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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, September 13, 2013

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.


South Dakota Native Homeownership Coalition has a webpage !  Stay tuned to updates and save the date for a dedicated day of training on homeownership resources for Coalition members and other interested housing practitioners on November 18, 2013.  The training will be held in Pierre, one day prior to the State Housing Conference hosted by the South Dakota Housing Development Authority.

South Dakota USDA Rural Development has the following vacancy (1) for Loan Specialist with the opening dates of 9/10/13 and closing 9/16/13 to be located in Aberdeen, SD.  Complete details can be found by clicking on the information: (DEU-grade 9) (DEU-grade 7)

Job announcement for the position of Director of the Office of Indian Education with the State of South Dakota.

South Dakota Innovation Expo:  September 16-17thThe Innovation Expo is a conference focusing on connecting entrepreneurs, innovators, angel investors, venture capitalists, and the many others who are involved in developing startup companies. The event will consist of speakers, breakout sessions, and networking focusing on the entrepreneurial community.


The Seventh Key to Economic Success is Growing Entrepreneurial Communities.

The Riches of Third Places – The Heart & Soul of a town can often be found in unexpected places. From the Orton Family foundation newsletter.

Think of your town. Now think of your favorite places —the places, aside from your home and workplace, where you spend quality time. What types of places are they and why are they meaningful to you?   For the rest –

Funding America’s Rural Nonprofits by Rick Cohen, June 13, 2013 Nonprofit Quarterly –  some analysis over 5 years of funds to rural nonprofits.

“Changing Lands, Changing Hands” is a 30-minute video that was produced by NET Television in Nebraska and Harvest Public Media that looks at the fastest growing group of farmers in the United States, those who are 65 years old and older. Thousands of farms, as much as half of the farmland in the United States, will be changing hands over the next generation. “Changing Lands, Changing Hands” examines how that could reshape the industry that drives the economy in middle America. Click here to watch the video. A second video “How Can We Save Rural America?” offers a 30-minute discussion program following up on issues raised in “Changing Lands, Changing Hands.” It focuses on solutions to helping small towns in rural America survive and thrive. Watch this video here.

“All-In Nation: An America That Works for All” is a book from PolicyLink and the Center for American Progress that offers policy recommendations for building a prosperous economy by ensuring that all are able to participate and achieve their full potential – particularly communities of color that are quickly becoming the nation’s majority. Download a free copy here.

“Community Food Enterprise: Local Success in a Global Marketplace” is a book funded by The Kellogg Foundation and The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. From the Executive Summary: “The local food movement is now spreading globally, yet is not well understood. To many, local food is exclusively about proximity, with discriminating consumers demanding higher-quality food grown, caught, processed, cooked, and sold by people they know and trust. But an equally important part of local food is local ownership of food businesses. This report is about the full range of locally owned businesses involved in food, whether they are small or big, whether they are primary producers or manufacturers or retailers, whether their focus is local or global markets. We call these businesses community food enterprises (CFEs).” Download the book here.

The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) published the latest edition of its Community Development Investments newsletter entitled “Extending Credit in Indian Country: How Banks Use Federal Programs to Promote Economic Development”. This issue reviews current economic conditions in Indian Country, presents examples of how national banks and federal savings associations can use federal programs to lend and invest in this market, and provides a primer on Community Reinvestment Act implications for OCC-regulated institutions that seek to do business in Indian Country.  Click here to read the newsletter.

How can states integrate community sustainability into their Clean Water State Revolving Fund  (CWSRF) programs? Two new reports discuss results from pilot projects in California and New York.  EPA’s Office of Water and Office of Sustainable Communities jointly sponsored a pilot technical assistance program to help the state of California direct resources for water infrastructure to projects that support sustainable communities. A new EPA report focuses on two aspects of the second phase of the pilot project that may be helpful to other states facing similar barriers:  1. Reexamining the State Revolving Fund priority-setting and technical review processes to ensure that applicants have given thorough consideration to alternative, more sustainable projects for addressing water quality issues.  2. Reducing administrative hurdles to funding land conservation projects and decentralized wastewater treatment systems by establishing frameworks for processing these types of projects.  Read the report.
EPA also funded the Environmental Finance Center at Syracuse University to provide technical assistance to the New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation, the state authority responsible for managing New York’s CWSRF program. A new report from the Environmental Finance Center describes the stakeholder engagement process that led to a set of recommendations on how the New York CWSRF could support more sustainable projects through a focus on energy efficiency, asset management, and smart growth principles.  Read the report.


“Storytelling Tools for Community Change: Tools You Can Use” PowerPoint

Resource title: “Storytelling Tools for Community Change: Tools You Can Use” PowerPoint Source (copyright holder): Wisconsin Clearinghouse for Prevention Resources Resource description: This PowerPoint resource talks about the important of intentionally and strategically finding stories, crafting them, and using them …

HOUSING ASSISTANCE COUNCIL has updated its RURAL DATA PORTAL Beta.  HAC’s RURAL DATA PORTAL is a simple, easy to use, on-line resource that provides essential information on the social, economic, and housing characteristics of communities in the United States. The RURAL DATA PORTAL provides over 350 data indictors for your community. Most of the information provided in the RURAL DATA PORTAL comes from HAC tabulations of the 2010 Census of Population and Housing, the American Community Survey (ACS) and Home Mortgage Disclosure Act Data. We invite you to visit:  and start “Taking Stock” of your community! Join HAC for a webinar introduction and overview of the RURAL DATA PORTAL on Wednesday, September 18, 2013 from 2:00 – 3:00 pm Eastern Time. Register Now


South Dakota Indian Business Alliance Workin’ With Tradition INSTRUCTOR CERTIFICATION SEMINAR

October 7-9, 2013 | 8:30am – 4:00pm SDSU Extension Regional Center – Pierre 412 W. Missouri, Pierre, SD 57501

“Workin’ with Tradition” is a classroom based soft skills training program developed with guidance from several NW Montana tribes. It is designed to help individuals of Native American heritage prepare for successful employment on or off the reservation by developing:

1. Greater awareness of difficulties faced when seeking employment, especially when home culture conflicts with workplace expectations.

2. Greater skill managing stress and anxiety.

3. Improved skills for difficult work situations, including time management, communication skills, and logical problem solving.

The National Conference for Women in Sustainable Agriculture takes place Nov. 6-8, 2013 in Des Moines. Keynote presenters are Danielle Nierenberg of FoodTank, Pakou Hang of the Hmong American Farmers Association, and Kari Hamerschlag of Environmental Working Group. The conference will include workshops and panels on topics ranging from CSA management to farm bill advocacy, plus field tours to women-owned farms.

Study shows advantages of prairie strips:  A new study by Iowa State University suggests that establishing strips of prairie amid row crops may be one of the most cost-effective, low-effort conservation practices available to farmers in the Midwest. The innovative practice converts one tenth of a row-cropped field to perennial prairie, resulting in more than a 90 percent reduction in soil and nutrient runoff from the entire field. The average cost to treat runoff from an acre of corn or soybeans is just $24 to $35 per year. “The Cost of Prairie Conservation Strips,” a two-page fact sheet from the Leopold Center, summarizes the results of this 15-year land management study

WEBINAR SERIES:   October Youth Online Workshops – Addressing Out-migration

For years, rural communities have been exporting one of their most precious resources – young people. Increasingly, we hear from rural leaders that they are searching for ways to stem youth out-migration and attract alumni and young families to their communities. These young people bring so much to a community – new energy and ideas, new pupils for the schools, new shoppers on Main Street, new business and civic leaders. Beginning in October, the Center for Rural Entrepreneurship and the Heartland Center for Leadership Development will co-host a three-part series to help rural leaders address youth out-migration through strategies to attract young people and families. We bring together the extensive experience of our two organizations and input from over 40,000 young people across rural America about what motivates them to want to return to rural communities.

The three sessions will address Tying Assets to Targets (October 2), Crafting Your Message (October 23) and Building a Winning Game Plan (November 13). To register for the series, click here. For more information, contact the Center’s Craig Schroeder.

MOSES (Midwest Organic & Sustainable Education) Farmer-to-Farmer Mentoring Program is accepting applications for 2014. The program pairs experienced organic farmers with either those new to farming (with at least one year’s experience) or those new to organic production. The goal is to help mentored farmers master organic practices, focus on goals and priorities, and lay a strong foundation for future success.


South Dakota Local Food Grant OpportunitiesThis article was written collaboratively by Chris Zdorovtsov and Jesse Hall.

The North Central Region – Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program (NCR-SARE) has opened its Farmer Rancher Grant Program, a competitive grants program for farmers and ranchers who want to explore sustainable solutions and innovative ideas to farming issues through on-farm research, demonstration, and education projects. Individual, partner, and group grants are available, ranging from $7,500-$22,500. NCR-SARE expects to fund 45 projects within the 12-state region. Proposals must be submitted by Nov. 14, 2013. NCR-SARE has added an online submission system this year.

THE FEDERAL LANDS HIGHWAY PROGRAM has announced the availability of funding to tribal governments for transportation projects related to safety, engineering, emergency services and education. Deadline: 9/19/2013. Click here for more information and to apply.

USDA still has a substantial amount of funding available for Section 504 home repair loans. Loan funds not obligated by 9/30/2013 will be lost. USDA Section 504 loan funds are available in all states and funds help very low-income homeowners repair their homes. Click here to learn more about the program and here to find out where to apply in your state.

HUD is offering grants to owners of eligible subsidized housing developments to hire staff to coordinate supportive services for elderly residents and/or residents with disabilities. Deadline: 10/14/2013. Click here for more information and to apply.

LOWE’S TOOLBOX FOR EDUCATION® GRANTS support projects in the following categories: technology upgrades, tools for STEM programs, facility renovations and safety improvements. Grant requests can range from $2,000 to $100,000. Deadline: 10/15/2013. Click here to visit the website and read more about this program.

THE AMERICAN ASSOCIATION OF UNIVERSITY WOMEN (AAUW) is accepting applications for Community Action Grants of up to $10,000. Grants are available to individuals, AAUW branches and AAUW state organizations as well as local community-based nonprofit organizations for innovative programs or non-degree research projects that promote education and equity for women. Deadline: 1/15/2014. Click here to learn more about the AAUW.

W.K. Kellogg Foundation Announces New Family Engagement Initiative – Grants of up to $500,000 will be awarded to public entities and nonprofits to support effective family engagement models that address obstacles faced by low-income families…. Deadline: September 23, 2013 (Pre-Applications)

Blackstone Charitable Foundation Seeks Proposals for Annual Entrepreneurship Initiative – Grants of up to $250,000 will be awarded to organizations that pilot, expand, or replicate entrepreneurial projects designed to catalyze the growth of successful businesses, industries, and communities…. Deadline: October 4, 2013

Target Accepting Applications for K-12 Field Trip Grants Program Over 3,600 grants of up to $700 each will be awarded to help public, private, and charter schools in the United States bring K-12 students to museums, historical sites, and cultural organizations in 2014….Deadline: September 30, 2013

Ezra Jack Keats Foundation Accepting Minigrant Applications – Public schools and libraries in the United States and its territories are invited to apply for mini-grants of up to $500 to support extra-curricular projects that foster expressiveness and community….Deadline: March 15, 2014

National Council of Teachers of Mathematics Seeks Proposal for PreK-8 Action Research Projects – Grants of up to $3,000 will be awarded for “action” research projects aimed at enhancing the teaching of math in pre-K through 8th-grade classrooms…. Deadline: May 2, 2014

Practice Change Leaders Invites Applications for Program to Improve Leadership at Health Institutions Offering Care to Older Adults – Offering a $45,000 stipend, the program is a one-year opportunity for organization leaders to gain enhanced skills and expertise to positively influence care for older adults…. Deadline: September 23, 2013

National Indian Health Outreach and Education (NIHOE III) – Application deadline: Sep 22, 2013. Funding for a national Indian organization to conduct outreach and education, and training and technical assistance designed to improve Indian health care and further health reform opportunities. Sponsor: Indian Health Service 

NBCC Foundation Rural and Military Scholarship Programs – Application deadline: Nov 1, 2013. Scholarships to increase the availability of counselors in underserved areas, with the current priority areas of rural and military communities. Sponsor: National Board for Certified Counselors Foundation

Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company Foundation Community Service Grant – Application deadline: Nov 1, 2013. Provides funding to dental hygienists for projects aimed at improving oral health or providing oral health education. Sponsor: American Dental Hygienists’ Association

AmeriCorps State and National Grants – Letter of Intent (Required): Dec 11, 2013; Application deadline: Jan 8, 2014. Funding for programs that are designed to strengthen communities and solve local problems. Sponsor: Corporation for National and Community Service 

American Kennel Club Humane Fund Invites Applications from Women’s Shelters that Permit Pets Grants of up to $1,000 will be awarded to nonprofit organizations for operational support and capital improvements related to the housing and maintenance of pets belonging to domestic abuse victims…. Deadline: Quarterly (November 15, February 15, May 15, and August 15)

RedRover Seeks Applications From Emergency Shelter Organizations to Help Victims of Domestic Abuse and Their Pets Grants of up $3,000 will be awarded to help victims of domestic violence and their animal companions stay together during times of crisis…. Deadline: October 30, 2013

Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation Accepting Applications for USArtists International Grant Program Grants of up to $15,000 are available to American dance, music, and theater ensembles and soloists that have been invited to perform at international festivals anywhere in the world outside the United States…. Deadline: December 6, 2013

National Art Education Foundation Seeks Applications for 2013 Art Educator Grants – Grants of up to $10,000 will be awarded for programs that aim to promote and improve the teaching of art and/or encourage research and experimentation in arts education…. Deadline: October 1, 2013 

‘Stand Down’ Grants to Assist Homeless Veterans

The U.S. Department of Labor announced the availability of $600,000 in “Stand Down” grants that will provide an estimated 10,000 homeless veterans with opportunities to reintegrate into society. The grants are being awarded under the department’s Homeless Veterans’ Reintegration Program. Approximately seventy grants in each of the three fiscal years covered by this solicitation are expected to be awarded. A maximum of $10,000 per multi-day event or $7,000 for a one-day event can be awarded. Stand Down grant funds must be used to enhance employment and training opportunities or to promote the self-sufficiency of homeless veterans through paid work. Applications for Stand Down funds will be accepted from State Workforce Agencies, State and local Workforce Investment Boards, Veterans Service Organizations (VSOs), local public agencies, and non-profit organizations including community and faith-based organizations. All applications for Stand Down grant funding must be submitted to the appropriate State Director for Veterans’ Employment and Training (DVET) at least ninety (90) days prior to the event.


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