Indianapolis, IN, Nov 09, 2012 -- United States Department of Agriculture Rural Development has announced the Indiana Cooperative Development Center is the recipient of a $175,000 Rural Cooperative Development Grant. Under this program, grants of up to $175,000 may be awarded to colleges, universities and non-profit groups to create and operate centers that help individuals or groups establish, expand or operate rural businesses, especially cooperatives and mutually-owned businesses. Grants may be used to conduct feasibility studies, create and implement business plans, and help businesses develop new markets for their products and services.
“This grant will be used to support a center that will provide technical assistance and education to individuals and entities in the startup, expansion or operational improvement of rural businesses, especially cooperative or mutually-owned businesses,” Indiana State Director of USDA Rural Development Philip Lehmkuhler said. “USDA is proud to continue its support of local and regional efforts to bolster these cooperatives and help them bring increased value and economic opportunity to rural residents.”
The Indiana Cooperative Development Center (ICDC) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that promotes cooperatives as a vibrant model to address the economic and social needs of Indiana’s communities. It began offering services in 2003 and was incorporated in 2006.
ICDC provides assistance to a wide variety of cooperatives including food, agricultural, arts and crafts, child care, energy, and housing with start-up, management, and other technical assistance. It also provides training opportunities designed to bring together groups of people involved in the same type of cooperative development.
For additional information on RD projects, please visit Rural Development’s new interactive web map featuring program funding and success stories for fiscal years 2009-2011. The data can be found at: http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/RDSuccessStories.html.
President Obama’s plan for rural America has brought about historic investment and resulted in stronger rural communities. Under the President’s leadership, these investments in housing, community facilities, businesses and infrastructure have empowered rural America to continue leading the way – strengthening America’s economy, small towns and rural communities. USDA’s investments in rural communities support the rural way of life that stands as the backbone of our American values. President Obama and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack are committed to a smarter use of Federal resources to foster sustainable economic prosperity and ensure the government is a strong partner for businesses, entrepreneurs and working families in rural communities.
USDA, through its Rural Development mission area, has an active portfolio of more than $172 billion in loans and loan guarantees. These programs are designed to improve the economic stability of rural communities, businesses, residents, farmers and ranchers and improve the quality of life in rural America.
USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer, and lender. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call (800) 795-3272 (voice), or (202) 720-6382 (TDD).