non-academic research professionals from the United States and Japan to research policy-relevant topics of long-range importance.... Deadline: September 1, 2012


Nathan Cummings Foundation Launches New Fellowship Program - One-year grants of $100,000 will be awarded to three individuals seeking to implement projects relevant to the foundation's mission or program areas (arts and culture, contemplative practice, the environment, health, and Jewish life and values).... Deadline: September 14, 2012


Hearst Foundations Grants - Application deadline: Applications accepted on an ongoing basis.
The Hearst Foundations are national philanthropic resources for organizations and institutions working in the fields of Education, Health, Culture and Social Service.


HIMSS Enterprise Davies Award - Application deadline: Applications accepted on an ongoing basis.  Awards to recognize exemplary implementations of electronic health records (EHRs).


FirstEnergy Accepting STEM Grant Applications From Educators - Grants of up to $500 are available to educators and youth group leaders to fund creative STEM projects for pre-K-12 students in areas where FirstEnergy does business.... Deadline: September 17, 2012


EarthEcho International and NEA Foundation Invite Applications for Water Planet Challenge Grants - Grants of $2,000 are available to middle and high school educators for programs utilizing EarthEcho's Water Planet Challenge Action Guides to involve their students in environmental awareness and conservation of water resources.... Deadline: October 15, 2012


National Science Teachers Association Accepting Entries for Shell Science Lab Challenge - More than $90,000 in equipment, cash grants, and other resources will be awarded to middle and high school science teachers in the U.S. and Canada who have created replicable approaches to science lab instruction utilizing limited resources.... Deadline: November 12, 2012


NEA Foundation-Nickelodeon Big Help Grants Available to K-8 Public School Educators - Grants of up to $5,000 are available to educators at K-8 public schools for the development and implementation of approaches to four key concerns — environmentalism, health and wellness, students' rights to a quality education, and community involvement.... Deadline: October 15, 2012


Southwest Airlines Accepting Applications From Hospitals and Charities to Participate in 2013 Medical Transportation Grant Program - Roundtrip airline tickets will be donated to nonprofit hospitals and medical transportation charities in the United States for patients and their caregivers who must travel for medical care.... Deadline: September 30, 2012


Living Economies Fellowship - Are you a passionate local innovator?

BALLE is accepting applications for our 2013-2014. Local Economy Fellowship.


Applications are due October 1, 2012.  Download for details and application.




The BALLE Local Economy Fellowship is the premiere learning and leadership community dedicated to connecting the most innovative and visionary local leaders. BALLE Fellows are those rare individuals who see the big picture in their communities, have an eye for spotting win-win-win opportunities across sectors and the character and dedication to bring businesses together and make things happen. Take a look:  Meet the Current Fellows


For more information on becoming a BALLE Fellow, or funding a Fellow  please contact Christine Ageton, Managing Director at christine[at]

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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