Investments in Rural America

Below are a few great examples of successful Community Investment Projects (CIP) supported by RDP and our QALICB partners:


A distribution business in Tennessee partnered with a local community college to fund a Class “A” CDL Training program. The course was held in the evening to accommodate working students. This program was enhanced with an additional incentive the state of Tennessee had in place to obtain postsecondary degrees or certificates for 55% of the residents by 2025. Those who qualified for the program received free tuition with the CIP picking up the remaining funds for miscellaneous items such as liability insurance and student & truck driving fees. As of September 2020, 145 individuals completed the CDL training; 47 were hired by the QALICB and 98 obtained employment elsewhere.



A farm equipment manufacturer in Nebraska partnered with the local high school and community college to create a workforce development and job training facility. The overall budget was $350,000 of which the CIP funds provided $90,000. The high school utilizes the building for welding classes, the college for adult classes, and local businesses use it for training. This is a multi-use facility which also met the need for a meeting center. The high school instructor has a passion for the courses taught, and motivated many students to consider careers in the trades.




On two separate occasions communities have used RDP’s CIP program to help fund a greenhouse used as a learning tool in coordination with local schools.  Students proudly develop knowledge, skill, and a sense of ownership in the fresh produce and flowers raised.  Products are sold to the community which helps offset costs incurred, and flowers are provided to students, teachers, or staff for special occasions. At least one of the schools provides produce to the school cafeteria. This is a great way to keep the nutritional benefits of the food by having a short time from harvest to consumption. In both cases, the CIP funds filled the gap to complete the fund raising that was already in process. Both communities already wanted a greenhouse, but the CIP helped make it a reality.