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CULTURE OF HEALTH PRIZES NOMINATIONS DEADLINE IS NOV. 3
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is accepting nominations for its Culture of Health Prizes, which honors collaborative, community-based efforts that are prioritizing health and empowering people in the community to live healthier lives. Ten awards of up to $25,000 will honor entire communities, not single organizations or initiatives. The prize is intended to shine a light on communities that have created powerful partnerships and deep commitments to make changes that will lead to longer, healthier lives for community members. Eligible communities must be either a town, city, county, federally-recognized tribe, Native Hawaiian organization serving and representing the interests of Native Hawaiians in Hawaii, or region (contiguous towns, cities or counties). Applicants must submit a brief, introductory essay by November 3. For more information, visit the foundation’s website.

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TOOLBOX FOR EDUCATION PROGRAM GRANTS AVAILABLE
The Lowe’s Toolbox for Education Program provides grants for school improvement projects. The priority for the 2017 grant cycle is basic needs of students. Individual public K-12 schools or nonprofit parent groups associated with public K-12 schools are eligible to apply. Parent groups that are applying independently must have an EIN and 501c(3) status from the IRS. Awards range from $2,000 to $5,000. The application deadline is November 29 or once 1,500 applications are received. For more information and to apply, visit the Toolbox for Education website.

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MAPPING TOOL SHOWS SNAP HOUSEHOLD PARTICIPATION RATES BY COUNTY
The Food Research and Action Center hasreleased an interactive mapping tool that provides household participation rates for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as food stamps, by county in each state. SNAP Maps is based on the American Community Survey (ACS) 5-year data (2011–2015) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Characteristics of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Households: Fiscal Year 2015. Each county is grouped into one of three census categories: Metro, Small Town, and Rural. SNAP participation nationally was highest among households in rural (16 percent) and small town (16 percent) counties compared to households in metro counties (13 percent). Check out the tool, analysis and other resources here.

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GRANTS TO END HOMELESSNESS
The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)is accepting grant applications from public and private agencies to promote a community-wide commitment to the goal of ending homelessness and to optimize self-sufficiency among those experiencing homelessness. The application deadline is September 28. Click here to review funding guidelines.

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GRANTS TO IMPROVE FOOTBALL FIELD SAFETY
The Local Initiatives Support Corporation and the NFL Grassroot Foundation have issued the 2017 RFP for projects to provide nonprofit, neighborhood-based organizations, middle schools, and high schools with financing and technical assistance to improve the quality, safety, and accessibility of local football fields. The application deadline is October 16. Click here for more information and to apply.  

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GRANTS TO SUPPORT LOW-INCOME INDIVIDUALS
The Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) is offering grants to support organizations led by low-income individuals working to break the cycle of poverty and improve their communities. CCHD’s grant programs include two types of grants. Community Development Grants support 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. Economic Development Grants support economic development institutions that include the voice of the poor and marginalized in developing new businesses that offer good jobs or develop assets that will be owned by local communities. Grants range between $25,000 and $75,000. Pre-applications for both programs may be submitted between September 1 and November 1. (Organizations are encouraged to submit their pre-application prior to the November 1 deadline.)For more information, visit the CCHD website.

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ALA RELEASES NEW REPORT ON RURAL U.S. LIBRARIES
The American Library Association's Office for Information Technology Policy has released a new report that focuses attention on the capacity of rural public libraries to deploy Internet-enabled computing technologies and other resources to meet the needs of their residents. The report, Rural Libraries in the United States: Recent Strides, Future Possibilities, and Meeting Community Needs, explores nuances of rurality, details challenges rural libraries face in maximizing their community impacts and describes how existing collaborative regional and statewide efforts help rural libraries and their communities.

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COMMERCE GRANTS TO SUPPORT PUBLIC WORKS
The U.S. Department of Commerce is offering grants to provide investments that support construction, non-construction, planning, technical assistance, and revolving loan fund projects under the Economic Development Administration’s Public Works and Economic Adjustment Assistance programs. The Public Works program provides catalytic investments to help distressed communities build, design, or engineer critical infrastructure and facilities that will help implement regional development strategies and advance bottom-up economic development goals to promote regional prosperity. The Economic Adjustment Assistance program provides investments that support a wide range of construction and non-construction activities in regions experiencing severe economic dislocations that have occurred suddenly or may occur over time. A portion of Economic Adjustment Assistance funding supports communities and regions that have been negatively impacted by changes in the coal economy. Eligible applicants are District Organizations of a designated Economic Development District; Indian Tribes; states, counties, cities, or other political subdivisions of a state; institutions of higher education; and public or private nonprofit organizations or associations acting in cooperation with local governments. The application period is ongoing, until the publication of a new program announcement.Click here for additional guidelines and to apply.

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USDA RURAL DEVELOPMENT GRANTS, LOANS AVAILABLE
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development has several loan and grant programs available for agricultural producers and rural small businesses. The Rural Energy for America Program offers guaranteed loan financing and grant funding to agricultural producers and rural small businesses to purchase or install renewable energy systems or make energy efficiency improvements. Agricultural producers with at least 50 percent of gross income coming from agricultural operations and small businesses located in eligible rural areas may apply. Value-Added Producer Grants help agricultural producers enter into value-added activities related to the processing and/or marketing of bio-based, value-added products. Generating new products, creating and expanding marketing opportunities, and increasing producer income are the goals of this program. Business and Industry Guaranteed Loans help bolster the existing private credit structure through the guaranteeing of loans for rural businesses, allowing private lenders to extend more credit than usual. Lenders with legal authority, sufficient experience, and financial strength to operate a successful lending program (i.e. federal or state chartered banks, savings and loans, farm credit banks, credit unions, etc.) may apply for this program. For more information on these loan and grant opportunities, contact the Pennsylvania USDA Rural Development office at 717-237-2189 or visit www.rd.usda.gov/pa.

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FORD FAMILY FOUNDATION OFFERING YOUTH DEVELOPMENT AND EDUCATION GRANTS
The Ford Family Foundation is accepting applications for Youth Development and Education Grants, which support educational projects, programs and out-of-school time facilities in rural communities that encourage the development of skills, confidence and support needed for school-aged youth (5-18 years) to connect with quality mentors, excel in school, develop leadership skills, graduate with a plan for the future and become successful citizens. Typical grant sizes range from $25,000 to $150,000 per year. While there are exceptions, the foundation prefers to fund no more than one-third of the proposed budget. The fund types include programs, operating requests and capital projects. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis. For more information, visit the foundation’s website.

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KELLOGG FOUNDATION GRANTS AVAILABLE
The W.K. Kellogg Foundation is accepting grants applications to support programs that focus on developing a healthy start and quality learning experiences for all children, helping families get stable, high-quality jobs and connecting employers with talented candidates, and/or advancing racial equity, developing leaders, and fostering community engagement. Award amounts have ranged from $5,000 to $1,500,000. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis. To learn more and to apply, visit the foundation’s website.

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FORD FOUNDATION OFFERING GOOD NEIGHBOR GRANTS
The Ford Family Foundationis offering small grants to organizations working in rural communities with populations of less than 35,000 in response to unexpected needs or simple projects. These grants are highly competitive and limited; priority is given to short-term grant requests for simple projects, unforeseen emergencies that interrupt programming or services, and one-off events or activities. Grants can range from $1,000 to $10,000 and funds are released within 60 days. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis. For more information, visit the foundation’s website.

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