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New training: mixed use incubator in rural settings

If your organization has an interest in mixed use incubation, please join us on January 25, 2017 at the Appalachian Center for Economic Networks (ACEnet) facilities in Athens. A complete agenda is below. This training is funded through the Rural Community Development Initiative (RCDI) through USDA.

Mixed Use Incubators in Rural Settings
January 25, 2017
10:00 AM – 4:30 PM

ACEnet Facilities
94 Columbus Road
Athens, Ohio 45701

Register Here!

Vino de Milo, a specialty food creator in Athens, uses the ACEnet kitchen incubator.

Vino de Milo, a specialty food creator in Athens, uses the ACEnet kitchen incubator.

The training is free for Ohio CDC Association members and costs $30 for non-members. Invoices will be sent after registration. Lunch cost is not included.

Time Activity
10:00 AM – 10:30 AM Welcome: Introductions, & Coffee
10:30 AM – 12:00 PM Incubation Program Overview: Mixed Use Incubators in Rural Settings

  • Facilities
  • Client Mix
  • ACEnet Services Breakout (Project Planning, Consulting, Other Services)
12:00 PM – 12:30 PM Tour: Tour of ACEnet’s Campus, including the Food Ventures Center
12:30 PM – 1:30 PM Lunch: Lunch will take place at an Athens30 Mile Meal partner restaurant
1:30 PM – 4:00 PM Rebuilding the Local Food Economy: The Food Ventures Center

  • Working with Local Food Businesses
  • Value Chain: Start-to-Finish (Challenges to face at every link in the value chain)
  • Working with Local Food Systems
4:00 PM – 4:30 PM Q&A: Q&A Session with ACEnet Staff

Bill would raise unemployment taxes, cut benefits


The legislature has released a new unemployment compensation bill (HB 620) that, like it’s predecessor HB 394, will hurt Ohio workers and their families.

Ask your state senator to oppose House Bill 620, which would slash unemployment compensation for laid off workers. Lame duck session is no time to rush through major policy changes that would worsen poverty in Ohio. Unemployment comp is a bridge to the next job for laid off workers – don’t blow it up!

Read about it in The Columbus Dispatch.


RFP open: 2017 AmeriCorps VISTA sub-sites

OCDCA welcomes current, good standing members to submit an application to become a sub-site to the OCDCA VISTA Project to begin summer 2017.

Funding for the OCDCA VISTA Project is providedVISTA logo by the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) and the Ohio Development Services Agency (ODSA) through the Ohio Housing Trust Fund (OHTF). Limited slots are a
vailable; therefore, this is a competitive process and some slots will be reserved for housing-only initiatives.

This will be your only opportunity in 2017 to apply for OCDCA VISTA support.

If your organization is interested in becoming a sub-site of the OCDCA VISTA Project, please complete the RFP by 5 PM Thursday, January 25, 2017.

For questions or technical assistance, please contact Melissa Miller at or by phone at 614-461-6392 ext. 209.

Need Assistance with the Application?

Is AmeriCorps VISTA Right for Your Organization?
December 14, 2016
10:00 – 11:00 AM
Register Here!

The above webinar will focus on AmeriCorps VISTA history and mission; the Ohio CDC Association’s AmeriCorps VISTA program goals; requirements of Ohio CDC Association AmeriCorps VISTAs sub-sites; and how to become a Ohio CDC Association AmeriCorps VISTA sub-site.

The below webinar will go through common errors in applications and what makes a great application. This is a great time to get all your RFP questions answered.

January 17, 2017
2:00 – 3:30 PM
Register Here!


What’s happening? Impact video & OHTF expansion

Our monthly newsletter: What’s Happening in Ohio Community Development? is out! Topics include the new video – how Ohio CDCs empowered 1,000,000 individuals last year; many RFPs, AmeriCorps VISTA updates, trainings, funding, job opportunities, and more!

Here is a brief snippet:

30 Seconds – Sign On for OHTF
Home Matters to Ohio, a broad-based campaign to build awareness about the importance of affordable housing is working to expand the Ohio Housing Trust Fund.

Many organizations have already signed on to support significantly increasing the Trust Fund in next year’s state budget, but your support is needed.hmtoohio300pxwide

Please take just 30 seconds to sign on your organization to expand the OHTF with Home Matters to Ohio.

The Ohio Housing Trust Fund provides resources for a variety of affordable housing needs as well as some funding for community economic development.

Thank you for your support! If you have any questions please contact Nate Coffman or (614) 461-6392 x 207.

For the rest, check it out here.




OCDCA announces microbusiness development program grantees

These past two months have been a very exciting time for OCDCA and its members.

Earlier this month, through the use of an impartial review committee, we awarded grants to thirteen members for their microbusiness programs through the Ohio Microbusiness Development Program. We had many great applications and were, unfortunately, unable to fund everyone.

The purpose of the Ohio Microbusiness Development Program is to provide funding for CDCs to further develop a local delivery system that encourages microbusiness development, provides low- and moderate-income households with access to capital for business development and self-employment, and creates and retains long-term jobs in the private sector.

Funding for this can be in the form of either training or technical assistance, or direct assistance to the business in the form of a loan, with loan funds repaid into a local microbusiness revolving loan fund. Funding for this program comes from Ohio Development Services Agency. View a list of all of OCDCA’s funders here.


Awarded Organizations

Adams and Brown Counties Economic Opportunities, Inc.

Appalachian Center for Economic Networks

Asian Services in Action, Inc.

Community Action Agency of Pike County

Economic and Community Development Institute

Greater Cincinnati Microenterprise Initiative

HHWP Community Action Agency

INCREASE Community Development Corporation

Northeast Shores Development Corporation

Southern Perry Incubation Center for Entrepreneurs

Supports to Encourage Low Income Families

Vinton County Economic Development Board

Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation

Congrats to all of the selected organizations! For more information about the Ohio Microbusiness Development Program, please contact David Foust at


Please support the expansion of the Ohio Housing Trust Fund

Home Matters to Ohio is a broad-based campaign to build awareness about the importance of affordable housing and to expand the Ohio Housing Trust Fund.


We are asking our members and partners in and out of the housing industry to endorse the proposal to significantly increase the Trust Fund in next year’s state budget.

Please use this online endorsement form to sign your organization on to the Home Matters to Ohio campaign.

For more information about the Ohio Housing Trust Fund please click here.

Be sure to follow @HomeMatterstoOH and #BuildontheTrust & #HomeMatters.

To learn more, stop by our booth at the Ohio Housing Conference this week.

Thank you for your support!


Fundraising development TA opportunities available

OCDCA is pleased to, once again, partner with the Dublin, Ohio based Cramer & Associates to offer a fundraising TA opportunity.

This competitive opportunity will provide six OCDCA member organizations one-on-one fundraising TA. Note, two of these opportunities are reserved for rural organizations as part of the OCDCA USDA RCDI.

Specifically, Cramer & Associates will analyze and address:

* What is the most efficient and effective philanthropic program/structure?
* What development benchmarks need to be created?
* What role should the Board play relative to fundraising?
* What role should the Executive Director play as it relates to fundraising?
* How do we increase funding from current donors?
* Is the organization utilizing staff and volunteer time efficiently and effectively?

Opportunity recipients will partake in leadership meetings with Cramer & Associates. Selected organizations will receive an internal evaluation as well as an analysis report with strategic recommendations including a timeline for implementation, prioritized core goals, organizational structure, and action steps.

To apply, applicants must submit a brief application, which should take about 30 minutes to complete, by 5 pm December 1.



What’s happening?

Our monthly newsletter: What’s Happening in Ohio Community Development? is out! Topics include the new video – how Ohio CDCs empowered 1,000,000 individuals last year; annual conference follow up, AmeriCorps VISTA updates, trainings, funding, job opportunities, and more!

Here is a brief snippet:

Report Finds Housing Trust Funds Provided $1 Billion to Support Affordable Homes in 2015
A new report by the Center for Community Change finds that 770 city, county, and state housing trust funds operating throughout the U.S. provided more than $1 billion in funds in 2015. The 2016 National Survey of Housing Trust Funds summarizes the findings from their survey of state, city, and county housing trust funds, including state enabling legislation for local housing trust funds. The report highlights seven critical trends that housing trust funds are advancing to ensure affordable homes become an asset to every community. Stay tuned for news about expanding the Ohio Housing Trust Fund.

1,000,000 Ohioans empowered by Ohio CDCs in 2015

In 2015, CDCs around the state empowered 1,000,000 Ohioans to make positive changes for themselves and their community. 

In early 2016, OCDCA conducted a survey of its members to determine the impact of community development corporations in Ohio during 2015. The numbers astonished us.

Ohio’s CDCs:

  • Served 1 in 12 Ohioans
  • Invested over $290,000,000 in their communities to meet the housing needs for more than 34,000 households
  • Reached over 115,000 individuals through food access efforts
  • Helped over 36,000 households with job training and small business development
  • Leveraged $5,750,000 of investments for financial empowerment into $57,000,000 in assets for LMI Ohioans
  • Organized volunteers that performed more than 324,000 hours of service in their communities

We created a new video and an industry data report for you to share to demonstrate the impact of your work! 

Please share it with co-workers, friends, and your community, and use it as a resource to tell your story.

Special thanks to Patrick Fromuth of Fromuth Productions for creating the video, to Ohio Capital Corporation for Housing for their generous funding support for the project, and to Bill LaFayette of Regionomics, for his assistance in analyzing the data.