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Sustainable Community Grants

With seed money from NIFA, the Sustainable Communities Grants competitive program was developed jointly by the Southern Rural Development Center (SRDC) and Southern-Region Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE). The program blends agriculture and community and economic development.

Through their joint grants program, they have funded projects that explicitly link community development and sustainable agriculture in the South and improve understanding of the benefits of such linkages. As a result:

  • Coastal Alabama communities are addressing farmland preservation issues.
  • Henderson County, North Carolina, community planners are coordinating policies and actions to sustain threatened agricultural communities.
  • Northern Louisiana farmers, community leaders, and agriculture and community development technical assistance providers are developing local markets for produce and promoting value-added activities to grow the local economy.
  • An Appalachian community college is passing along to farmers what students and faculty have learned about raising trout, crawfish, and tilapia using water from abandoned coal mines.
  • Kentucky farm women are building their policymaking skills.


Summaries of funded programs and impacts are available online.


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