• Coming Together for Racial Understanding logo

    Coming Together for Racial Understanding

    Unique Value Statement: Coming Together for Racial Understanding is a dialogue-to-change process for communities seeking new pathways for working together across racial/ethnic lines that seeks to foster understanding and build trust in order to take informed collective action for meaningful change, unlike required DEI training alone which seldom seeks to develop trusting relationships among participants.

  • CREATE BRIDGES Walmart Project logo


    The initiative, Create Bridges: Celebrating Retail, Accommodations, Tourism, and Entertainment by Building Rural Innovations and Developing Growth Economies, funded by Walmart, is centered on strengthening retail, accommodations, tourism, and entertainment industries which have been notably impacted by COVID-19 and often make up a large portion of the jobs and businesses that drive rural economies.

  • Bridging the Digital Divide award announcement image

    Digital Divide

    Vital to Rural Economic Development (AFRI’s Agriculture Economics and Rural Communities priority) is equitable digital access. Digital equity means all individuals have digital (internet) capacity needed for full participation in our society and economy. Digital equity is essential for economic viability and quality of life. This project's goal is to identify and address digital equity challenges facing socio-economically disadvantaged (SED) communities in the Southern Region. The research identifies unique challenges facing these communities along with the capacity of the 1890 Extension Service to respond.

  • people sitting at table with laptops

    Digital Skill Building and Digital Volunteer Initiative

    Broadband infrastructure is expected to expand rapidly over the next few years but will only be effective if people have the digital skills they need. Extension is well positioned to provide such training, yet capacity building is necessary. Based on a national survey of digital skill needs, a set of lessons were developed for each skill and a Digital Volunteer Initiative was shaped to help support Extension efforts.

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    Heirs' Property

    The USDA defines heirs’ property as land that has been passed down informally from generation-to-generation. In most cases, it involves landowners who died without a will. Heirs’ property is land owned “in common” by all of the heirs, regardless of whether they live on the land, pay the taxes, or have ever set foot on the land. Geographic areas heavily impacted: Appalachia, Colonias of South Texas, Mississippi River Delta Region, Native American Tribal Lands, and Southern Cresent Region (Blackbelt Region)

  • Regional Rural Development Centers logo

    Listening Sessions

    In the wake of multiple chronic challenges exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, rural communities and small towns across the United States are beginning to build back from the associated impacts on their economies, workforces, and communities. These recovery efforts pose critical questions of where and how to invest. To identify where stakeholders engaged in rural development see the greatest need, and the greatest opportunity, the Regional Rural Development Centers have embarked on a process to collect feedback through a year-long initiative. This feedback will be shared with with USDA NIFA and other federal partners as stakeholder feedback.

  • National Digital Education Extension Team logo

    National Digital Education Extension Team

    NDEET is made up of Extension professionals and interested partners passionate about digital applications. NDEET believes Extension can play a unique and significant role in educating communities across the country on the challenges and opportunities of the digital age. NDEET is also a network of faculty, educators, and specialists that compiles a list of educational and planning resources used to increase awareness, access & availability and adoption & utilization of broadband. In addition, NDEET conducts research to further contribute knowledge and best practices to these efforts.

  • SERA 47 logo

    SERA 47: Local Foods

    Significant interest in local and regional food system strategies has risen over the past decade in response to efforts to grow and/or stabilize local economies, address gaps in food access, enhance farm sustainability, and increase viability in rural and urban communities. For many, these efforts constitute new, innovative, and interdisciplinary approaches and collaborations to create more resilient, vibrant, and just food systems and economies.

  • rural neighborhood

    The Interdisciplinary Network on Rural Population Health and Aging

    The new National Institute on Aging (NIA)-funded Interdisciplinary Network on Rural Population Health and Aging (INRPHA) facilitates innovative research on the multilevel and multidimensional exposures shaping and being shaped by health and aging trends among different rural populations and regions in the United States.