According to Nonprofit Quarterly, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack is disappointed that rural philanthropic grantmaking by the nation's foundations has declined when overall foundation grantmaking has increased nationwide. It's important to educate national grantmaking organizations that they can be unique and critical partners in solving today's most urgent issues in rural areas.
The deal to build a $324 million broadband infrastructure project has been finalized. According to Broadband Breakfast, the KentuckyWired Project, is a public-private partnership to help build a 3400-mile open access network that will span all 120 counties in Kentucky. This unique financing structure, in which Macquarie Capital shares both the benefits and the risks of the project with the state, is viewed as a model for broadband infrastructure projects throughout the country.
Check out Food Tank's list of 14 initiatives that are educating youth about agriculture, and creating a genuine interest in safe, sustainable, and healthy food.
Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) is seeking applications for a Notice of Funding Availability for a Ladders of Opportunity Initiative Pilot On-the-Job-Training Supportive Services (OJT/SS) Program. The FHWA is seeking projects that create new nationally or regionally significant workforce development programs or that augment or replicate successful existing programs that will benefit highway construction firms or the highway construction industry. Read the Ladders of Opportunity Initiative Pilot NOFA.
U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) Grant Program
USDA announced the availability of up to $16.8 million in funding to help participants in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) increase their purchases of fruits and vegetables. The funding is available to local, state and national organizations to test incentive strategies to help SNAP participants better afford healthy foods. This is the second round of awards to be made under the Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) program created by the 2014 Farm Bill. USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) will administer the grants. Applications are due December 16, 2015. NIFA will host a webinar for applicants on October 14, 2015 at 2:00 PM, EDT. Access the webinar here.
The U.S. EPA announced approximately $13.2 million in supplemental funding to help transform communities by cleaning up contaminated Brownfields properties. Funding will be given to 31 successful RLF grantees helping 44 communities carry out cleanup and redevelopment projects.
On National Manufacturing Day, the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the U.S. Commerce Department's National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) announced they will commit $5.8 million over the next three years to establish and sustain a consortium focused on the identification of new, emerging areas of advanced manufacturing. Led by the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, the Alliance for Manufacturing Foresight (MForesight) will provide a channel for rapid input from industrial, academic and other private sectors on future manufacturing technologies. It also will work to help align advanced manufacturing research with national priorities and challenges to ensure efficient use of federal and private funding and increased returns on investments for both parties. MForesight already has established partnerships with more than 30 thought leader/organizations from industry, professional associations and academia to help build an inclusive community focused on advanced manufacturing research and development, education, and training. Read the announcement…
Oklahoma Recycling Conference
Those interested in learning more about recycling can do so at the 2015 Oklahoma Recycling Conference. The conference, hosted by the Oklahoma Recycling Association, will take place Oct. 20 at the University of Oklahoma-Tulsa Schusterman Center. This one-day conference will take place from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and will feature Scott Cassel, chief executive officer and founder of the Product Stewardship Institute, as the keynote speaker. Other industry specialists will be sharing their knowledge on topics such as recycling in schools, recycling organic materials and recycling challenges faced by rural communities. The theme for this year’s conference is Taking It Back: Making Recycling Work for Oklahoma.
The conference is geared toward all Oklahoma residents, including municipal and county officials, recycling professionals, rural community members, Extension educators, K-12 and college educators and students interested in recycling or improving local programs.
Participants may register online . Early registration is $60 until Oct.13. After that date it is $75. OKRA members may register early for $40 or $55 after Oct. 13. The student early registration rate is $15, or $20 after Oct. 13. Registration includes all local foods for the continental breakfast, lunch and break refreshments. Parking is free. A hotel room may be reserved here: http://hiltongardeninn.hilton.com/en/gi/groups/personalized/T/TULMDGI-OKRA-20151019/index.jhtml. For more information about the conference, please visit .
This conference counts as an in-service for Extension Educators. It is number 72284. Up to seven Continuing Education Credits will be offered to members of the Solid Waste Association of North America certification who attend the conference. For more information, contact Lynn Malley at or .
National Cooperative Month
October is National Cooperative Month. The cooperative business model is an effective, highly flexible tool that can be used for the benefit of the rural people and communities we serve. Co-ops allow individuals and organizations to form business that they jointly own, operate and manage to deliver goods and services for the mutual benefit of the co-op members and their communities. This is particularly important in many rural communities with low capacity for economic growth. Sharing resources and forming a cooperative can greatly magnify the power of individual action – co-ops are often the best option to meet a common need!
This month, there are ample opportunities to learn more about cooperatives and cooperative development.
Rural Cooperatives Magazine (September/October Edition)
U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development: Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food, Know Your Cooperative The Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food, Know Your Cooperative webinar will address the growing intersection between local food systems and cooperatives. Cooperative leaders from across the local food supply chain will discuss the advantages of the cooperative business model, how they are engaged in building robust local food systems, and supply-side, distribution, market-side and consumer issues.
Date: Friday, October 30, 2015
Location: USDA Whitten Headquarters Building, Room 107-A
Online and Audio
Dial: (866) 525-2577 Conference ID: 50573752
USDA encourages participants to use computer audio and the online 'chat' feature instead of phone lines.
RSVP Required: Send an e-mail to Community Planning and Development Specialist Scott Cessarich at Scott.Cessarich@wdc.usda.gov by Wednesday, Oct. 28, 2015, to reserve a seat if attending in person.
Planning More Efficiently & Effectively: Aligning the CEDS with Other Regional Plans
The first installment focused on aligning CEDS with other regional planning efforts. We were joined by representatives from two Economic Development Districts that have found opportunities to “connect the dots” and develop robust CEDS that achieve multiple benefits for their regions.
New CFPB Tool for State and Local Financial Education Policymakers
In April, the CFPB issued a new guide that it hopes will connect policymakers with tools, information and insights to enhance K-12 financial education efforts. "Advancing K-12 Financial Education: A Guide for Policymakers" features three main sections: laying the groundwork, building the initiative, and expanding its impact (to reach more young people over time, for example). The CFPB stated that while the guide is likely to be most helpful for state policymakers, all members of the financial education community could benefit from its case studies and resources. Find the guide at http://www.consumerfinance.gov/reports/advancing-k-12-financial-education-a-guide-for-policymakers.
New Guide for Community Service Organizations Promoting Financial Capability
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services published an interactive guide for community-based organizations interested in promoting financial capability in programs related to housing, job training, and other social services. To learn more and to download the guide, entitled "Building Financial Capability: A Planning Guide for Integrated Services," start at https://www.acf.hhs.gov/programs/ocs/resource/afi-resource-guide-building-financial-capability.
Newsletters and email from which we gather this information include:
v Foundation Center RFP Service - To subscribe visit: http://foundationcenter.org/newsletters/
v To subscribe to the RAC Health Listserv - click here to go to the subscription form.
v Electronic newsletter of the RUPRI Center for Rural Entrepreneurship, Rural Entrepreneurship News. To subscribe, http://team.energizingentrepreneurs.org/news2/public_html/lists/?p=subscribe
v Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City newsletter: http://www.kansascityfed.org/alert/’
v Blue Avocado Nonprofit Magazine - They have a newsletter on boards and nonprofit management, down-to-earth and useful. http://www.blueavocado.org/
v Rural LISC e-newsletter - http://www.lisc.org/rural
v National Association for Development Organizations (NADO) – www.nado.org
v ERS - A notification service is provided by USDA's Economic Research Service for Charts of Note and other research to keep you informed of the latest and most relevant research on the topics that interest you. You can subscribe at http://www.ers.usda.gov/Updates/
v Orton Family Foundation – email sign-up - http://www.orton.org/sign_up
USDA Rural Development
1400 Independence Ave., S.W.
Washington, D.C. 20250
Christopher.Proctor@wdc.usda.gov | 202-619-1739
“Committed to the future of rural communities.”