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In 2015, The Ford Family Foundation will embark on a new program of work that will focus on supporting rural communities as they take action to improve local conditions. The Foundation will be open to providing grants and other supports to communities that define a plan of action for community betterment, with a priority on increasing employment and economic vitality. This work is meant to complement the work of the Ford Institute for Community Building, which helps to build the capacity of rural communities and their residents. This program intends to support the action steps that follow once communities have built their own capacity and made a commitment to take on a community improvement agenda.
This is a new and emerging area for the Foundation, and applicants are encouraged to check back here throughout 2015 as we define this work more specifically.
We will be looking to support projects, programs, and organizations that seek to:
- Increase the number of rural residents who are trained in ways that match current and projected rural labor force demand and are connected to employers.
- Increase the number of sustainable businesses that are being created, expanded, and retained in rural communities.
- Increase the capacity of systems throughout the state that aim to support rural community economic development.
At this time, by invitation only.