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The following is from Christine Sorensen, rural development coordinator for the U. S. Department of Agriculture-Rural Development in Pierre, S.D. Read on for valuable resources for rural communities, including several grant opportunities.

Resources for rural communities, August 25, 2014

The following is from Christine Sorensen, rural development coordinator for the U. S. Department of Agriculture-Rural Development in Pierre, S.D. Read on for valuable resources for rural communities, including several grant opportunities.



Don’t wait for permission. You already have it. Be remarkable and settle for nothing less. ~ 9 Clouds Marketing  free weekly newsletter

Join the Creativity Capital of South Dakota, Brookings for Creativity Week,  September 27-October 4th.  Register your event today.     

See you at the South DakotaState Fair:  Value Added Day Tent, Thursday, August 28, 2014.  Huron, SD!

Marketing Hometown America empowers communities to create a vision to grow. Designed as a tool to create dialogue that moves toward action, it can be the spark to help a rural community look at itself in a new way. Find out more at the SD State Fair, Friday August 29th at 5:30 PM at the Women’s Building. For more information see:  for contacts.

2014 Leadership Luncheon:  South Dakota Community Foundation’s plan is to bring these leaders together for constructive conversations about how we can continue to make South Dakota a better place to live, work and play. Please plan to join community and nonprofit leaders from your region for a free luncheon event at one of the listed sites:

August 26th – The Ward Hotel, Aberdeen

August 27th – Discovery Museum, Mitchell

All luncheons are held from 11 am to 2 p.m. local time. RSVP Contact:  Buddy Seiner or 800-888-1842

South Dakota Native Homeownership Coalition:  Convening on Pine Ridge.  September 23, 2014 in Kyle. 9:00-4:00 PM.  Focused on the SHOP (Sustainable Home Ownership Project). Contact me for more information. 

South Dakota Local Foods Conference:  Save the date:  November 14-15th, SDSU Extension Sioux Falls Regional Center, 2001 E. 8th St. , Sioux Falls, SD 57103

South Dakota Center for Enterprise Opportunity:  Women’s Business Conference,  Friday, September 12 8:00AM – 1:00 PM Kelly Inn,Yankton, SD. Registration Information: or call Brittni at 605-642-6435 or Chauntel at 605-668-5700/ Early Bird Registration:  $75 by Sept. 2/ Late Registration: $90 after Sept. 2/ Registration includes lunch and resource program

Friday, October 24, 2014 for the Fifth Annual Women’s Business Conference presented by the SD CEO Women’s Business Center. This event is for employees, managers, business owners, senior leaders, CEO’s, and anyone wanting to advance their business skills! Leading Edge Coaching & Development, with a focus on TeamBuilding. This year’s event will also include a Panel of Entrepreneurs, Networking Luncheon, Business Showcase, Door Prizes, and more!

When: 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Where: The Lodge at Deadwood
Early Bird Registration: $115
Early Bird Deadline: October 13th                     

Register today ONLINE or by phone at 605-642-6435



In celebration of the fifth anniversary of the Partnership for Sustainable Communities, HUD, DOT, and EPA released “Partnership for Sustainable Communities: Five Years of Learning from Communities and Coordinating Federal Investments” today. The report shows how the three agencies are changing their policies and removing barriers to help communities provide more housing choices, make transportation systems more efficient and reliable, and create vibrant neighborhoods while protecting the environment. · Read the report: Read the press release:

Community Vitality and Rural Healthcare Topic Guide – this new guide, developed by RAC Information Specialist Kathleen Spencer focuses on the linkage between rural healthcare and the economic strength and overall vitality of the community. Thank you to Gerald Doeksen, Cheryl St. Clair, and Fred Eilrich, National Center for Rural Health Works; David Schmitz, Family Medicine Residency, Idaho State University Department of Family Medicine; and Jo Anne Preston, Rural Wisconsin Health Cooperative for their assistance in developing this guide.

Fact Sheet: Increasing Investment in Rural America  – Jul 24, 2014 — This week, the White House Rural Council will host the inaugural Rural Opportunity Investment Conference (ROI) to promote potential investment opportunities that exist throughout rural America. In conjunction with this event, the White House Rural Council is announcing a $10 billion dollar investment fund to promote rural economic development. This fund will continue to grow the rural economy by increasing access to capital for rural infrastructure projects. Target investments of this fund will include rural community facilities with an emphasis on healthcare and educational facilities. Source: Office of the Press Secretary

Persistent Poverty Dynamics: Understanding Poverty Trends Over 50 Years  – Reports on high-poverty counties, with a poverty rate of 20% or more, based on data from the 2007-2011 American Community Survey, compared to 1970, 1980, 1990 and 2000 Census data. Includes comparison of rural (micropolitan and noncore) counties and metropolitan counties. Identifies counties with persistent and intermittent high poverty, as well as newly high poverty counties. Organization: Rural Policy Research Institute. Date: 07 / 2014

The latest issue of EntreWorks Insights has a great summary of the value of regional data and benchmarking, and provides links to some good examples–useful if you are looking for ways to tell your economic development story.

Promoting Educational Attainment at the Local Level  – Much of the wage growth in the United States over the last several decades has gone to the most productive (and highly educated) workers. A Partners Update article looks at the implications for community and economic developers.

10 Greatest Hits from the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (#WIOA) – a quick round-up or count down of the Workforce Act just passed and signed by the President.  And here is a link to the press release –

FCC Releases Broadband Report, Interactive Tool – The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has released its latest broadband report. The report provides summarized data on Internet access connections in the U.S. (over 200 kilobits per second in at least one direction). The FCC also released a web-based tool that allows users to interact with the broadband data by changing geography, managing metrics, and ranking their state/region on select broadband characteristics. Read more…

Part-Time for Economic Reasons: A Cross-Industry Comparison – A segment of the workforce is working part time, even though they say they want full-time work. What factors are at work within this cohort, and which industries have been most affected? A macroblog post delves into the data.

Jobs Calculator Updated with State Data – How many jobs does it take in your state? Check out our state-level Jobs Calculator to learn how June data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics affect the outlook for unemployment in each state.

How Did Rural Residents Fare on the Health Insurance Marketplaces? – Examines 2014 premiums, issuers, and plans offered to residents of urban and rural counties. Disparities in both price and number of coverage choices were found between states with a small rural population and those with a significant rural population. Organization: Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Date: 08 / 2014

Improving Access to Comprehensive Healthcare for Veterans – Summarizes findings from recent VA research related to healthcare access. Includes studies on telemental health services for rural Veterans with PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), barriers for rural Veterans at risk of suicide, and home-based primary care services for rural American Indian and Native American Veterans who receive care from both VA and the Indian Health Service. Organization: Veterans Health Administration. Date: 08 / 2014

 Keeping Rural Communities Healthy – This report by the Joint Economic Committee recognizes that keeping rural communities healthy is vital to the U.S. economy. The report provides an overview of characteristics of rural populations, rural health statistics, barriers to healthcare in rural areas, economic implications of rural healthcare, and relevant policy actions to keep rural America healthy. Organization: U.S. Congress Joint Economic Committee Democratic Staff. Date: 07 / 2014

Rural Connections: Challenges and Opportunities in America’s Heartland – Report looks at the condition, use and safety of the nation’s rural transportation system and discusses recommendations to improve connectivity in America’s small communities and rural areas to access jobs, education and healthcare. Organization: TRIP. Date: 07 / 2014

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and Rural Households – Examines the use of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits (formerly known as food stamps) by household and place of residence, including a comparison of rural, micropolitan, and metropolitan areas. It also looks at the age of individuals in households receiving SNAP, recognizing that elder and child populations are most at risk of food insecurity. Argues the importance of SNAP in rural communities. Organization: Center for Rural Affairs. Date: 07 / 2014



Free tool for collegial online video-based conversations – This article discussed the use of Google hangouts as a free tool for online discussions. This might be a useful tool for conducting working group meetings or other group conversations normally done via conference call. If you’d like to explore setting up a demo of this, contact Karen for more…Read More »

SBA: SPECIAL EDITION | SBA: Helping Underserved Entrepreneurs Succeed – Special Edition bulletin full of resources to support underserved entrepreneurs (women, minorities, Native Americans, veterans, 50+ and disabled individuals). is a web portal to community development resources from all 12 Federal Reserve Banks and the Fed’s Board of Governors, including research, data analyses, multimedia tools, publications/reports and news of events and programs.



The Great Plains Interactive Distance Education Alliance (IDEA) is a partnership of 20 public university members providing access to the best educational opportunities by collaboratively developing and delivering high-quality, online academic programs. Great Plains IDEA is an academic alliance that offers fully-online graduate and undergraduate coursework and program options in high demand professional fields. Programs:  (I’m getting my Masters of Community Development through GPIDEA-SDSU-check them out.) 

Center for Rural Entrepreneurship:  e2 University Online resource Assessment Part 1 – Development Opportunities. Development Opportunities is one of five core assessments used in communities and regions in support of optimized strategy development for an entrepreneurial community. The full resource package includes the Guide, sample assessments and a step-by-step illustration of how they use readily available research to complete each of these five Opportunity Analyses. For a free copy of our Development Opportunities Guide click hereFor more information on the entire resource package check out the Assessment page here e2 University Online resource continues to grow. These resources provide practical and hands on tools to supplement the new bookEnergizing Entrepreneurial Communities, A Pathway to ProsperityFive e2 Resource Packages are now available – Community ReadinessEnergizing Your CommunityOrganizing for ActionAssessment Overview and now Opportunity Assessment.

WEBINAR ANNOUNCEMENT:  Case Studies of Funding Sources for Local Food Systems in Midwest Communities:  Linda Naeve and Christa Hartsook (Iowa State University) September 16, 2014 (Tuesday) 10:00 AM CT / 11:00 AM – Eastern Time

EPA:  Green Infrastructure and Smart Growth – Wednesday, September 3, 1:00-2:30 Eastern – Speakers from EPA, the city of Little Rock, Arkansas, and Upstate Forever Communities will discuss how communities can leverage green infrastructure as part of broader smart growth initiatives. Each webinar qualifies for certification maintenance credits from the American Planning Association.

Learn more about these webinars and find instructions on how to attend at

Webinar: Planning Your Web Re-design, Thursday, August 28, 2014, 2 to 3 p.m. EDT Register Today!  Through National Cooperative Business Association. If you’re considering a website redesign, you’re in good company. It can be a daunting process, but creative service agency MindActive is ready to walk you through the top trends and best practices. Led by MindActive’s Phillip Hamilton and Byron Sletten, the webinar “Latest Trends for Planning a Re-design” will unpack the plannning process.

RECORDED Webinar and Slides Available for Rural-Urban Connections Webinar – On July 24, the NADO Research Foundation hosted the webinar, “Strengthening Rural-Urban Connections to Support Competitive Regions.”  From economic and workforce development to transportation to tourism to energy to food systems and beyond, it is becoming clear that an effective framework for understand urban and rural is through a prism of interdependence and linkages, rather than division and isolation. Click here to watch a recording of the webinar and to download the presentation slides. The webinar was supported by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.  Questions?  E-mail Brett Schwartz

Recorded Webinar: Exploring Energy Efficiency and Alternatives – – includes curriculum explains the different types of renewable energy  from bio-diesel to solar hot water.

Videos – WXTV – Series of short videos on techniques for weatherizing your home.

Should You Look At Pet Franchise Ownership? Interested in franchises? The pet industry is huge and it continues to grow, with or without a strong economy. Not many industries can claim to do that. Here are some insights from expert Joel Libava to help you decide if pet franchise ownership might be right for you.  > Read more

Bush Fellowship Information Sessions Expanded:  Ahead of September 11 Application Deadline.  What do you need to become a better leader? Whether it’s a self-designed learning experience or an academic program, don’t wait until the last minute to explore the many ways a Bush Fellowship could be right for you. They have added slots to our two upcoming online information sessions, so please register today:

Workforce Summit Report Announced :  Meeting to be held across South Dakota to share the final report, findings and results of the recent regional Workforce Summits. Over 1,000 people provided input about workforce needs.  Public meetings are scheduled for:

Tuesday, Sept. 2

  • 7:30 – 8:30 a.m. MDT at the Rushmore Plaza Holiday Inn in Rapid City
  • 11:45 a.m. – 12:45 p.m. CDT at the DakotaEventCenter in Aberdeen
  • 4:30 – 5:30 p.m. CDT at Lake Area Technical Institute in Watertown

Wednesday, Sept. 3

  • 7:30 – 8:30 a.m. CDT at the BrookingsDaysInnConvention Center
  • 11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. CDT at Mitchell Technical Institute
  • 3 – 4 p.m. CDT at the Sioux FallsConvention Center

Previous Workforce Summit resources, videos and presentations are available at



The N7 (Nike) Fund grant cycle is now open. Nike N7 and the N7 Fund are aligned with Designed to Move, a growing community of public, private and civil sector organizations dedicated to ending the growing epidemic of physical inactivityThe application will be available until November 15, 2014, 11:59PM PST.

Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS):  CNCS is seeking organizations interested in sponsoring Senior Corps RSVP programs. Nationwide, RSVP programs engage more than 300,000 people age 55 and over in a range of activities that meet community challenges. Although it is not required, CNCS strongly encourages applicants to submit a Notice of Intent to Apply by Friday, August 8, 2014. The Notice of Intent to Apply helps CNCS plan an efficient application review process and to notify applicants directly if application materials are updated.

Notice of Intent to Apply should be sent to The deadline for grant submission is 5:00 p.m. EST, September 9, 2014. The Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) and accompanying application materials can be found at with the Notice, you can find Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) and Appendix A which lists the available service areas for this competition.

Nominations Invited for I Love My Librarian Award – DEADLINE: September 12, 2014. Up to ten librarians and/or library media specialists will be selected to receive a $5,000 cash award, a plaque, and a $500 travel stipend to attend an awards reception in New York City….

Bush Foundation Accepting Applications for 2015 Fellowships – DEADLINE: September 11, 2014. Fellowship grants of $100,000 will be awarded to emerging leaders in Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota to pursue professional development experiences….

Native Strong: Healthy Kids, Healthy Futures Capacity Building Grant – Application deadline: Sep 12, 2014. Offers funding to organizations working to prevent or reduce childhood obesity and type 2 diabetes in Native American children. Funds may be used for capacity building, community planning, or community health assessments. Sponsor: Notah Begay III Foundation

Seventh Generation Fund Accepting Applications for Indigenous-Led Initiatives – DEADLINE: September 15, 2014. Grants of up to $5,000 will be awarded to Native American community-based organizations and projects aligned with one of the fund’s program areas.

Healthy Communities / Healthy America Fund – Application deadline: Sep 22, 2014. Awards grants to free clinics to implement the CDC’s National Diabetes Prevention Program. Sponsor: AMA Foundation

EPA Announces FY 2015 Brownfields Area-Wide Planning Grant – Click here for the solicitation. Proposals are due by September 22.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is soliciting proposals from eligible entities to conduct research, technical assistance, and/or training activities that will enable the entity to develop an area-wide plan for brownfields assessment, cleanup, and subsequent reuse. Brownfields area-wide planning (BF AWP) grant-funded activities must be directed to one or more brownfield site(s) located in a specific area, such as a neighborhood, a district (e.g., downtown, arts or shopping area), a local commercial corridor, a community waterfront, or a city block. Each project funded under this grant must result in an area-wide plan which includes specific plan implementation strategies for assessing, cleaning up, and reusing the brownfields site(s) as well as related brownfields and project area revitalization strategies.

U.S. Soccer Foundation Invites Letters of Interest for Safe Places to Play Grants – DEADLINE: September 24, 2014 (Letters of Inquiry). Grants of up to $200,000 each will be awarded to nonprofit organizations working to build or enhance a field space that enables children in underserved communities to stay active, healthy, and safe….

Baseball Tomorrow Fund Invites Applications from Youth Baseball and Softball Programs – DEADLINE: October 1, 2014. Grants will be awarded to finance a new program, expand or improve an existing program, undertake a new collaborative effort, or obtain facilities or equipment necessary for youth baseball and softball programs.

Road Runners Club of America Accepting Applications for Kids Run the Nation Fund Grants – DEADLINE: October 1, 2014. Grants of up to $1,000 will be awarded to running clubs and other nonprofit organizations in support of structured youth running programs.

Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Releases 2015 Future of Nursing Scholars Request for Proposals – DEADLINE: October 1, 2014. The three-year program provides scholarships of $125,000 as well as networking opportunities to Ph.D. students in nursing who are committed to a long-term career focused on bringing transformational leadership to nursing and health care in the United States.

American Century Investments Foundation Invites Applications From Health and Human Services Organizations – DEADLINE: October 7, 2014. Grants of up to $25,000 will be awarded to nonprofit health and human service organizations based in communities where American Century Investments employees live and work.

Applications Invited for Soros Justice Fellowships in Advocacy and Media – DEADLINE: October 22, 2014. Fellowships of up to $110,250 will be awarded to support individuals working to implement innovative projects that advance reform and spur debate on a range of issues facing the criminal justice system in the United States.

NIST Announces New Competition for Advanced Manufacturing Planning Awards – Pre-applications are required for this AMTech competition and are due by 11:59 p.m., Eastern Time, Sept.5, 2014. Full applications must be received by 11:59 p.m., Eastern Time, Oct. 31, 2014. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) announced a new competition for planning awards to support industry-driven consortia in developing research plans and charting collaborative actions to solve high-priority technology challenges and accelerate the growth of advanced manufacturing in the United States. NIST’s Advanced Manufacturing

Technology Consortia (AMTech) Program  anticipates awarding a total of $5.6 million in two-year grants during the young program’s second competition. Awards will range between about $250,000 and $500,000, subject to the availability of funds. Applications are due Oct. 31, 2014, and selections will be announced during the first half of 2015.  Teaming and partnerships that include broad participation by companies of all sizes, universities and government agencies, driven by industry, are encouraged. Nonprofit U.S. organizations as well as accredited institutions of higher education and state, tribal and local governments are eligible to apply for the program. The text of the FFO announcement also is available at  More information on the AmTech program is available at:

Chi Sigma Iota Issues RFP for 2014-15 Excellence in Counseling Research Grants – DEADLINE: November 15, 2014. Grants of up to $2,500 will be awarded in support of research projects focused on professional advocacy, wellness counseling, and developmental counseling.

Finish Line Youth Foundation Invites Applications for Youth Athletic Programs and Camps – DEADLINE: September 30, 2014Grants of up to $5,000 will be awarded to nonprofit organizations for community-based athletic programs and to establish camps that teach active-lifestyle and team-building skills.

Ben & Jerry’s Foundation Seeks Proposals for Social and Environmental Justice Projects – DEADLINE: October 15, 2014 (Pre-applications)Grants of up to $20,000 will be awarded to support nonprofit community-organizing groups in the United States working to further social and environmental justice and support sustainable and just food systems. 

Freedoms Foundation Accepting Nominations for 2015 Leavey Awards – DEADLINE: November 1, 2014Cash awards of up to $15,000 will be made to classroom teachers who have displayed passion and creativity in their efforts to teach entrepreneurship and the free enterprise system.

National Science Teachers Association Invites Nominations for Shell Science Teaching Award – DEADLINE: November 18, 2014The $10,000 prize recognizes an outstanding K-12 teacher who has had a positive impact on his or her students, school, and community through exemplary science teaching.

Applications Invited for Terri Lynne Lokoff/Children’s Tylenol National Child Care Teacher Awards – DEADLINE: December 8, 2014. Fifty pre-K teachers will be selected to receive grants of $1,000 in honor of their dedication to providing high-quality child care.


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