April 26, 2018
New USDA State Fact Sheets on Rural Economy. The Economic Research Service at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently updated its state-by-state report on population, income, poverty, food security, and education. The interactive map gives state-level data on these and other economic indicators, along with metro/non-metro breakouts within states. Links to county-level data are provided where available.
Improve Rural Youth Literacy – May 18. The U.S. Department of Education (ED) supports innovative literacy programs for youth from birth through high school in high-needs schools and districts in the Innovative Approaches to Literacy program. ED will give priority points to applications proposing high-quality literacy programs to students in rural school districts. Eligible applicants include school districts serving populations at least 20% from low-income families, national not-for-profit organizations, or consortia of these. Research has shown that education has a life-long impact on health and well-being, even reducing risk for chronic conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, and obesity that are prevalent in rural communities.
Relatives as Parents Program – June 13. The Brookdale Foundation Group will provide $15,000 seed money for state and local programs that support grandparents and other relatives raising children outside of a foster care system. Recipients must establish a collaborative network with other support systems such as family services, child care, aging, education, legal, health care, mental health and extension services. Public state agencies that receive the grant must match the funds 100 percent in cash or in-kind. Many of the services considered important for positive child welfare outcomes are limited in rural communities, and there are reports that the opioid crisis is overwhelming foster care. Earlier this year, the Agency for Children and Families issued a brief exploring special considerations for rural practice, including caseworker skills and availability, confidentiality and ethical practice, and the importance of cultural competency.
Resources for Tribal Self Governance Negotiation – June 17. The Indian Health Service (IHS) will award $48,000 each for five cooperative agreements to offset the cost of negotiating participation in the Tribal Self Governance Program (TSGP). The TSGP allows tribes to tailor health care programs and services to meet the needs of their communities. Negotiations are a tribally-driven process that requires careful planning and preparation. The IHS will also make awards up to $120,000 to five organizations for Tribal Self Governance Planning. The planning phase must include legal and budgetary research and internal Tribal government planning and organizational preparation relating to the administration of health care programs. Applications for planning are also due on June 17.
Coordinating Research for Rural Opioid HIV Initiative – July 16 and August 15. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) will select one public or private entity to provide scientific and technical support to its initiative on rural opioid use and infectious disease comorbidities. This interdisciplinary Coordinating Center will work with NIH’s National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) to analyze community-level datasets from NIDA’s rural opioid initiative and develop evidence-based practices. The application deadline is August 15; letters of intent are due on July 16.