August 2016- Volume XIV, Number 7

Compiled & edited by Deb Miller Slipek, Ann Treacy, and Jane Leonard



–Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health. The Great Plains Center offers grant funding to both scholarly researchers and community organizations engaged in agricultural safety and health activities. Funding is available up to $15,000 for two types of projects. The purpose of the Community Outreach/Education Grant is to enhance delivery of evidence-based agricultural health programs. Community projects are typically submitted by non-profit community entities delivering agricultural safety and health programs. The purpose of the Academic/Scholarly Research Grant is to create new agricultural safety and health knowledge, and to assess and promote best safety and health practices. Scholarly research projects are typically submitted by students, staff, and faculty of academic institutions. Research projects will be judged for scientific merit. The application deadline is August 15th.

— The NFL Grassroots Program has issued a Request for Proposals. The Grassroots Program is a partnership of the National Football League Foundation (NFL Foundation) and the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC), which provides technical assistance and manages the program. The goal of the Program is to provide nonprofit, neighborhood-based organizations with financial and technical assistance to improve the quality, safety, and accessibility of local football fields. The NFL Foundation Grassroots Program provides grants of up to $250,000 for capital improvement projects. Deadline: 8/15/2016. Click here for application guidelines.

–Health Resources and Services Administration is offering funding to provide comprehensive primary healthcare services to an underserved area or population. Deadline: 8/16/2016. Click here to review funding guidelines.

Avon Breast Health Outreach Program (BHOP) Funding to link medically underserved populations to breast health education and screening services. Application Deadline: August 19, 2016.

American Indian/Alaska Native Early Head Start (EHS) Expansion and EHS-Child Care Partnerships offer funding to expand Early Head Start programs for American Indian/Alaska Native populations or to create partnerships with local child care providers within a community, leveraging existing local resources to provide a comprehensive array of health, mental health, nutrition, and social services to infants, toddlers, and their families. Application Deadline: August 24, 2016. Sponsored by the Administration for Children and Families.

Early Head Start (EHS) and Migrant and Seasonal EHS-Child Care Partnership Grants offer funding to expand access to high-quality, comprehensive early learning services for eligible low-income, migrant and seasonal infants, toddlers, and their families. Application Deadline: August 24, 2016. Sponsored by the Administration for Children and Families.

Early Head Start and EHS-Child Care Partnership Grants offer funding to operate Early Head Start programming within a community, leveraging existing local resources to provide a comprehensive array of health, mental health, nutrition, and social services to infants, toddlers, and their families. Application Deadline: August 24, 2016. Sponsored by the Administration for Children and Families.

— Department of Labor has a major new grant program that offers funding for job training and education that leads to in-demand and industry-recognized credentials and degrees facilitating “regional workforce partnerships”. Maximum amount: $6,000,000. Eligible: workforce investment systems, community colleges, nonprofits and others that are part of a “regional workforce partnership.” Deadline: 8/25/2016. Click here to learn more about this new program.

Gannett Foundation Community Action Grants support local organizations with funding priority given to programs that focus on education and neighborhood improvement, economic development, youth development, community problem-solving, assistance to disadvantaged people, environmental conservation, and cultural enrichment. Geographic coverage: Limited to certain areas of 35 states and U.S. territories, see sponsor’s website for more details. (Includes some of Minnesota.) Application Deadline: August 29, 2016.

–Chartwells in Partnership with is offering funding for schools seeking to enhance their curriculums and offer food and nutrition education through an edible garden program. K-12 public or private schools throughout the country that are planning a new or expanding an established garden program are eligible to apply. The program will provide 18 grants that include funds to purchase plants, soil, and garden tools, as well as additional gardening resources. Deadline: 8/31/2016. Visit the website here to learn more about the program.

–The Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) is offering funding to nonprofit organizations that nurture the participation of people living in poverty to change structures and policies that affect their lives. At least 50 percent of those benefiting from the applying organization’s efforts must be people experiencing poverty. Grants range between $25,000 and $75,000. Deadline: pre-applications may be submitted between 9/1/2016 and 11/1/2016. Visit the CCHD website here for more information.

–The National Endowment for the Arts has issued guidelines for 2017 Our Town funding, and they are now posted on the NEA website here. Grants will be offered in Arts Engagement, Cultural Planning, and Design Projects as well as in Projects that Build Knowledge About Creative Placemaking. Deadlines: applications are due on 9/12/2016

–The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) will make five Rural Capacity Building for Community Development and Affordable Housing Grants of up to $2.5 million to national organizations with ongoing experience in rural housing and community development. Applications are due September 13.

–Dual-Training Grants Application Available Now! Employers can now apply for grants to help create or expand dual-training programs in advanced manufacturing, agriculture, health care services and information technology industries. Dual-training grants are part of the Minnesota PIPELINE Project, which was established by the Minnesota Legislature in 2014 to expand dual training and apprenticeship programs. This is the third round of grants released for this program. Thus far, 37 employers have received grants totaling $1,428,439 to support the training of 274 students/employees. Applications due September 23, 2016 at 5 pm CDT. LEARN MORE

–The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development is requesting applications for the Minnesota Emerging Entrepreneur Program. The program provides funding to local nonprofit corporations that will use these funds to make loans to Minnesota businesses majority-owned and operated by minorities, low-income persons, women, veterans, and/or persons with disabilities.  The Request for Proposal

Proposals must be received by DEED no later than 4:00 pm. on September 30, 2016. Late proposals will not be considered.  For more information contact or 651-259-7458

–The Target Field Trip Grants program provides funds for K-12 field trips in order to give students throughout the country the opportunity to explore more of the world outside the classroom. Grants of up to $700 each will be awarded to educators, teachers, principals, paraprofessionals, and classified staff who are employed by accredited K-12 public, private, or charter schools. Deadline: online applications will be accepted through 10/1/2016. Visit the Target website here to learn more about the program.

Wrigley Company Foundation Community Service Grant provides funding to dental hygienists for projects aimed at improving oral health or providing oral health education. Application Deadline: October 1, 2016.

–Border to Border Grants.  The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), Office of Broadband Development, will be soliciting proposals from qualified organizations for Minnesota Border to Border Broadband Development Grants. The application deadline is 4:00 p.m., Monday, October 3, 2016. Details are available as are updated maps.

–The Tourism Marketing Grant Program is designed to promote and facilitate increased travel to and within the state of Minnesota, increase the number of resident and nonresident travelers to our state, grow travel-related sales and employment in Minnesota, generate increased sales tax revenue from travel-related industries, and develop industry partnerships to expand marketing reach. Grants are offered to Minnesota non-profit organizations formed for the primary purpose of tourism promotion and to scenic byway groups incorporated as a non-profit organization. Grants are to be used for marketing and promotional projects or to conduct research to help in this endeavor. To request tourism marketing grant funding, applicants must complete the Grant Request Form and return it to your regional representative by October 14, 2016. Grant guidelines and applications can be found at:

–The Medical Education and Research Costs (MERC) grant program, administered by the Minnesota Department of Health, distributes grants annually to providers of clinical medical education. The next application cycle is expected to open in late August 2016 and will be due on October 31st. For more information, contact Diane Reger at 651-201-3566.

—  USDA Rural Development is soliciting applications through the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP), which provides guaranteed loan and grant financing for rural small businesses and agricultural producers to purchase or install renewable energy systems or make energy efficiency improvements. USDA reminds eligible applicants that set-aside funding is available for grant requests less than $20,000 and may offer priority scoring for projects located in underserved areas and/or benefiting underserved populations. USDA also guarantees loans for a minimum of $5,000 and maximum of $25 million. Applicants are encouraged to apply through the loan guarantee program for larger-scale projects. Grant and guaranteed loan combinations are also available. The next application deadline for grants under $20,000 is October 31, 2016. For details on how to apply, visit, contact USDA Rural Development State Energy Coordinator for Minnesota Ron Omann at or (651) 602-7796, or see page 78029 of the December 29 Federal Register.

— The Laura Jane Musser Fund is offering funding to encourage collaborative and participatory efforts among citizens in rural communities that will help to strengthen their towns and regions in a number of civic areas including, but not limited to, economic development, business preservation, arts and humanities, public space improvements and education. Programs in Colorado, Hawaii, Michigan, Minnesota and Wyoming may apply. The applicant community must have a population of 10,000 or fewer and must be able to demonstrate the rural characteristics of their location. Deadline: 11/2/2016. Click here to review further guidelines and to apply.

–THE HOME DEPOT Foundation Community Impact Grants Program provides support to nonprofit organizations and public service agencies in the U.S. that are using volunteers to improve the physical health of their communities. Proposals for the following community improvement activities will be considered: repairs, refurbishments, and modifications to low-income or transitional veteran’s housing or community facilities (schools, community centers, senior centers, etc.); weatherizing or increasing energy efficiency of low-income or transitional veteran’s housing or community facilities; engaging veterans as volunteers to help other veterans in their community through service projects focusing on the renovation, repair, and improvement of homes and other properties serving veterans; and planting trees or community gardens or landscaping community facilities that serve veterans. Requests will be accepted through 12/31/2016. Visit the Foundation’s website here to submit an online application.

–2016 MiM solar thermal rebates are available to Minnesotans statewide.  The Minnesota Department of Commerce has opened rebate opportunities for solar thermal systems to all Minnesota residents, businesses, nonprofits, and government entities as part of its 2016 Made in Minnesota Solar Energy Incentive Program. Applications for solar thermal rebates will be reviewed and funded through 2016 on a first-come, first-served basis until funds have been fully reserved. Read more.

–Explore Minnesota is excited to announce a new pilot grant program for New Event Funding. The New Event Grant Program was developed to increase the economic impact of visitors on state and local economies, increase spending by visitors, generate media awareness of Minnesota, and enhance the quality of life for Minnesotans. The program provides funding to secure and operate new major events throughout the state. This pilot program creates a coordinated approach for funding events in Minnesota, including (1) competitive bidding/sponsorship and (2) operating/hosting new events that have the potential to generate significant economic impact for the host community. Questions on the New Event Grant program: Email or call Lori Peterson at 651-757-1876 or

Grant Guidelines and applications can be found at:

–USDA is offering funding to Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) to participate in the Community Facilities Re-lending Program. Through the program USDA provides low-interest, direct loans through the program to re-lenders: high-impact, community-based lending institutions with a track record of mission-driven lending in high poverty areas. Re-lenders can use the funds to make loans for community facilities projects like health clinics, schools, libraries, food banks, municipal buildings, and child care centers. Deadline: open. Click here to visit the website for funding guidelines and forms.

–Green project idea? Get a MPCA environmental assistance loan. The MPCA offers low-interest loans for capital projects that improve the environment. Apply for the Environmental Assistance (EA) loan program if you’re considering a project in green chemistry, pollution prevention, source reduction, recycling, or composting collection. Capital costs are limited to the costs of machinery and equipment, including freight and installation, and related improvements. Eligible applicants include small to medium-sized businesses and political subdivisions of Minnesota. There is currently funding available. Since the amount available fluctuates, it is recommended to contact the program with questions on fund availability.

The EA loan program has two types of loans. Participatory loans provide up to $100,000 at zero percent interest with a dollar-for-dollar match from a participating financial institution. In addition to the interest rate charged by the institution on its matching funds, there may be additional administrative fees. Overall though, these loans generally have a very low interest rate. Direct loans are limited to businesses/entities and up to $50,000 at four percent interest or one half the prime rate, whichever is greater. Direct loans must be matched by one dollar from the applicant for every two dollars received. Start-up businesses are not eligible for direct loans.

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. Visit the MPCA Environmental Assistance Loan Program for more information.


–Blandin Community Broadband Program Webinar: Growing and Keeping Tech Talent will be held on August 11.

–“Immigrant Family Economic Success in Rural Communities” is a webinar series offered by The Aspen Institute. “Hello! Please Come In!” that’s the typical welcome sign as you enter rural communities across the United States. But some rural towns and businesses now add signs that read “¡Bienvenidos!” (Spanish) and “Zoo siab txais tos!” (Hmong), among others. That’s because growing numbers of immigrants and refugees are moving into rural communities-from 2012 to 2014, 31 percent of net new rural residents were foreign-born. To learn more about this growing population of rural Americans and to learn what rural practitioners can do to support them participate in an upcoming Aspen Institute webinar series: Immigrant Family Economic Success in Rural Communities. Sessions are scheduled for August 18, 2016, August 25, 2016 and September 1, 2016. Click here to register for any or all of these sessions.


–Upcoming Workshops for Minnesota Emerging Entrepreneur Program.  The Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development is currently requesting applications for the Minnesota Emerging Entrepreneur Program. The program provides funding to local nonprofit corporations that will use these funds to make loans to Minnesota businesses majority-owned and operated by minorities, low-income persons, women, veterans, and/or persons with disabilities. Three workshops will be held to discuss the RFP and answer questions about the application process.

August 22, 2016

1:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Brainerd Lakes Area Economic Development Corporation

CTC Room

224 West Washington Street



August 23, 2016
1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Intergovernmental Center
Minnesota River Room
10 Civic Center Plaza

August 26, 2016
1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development
Minnesota Room
332 Minnesota St, Suite E200
St. Paul

The times and locations of the workshops are subject to change so attendees should confirm times and locations by visiting DEED’s calendar or by contacting Bob Isaacson, or 651-259-7458. The DEED calendar will display any additional workshops that are scheduled.

–Health disparities of immigrant workers in agriculture webinar. This webinar will focus on the health and safety of immigrant workers in agriculture. It will explore disparities in health and safety outcomes for immigrant workers compared to non-immigrant workers, and attempt to describe some reasons for those disparities. Case studies as well as descriptive and analytic data will be presented. The focus will be on immigrant workers in the U.S., but the same phenomena exists in developed and developing countries around the world. The webinar will be held August 24, 12-1 pm CDT. It is free but you must register.

–DEED is pleased to be partnering with the Council of Development Finance Agencies

to bring a special one-day conference to Minnesota!  Join the CDFA Minnesota Financing Roundtable for the inaugural conference on Thursday, August 25. This event will feature a number of economic development finance experts from around the state discussing development finance tools, authorities, resources and approaches, and how these can affect the Minnesota economy going forward.

The conference will take place at the Renaissance Minneapolis Hotel, The Depot in downtown Minneapolis and is supported by dozens of the state’s finest development finance leaders.

Register today to reserve your spot at the 2016 CDFA Minnesota Financing Roundtable Conference.

–Blandin Broadband Conference: Sep 13-14.  You’re invited to the Fall Broadband conference, Border to Border Broadband: Advancing the Vision on September 13-14 at the Greysolon Ballroom in Duluth, MN. It is an opportunity to continue the work from last year’s conference where attendees crafted the well-received state broadband vision.

–Join the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits for our 2016 Annual Conference on October 6 – 7, 2016 at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center. Learn more and register.

— The Heartland Center for Leadership Development will offer “Helping Small Towns Succeed” October 11-13, 2016, at the Snow King Resort in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

–Save the date for the 30th Annual Minnesota Venture Conference — Minnesota’s premier event for entrepreneurs and investors! It will be held Thursday, October 13, 2016 from 7:15 am – 5:45 pm at the Minneapolis Convention Center.  For more information go to:

–Broadband Communities Conference (Minneapolis) will be held October 18-20.

–The annual Many Faces of Community Health Conference will be held November 3-4 in Bloomington.

–The Minnesota Solar Energy Industries Association (MnSEIA) recently announced that its 2016 Midwest Gateway to Solar Conference will be held Nov. 15-16 at the Hilton Airport/Mall of America in Bloomington. Information on registration and early bird rate is available.

— The 2016 Tekne Awards will be held on November 16th at the Minneapolis Convention Center.  You can learn more and find the full list of Tekne recipients at Applications and nominations are now open!


–The Minnesota State Loan Repayment Program (SLRP) for primary care providers practicing in rural and urban health professional shortage areas in Minnesota is open for applications. For the 2016 cycle, applications must be faxed or postmarked by August 19. For more information, contact Deb Jahnke at 651-201-3845.

— Submit an Abstract for the 2017 Federal Reserve System Community Development Research Conference.  The Community Affairs Officers of the Federal Reserve System invite paper submissions for the tenth biennial Federal Reserve System Community Development Research Conference, a unique event that aims to bridge the gaps between research, policy, and practice on key issues facing the country. High-quality and emerging research is presented in a dialogue with policymakers and community practitioners who can utilize the lessons gleaned from the research. The 2017 conference seeks to inform a robust public conversation on the theme of Strong Foundations: The Economic Futures of Kids and Communities. Submissions for plenary, concurrent, and poster sessions are invited in three broad categories:

  • The context for child and youth development;
  • The role of community development and key partners; and
  • Implications for the economy and workforce.

Abstracts are due August 19, 2016. View the full text of the Call for Papers and submit your paper/abstract. Please direct any questions to or 612-204-6785.

Rural Health Fellows Program is a year-long, intensive program designed to develop a community of rural health leaders. Application Deadline: September 1, 2016.

–Nominations for 2016 Community Health Awards.  Nominate someone you think deserves a Community Health Award. The awards will be presented by Commissioner of Health Ed Ehlinger on September 28th during the Community Health Conference. For more information, contact Megan Drake-Pereyra at 651-201-3640.

— Bush Foundation Fellowships. Deadline: September 29, 2016. MORE

–Nominations for Nurse of the Year. The March of Dimes is honored to pay tribute to the nursing profession by recognizing extraordinary nurses throughout the community. The Nurse of the Year event will be held October 14. For more information, contact Jonathon McCarthy at 612-326-9441.

–The Minnesota High Tech Association (MHTA) to be Minnesota host of SBIR/STTR programs. MHTA has been named the host of the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Federal and State Technology Partnership (FAST) Program for the state of Minnesota. FAST is designed to stimulate economic development with outreach and technical assistance to science and technology-driven small businesses, with a particular emphasis on socially and economically disadvantaged firms, helping them to compete in federally-funded research and development through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Programs. LEARN MORE

Public Health Student Volunteer Program provides a one-semester internship experience for students enrolled in a public health program. Geographic coverage: Nationwide. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis. Sponsored by the Health Resources and Services Administration.


–Research Indicates Rural Still Behind Broadband Access. The FCC’s reports that 39 percent of rural areas lack access to the newly defined broadband, while only 4 percent of urban areas lack it.

Vulnerable Rural Counties: The Changing Rural Landscape, 2000-2010 A study of how rural counties were impacted by the 2008 recession, specifically focused on an increase in poverty levels, shifts in population, and loss or reduction of healthcare services and facilities. Includes county-by-county maps with data such as poverty and unemployment rates, elderly population, educational level, non-white population, health insurance coverage, availability of primary care and other specialties, and change in number of hospitals and other healthcare facilities. Appendices include tables comparing urban and rural/remote county statistics. See also: Key Facts in Rural Health: Vulnerable Rural Counties, the Changing Rural Landscape, 2000-2010 (Fact Sheet).

–“Working Across Generations to Move Rural Families Forward” is the title of an article in the Aspen Institute’s online newsletter. In 2014, nearly 25 percent of children in nonmetropolitan areas were poor, compared to about 21 percent in metropolitan areas. According to the UNH Carsey School of Public Policy, 64 percent of rural counties experienced high child poverty (20% in poverty or greater) in 2010 compared to 47 percent of urban counties. Research shows that children raised in poverty are less likely to succeed as adults. So how can rural families and communities buck this trend and build on local assets like their resourcefulness, relationships, and creativity to ensure the long-term success of local children? Read the blog post from the Aspen Institute Community Strategies Group, advocating for a two-generation approach to addressing rural child poverty here.

Social Determinants of Health for Rural People This topic guide has been updated with new frequently asked questions and updated statistics. It focuses on the health inequities that rural residents experience. Learn how income-level, educational attainment, race/ethnicity, housing quality, and other factors impact health.

Disparities in the Health and Well-Being of Children and Youth in Rural Areas

Recording of a May 21, 2016 DataSpeak webinar. Topics addressed include trends in rural children’s health, rural child mortality, and challenges facing American Indian children. Speakers included Janice Probst of the South Carolina Rural Health Research Center, Alana Knudson of the NORC Walsh Center for Rural Health Analysis, and Steve Holve of Indian Health Service. Length: 59:00.

–An article in Governing titled “With Hospitals in Critical Condition, Can Rural America Survive?” explores the reality that nearly 30 percent of the country’s rural hospitals are at risk of closing in the next two years. Though rural hospitals have faced closure threats before, this time the challenges run deeper, and call into question whether rural areas themselves can survive in the absence of hospitals. Read the piece here.

–An article in the Center for Rural Affairs Rural News states that Latinos and immigrants are not only bringing population growth to rural America, they are also bringing economic growth. It goes on to say that the income growth that tends to accompany Latino population growth in rural counties is even greater where native-born, non-Hispanic populations have otherwise been shrinking. Read the article here.

–USDA Rural Housing Service (RHS) has released a suite of investment data to increase transparency and better educate stakeholders and appropriators about RHS program investments. The data suite includes information about loans, loan guarantees, and grants invested through RHS Single Family Housing, Multi-family Housing, and Community Facilities programs. Read the full announcement with links to access the data here.

–How Housing Matters 2016 is the published results of a survey by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Kresge Foundation, and Melville Charitable Trust which finds that nearly seven out of ten (68 percent) Americans believe it is difficult to obtain affordable housing. Get the report here.

–HUD has published early findings from its large-scale random assignment study on the benefits of housing counseling for first-time homebuyers. These findings indicate promising results, including improved mortgage literacy, homebuyer outcomes and loan performance. HUD hopes this study will confirm that first-time homebuyer education and counseling helps borrowers make better choices and expands access to credit. Download a copy of the report here.

–HUD has announced the release of the Maximizing Investments Toolkit. The Toolkit includes tools and guidance to help grantees identify local housing and community development needs and determine how to most effectively use their resources to address those needs. The tools are designed to help grantees set appropriate goals for their investments and to identify ways to maximize their positive impacts. Access it here.

–“Meet Liberty, the Uber-like service built for rural America” is the title of an article in the Silicon Prairie News about a new transportation network company working to improve mobility in rural areas by connecting existing public transportation providers with planning agencies, medical centers, and organizations serving people with special needs. Read the article here.