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Success Stories

“This is Home” – A Family Finds Their Forever Home in Calais, Maine

One of the first rooms Heather Gagne and her daughters began redecorating in their new home is the dining room, shown in the top photo. They have been busy repainting and making other updates. Raising a family in coastal Machias, Maine may sound lovely, but for Heather Gagne recent years proved stressful. There were few housing options in their Downeast community, and Heather was glad to find a rental home to…

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Use the filters below to find additional stories about how our programs have helped rural communities across the nation.

Search Results: 27 Stories
Maine Flower Collective photo by Gina Bartholomew with Left to Right, Courtney Mongell, Melissa Law, Andrea Ault, Michelle Jones, Mary Lou Hoskins, Carolyn Snell

Maine Flower Collective blooms and grows after first year

In a world where imported blooms typically dominate our bouquets and arrangements, there remains a healthy demand for local, seasonal flowers in Maine. Ranunculus, Lisianthus, dahlias, and hydrangeas are popular for being the beautiful workhorses of flower designs, but they don’… [Read More]
A group of Start.Coop's incubation and acceleration cohorts

Start.Coop Launches Market-Ready Start-Ups by Scaling Out

Cooperatives for a Better World, a Manchester, NH, nonprofit known as Start.Coop, knows that there is no easy path to entrepreneurship. Its innovators—using extensive backgrounds in education, housing, agriculture, finance, social justice and other essential sectors that thrive… [Read More]
Man prepares to open electric box

USDA Funding Helps Mitigate Fire Risk for Electric Co-op Service Area

Many of us don’t often think about where the electricity comes from that powers the lights in our home and charges our cell phones. However, residents living in communities powered by Kit Carson Electric Cooperative Inc. can see where their power comes from. It is provided by… [Read More]
Large, cavernous warehouse with bins of fertilizer.

Fertilizer Grant Increases Access for Growers in Rural Montana

Farmer’s Union Oil Company of Circle and Terry is a farm and ranch supply cooperative that started in 1930. It serves member owners with products such as fuel, propane, fertilizer, and tires. In early 2023, Farmer’s Union Oil finished construction on a new, larger-capacity… [Read More]
West River Electric Association crews use bucket trucks install power lines in South Dakota

Cooperatives keep the lights on in Rural Communities

West River Electric Association, based in Wall, S.D. has been delivering power to the counties of Haakon, Jackson, Meade, Pennington, Oglala Lakota, and Ziebach in South Dakota since 1939. Their focus has always been on their customers, who are also their members, and recent… [Read More]
photo of ribbon cutting

Rural Community’s First Hospice Center

For the people of Glasgow, Kentucky, a collaboration between T.J. Community Mission Foundation, the city, Farmers Rural Electric Cooperative, and USDA Rural Development helped to meet a critical need in the community. In 2020, the city was able to open its first hospice center… [Read More]
group photo of a ribbon cutting

Garbage Turned into Energy

Have you ever ridden by a landfill and watch flames coming out of pipes emerging from the debris and say to yourself-what a waste of energy/heat??? That’s called off gassing to relieve gas build up from garbage. Although, in 2013, Farmers Rural Electric Cooperative Corp. (RECC)… [Read More]
Image of sign of Meadville, Pennsylvania

Engage Your Community With Investment Cooperatives

What can you do to bring economic development to your rural communities? Is it possible without large corporations or out of town investors that may not understand the needs of your community? Perhaps your community should consider investment cooperatives. Local organizers in… [Read More]
photo from common grounds cooperative website

Finding Common Ground: A Community Economic Development Project

Traverse City, Michigan is a rural community on the shores of lake Michigan. A city with a strong year-round recreation economy and a vibrant downtown filled with independent businesses. Many business owners have struggled to locate commercial space, as well as retain employees… [Read More]
Organic Valley pic; picture of father and daughter with cow

Good Things Come From Wisconsin’s ‘Valley’

What began as an organic produce pool of farmers in the Coulee region of southwest Wisconsin has grown to become a member of the Top 100 Agricultural Cooperatives, and the largest organic marketing cooperative when farmers wanted something different than the market had to offer… [Read More]