Friday, October 6, 2017

Community Resources 10-6-17

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1.      Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive Grant- USDA's Food Insecurity Nutrition Incentive (FINI) Grant Program supports projects to increase the purchase of fruits and vegetables among low-income consumers participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) by providing incentives at the point of purchase. There are three categories of projects: (1) FINI Pilot Projects (awards not to exceed a total of $100,000 over one year); (2) Multi-year, community-based FINI Projects (awards not to exceed a total of $500,000 over no more than four years); and (3) Multi-year, FINI Large-Scale Projects (awards of $500,000 or more over no more than four years). For more information or to apply, see the website.

2.      USDA’s Community Food Projects Grants- Community Food Projects are designed to increase food security in communities by bringing the whole food system together to assess strengths, establish linkages, and create systems that improve the self-reliance of community members over their food needs. These grants are intended to help eligible private nonprofit entities that need a one-time infusion of federal assistance to establish and carry out multipurpose community food projects. Projects are funded from $10,000–$400,000 and from one to four years. The deadline for applications is Monday, December 4, 2017. See the request for applications for details.

3.      THE JEAN GRISWOLD FOUNDATION is offering grants to nonprofit organizations to enhance the quality of life for low-income seniors and adults with disabilities who choose to age in place. The Foundation offers support to organizations located within a 25-mile radius of Griswold Home Care offices in 34 states. The Foundation's funding priorities focus on programs that provide services such as home delivered meals, transportation, friendly visitors, home chores and repairs, hospice, and respite and caregiver support. The Foundation also supports local community and grassroots organizations that provide other programs and services with the intent of helping those of limited financial means to age in place. Most grants are in the $500 to $2,000 range. Deadline: 10/31/2017. Visit the Foundation’s website here to submit an online application.

4.      ANNIE'S GRANTS FOR GARDENS offers grants to develop edible garden projects that help connect kids to nutritious food. Geographic coverage: Nationwide. Deadline: 11/11/2017. Click here to visit the website for funding details.

5.      WHOLE KIDS FOUNDATION is offering grants to support new or existing edible gardens at K-12 schools and nonprofit organizations. Geographic coverage: nationwide. Deadline: 11/15/2017. Click here for funding guidelines.  

6.      USDA AND THE USDA NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF FOOD AND AGRICULTURE are offering grants to plan or implement food projects designed to meet the needs of low-income individuals and increase community self-reliance concerning food and nutrition. Geographic coverage: Nationwide. Deadline: 12/4/2017. Click here to review funding guidelines.

7.      THE LAURA JANE MUSSER FUND encourages collaborative and participatory efforts among citizens in communities in Colorado, Hawaii, Michigan, Minnesota, and Wyoming, as well as Cameron, Hidalgo, Starr, and Willacy counties in Texas. Through the Rural Initiative Program, the Fund supports efforts that will help to strengthen individual rural towns in the targeted states in a number of civic areas, including, but not limited to, economic development, business preservation, arts and humanities, public space improvements, and education. The applicant community must have a population of 10,000 or fewer and must be able to demonstrate the rural characteristics of their location and support from a diverse cross-section of community members and institutions. Planning grants of up to $5,000 and implementation grants of up to $25,000 are provided. Deadline 11/2/2017. Specific grant guidelines and application procedures are available on the Fund’s website here.

8.      THE NATIONAL RURAL HEALTH RESOURCE CENTER is offering technical assistance to small hospitals in rural, persistent-poverty areas to help prepare and assist them in moving from a fee-for-service and volume based payment system to one that is dependent on value and quality. Deadline: 10/16/2017. Click here to review funding guidelines.

9.      BUREAU OF PRIMARY HEALTH CARE, HEALTH RESOURCES AND SERVICES ADMINISTRATION, U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES is offering funding to provide comprehensive primary healthcare services to an underserved area or population. Deadline 11/20/2017. Click here for funding guidelines.

10.   HUD is offering Choice Neighborhoods Implementation Grants designed to address struggling neighborhoods with distressed public housing or other HUD-assisted housing through a comprehensive approach to neighborhood transformation. Eligible grantees include Public Housing Authorities, local governments, tribal entities, nonprofits, and for profit developers that apply jointly with a public entity. Deadline: 11/22/2017. Click here for funding guidelines and to apply.

11.   USDA's Rural Housing Service is accepting pre-applications for the Multifamily Preservation and Revitalization program. Properties serving census tracts in persistent poverty counties or other areas with special housing needs will get extra points. Pre-applications requesting multiple MPR funding tools are due 12/1/2017. Funding guidelines are available in the Federal Register notice here.

12.   THE NFL FOUNDATION GRASSROOTS PROGRAM, administered by the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) and funded by the National Football League Foundation, provides support for nonprofit neighborhood-based organizations and middle or high schools to improve the quality, safety, and accessibility of local football fields. Matching Field Surface Grants of up to $250,000 are available to help finance the resurfacing of community, middle school, or high school football fields. General Field Support Grants of up to $50,000 are available for capital projects not associated with the actual field surface, such as the installation/refurbishment of bleachers, concession stands, lights, etc. All organizations applying for funds must be located within NFL Target Markets and serve low- to moderate-income areas within those markets. A list of eligible communities is included in the Request for Proposals (RFP). Deadline: 10/16/2017. Visit the LISC website here to download the RFP.  

13.   U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY is offering three grant opportunities in the area of Brownfields sites: 1) funding to inventory, characterize, assess, and conduct planning (including cleanup planning) and community involvement related to brownfield sites; 2) funds to carry out cleanup activities at a specific Brownfields site, resulting in better community environmental health; and 3) grants to eligible agencies to capitalize a revolving loan fund that will provide loans and subgrants to eligible entities to carry out cleanup activities at brownfield sites contaminated with hazardous substances and/or petroleum. Deadline for all of these grants: 11/16/2017. Click here for an application and funding guidelines for 1); click here for 2); and here for 3).  

14.   YOUTH SERVICE AMERICA (YSA) is partnering with Hasbro's signature philanthropic initiative, BE FEARLESS BE KIND, to encourage young people to stand up for others, include everyone, and take action when they see a problem. BE FEARLESS BE KIND Grants give young people an opportunity to put their empathy, passion, and creativity into action as they help make the world a better place. Grants of $500, $1,000, or $2,000 will be provided to nonprofit organizations and K-12 schools throughout the United States to support youth-led community projects that take place through December 15, 2017. These projects should address meaningful local and global issues through Awareness, Service, Advocacy, and Philanthropy (ASAP). Deadline: applications will be accepted and grants awarded on a rolling basis until 10/31/2017. Visit the YSA website here to learn more about the application process.

15.   GRADNATION ACCELERATION GRANTS will support existing state- and community-level efforts focused on accelerating progress for more young people to attain high school graduation and post-secondary success. Organizations in the following ten states are eligible to apply: California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Washington. Two state organizations and three community organizations will receive $250,000 and $100,000, respectively, over the two-year grant period. Deadline: 11/8/2017. Visit the GradNation website here to review the funding guidelines and submit an online application.


1.       Drowning In Grain-Reuters Special Report on Global Grains Glut, Farm Policy News, 9/28/17.

2.      SNAP food aid program tied to lower health spending for poorReuters US News, 9/25/17.

3.      Produce price less of a concern for millennialsThe Produce, 9/25/17.

4.      Honoring Gus Schumacher, Food & Farming Hero. 1939-2017, WholesomeWave, 9/25/17.

5.      Farmers Reap Big Benefits from Cover CropsUSDA SARE, 9/22/17.

6.      Wisconsin Family Passes Down Conservation Ethic & Sustainable Family FarmUSDA.

7.      Winning at Farmers’ Markets – Secrets of Success, 8/31/17, Growing Produce.

8.      USDA's 2016 organic production surveyUSDA (NASS)

9.      Organic Ag Sales Up 23% in 2016- Sales of organic agricultural production continued to increase in 2016, when U.S. farms produced and sold $7.6 billion in certified organic commodities, according to data released on September 20th by USDA. Results of the 2016 Certified Organic Survey show that 2016 sales were up 23 percent from $6.2 billion in 2015. During the same year, the number of certified organic farms in the country increased 11 percent to 14,217, and the number of certified acres increased 15 percent to 5.0 million. Read more...

10.   New Research from the Carsey School of Public Policy on “Employment, Poverty, and Public Assistance in the Rural United States” provides a glimpse of the economic and demographic characteristics of life in the rural United States. Using data from the American Community Survey, they compare those living in low- and lower-middle-income counties to those living in upper-middle- and high-income counties. Get the brief here.

11.   In this article The Nation by David Bollier, "To Find Alternatives to Capitalism, Think Small," Bollier illustrates that the relocalization and decommodification of "production and services" is a "compelling strategy" for "small cities, towns, and rural areas that have been ruthlessly hollowed out by big-box stores, online retailers, automation, big agriculture, and outsourcing", to thrive within the current economy. He forms his story with examples of businesses that are thriving by way of relocalization and decommodification. Read the article here.

12.   “Heartache, Pain, and Hope: Rural Communities, Older People and the Opioid Crisis” is a report from Grantmakers in Aging that focuses attention on the opioid epidemic's damage to rural communities, particularly the lives of older people, and describing providing program, innovative partnerships, policy recommendations, and scientific and medical responses for governments, communities, nonprofits, and philanthropies. Get the report here.

13.   An article in the Daily Yonder “Broadband Analysis: Scrappy Wireless ISPs Get the Job Done” says that rural areas don't need to wait on expensive and hard-to-build fiber-to-the-home networks to start using broadband. In many cases, fixed wireless can provide a fast and affordable last-mile connection in underserved areas, and some communities are building the system themselves. Read the article here.

14.   The ACTION Campaign released updated fact sheets on the impact of the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit in each state including data on the homes created or preserved, jobs supported and local income and tax revenue generated. The fact sheets also include information on the affordable housing shortages in each state. Get the fact sheets here.

15.   HUD has published in the Federal Register its list of 2018 qualified census tracts (QCTs) and difficult development areas (DDAs), which are eligible for as much as a 30 percent boost in basis while receiving low-income housing tax credits (LIHTCs). Get the list here.

16.   National Housing Council has released the 2017 edition of "Paycheck to Paycheck," a database allowing users to see the rental and homeownership affordability challenges of workers in 83 occupations in 203 metro areas nationwide. Click here to access the database.

17.   “A Community-Based Marketing Campaign at Farmers Markets to Encourage Fruit and Vegetable Purchases in Rural Counties with High Rates of Obesity, Kentucky, 2015-2016” examines effectiveness of the “Plate it Up Kentucky Proud” program, targeting farmers market shoppers in 6 rural Kentucky counties in the Delta and Appalachian regions, from September 2014-September 2016. The report, from the Centers for Disease Control, features statistics including age, sex, income, and rate of consumption of fruit, salad, and other vegetables. Get the report here.

18.   The Carsey School of Public Policy at the University of New Hampshire has released a new data snapshot showing that child poverty declined by 1.2 percentage points between 2015 and 2016, according to analyses of the official poverty measure (OPM) in the latest American Community Survey. By 2016, child poverty across the nation was still 1.5 percentage points higher than before the Great Recession. Download the brief here.

19.   “Aging in Place in Small Urban and Rural Communities,” a report prepared for the U.S. Department of Transportation examines the current state of aging in place, including cost benefits of rural residents living independently and using home health services and public transportation, rather than relocating to assisted living facilities. The report includes statistics on costs of various types of senior living situations in North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Missouri, Wisconsin, Mississippi, Maine, New Mexico, and Montana, and aging in place cost savings forecasts for these states. Click here to get the report.  An Executive Summary is available by clicking here.

20.   The Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s agencies of Rural Development and the Agricultural Marketing Service recently released "Harvesting Opportunity: The Power of Regional Food System Investments to Transform Communities." This publication explores insights into the potential for regional food systems to promote economic growth for both rural and urban communities through the creation or enhancement of jobs and businesses. It also highlights how appropriately targeted policies and support can harness regional food system investments to advance the economic and financial security of low- and moderate-income households and communities. Get the publication here.

21.   A report from the Bipartisan Policy Center, “The Appalachia Initiative: A Bipartisan Approach for the 21st Century” reports on the current challenges facing Appalachia. The report breaks down data by education and workforce, entrepreneurism and job creation, energy and infrastructure, and rural health. Get the report here.

22.   HUD, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs has published "Disaster Preparedness to Promote Community Resilience: Information and Tools for Homeless Service Providers and Disaster Professionals." This toolkit is for emergency mangers, homeless service providers and health care providers and includes strategies to better integrate homeless service providers into emergency management systems.  Get the toolkit here.

23.   An article in the Daily Yonder Creative Solutions to the Rural Doctor Shortage” reports that fewer and fewer physicians are choosing to serve rural areas after graduating. The article focuses on alternatives that will keep people healthy and increase the number of high-paying community jobs. Read the article here.

24.   CDFI Fund has released a Summary Report and data collected on New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) investments across the nation through fiscal year (FY) 2015. The Summary Report categorizes all investments utilizing the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS), which is the standard used by Federal statistical agencies to classify businesses. Analysis of NAICS data shows that over 68 percent of NMTC investments made through 2015 have been concentrated in single/mixed-use real estate, health care and social services, manufacturing, and education. Get the Summary Report here.  


1.      Jennifer Meta Robinson (Indiana University-Anthropology) and James Farmer (Indiana University-School of Public Health-Bloomington) discussed local foods and their recently published book, Selling Local—Why Local Food Movements Matter. Selling Local discusses gaps and challenges related to local foods and provides information on USDA programs that support local foods, as well as approaches for growing capacity. For more information or for a copy of the presentation, please email Jennifer or James.

2.      Julie Schilf, Materials Management Branch, USEPA Region 5, shared information on EPA’s Sustainable Management of Food Program, which is designed to make reduction of wasted food easier. Every day, Americans waste enough food to fill the Rose Bowl and 21% of landfill waste is food. Wasted food by American family amounts to $1600/year. EPA created a library of food recovery tools and resources, which can be found on its Sustainable Management of Food website. We also discussed food date labels and promised to provide information on that: Harvard Food Law & Policy Clinic date labeling reportNRDC/Save the Food campaignReFED Report; and here's a recent news article on the topic. Finally, we mentioned an upcoming event that will discuss wasted food. The Illinois Soil, Food, Water & Composting Summit will be held in Chicago on November 3. To register, see the event websiteIf you have ideas for ways to reduce wasted food or you have other questions, please contact Julie.

3.     Erin BiehlProject Manager, Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future, discussed the Baltimore Food System Resilience Advisory Report (SummaryFull Report). After riots occurred in Baltimore in 2015 and the food system was affected, the Center became interested in studying food system resilience. The Center studied ways to minimize or eliminate disruptions to food systems as a result of damage to buildings, transportation, electrical and other infrastructure systems. These might occur due to weather, civil unrest, or a disaster. Some of the study's key takeaways included: address vulnerabilities; enhance redundancy; build resilience; incorporate food into resilience planning; involve stakeholders; and, support small business and non-profit preparedness. For more information or to obtain a copy of the presentation, please email Erin.

4.      Michelle Ajamian, Appalachian Staple Foods Collaborativediscussed Shagbark Seed & Mill's focus on regional food systems, food sovereignty and security, and increasing organic farming. A focus for the collaborative has been on expanding local foods to include grains and legumes as neither had been considered when discussing or promoting local food production, although grains and beans constitute a primary food source for most of the world, Americans included. The collaborative has also focused on value added production, creating popular pastas (a top seller) and tortillas which are sold to local restaurants. Michelle also discussed their Community Food Initiatives. For more information or to obtain a copy of Michelle's presentation, please email Michelle.
During the meeting, Alan also shared information on organic food sales which continue to rise (for details, please see the news item below). He also mentioned organic grains which we discussed during our March 2017 GoodGreens meeting. Domestic demand for organic grain cannot currently be met as many American farmers aren’t aware of the opportunity or consider the obstacles to converting to organic production too great/expensive. Organic grain demands a price two to three times higher than non-organic grain, providing a great opportunity for American farmers. For additional resources on organic training and transition assistance, visit the USDA organic training resource pageYou can also contact Anders Gurda, Project Coordinator, Organic Grain Resources and Information Network (OGRAIN) who spoke at our March meeting

5.     Apply now for the NACo Creative Counties Placemaking Challenge!
The National Association of Counties – in partnership with Americans for the Arts – has launched the Creative Counties Placemaking Challenge to train local leaders from rural and mid-sized counties on how to advance arts-based economic and community development to address local challenges. Counties with populations of less than 250,000 are encouraged to apply today at! Selected teams will have the opportunity to attend a 2 ½ day training in Des Moines, Polk County, Iowa and will receive technical assistance and mentoring. Please note applications are due by October 13th.

6.     National Institute of Food and Agriculture will host a webinar on Monday, October 2nd, 2017 at 3:00 PM EDT to explore the impact of opioids on drug and alcohol abuse in youth and to provide resources and strategies for addressing this critical community issue. Join Brian Marquis, Public Liaison at National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), in a discussion about how to bring National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week and the science behind the consequences of drug and alcohol use on the brain, body and behavior to youth in your communities. Click here to register.  

7.     PolicyLink is offering a webinar “HEALTHY HOUSING – Strategies to Address Environmental Hazards; Making Homes and Neighborhoods Safer and HealthierWednesday, October 4, 2017, 1:00 - 2:00 PM EDT. The webinar will explore the work of several organizations that have pioneered approaches to remedying toxic threats to housing and involving residents of neighborhoods being impacted in advocating for planning and land use policies that address their needs. Click here to register.

8.     The National Housing Conference (NHC) will host a Restoring Neighborhoods Task Force Meeting in a webinar October 4, 2017 at 2:00 PM EDT. This webinar will cover NHC's "Paycheck to Paycheck 2017" database, and report on housing affordability for those in healthcare occupations. In addition, Enterprise Community Partners will discuss a recent report on segregation in housing and education. Click here for the report, “Creating Equitable Student Outcomes: How Housing and Education Policy are Intertwined.” The webinar will close with presentations from Michael Johnson at JPMorgan Chase and Mark Van Brunt at Raza Development on JPMorgan Chase's PRO Neighborhoods program and one specific project on equitable transit-oriented development, Adelante Phoenix, in Arizona. Register here.  

9.     USDA’s National Institute for Food and Agriculture will host a webinar on Tuesday, October 10, 2017 at 4:00 PM EDT to learn about financial literacy education resources from the U.S. Department of the Treasury, National Credit Union Administration, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation’s Money Smart for Young People program and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s Your Money Your Goals program. Participants will learn how to locate and engage local banks and credit unions that provide access to federally insured accounts for consumers. Additionally, the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas will present tools and information for banks, and organizations interested in partnering, on how to engage in workforce development. Click here for the registration link; registration password is Agriculture.

10.  The HUD Office of Rural Housing and Economic Development will hold a Rural Gateway Peer-to-Peer conference call October 11, 2017, at 2:00 PM EDT on “Harvesting Opportunity: The Power of Regional Food Systems to Transform Communities.” This call will offer participants the opportunity to learn more about community and economic development opportunities of regional food system investments. Please RSVP by email to no later than close of business on October 6, 2017. Please include your name and organization. Call-in instructions and additional materials will be emailed to participants on October 10, 2017.

11.  Prosperity Now is offering a webinar “The Road to Zero Wealth: How the Racial Wealth Divide is Hollowing Out America’s Middle Class and What We Can Do About It” on Tuesday, October 17, 2017 at 2:00 PM EDT. Presenters will discuss the current state of the racial wealth divide, its future trajectory and what it means for all of us. The role that policies play in driving this ever-accelerating divide and what can be done to address this problem will also be discussed. The report, “Racial Wealth Equity, Savings, Housing & Homeownership, Jobs & Income, Financial Capability, About Prosperity Now” can be downloaded here. Click here to register for the webinar.

12.  The Council on Michigan Foundations’ Annual Conference “Our Common Future” will be held October 25-26, 2017 in Detroit, Michigan. Review the agenda and register here.

13.  Healthy Appalachia Institute will host “Taking Our Communities Back: Synthetic Narcotic & Opioid Abuse Prevention Summit” will be held 8:00 AM-4:00 PM EDT on November 15, 2017 in Abingdon, Virginia. To register, and for more information on this event, click here.  

14.  Novogradac 2017 Tax Credit Housing Finance Conference will be held November 30 through December 1, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The event is for investors, developers and others in the affordable housing industry to network, get informed and prepare for what’s coming in the industry. Click here to register.

15.  TAB EZ Grantwriting Tool & Tips for EPA Assessment and Cleanup Proposals National Webinar Tuesday, October 3, 2017, 12:30 PM Eastern /11:30 PM Central /10:30 AM Mountain /9:30 AM Pacific.
This webinar is free but registration is required. To register, please visit the webinar webpage at Once your registration has been received, a confirmation email will be sent which will include the webinar connection information. Space is limited, so register soon!
You will need a KSU TAB account to register. New users who have not previously set up an account can do so by clicking the "Get a free account" link in the upper righthand side of the webpage. (If you have questions, please contact Sheree Walsh,, 785-532-6519.)    

16.  EPA National Assessment & Cleanup Guidelines Outreach Webinar Thursday, October 5, 2017, 1:30PM Eastern / 12:30 PM Central /11:30 AM Mountain / 10:30 AM Pacific. Join the webinar at And for audio dial-in: 1-866-299-3188/Conference Code: 202 566 1817#). Mark your calendar. No preregistration.

17.  NALGEP Tips for Successful Brownfields Grant Proposals Webinar Tuesday, October 17, 2017, 2:00 PM Eastern / 1:00 PM Central /12 Noon Mountain / 11:00 AM Pacific.
Join the webinar to hear from the nation's top brownfields experts to learn key tricks of the trade as you prepare your FY 2018 grant application.




Associate Professor and Community Development Specialist

Department of Agricultural Economics

Oklahoma State University

323 Agricultural Hall

Stillwater, OK 74078-6025


405-744-8210 – fax

Find grants and professional development resources on my blog




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