Niobrara Nebraska from nearby hill

Blog Articles & Stories

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When Bruce Willems of Correctionville, Iowa, set out to address an erosion problem on the family farm, he didn’t realize he was beginning a lifelong conservation journey. What started out as a one-year contract to plant cover crops is now a decade-long commitment to the overall health of his farm through the Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP).
  • Environment
  • Farm and Food
La guardería, Karime Child Care ubicada en Grand Island, Nebraska, ha estado abierta desde abril del 2017. En esos pocos años, la propietaria Carime Ruvalcaba ha visto éxito y crecimiento en su negocio. Sin embargo, cuando cerró indefinidamente en abril de 2020, debido a la pandemia, la emprendedora decidió tomarse el inesperado tiempo libre para desarrollar sus habilidades como propietaria de un negocio.
  • Small Business
Karime Child Care, located in Grand Island, Nebraska, has been open since April 2017. In those few years, owner Carime Ruvalcaba has seen success and growth in her business. Though, when it closed indefinitely in April 2020, due to the pandemic, the entrepreneur decided to take the unexpected time off to grow her skills as a business owner.
  • Small Business
Debate on state budget adjustments began on March 15. Both Legislative Bill (LB ) 1011, the mainline budget bill and LB 1012, which provides for fund transfers, advanced to select file. One notable...
  • Environment
  • Farm and Food
  • Rural Health
  • Small Business
  • Small Towns
We’re in the 11th week of the Iowa legislative session. Last Friday was the second funnel deadline, which means legislation needed to pass its committee in the alternate chamber from which it was introduced to remain viable. The deadline does not include tax and spending bills.
  • Environment
  • Small Towns
In Iowa and across the Midwest, farmers are investing in conservation practices such as cover crops, extended rotation, and nutrient management thanks to the support of programs from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. As Congress looks to set priorities for the 2023 farm bill, it must focus on supporting conservation programs.
  • Environment
  • Farm and Food
Federal programs that invest in rural America have a significant impact on small communities. As resources are made available to local businesses and farmers, they are better equipped with the tools they need to succeed.
  • Farm and Food
  • Small Business
Pipeline proposals can be contentious when economic, environmental, and landowner interests are at odds. With two proposed pipelines intended to facilitate carbon capture and storage across the upper Midwest, it is important there is an understanding of the facts, as well as the relevant questions and concerns surrounding the projects.
  • Environment
A devotion to her community and a dedication to bringing people together brought Alexandra Dillon to work alongside the Center for Rural Affairs, and that partnership has resulted in helping those she...
  • Small Business
Many Nebraska schools are struggling to find and serve locally grown food to their students. Some schools have greenhouses, but they’re often underutilized or used only to grow flowers for fundraisers. These greenhouses can produce food for school cafeterias, and they can be school-based enterprises that teach students leadership and entrepreneurial skills.
  • Farm and Food
Administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development, the Value-Added Producer Grant (VAPG) program helps agricultural producers expand their businesses through value-added products and services. Free Day Popcorn, operated by Nate and Stacey Freitag, was once such business to receive a VAPG award in 2021.
  • Farm and Food
  • Small Business
“Let my hands be in touch with the black soil, feeling the life within. Allow my ears to hear the singing of the birds, the choir of the sky."
  • Farm and Food
On March 1, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development announced the availability of $19.75 million in total funding for projects as part of the Value-Added Producer Grants (VAPG) program.
  • Farm and Food
When Aliza Brunsing walked into the West Point Chamber of Commerce office with a hope and dream to start a local farmers market, she had no idea—nor intention—of being recognized for her efforts down the line.
  • Small Towns
The legislative session is drawing to a close. Yesterday, Monday, March 7, was Legislative Day 34 of South Dakota’s 38 day session, the last day for a bill or joint resolution to pass both houses...
  • Environment
  • Farm and Food
  • Small Towns
We’re in the ninth week of the Iowa Legislature’s 2022 session. Since our last update, the first funnel deadline has passed, trimming the list of legislation eligible to continue in the process. Currently, lawmakers are focused on debating bills.
  • Environment
  • Farm and Food
  • Small Towns
Today, Tuesday, March 8, is the start of all-day floor debate and with just 22 days left to finish general and select file debate senators have a lot to discuss. Around 90 priority bills are out of committee and it is unclear if all of them will get time on the floor this year.
  • Environment
  • Farm and Food
  • Rural Health
  • Small Business
  • Small Towns
Throughout the nearly 50-year history of the Center, the emergence of federal policy supporting soil and water conservation, local and regional food systems, beginning farmers, and value-added agriculture is one of the most significant areas of policy wins.
  • Farm and Food
Early in my farming career, I began paying attention to different farm organizations and their respective values. I determined early on that the Center for Rural Affairs’ ideas about the future of farms and rural communities made sense to me.
  • Farm and Food
Esta primavera, aquellos que están considerando comenzar un negocio de camiones o aquellos que tienen un negocio de camiones y necesitan más orientación están invitados a la academia de camiones (Trucking Academy).
  • Small Business