September-October 2015- Volume XIII, Number 8
Compiled & edited by Deb Miller Slipek, Ann Treacy, and Jane Leonard
—The Institute for Rural America has issued a request for proposals for a $5,000 Leadership Training Grant. The competitive grant is awarded for creative and educationally focused proposals targeted at groups desiring to develop and foster leadership within their member base. Successful applications will clearly outline a leadership training plan. Proposals that include cooperators who can assist with project planning, evaluation, or information dissemination will be viewed favorably. Deadline: 10/15/2015. Click here to learn more about the program and to apply.
— The Explore Minnesota grant program is offered to assist communities and scenic byway organizations in attracting travelers to Minnesota. Information on the program and guidelines for grants are now available on the industry website.
The maximum grant amount is $8,000 and requires a match from the recipient. Organizations with total income of $100,000 or less qualify for a 1:1 match. Those with total income over $100,000 are required to match at 2:1.
Projects that are included in the 2016 Co-Opportunities Program are NOT eligible for grant funding. A complete list of projects is included in the grant guidelines, and grantees must confirm on the application that the project(s) they are submitting are not part of an EMT Co-Opportunities Program. Applications for the 2016 Explore Minnesota Grant Program are due Oct. 15, 2015.
If you are a Minnesota non-profit tourism or scenic byway organization and want further information on the grant program, contact your Regional Manager:
- Central – Carol Altepeter 888-629-6466
- Metro – Gayle Junnila 800-657-3637
- Northwest – Carol Altepeter 888-629-6466 or David Bergman 888-563-7777
- Northeast – Tim Campbell 888-876-6784
- Southern – Lisa Havelka 888-975-6766 Grant solicitation timeline
Greater Minnesota applicants must submit a letter of intent describing the key components of their project by Oct. 30, 2015. A regional representative will contact applicants to help review the project proposal and the steps necessary for delivering a federally funded project prior to local communities and regional agencies submitting a full grant application.
–-Greater Minnesota. The Transportation Alternatives Program is a competitive grant opportunity for local communities and regional agencies to fund projects for pedestrian and bicycle facilities, historic preservation, Safe Routes to School and more. Minnesota will be soliciting projects for approximately $7.5 million in available grant funding across the state.
— THE HOME DEPOT FOUNDATION is seeking proposals for Veteran housing projects in rural areas. Projects may be new construction or rehab, with priority given to renovation and rehab projects, and must be either in progress or scheduled to commence within the next 12 months. The Home Depot Foundation anticipates funding several projects, with awards ranging from $25,000 to $40,000. Deadline: 10/30/2015. Click here to visit the website for funding guidelines.
— Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Scholarship Grant Program. The HCBS Scholarship grant provides funding to HCBS providers to support in–house scholarship programs for their employees. The goal of the grant is to bolster and improve the education of the HCBS workforce by enhancing or creating incentives for employees to obtain degrees and training that will improve patient and client care. Applications are due October 30.
Or call Explore Minnesota at 800-657-3637; 651-757-1848 for more information.
Oct. 30, 2015 — Letter of intent deadline
Jan. 8, 2016 — Full grant application deadline
April 15, 2016 — Grant recipients announced.
– Small/Art Project Assistance Grants: Nonprofit organizations, art groups, school districts, and local units of government may apply for arts-related funding ranging from $500-$5,000.
– Arts and Cultural Heritage Grants for Individuals: Individual artists may apply for arts-related funding up to $2,500. Eligible applicants must be permanent residents of Region 7E. or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. The link to the application process can be found at the ECRAC website: www.ecrac.org/grants
—Fuel Up to Play 60 Grants Offers funding to schools nationwide to start or maintain a healthy nutrition and physical activity program. Application Deadline: Nov. 4, 2015.
— THE BUSH FOUNDATION is offering Community Innovation Grants to communities and nonprofits across Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and the 23 Native nations that share the same geography. Grants are provided for projects that use inclusive, collaborative, and resourceful processes; are thoughtful, realistic, and address the identified community need; and are likely to make a significant, sustainable difference, now or in the future. Nonprofit organizations and government entities (including schools) may apply for grants ranging from $10,000 to $200,000. Deadline: 11/5/2015. Visit the Foundation’s website here to download the Grant Application Packet and submit an online application. Anyone with questions is encouraged to call the team at 651-379-2266 or email CommunityInnovation@BushFoundation.org. For more information go to: www.bushfoundation.org
–THE LAURA JANE MUSSER FUND is offering grants in Colorado, Hawaii, Michigan, Minnesota, and Wyoming through the Fund’s Rural Initiative Program. The program 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. Planning grants of up to $5,000 and implementation grants of up to $25,000 are provided. Deadline: 11/6/2015. Specific grant guidelines and application procedures are available on the Fund’s website here. — Benefits Enrollment Centers (BECs) Awards funding for the establishment of a Benefits Enrollment Center, which will work to find and enroll eligible Medicare beneficiaries (seniors aged 65+ and adults living with disabilities) into benefit programs.
— The Corporation for National and Community Service is offering AmeriCorps grant funding for programs that are designed to strengthen communities and solve local problems. Funds may be used for programs that utilize AmeriCorps members in the following areas: disaster services, economic opportunity, healthy futures, environmental stewardship, education, and veterans and military families. Deadline: Letter of Intent (required) 12/9/2015; application deadline 1/20/2016. Click here to visit the website for guidelines.
–USDA has issued a Notice of Solicitation of Applications for the Multifamily Preservation and Revitalization (MPR) program. This program is available for existing Section 515 and Section 514/516 properties. A variety of restructuring tools are available including grants, no-interest loans, soft second loans, and debt deferral. Properties with existing USDA multifamily mortgages that are maturing on or before Dec. 31, 2018 can apply for debt deferral; this continues the affordability of the property and its Rental Assistance eligibility. Deadlines: applications for MPR are due 12/1/2015; applications for debt deferral for maturing mortgages are due 12/31/2015. Click here to review the guidelines for this program.
— HUD is offering “Continuum of Care” funding to nonprofit and public agencies to promote a community-wide commitment to the goal of ending homelessness; provide funding for efforts by nonprofit providers, States, and local governments to quickly re-house homeless individuals, families, and persons fleeing domestic violence; promote access to and effective utilization of mainstream programs by homeless; and optimize self-sufficiency among those experiencing homelessness. Application deadline: 11/20/2015. Click here for funding guidelines.
–The Office of Rural Health and Primary Care Rural Hospital Capital Improvement Grant program assists small rural hospitals in undertaking needed modernization projects to update, remodel or replace aging hospital facilities, record systems, and equipment necessary to maintain the operations of the hospital. Maximum awards will be $125,000. An eligible hospital is a general acute care hospital of 50 or fewer beds located in a community with a population of less than 15,000, according to United States Census Bureau statistics, outside the seven-county Twin Cities metropolitan area. Pre-applications are due November 13. Go to: http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/orhpc/funding/
Letter of Intent (Optional): Oct. 15, 2015. Application Deadline: Nov. 13, 2015. For further information, please call 320-396-2337
– McKnight Individual Artist Grants: Individual artists may apply for arts-related funding up to $1,000. Eligible applicants must be permanent residents of Region 7E.
– Arts and Cultural Heritage Grants for Organizations: Nonprofit organizations, art groups, school districts, and local units of government may apply for arts-related funding ranging from $5,000-$15,000.
– Art in Our Schools Grants: School districts may apply for arts-related funding up to $3,000.
–East Central Regional Arts Council (ECRAC) wishes to announce to all local artists, art organizations, and schools within the Minnesota Counties of Pine, Isanti, Chisago, Kanabec, and Mille Lacs that the October 1st deadline to apply for arts grant funding has been extended to 11:55 p.m. Monday, November 2nd, 2015 for projects beginning in or after January, 2016. Funding is currently available through the following grant programs:
— The Immigrant International Medical Graduates (IIMG) Primary Care Residency Grant Program provides grant funding to support residency training for immigrant international medical graduates. This program is one aspect of a comprehensive program authorized by Minnesota State Statute 144.1911 to address barriers to practice and facilitate pathways to assist IIMGs to integrate into the Minnesota health care delivery system with the goal of increasing access to primary care in rural and underserved areas of the state. Eligible applicants are programs, sponsors and potential sponsors of primary care residency positions located in Minnesota that propose to train IIMG medical residents in the primary care specialties of Family Medicine, General Internal Medicine, General Pediatrics, Internal Medicine/Pediatrics, Psychiatry and Obstetrics and Gynecology. Funds are available for up to $150,000 per year, per IIMG residency slot for up to four years. Applications are due by November 2. Contact Yende Anderson at 651-201-5988 for more information.
— WHOLE KIDS FOUNDATION is accepting applications for a school garden grant program in public, private, and charter K-12 schools. 2015 Deadlines: 10/31 and 11/15. Click here to visit the website to review funding guidelines.
See solicitation details.
— Northwest Minnesota Entrepreneurs: Applications for the 2016 IDEA Competition are now being accepted until December 31, 2015. This competition gives ANYONE with a product or service idea the opportunity to turn the idea into a reality. The IDEA Competition gives participants access to business development tools, a chance to get your product mentioned in the media, pitch to potential investors, professional services, and finally a chance to win $10,000 in funding to get your idea moving. For more information please go to www.ideacompetition.org
— The Minnesota Loan Forgiveness Program will be opening up next year´s application cycle on November 1 and will close on Monday, January 4, 2016. Over $3.2 million is available in Fiscal Year 2017. In addition to the eligible professions of physicians, dentists, pharmacists, midlevel providers, nurses, and nurse/allied faculty, the program has been expanded to include three new professions—Rural Dental Therapists/Advanced Dental Therapists, Rural Public Health Nurses, and Mental Health Professionals as defined by Section 245.462, subdivision 18. For information on the professions covered in the program, and for instructions on applying, please see the Loan Forgiveness and Repayment Programs webpage, or contact Brenda Flattum at 651-201-3870 or Paia Vang at 651-201-3895.
—The Minnesota Department of Commerce recently announced two new energy financing programs intended to support energy efficiency and renewable energy projects in Minnesota: The Rev It Up Program for local government units that are seeking low-cost, long-term capital to finance community energy efficiency and renewable energy system projects, and the Public Entity Energy Audit and Renewable Energy Feasibility Study Loan Program, which provides public entities with funds needed to pay for energy audits and renewable energy feasibility studies. Read more.
— The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg is offering grants to nonprofit organizations for general operating, program, and capital project support to help lower income older adults to live dignified, meaningful, and engaged lives in the community and to maintain their independence for as long as possible. Deadline: letter of inquiry accepted any time. Click here for funding guidelines.
–The METLIFE Foundation is offering three kinds of financial inclusion grants to nonprofit organizations: Access to Knowledge grants support organizations with the ability to reach large numbers of underserved households around the world and work with them to develop financial strategies and capabilities to improve lives. Access to Services grants focus on organizations that deliver high-quality services like savings, microinsurance, and credit to individuals in need. Access to Insights grants partner with researchers, academics, and non-governmental organizations to better understand the problems and potential solutions within the financial inclusion field. Deadline: financial inclusion grant requests are accepted and reviewed throughout the year. Visit the Metlife website here to download the grant application guidelines.
—W.K. Kellogg Foundation Grants support programs that work in the areas of childhood education, healthy children, secure families, racial equity, and civic engagement. Applications accepted on an ongoing basis.
—USDA is accepting applications for loans and grants to support business expansion, create jobs and increase economic opportunities in rural communities. Funding is being provided through USDA’s Rural Microentrepreneur Assistance Program (RMAP). Details about how to apply for this are found in the Federal Register here. Application forms may be obtained from any USDA Rural Development State Office.
—31st Annual Minnesota Policy Conference will be held on Wednesday, October 14 at the Continuing Education and Conference Center, Saint Paul, Minnesota.
— The 2015 Cyber Security Summit takes place October 20-21 at the Minneapolis Marriott Northwest. For more information or to register, go to www.cybersecuritysummit.org.
—I’m Home Conference Minneapolis will be held October 26−28, 2015
CFED sponsors this conference bringing together affordable housing developers, lenders, government agency staff, policymakers, industry experts, homeowners, community organizers, researchers, and funders to consider manufactured housing as a source of affordable housing and asset building for low- and moderate-income families.
— The Northeast Small Business Development Center will be hosting the Regional Economic Indicators Forum on October 27th from 7AM to 9AM at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center. Cost will depend upon registration option selected. For more information, please go to http://z.umn.edu/yzo.
— The Minnesota Council on Foundation will hold its 2015 Annual Conference: Impact by Design on October 28 & 29, 2015 at the Crowne Plaza St. Paul-Riverfront. For further information go to: http://www.mcf.org/2015conference#
— The Will Steger Foundation has launched a series of forums titled “Climate Minnesota: Local Stories, Community Solutions.” The forums aim to increase public awareness around local climate change impacts and build community resiliency through science, stories and place-based solutions. The remaining meetings will take place: Nov. 2 in Brainerd; Nov. 2 in Detroit Lakes; and Nov 17 in Marshall. The Minnesota Department of Commerce, Division of Energy Resources is an exhibitor and provides energy-related resources at the events. Click here for a list of meeting dates and locations in greater Minnesota. Convenings are free and open to the public, and appetizers and desserts will be provided. Advanced registration is requested.
–Registration is now available for the 14th Annual Scenic Byway Workshop to be held on November 17 – 18. The Lake Country Scenic Byway will host the Workshop at the Lodge on Detroit Lake. This year’s agenda includes topics that will provide information and direction for the continued Sustainability of the Scenic Byways Program under MAP-21. Please be prepared to speak on your updated byway Corridor Management Plan. Feel free to bring any brochures you want to share.
Registration for the Scenic Byway Workshop will be accepted until Noon on Monday, Nov. 9. Registration checks should be made payable to: “UMVRDC SCENIC BYWAY WORKSHOP”. Registrations will not be accepted at the door. If you have questions please contact Holly Slagle, State Scenic Byway Coordinator at 651-366-3623 or email@example.com. For more information on Minnesota Scenic Byways visit their website.
— Minnesota Broadband Conference November 18-20. The Blandin Foundation and the Office of Broadband Development are working on the fall broadband conference, Border to Border Broadband: Better Together, to be held in Minneapolis on November 18-20. http://wp.me/p3if7-3dk
— Allina Health, Abbott Northwestern and the University of Minnesota are presenting Climate Change and Public Health: An Interprofessional Review to be held November 21 in Minneapolis, MN.
— The Robotics Alley™ Conference & Expo is bringing a diverse group of robotics and automation experts to Minneapolis. This year’s event on Dec. 1-2 at the Hyatt Regency in Minneapolis will feature keynote speakers Martin Buehler, Executive R&D Imagineer at Walt Disney Imagineering; Nathan Harding, Co-Founder and CEO of Ekso Bionics; and Robert High, Chief Technology Officer for IBM’s Watson Solutions. Click here to learn more and register today!
—Save the Date for the 2016 Explore Minnesota Tourism Conference Mark your calendar now to attend the 2016 Explore Minnesota Tourism Conference, Feb. 2-3, 2016, at the Sanford Center in Bemidji.
— Minnesota Homelessness Study. Every three years the Amherst H. Wilder Foundation conducts a triennial statewide homelessness study to better understand the prevalence, causes, circumstances and effects of homelessness, and to promote efforts toward permanent, affordable housing for all Minnesotans either urban, suburban or rural. On October 22, 1,000 volunteer interviewers are needed for about a 4-hour time commitment at over 300 shelter locations throughout Minnesota. For more information contact Chris Lindberg at 651-280-2728.
— The 5th annual National Rural Health Day is Thursday, November 19. This celebration allows the National Organization of State Offices of Rural Health (NOSORH), the State Offices of Rural Health (SORH) and our partners to showcase rural America and highlight the unique healthcare needs of rural communities. View the Celebrating the Power of Rural website to learn more.
— Nurse Anesthetist Traineeship Program (NAT) Provides funding to support traineeships for licensed nurses who are enrolled in a nurse anesthesia program, with preference given to projects that will benefit rural and underserved populations. Application Deadline: Nov. 20, 2015.
— Nominations for the 2015 Tourism Marketing Awards presented by Explore Minnesota are due by Monday, Nov. 30. The awards are given annually at the Explore Minnesota Conference and will be presented on Feb. 2 at the Sanford Center in Bemidji, Minnesota. Copies of the new nomination forms and submission templates are now available for both the Competitive and Special Recognition Programs. These are distinct programs with different judging criteria. Please share this information with your community and encourage applications. For more information, contact Dave Bergman at 888-563-7777 or view the Travel Marketing Award Guidelines.
— 2015-2016 Lights, Camera, Save! Video Contest The ABA Community Engagement Foundation sponsors this video contest for banks to engage teenagers to educate themselves and their peers about the value of saving and using money wisely. Banks host the local level of the competition and select winners to compete on the national level.
— LifeSmarts Online Consumer Challenge The National Consumers League hosts LifeSmarts, an online competition open to all students in grades 6-12. Each month focuses on a different category important to teen consumers: personal finance, health and safety, consumer rights, technology, and the environment. Teams with the highest online scores advance to state competitions in the early spring, and the winning teams advance to the National Championship (April 9-12 in Denver, Colo.).
— H&R Block Budget Challenge is a free teen financial literacy program in the form of an online game that simulates real life as an adult: paying bills, managing expenses, saving money, investing in retirement, paying taxes, and more. Participants play classroom against classroom and students against students in this learning-by-doing simulation to win $3 million in grants and scholarships.
—Scholarships, Loans, and Loan Repayment for Rural Health Professions – Provides an overview of scholarship, loan, and loan repayment programs available for healthcare students who intend to practice in rural areas. Visit the guide to find information and successful models for the development of programs designed to attract health professionals to rural areas.
— The National Association of Development Organizations (NADO) Research Foundation has launched a new online resource of tools to help rural regions and small towns, drawing on their four-year capacity-building role with the Sustainable Communities Learning Network. Access the resources here.
—The Orton Family Foundation has released the NEW –2nd Edition of the Community Heart & Soul™ Field Guide. In it you will find: more tools and resources; new success stories; tips throughout that provide helpful, practical insight into Heart & Soul. The best reason to get the guide? To be inspired to start the TRANSFORMATION in your town. Download the Field Guide today and get started on the path to making your community thrive based on three cornerstone principles: Involve Everyone, Focus on What Matters and Play the Long Game.
—Rural Migrant Health – Visit this updated guide to learn about the challenges and health disparities that migrant and seasonal farmworkers face, and find solutions for your community to assist them with accessing healthcare services and gaining health insurance coverage.
— Albert Lea Walking and Biking Movement A program of walking and biking initiatives, along with high-level policy systems and environmental changes, to promote health and wellness for community members.
— 2014 National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report: Chartbook on Rural Health Care A summary of trends in healthcare quality and disparities for rural populations. Includes quality measures for rural populations addressing patient safety, person-centered care, effective treatment, healthy living, and access. Part of a series of publications related to the National Healthcare Quality and Disparities Report.
— Employment & Education Unemployment rates in nonmetro areas are similar to rates in metro areas, though with wide geographic variation, and the impact of the 2007-09 recession was similar in metro and nonmetro areas. Average earnings, however, are substantially lower among nonmetro workers, as are education levels. The lower rural earnings levels reflect lower shares of highly skilled jobs and lower returns to college degrees in rural labor markets.
— AARP-Small Business Administration Webinars. AARP and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) host new webinars and republish previous webinars to educate people who want to start businesses or expand existing ones.
—The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) released an updated edition of its 2012 Community Developments Insights report titled Small Business Investment Companies: Investment Option for Banks. This report describes the U.S. Small Business Administrations Small Business Investment Company (SBIC) program, its role in capital markets, and how financial institutions can use it to expand their small-business finance activities.
— A new guide from the Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED) for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Children and Families, provides a roadmap to help community-based organizations integrate financial capability services into their programming. “Strategies to Integrate Financial Services into Community Organization Programming” suggests ten services that organizations can provide to help families build financial capability, as well as an assessment framework to determine how to deliver integrated financial capability services. It also includes tools to help organizations develop action plans and build stakeholder buy-in. Get the guide here.
–The recently re-launched website, Racial Equity Tools, compiles resources and curricula for communities and organizations working to advance racial justice. The site features learning modules, films, and discussion guides designed to build understanding of how structural racism and other forms of inequity affect employment, food justice, and other human development issues. Visit the site here.
—Minnesota Compass recently released the following demographic information: Home to 5.5 million people, Minnesota is undergoing major shifts.
–Rural Assistance Center (RAC) has developed a guide titled “Rural Hunger and Access to Healthy Food”. A nutritious diet is important for maintaining good health, but accessing fresh and affordable food can be a challenge for some rural residents. This RAC topic guide provides information on how to address food security issues in every rural community, including funding and assistance programs, model programs, strategies, and more. Access the guide here.
— Household Food Security in the United States in 2014 is a brief from the USDA Economic Research Service that reports on household food security, food expenditures, and use of federal food and nutrition assistance programs in 2014. Includes food insecurity statistics for metropolitan and non-metropolitan areas. Get the report here.
Check out our storyboard from the 2015 Gathering. It includes videos, articles, and presentation materials from the event. To see a list of participants, click here.
— It’s all here: Videos, Tweets, Presentations, and Media Coverage from the 2015 National Rural Assembly. The 2015 National Rural Assembly welcomed 175 rural leaders from across the country to Washington, D.C., for three days of fellowship and a content-rich agenda focused on strengthening rural communities. Participants came from communities in Appalachia, the Delta, the West, Midwest, and Southwest, Indian Country, and Alaska, and together with officials from the White House, Congress, and federal agencies, addressed topics of youth leadership and empowerment, rural child poverty and the persistent gap in philanthropic investment in rural America.
— Atlas of Rural and Small-Town America View the diversity of challenges and opportunities across America’s counties. Get statistics on people, jobs, veterans, and county types. Data have been updated to reflect the latest population, poverty, and American Community Survey statistics.
—6 things you should know about poverty in Minnesota: Myth-busters edition. Minnesota Compass uses new estimates from the Census Bureau to bust commonly-accepted myths about poverty in Minnesota. Read more
The Twin Cities region has one of the lowest shares of people of color compared to other major metro areas: 22 percent, ranking twenty-fourth of the top twenty-five metros. That said, the population of color is growing rapidly and is expected to make up at least 40 percent of the region’s overall population by 2040.