Working Across Generations to Move Rural Families Forward

We all want the best for our children’s futures: a quality education, meaningful employment, stable finances, good health and well-being. But for rural children living in poverty, the future isn’t so bright. In 2014, nearly 25 percent of children in nonmetropolitan areas were poor, compared to about 21 percent in metropolitan areas. According to the […]

Children’s Savings Accounts

The Basic Idea: Help children, youth and their families save towards the purchase of an appreciating asset upon reaching adulthood so that economic status will not be a barrier to the young person’s path to success. How it works: Children and youth are provided with a specialized savings account that they can access and use […]

Rural Affordable Homes through Land Trusts

With its beaches, forests, farms, and bucolic villages, Orcas Island – a rural island of 5,000 residents off the coast of northwest Washington State – has long drawn honeymooning, whale-watching, kayaking tourists and, increasingly, tech-exec millionaires building luxury homes. But as the “hidden Paradise” reputation of Orcas grew with vacationers and second home-owners, soaring land […]

Revolving Loan Fund for Affordable Housing

The Basic Idea: Develop a pool of loan resources used to finance construction of affordable housing units and their purchase. As owners repay the loans, the payments revolve back into the fund to support additional housing development. How it works—The Essentials: A Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) or other lead organization assembles a pool of […]

Down Payment Assistance

The Basic Idea: Help low-income families with the down payment they need to purchase a home. How it works—The Essentials: State, federal and/or local funds are pooled to provide help with down payments for low- to moderate-income families, using a variety of approaches. Typically, a local administrative entity accepts applications, screens applicants and administers the […]

Combining Tax Prep and Affordable Health Insurance

A Wealthier and Healthier Tax Time The Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) launch in October brought big changes to the coming tax-filing season.  This year only, health insurance enrollment under ACA will overlap with tax season.  While penalties will apply in future tax seasons, this year, families can enroll in health insurance and get the coverage […]

New Report: Rural America at a Glance

The USDA’s Economic Research Service (ERS) recently released the 2013 Edition of Rural America at a Glance, an annual report that highlights social and economic conditions in rural America. The report found three worrisome trends in rural areas: fewer jobs, population loss, and higher poverty. While the number of jobs in metro areas grew 1.4% […]

RuFES Linking to Design Thinking

People live in places. That’s why the Rural Family Economic Success (RuFES) framework uses a place-focused approach to helping families Earn it, Keep it, and Grow it. RuFES starts by learning about the hardworking families in a rural community who are struggling to get ahead. RuFES then examines the barriers that stymie these families’ progress […]

Pre-College Assistance Programs

The Basic Idea: Increase the opportunities for promising “at-risk” students to go to college and increase their lifetime earning potential. How it works: Identify low-income students who show the academic promise to go to college, but face formidable economic and social barriers. Help students with school achievement through tutoring and counseling. Provide guidance with the […]

Contextual Vocational Education

The Basic Idea: Provide youth entering the job market with the opportunity to learn a job skill—on the job—while completing their education. How it works: A school or other organization partners with industry to train youth for the skills in a specific job, while they are in high school or just after graduation—often in conjunction […]

RuFES is a project of the Annie E. Casey Foundation and the Aspen Institute Community Strategies Group.
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