On November 18, US Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that six Mississippi grants were among the recipients of the USDA Department of Rural Development Awards.
• Brookhaven’s South Central Community Action Agency received $ 187,000. This agency provides qualified low-income families with access to several different short- and long-term assistance programs in Copiah, Hinds, Lincoln, Madison, Pike, Rankin, Simpson and Walthall counties. It offers case management, support in obtaining and paying rent for adequate housing, information on affordable health and nutrition services, and help in receiving adequate education or employment.
• Home Again, Inc, a non-profit subsidiary of Hope Enterprise Corporation in Jackson, received $ 99,370.
• WWISCAA, Inc., of Greenville, received $ 100,000. The organization offers comprehensive social service programs – primarily anti-poverty programs – in Warren, Washington, Issaquena, Sharkey and Yazoo counties, as well as limited services to Humphreys, Desoto, Tate, Tallahatchie, Panola and Quitman.
• The Gateway Community Development Corporation of Yazoo City received $ 50,000.
• Mississippi Association of Cooperatives of Jackson, a non-profit organization that helps farmers, their families and communities increase their livelihoods, increase their security and improve their quality of life, received $ 175,000.
• Tri-County Agricultural Cooperative, a project in Batesville that supports approximately 45 socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers located primarily in the Mississippi Delta counties of Panola, Tallahatchie and Yalobusha, received $ 175,000.
The investments are part of the Biden administration’s attempt to “ensure that people living in rural communities have equitable access to infrastructure and opportunities often taken for granted by people living in urban and suburban areas.”
“No matter where they live, their race, ethnicity or gender, or the size of the city in which they live, all people should have access to decent housing, clean water and good opportunities. employment, ”said Vilsack. “It’s fundamental for a healthy society and stable communities. [The] ad construction[s] on the historic investments made possible by the American Rescue Plan Act enacted by President Biden to ensure fairness at a time when people living in underserved places suffer the most. These investments will go a long way in helping America “build back better” to a just and more equitable society. “
Vilsack highlighted 218 USDA investments made in six programs specifically designed to help people and businesses in rural areas. These programs include
The funding will help more than 425,000 people in 46 states, Puerto Rico and the Western Pacific, says USDA. The organization said the funding “reflects the many ways USDA Rural Development helps rural residents, businesses and communities meet economic development, infrastructure and social service needs.”
The ministry cited the following ways for the money to help:
• Help low-income people make health and safety repairs to their homes.
• Help build and improve water supply and wastewater treatment infrastructure for people living in American communities along the Mexican border.
• Help rural business owners in the Mississippi Delta access capital and business development assistance
• Help colleges that serve tribal populations modernize campus buildings and services
As examples of specific programs that will be funded, the ministry has listed the following:
• Keystone Development Corp. of Lancaster, Pa., is receiving a grant of $ 173,288 for socially disadvantaged groups to provide technical assistance in business development. It will support women owners of agricultural cooperatives that grow flowers and various types of fibers. The project is expected to help 25 women farmers in three counties in Pennsylvania and five counties in New Jersey.
• Habitat for Humanity / Lake-Sumter in Central Florida receives a housing preservation grant of $ 351,135 to help 42 low- and very low-income people complete health and safety repairs to their homes. These investments will promote healthier and happier lives for the 42 owners.
• The Skagway Development Corp. in Alaska receives a grant of $ 121,825 from the Rural Community Development Initiative to help small businesses develop five-year growth and operating plans. It will provide services to businesses with 50 or fewer employees and less than $ 1 million in gross revenues to help new entrepreneurs and small business owners succeed and create jobs in their communities.
• Red Lake Nation College in Minnesota receives a Tribal College Initiative grant of $ 175,448 to purchase computers, a 15-passenger van and lawn care equipment. The college will replace the 30 computers in the learning center and computer lab, and the 32 computers assigned to faculty and staff.
The 218 prizes are awarded in Alaska, Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah , Virginia, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Washington, DC, Puerto Rico and the Western Pacific.
Under the Biden administration, Rural Development provides loans and grants to help expand economic opportunities, create jobs, and improve the quality of life for millions of Americans in rural areas.
All scholarships were presented by representatives Bennie G. Thompson or Michael Guest.