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The National Rural Housing Coalition has released the results of a study called “Impact Report: The Economic and Human Impact of Nonprofit Organizations on Rural America”. The report includes success stories from rural housing organizations that provide affordable homes and rental housing opportunities in rural areas. Click here to get a free copy.  

7 key lessons for addressing racism through dialogue and community change - What does it take to create community change and improve democracy? Early on, we decided to address the issue of racism head-on as we worked with and learned from community groups. Twenty-five years after we began this journey we are still learning, but at this milestone we want to highlight some key lessons from along the way.

Small family farms operate 48 percent of U.S. farmland and account for 22 percent of U.S. agricultural production

In 2013, 98 percent of U.S. farms were family farms, where the principal operator and his or her relatives owned the majority of the business. Two features of family farms stand out. First, there are many small family farms—those reporting less than $350,000 in gross cash farm income (GCFI)— and they account for 89 percent of all U.S. farms and operate 48 percent of U.S. farmland. Second, while most production—65 percent—occurs on the 9 percent of farms classified as midsize/large-scale family farms, small farms’ 22-percent share of production is larger than that of midsize farms alone (20 percent) or nonfamily farms (12 percent). This chart updates one found in Structure and Finances of U.S. Farms: Family Farm Report, 2014 Edition, EIB-132, December 2014.

Access to Behavioral Health Care for Geographically Remote Service Members and Dependents in the U.S.
A geospatial analysis using TRICARE and other data to determine access to and utilization of mental and behavioral healthcare services for veterans who reside in remote locations. Recommends two pathways for improving access to care: telehealth service and collaborative care between primary care and specialty behavioral care. Organization: RAND Corporation. Date: 01 / 2015

Economic Impact of Rural Health Care
Presents the economic impact of healthcare on rural communities. Types of impacts examined include hospital construction, critical access hospitals, primary care physicians, general surgeons, pharmacies, dentists and more.
Organization: National Center for Rural Health Works. Date: 12 / 2014


Action road map planning tool - This Action Road Map will help communities walk through the steps they need to take to carry out a plan for action. Using this worksheet, you will think about the people, places, and things in your community that can help you reach your goals.

Messaging strategy worksheet - If you have a message that you want to spread to members in your community, you'll be more effective and reach more people if you have a clear strategy. Use this worksheet to help guide your team in creating a messaging strategy.

Telehealth Start-Up and Resource Guide
Provides an overview and framework for implementing telehealth in critical access hospitals and rural areas. Includes resources about telehealth and an annotated list of organizations that support telehealth activities.
Organization: Telligen Health Information Technology Regional Extension Center. Date: 10 / 2014

Aim for Impact and Sustainability Resources
A compilation of tools, resources and educational materials based on the Baldrige Performance Excellence framework developed for rural health network grantees. Organization: National Rural Health Resource Center


WEBINAR: Moving Up the Ladder of Youth Engagement -
Young people can be powerful contributors to society, but too often adults don’t seek or hear their voices. Youth voice is not about letting youth help us with our work, our issues, and our problems.  It is about working together as partners, collaborators, and allies to solve problems together.  Join us as we explore the core ingredients of authentic youth engagement and discuss ways for you to be successful in working with young people.
When: Tuesday, January 13, 2015,  2-3 p.m. Eastern (1:00 p.m. Central; Noon Mountain; 11:00 a.m. Pacific) Part of the Enhancing Rural Capacity Learning Network for our first webinar of 2015! Please share this notice with anyone that you think would be interested in strengthening their skills for working with young people. All are welcome.
Where:   Click here  - this link will take you to our online event center--it will open 20 minutes prior to the start of the webinar.  We will be hosting the webinar via WebEx Event Center.  Once you are at the site, enter your first name, last name, email address and the event password (Ercc2015) to join the event.  About our presenter: Our presenter is Lauren Traister, UVM Extension 4-H Teen & Leadership Program Coordinator.  Lauren runs a variety of programs to develop life and leadership skills in young people.  She has 11 years of experience with experiential learning, life skill development, leadership training and youth engagement.  Questions:  Please contact Heidi Mouillesseaux-Kunzman (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

Land Use Decision-making - Winter/Spring 2015 Webinar Series – Monthly webinars are offered from 12 Noon - 1:15 pm . The webinars are designed to help planners, elected officials and citizens better engage in land use decision-making processes.

Questions about the webinar?  Register at http://extension.psu.edu/land-use-webinar. Contact Peter Wulfhorst at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 570-296-3400



FUNDERS’ NETWORK FOR SMART GROWTH AND LIVABLE COMMUNITIES - PARTNERS FOR PLACES is offering grants to cities and counties to improve communities by building partnerships that promote a healthy environment, a strong economy, and well-being of all residents. Local, place-based foundations, public charities created by city or county governments, or partnering nonprofit organizations in the United States and Canada are invited to apply. Deadline: 1/28/2015. Click here to visit the website for details.

THE RETIREMENT RESEARCH FOUNDATION is offering funding to nonprofit organizations located in Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Missouri, and Wisconsin for programs that improve the quality of life for older Americans. The focus is on community programs designed to maintain older persons in their homes, supportive services to older persons in residential settings, improving the quality of nursing home care, acute- and long-term care for older persons with chronic conditions, and opportunities for older adults to engage in meaningful roles in society such as employment and volunteerism. Deadlines for 2015 are: 2/1, 5/1, and 8/1. Click here for funding guidelines and the application procedure.


Appalachia Culture of Health Research - Application deadline: Feb 1, 2015.  Offers funding for research that will help determine how philanthropy is currently addressing/investing in health and wellness in Central Appalachia, and will help develop a vision for addressing Central Appalachia's health challenges. Sponsor: Appalachia Funders Network

Tribal Sexual Assault Services Program (Tribal SASP) - Letter of Intent (Optional): Feb 3, 2015, Application deadline: Feb 24, 2015
Provides funding directly to tribes, tribal organizations, and nonprofit tribal organizations to create, maintain, and expand sustainable sexual assault services. Sponsor: Office on Violence Against Women

THE PRESIDENT’S COMMITTEE ON THE ARTS AND THE HUMANITIES is offering grants through The National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Awards to recognize excellence in after-school and out-of-school arts and humanities programs for underserved children and youth. Deadline: 2/2/2015. Click here for more information and application guidelines.


THE NATIONAL FISH AND WILDLIFE FOUNDATION is offering grants through the Five Star and Urban Waters Restoration Grant Program, to develop community capacity to sustain local natural resources for future generations. Support is provided to local partnerships throughout the United States for wetland, riparian, forest, and coastal habitat restoration; urban wildlife conservation; and stormwater management. Deadline: 2/3/2015. Visit the website here to review application guidelines.


NEA is offering Art Works Grants to nonprofits, units of state or local government, and federally recognized tribal communities or tribes. Objectives: The creation of art that meets the highest standards of excellence, public engagement with diverse and excellent art, lifelong learning in the arts, and the strengthening of communities through the arts. Deadline: 2/19/2015. Click here for application guidelines.


THE S. MARK TAPER FOUNDATION is offering grants of up to $250,000 to charitable, educational, or religious organizations in Southern California for projects that enhance the quality of people's lives by improving communities. Deadline: Letter of Intent by 2/27/2015. Click here for application guidelines.


THE FEDERAL TRANSIT ADMINISTRATION is offering grants to federally-recognized Indian tribes and Alaska Native villages, groups, and communities for public transportation programs on Indian reservations. Deadline: 2/18/2015. Click here for grant guidelines.  


THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES is offering grants to nonprofit and public agencies that provide medical education and services for programs that improve medical knowledge about geriatric care. Deadline: 3/5/2015. For application guidelines, click here.


Native Asset Building Initiative - Application deadline: Mar 25, 2015
Funding to establish and operate a Native Asset Building Initiative which will provide an array of supports and services to enable low income individuals and families to become economically self-sufficient.
Sponsor: Administration for Native Americans

Indian Health Service Health Professions Scholarship Program - Application deadline: Mar 28, 2015
Provides scholarships for American Indian and Alaska Native students enrolled in a health professions program. Sponsor: Indian Health Service

Indian Health Service Preparatory Scholarship - Application deadline: Mar 28, 2015
Provides scholarships for American Indian and Alaska Native students who are enrolled in undergraduate or preparatory courses in preparation for entry to health profession schools. Sponsor: Indian Health Service

WILLIAM J. & DOROTHY K. O’NEILL FOUNDATION provides capacity building, special projects, and general operations support for family-centered endeavors in the areas of education, health and wellness, self-sufficiency, economic development, housing, arts and culture, and environmental sustainability. Deadline: Letter of Intent by 3/25/2015. Click here for funding guidelines.  

Suzette M. Agans

Community and Economic Development
Rural Development | U.S. Department of Agriculture
1400 Independence Ave., S.W. | Washington, D.C. 20250-3253
Phone: 202.401.1922 | Fax 202.401.7311

"Committed to the future of rural communities"



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