GROW SD in the News

Weatherization Day

Monday, October 29, 2018

Low-income households in America spend a disproportionate percentage of their annual incomes on home energy bills. Weatherization Day, October 30, highlights cost-effective, permanent weatherizing solutions for reducing the heavy energy burden these families endure. The US Department of Energy has supported weatherization of more than 7 million low-income households across the nation since 1976. Of those, GROW South Dakota has weatherized more than 7,300 homes in the state for a total of over $24 million.   A recent survey of GROW SD’s weatherization customers shows satisfaction with the services they’ve received and gratitude that their homes are healthier and more energy efficient. • 94%...
BIG IDEA COMPETITION LAUNCHES STATEWIDE

Thursday, October 04, 2018

Youth! Entrepreneurship! Cash! Scholarships! These are the key ingredients in the 2018 BIG Idea Competition, which launched on September 1. High school students across South Dakota are invited to compete in this business idea competition where winners will receive over $5,500 in cash awards and scholarships. Students may work individually or as a team and will be able to submit their business idea applications online until October 31, 2018. The online application as well as various resources and examples can be accessed at the BIG Idea website: www.BIGIdeaSD.com. For the optional marketing design competition, which carries a $500 cash prize, students will create...
GROW SD Receives Over $1.4 Million in CDFI Funding

Thursday, October 04, 2018

GROW South Dakota was recently awarded $1.45 million from the U.S. Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institutions Fund (CDFI Fund). GROW South Dakota and the Northeast South Dakota Economic Corporation (NESDEC), both of which are certified CDFIs, received the awards, which will expand their small business and first mortgage housing lending programs. The announcement came in September. GROW South Dakota received a grant of $950,000 in CDFI Financial Assistance funds, which will support its direct lending program for housing mortgages. Of the total, $250,000 will be directed to focus on South Dakota counties identified by the CDFI Fund as areas of persistent poverty. NESDEC...
GROW SD to Celebrate Weatherization Day

Thursday, October 04, 2018

Each year, October 30 is recognized as Weatherization Day. This day highlights the fact that low-income households spend a disproportionate percentage of their annual incomes on home energy bills. Weatherization provides cost-effective, permanent solutions for reducing the heavy energy burden these families endure. The US Department of Energy has supported weatherization of more than 7 million homes across the nation since 1976. Weatherization programs focus on upgrades to mechanical and electrical systems, health and safety measures, and building shell issues. These services not only save energy through advanced technologies to improve energy affordability for low-income families, but they also save lives...
BIG Idea Competition Opens September 1

Wednesday, August 08, 2018

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director Entrepreneurship - taking initiative and risk in a business venture - is one key to supporting our rural economies The BIG Idea Competition, entering its eleventh year, seeks to promote entrepreneurship, spur creative thinking, and encourage students to start a business. The BIG Idea Competition is a free business idea competition for high school students.  Students submit a written description of their business idea and compete for over $5,500 in cash awards and scholarships. There is also an optional Marketing Design award where students create an ad to support their business idea. Additional...
Loan Supports Young Entrepreneur’s Daycare Dreams in Philip

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

A young entrepreneur is pursuing her dream of owning her own daycare business, thanks to the help of a loan from GROW South Dakota. Hallie Konst was born and raised in Philip, South Dakota. She has always loved children and caring for people. She considered pursuing a teaching degree but opted to study business management because she thought it would translate to a higher paying job after graduation. In the end, she figured out a way to combine her passion with her schooling by purchasing an existing Philip daycare in 2017 and opening Konst Kids Daycare. The daycare facility in Philip has been...
GROW SD Grant Supports Faulkton Elevator Mural

Monday, July 09, 2018

GROW South Dakota has received a grant that will support a unique mural going up in Faulkton this summer. Australian artist Guido van Helten, who has created large murals on public buildings around the world, will be painting images representative of the people of the Faulkton area on the grain elevator there. GROW SD received a grant from a Rural Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) program meant to support arts and culture projects that help drive economic development.  Van Helten was recruited to Faulkton to paint the Agtegra elevator in order to create a one-of-a-kind South Dakota artwork in the town...
Unique Board Structure Guides GROW South Dakota

Monday, July 09, 2018

GROW South Dakota is not a typical nonprofit organization. Governing an affiliation of three separate, independent nonprofits with complementary missions and shared staff can be a challenge, but the boards of directors of the three agencies are up to the task. Each organization has its own board of directors. NESDCAP, founded as part of President Lyndon Johnson’s War on Poverty, has a 15-member board, divided into groups serving from three sets of counties in the 17-county service area. By law, board members must represent low-income, private, or public official constituencies. NESDEC also has a 15-member board representing its 22-county service area....
GROW SD Celebrates 40th Anniversary with Business Loan Special

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

In 1978, GROW South Dakota made its first business loans. In the 40 years since then, the agency has had significant impact on businesses and communities throughout northeastern South Dakota and beyond. To celebrate this milestone, GROW SD is offering a business loan special.   GROW SD’s revolving loan fund was established in 1978 with the purpose of supporting economic development in 22 northeastern South Dakota counties through small business loans and job creation. Since that time, the agency has made 2,009 loans for a total of more than $69.7 million to 1,214 area businesses (as of 3/31/18). These loans have assisted...
Celebrating Homeownership Month

Tuesday, June 05, 2018

June is National Homeownership Month, a time to recognize how owning a home relates not just to achieving the American Dream, but also to providing stable lives for families and creating stronger neighborhoods and communities. Homeownership is always a focus for GROW South Dakota, as we provide a variety of products and services to help people purchase or improve their homes. GROW SD has made 324 loans this year. GROW SD is putting three newly constructed single family homes on the market in Sisseton. These two bedroom, two bath homes include a two-car garage and are 1,140-1,230 square feet. Construction of...
GROW SD Celebrates Community during NeighborWorks Week

Tuesday, June 05, 2018

During NeighborWorks Week, GROW South Dakota will host two open houses on June 6, 11 AM to 6 PM, with lunch being served 11 AM to 2 PM. The homes are located at 616 8th Ave E., and 105 Arnie Dr., Sisseton, SD. This year’s theme is “Advancing Opportunity,” and NeighborWorks organizations advance opportunity by empowering residents and communities with the tools, skills and services they need to help everyone thrive. GROW South Dakota and other NeighborWorks organizations across the country will mobilize tens of thousands of residents, business people and government officials in a week of neighborhood change and awareness,...
Celebrating Community Action Month

Monday, April 30, 2018

In May, community action agencies nationwide observe Community Action Month, a period set aside to recognize the contributions that nonprofits, volunteers, and other committed citizens can make in improving their communities. The Northeast South Dakota Community Action Program (NESDCAP) dba GROW South Dakota has been at it for 50 years. It was created in 1966, soon after President Lyndon Johnson signed the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964, which created Community Action Agencies as part of the War on Poverty. GROW South Dakota was established to wage the war on poverty by implementing innovative and cost-effective programs to improve the lives and...
Encouraging Homegrown Businesses

Monday, April 30, 2018

Small businesses can have a big impact. Did you know that two out of three new private-sector jobs in the United States since the Great Recession were created by small businesses? Since 1963, the President of the United States has issued a proclamation announcing National Small Business Week. In 2018, this week falls between April 29 and May 5. It’s a time to honor the remarkable contributions of America’s entrepreneurs and small business owners. For the first time this year, the Small Business Alliance is hosting a virtual conference as part of National Small Business Week. This is a wonderful opportunity for...
NESDEC Board Member Sought

Monday, April 16, 2018

The Northeast South Dakota Economic Corporation (NESDEC) dba GROW South Dakota is seeking a board candidate for a Low Income Representative on the Board of Directors. The board member will represent constituents from Clark, Codington, Day, Grant, Marshall, and Roberts counties. If you would like further information, please contact Lori Finnesand at 605-698-7654 or lori@growsd.org.  For more information about GROW South Dakota’s housing and business development programs and services, please visit our website at www.growsd.org or call (605) 698-7654.
Down Payment Funds Deploying Ahead of Schedule

Wednesday, April 04, 2018

GROW South Dakota has received $4.1 million in funding to support down payment assistance for families with low to moderate income. In April 2017, GROW SD received funding from Project Reinvest for 200 deferred loans at $10,500 each and was expected to deploy them within two years. In November, 2017, the Wells Fargo Neighborhood LIFT funding for 225 forgivable loans at $7,500 each was launched and also had a two-year deployment time. In both programs, the down payment assistance was paired with a first mortgage typically financed by a Grow SD approved lender. As of late March 2018, GROW SD has...
Tax Law Changes Demand Attention

Friday, February 16, 2018

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director   For most small business owners, changes in the tax law take a back seat to the day to day operations.  Here’s a couple reason why you should pay attention to the recent tax law changes. Payroll Issues – The tax tables used to calculate withholding for paychecks have changed significantly.  First, make sure you (or your payroll service) is using the most recent tax tables (IRS Publication 15).  If you are using a payroll software, be sure to update it before every payroll so you are using current tables.  The new 2018 tables...
GROW SD Receives State Farm® Grant to Support Small Business

Friday, February 09, 2018

The Northeast South Dakota Economic Corporation (NESDEC) dba GROW South Dakota (GROW SD) recently received a Good Neighbor Citizenship Grant from State Farm for its technical assistance (TA) program for small business borrowers. The purpose of the project is to assist small business loan applicants prepare to borrow money and grow their business. The TA provided by GROW SD business loan officers will support business owners in various aspects of their operations. Each business will have different needs, but in general, TA comprises starting or expanding a business before, during, and after financing. NESDEC primarily serves northeastern South Dakota, but the...
Aberdeen to Host 2018 SD Women’s Business Conference

Wednesday, February 07, 2018

On March 9, 2018, women business leaders from across the state will gather in Aberdeen, South Dakota for The Women’s Business Conference. The one-day will, encourage, inspire and educate female executives and entrepreneurs. For more than a year, The South Dakota Center for Enterprise Opportunity (Women’s Business Center) has been planning the event along with a team of local volunteers. The event will feature Keynote Speaker Dee Dee Raap, BHSU School of Business Professor Dr. Barbara Looney, a panel of local women executives, and local women-owned business entrepreneurs. Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director, and GROW South Dakota’s Loan Officer,...
Improve the Air Quality in Your Home

Wednesday, February 07, 2018

According to the Environmental Protection Agency, indoor air quality is very important. Poor indoor air quality is currently one of the top five leading factors that affect respiratory health in the United States. There are many tips you can take to improve indoor air quality in your home: • Cleaning up any mold problems and controlling moisture • Changing furnace filters and keeping air ducts clean • Living in a smoke-free environment • Keeping your home clean and dust free • Installing carbon monoxide alarms • Installing an air purifier to help keep the air inside your home as clean as possible • Using safe practices when renovating Weatherization...
Homeless Count to be held January 23, 2018

Thursday, January 04, 2018

Homeless Count to be held January 23, 2018 Every year, the South Dakota Housing Development Authority conducts a one-day count of homeless persons in the state. The count is mandated by HUD. Again this year, SDHDA contracted with the four CAP agencies in the state to coordinate counts in their service areas, and GROW SD will support the 17 NESDCAP counties. The results of the count are used both to identify the problem and to request funds to address it. The date for this year’s count is January 23.   Last year, participation in the count by NESDCAP’s 17 counties increased from...
NESDEC Provides Financing to Dakota Provisions

Thursday, January 04, 2018

NESDEC Provides Financing to Dakota Provisions The Northeast South Dakota Economic Corporation (NESDEC), dba GROW South Dakota, recently received a $780,800 Community Economic Development grant from the Office of Community Services in the Administration for Children and Families in the Department of Health and Human Services. The grant will allow NESDEC to help finance the expansion of the Dakota Provisions Turkey Processing Plant in Huron, South Dakota, to provide a retail ready-to-eat food line of lean meat turkey products. NESDEC will provide a working capital loan along with no-cost business development services to Dakota Provisions in order to help create a...
Rental Property Repairs Available

Monday, December 04, 2017

Whether it is for a new roof or a new bathroom, landlords looking to improve their properties have a great opportunity. Rental property owners can receive up to $15,000 in matching funds to renovate their single family properties under a program operated by the Northeast South Dakota Economic Corporation (NESDEC). The financial support will be in the form of a forgivable loan.   The program requires that property owners supply funds at least equal to NESDEC funding for a proposed project. The minimum total cost of a project is $6,000 ($3,000 from the owner and $3,000 from NESDEC). NESDEC’s maximum contribution may...
GROW SD Uses State Farm® Grant to Prepare Homebuyers

Wednesday, November 01, 2017

GROW SD Uses State Farm® Grant to Prepare Homebuyers New homebuyers in South Dakota are more prepared for homeownership thanks to GROW South Dakota’s Preparing Homebuyers project and the help of a Good Neighbor Citizenship Grant from State Farm. The project supports prospective homebuyers in evaluating their readiness to purchase a home, preparing to apply for a mortgage, and building their understanding of all aspects of owning a home. The grant funded an information sheet on basic steps in preparing for homeownership. GROW SD began the project with a goal of reaching at least 200 people with homeownership information. Through a variety of...
BIG Idea Competition Celebrates 10th Anniversary with Special Speaker and Entrepreneurship Survey

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

The BIG Idea Competition—the business idea contest for South Dakota high school students—is celebrating its 10th anniversary in 2017 with a few new wrinkles. The basics of the competition remain the same as they have since its founding in 2007. High school students are invited to work individually or in small teams to produce a description of a business idea and enter it at www.bigideasd.com by October 31. After judging by hundreds of volunteers statewide, the top eight finalists will present their ideas at a final event on December 7 in Aberdeen. Winners receive cash prizes and scholarships from Northern...
GROW SD Seeking Two New Board Members

Thursday, September 28, 2017

The Northeast South Dakota Economic Corporation (NESDEC) dba GROW South Dakota is seeking two board candidates to represent the Private Sector on the Board of Directors. The board members will represent constituents from two different areas:  Area B: Beadle, Buffalo, Faulk, Hand, Hyde, Jerauld, Kingsbury, Miner, Sanborn, and Spink Counties. Area C: Brown, Campbell, Edmunds, McPherson, Potter, and Walworth Counties. If you would like further information, please contact Lori Finnesand at 605-698-7654 or lori@growsd.org. For more information about GROW South Dakota’s housing and business development programs and services, please visit our website at www.growsd.org or call (605) 698-7654. GROW SOUTH DAKOTA is an Equal Opportunity...
GROW SD Provides Lasting Improvements

Thursday, August 10, 2017

A disabled man was having problems with his house to the point that the city had issued citations requiring him to make improvements by a certain deadline. His disability kept him out of work, and the medical expenses reduced his income and resources. He didn’t expect to be able to get assistance. He contacted GROW South Dakota, who inspected the home and determined that he qualified for the Weatherization program and for a home improvement forgivable loan. GROW SD and contractors replaced windows, the front door, and the hot water heater. They also repaired sewer pipes, made electrical repairs, installed insulation,...
GROW SD Receives $2.4 Million Grant to Support Down Payment Assistance

Thursday, July 06, 2017

GROW SD Receives $2.4 Million Grant to Support Down Payment Assistance GROW South Dakota has earned a $2.4 million grant from Project Reinvest: Homeownership program. The largest grant in GROW SD’s history will be used to support down payment assistance for low- and moderate-income South Dakotans. GROW SD is one of 19 awardees across the country in this first competition in the Project Reinvest program. The down payment assistance will be in the form of deferred second mortgages. GROW SD will be able to make 200 loans in the amount of $10,500 each during the two-year grant period to income eligible homebuyers....
Mural to be Painted on GROW SD Office Building

Thursday, July 06, 2017

A new mural will soon be painted on the south side of the GROW South Dakota office building in Sisseton. GROW South Dakota received a grant from Rural LISC to commission community art projects in Sisseton – some of which are already completed. The flower planters lining the main street as well as a cross walk that was painted, and soon a mural. Alexis Monroe & Nicholas Blaske produced three designs reflecting the beauty of the Sisseton community and the diversity it represents. Three of the designs were put to a public vote on Facebook. The winning design, will depict a South...
Homeownership Education

Monday, June 19, 2017

Are You Ready to Buy a Home? Would you like information on how to obtain a mortgage loan? Do you need assistance with Money Management? How well do you understand credit? Is it time to protect your investment? These are topics included in a Homebuyer Education Class offered by GROW South Dakota. GROW South Dakota is a HUD approved Housing Counseling Agency and Housing Education Resource Organization (HERO). GROW South Dakota offers individual education for homeownership. Schedule your Homebuyer Education Class today by calling (605) 698-7654 or by emailing info@growsd.org. Click here for more information.  
GROW SD Celebrates NeighborWorks Week

Monday, June 05, 2017

On June 7, GROW South Dakota will celebrate NeighborWorks Week and Homeownership Month in Sisseton by offering refreshments and information in its headquarters parking lot.  Everyone is invited for hot dogs and soda.   During NeighborWorks Week (June 3-10), GROW SD and other NeighborWorks organizations across the country will mobilize tens of thousands of residents, business people and government officials in a week of neighborhood change and awareness, including painting and landscaping properties, recognizing successful partnerships and hosting a number of events that educate, train and inform. In addition to lunch, GROW SD will offer visitors information about the benefits of homeownership,...
GROW SD Offers Home Buyers Down Payment Assistance

Monday, June 05, 2017

June is National Homeownership Month, and it’s a great time to get into a home. GROW SD makes that easier for home buyers by offering down payment and closing cost assistance. Some people who have the income to make monthly mortgage payments nevertheless find it difficult to save the money necessary to make a down payment on a home. Because of this, they may be denied the opportunity. Down payment assistance provides a solution. GROW SD offers income-qualified home buyers loans they can use to cover a down payment and closing costs. These loans are paired with first mortgages. The down...
GROW SD to Host Program on Age-Friendly Communities

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

On June 14, GROW South Dakota will host a program on Age-Friendly Communities at 1:00 p.m. at the Dakota Events Center, in Aberdeen. The program will provide community and economic development professionals, local government officials, businesses, and other interested parties an overview of the Age-Friendly concept and examples of how various places are making their communities friendly to people of all ages, particularly seniors. GROW SD is promoting Age-Friendly Communities in South Dakota. The concept simply encourages communities to consider both the needs and contributions of the aging in their future planning. Leaders ought to want to make their communities great...
FREE Business Workshops to be Held in June

Monday, May 22, 2017

In June 2017 GROW South Dakota will be hosting a free workshop titled Get Your Business Online in Clear Lake, Eureka, and Highmore. Attendees will learn from Google experts through video presentations. Kelly Weaver, with the Small Business Development Center, will be on hand for questions and for hands on help with creating an online profile. The workshops will be held: Tuesday, June 13 from 11:45 am to 1:00 pm in Clear Lake at the Sports Page. Register here or by contacting Joan Sacrison at (605) 874-8038. Wednesday, June 21 from 11:45 am to 1:00 pm in Eureka at the Eureka Information Center. Register here or by contacting Wanda...
GROW SD Receives Grant for Sisseton Master Plan

Thursday, May 18, 2017

The South Dakota Community Foundation recently awarded GROW South Dakota a grant to be used in leading a master planning process for Sisseton, SD. The grant will enable Grow SD to coach and facilitate meetings resulting in a community-inspired vision for Sisseton.   Lori Moen, GROW SD Chief Operating Officer, stated that “the master plan will be a guide as they develop a community wide vision.   This tool will combine the visions and existing goals into one platform.”  The process will involve large and small group meetings that will identify the challenges and solutions for the priorities of Sisseton.  These...
Age Friendly Communites

Wednesday, May 03, 2017

  May is Older Americans Month. Anytime is a good time to recognize the contributions as well as the needs of America’s seniors, and this month is a good time to mention GROW SD’s new project that addresses both needs and opportunities when it comes to older Americans. Please click on the picture to take our survey and share your thoughts on age friendly communities.    GROW SD recently received a grant from Grantmakers in Aging in conjunction with the South Dakota Community Foundation to help raise awareness of the concept of age-friendly communities. The idea encourages localities to consider the needs of...
GROW SD Celebrates Community Action Month

Wednesday, May 03, 2017

In May, community action agencies nationwide observe Community Action Month, a period set aside to recognize the contributions that nonprofits, volunteers, and other committed citizens can make in improving their communities. NESDCAP dba GROW South Dakota has been at it for more than 50 years. It was established soon after President Lyndon Johnson signed the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964, which created Community Action Agencies as part of the War on Poverty. GROW South Dakota was established to wage the war on poverty by implementing innovative and cost-effective programs to improve the lives and living conditions of families and individuals by...
GROW SD Increases its Rental Portfolio

Wednesday, May 03, 2017

GROW SD added two new properties to its rental portfolio in January when it took on apartment buildings in Pollock and Sisseton. Altogether, the organization owns and/or manages 141 rental units in seven communities in northeastern South Dakota. GROW SD manages rental units in Doland, Leola, Milbank, Pollock, Sisseton, Tulare, and Wilmot. These eight apartment complexes contain from four to 60 units. GROW SD owns and manages two of the apartment buildings and manages the rest for third-party owners. Among the amenities, all of the properties offer laundry on site and off street parking. Lawn care and winter sidewalk clearing are...
GROW SD Celebrates World Book Day with Donation to Library

Thursday, April 20, 2017

In honor of World Book and Copyright Day, celebrated on April 23, GROW South Dakota donated a copy of the recently published book NeighborWorks Works: Practical Solutions from America’s Community Development Network to the Sisseton Public Library.  The work of the Sisseton Economic Development Corporation along with GROW South Dakota are featured in the book. The book consists of national case studies of the outstanding work being done in community development, as well as innovative solutions in affordable housing. For more information about GROW South Dakota housing, community and business development programs call (605) 698-7654. Photo Caption: Pictured are Lori Moen, GROW SD; Jane...
GROW SD Receives State Farm® Grant to Prepare Homebuyers

Friday, March 31, 2017

GROW South Dakota recently received a Good Neighbor Citizenship Grant from State Farm for its Preparing Homebuyers project. The purpose of the project is to support prospective homebuyers in evaluating their readiness to purchase a home, preparing to apply for a mortgage, and building their understanding of all aspects of owning a home. The grant will fund the preparation of an information sheet on basic steps in preparing for homeownership as well as coaching by GROW South Dakota staff to make a successful application for a home mortgage. The project has a goal of particularly supporting low-income potential homebuyers. The grant...
Sisseton Landmark Selected for Art Installation

Friday, March 31, 2017

Markus Tracy is preparing his canvas for one of the public art project to be completed on Veterans Avenue in Sisseton in preparation for the community's 125th celebration in June. Using a unique "inside-out" concept, the exterior doors and windows of the Siston Theater will become individual screens projecting images that reflect the community's identity for people passing by on the sidewalk or street. The project is a joint effort of GROW SD and the Sisseton Arts Council with support from a Rural LISC Arts and Culture Grant and the South Dakota Arts Council. Next week's Courier will feature another of the art projects to...
Annual Statistics Tell Positive Story

Thursday, March 30, 2017

2016 was big year for business development in S.D. The South Dakota Small Business Development Center was a significant force in job development in 2016. Its offices helped create or retain 1,434 jobs across the state. The statewide network of business-assistance offices also helped 158 new businesses get started, and the offices’ efforts had a direct economic impact of nearly $264.2 million. As measured in the SBDC’s annual report for 2016, economic impact includes capital investments, new and retained sales, and federal contracts and grants. 2016 was an outstanding year for the network and its clients, including 2,218 new clients served last year,...
Get Your Business Online Workshops to be Held In March

Wednesday, March 01, 2017

In March 2017 GROW South Dakota will be hosting a free workshop titled Get Your Business Online in Faulkton, Britton, Webster, and Redfiled. Attendees will learn from Google experts through video presentations. Kelly Weaver with the Small Business Development Center will be on hand for questions and for hands on help with creating an online profile. The workshops will be held: Monday, March 27 in Faulkton from 6:30 pm to 7:30 pm at Dot T's. Register by contacting Trevor Cramer at (605) 598-3050 or trevorcramer@yahoo.com. Tuesday, March 28 in Britton from noon to 1:30 pm at the Marshall County Community Center. Register here...
GROW SD Offers Up to $10,000 in Down Payment /Closing Cost for Home Loans

Wednesday, March 01, 2017

GROW South Dakota, the statewide community and economic development nonprofit, can offer income-qualified homebuyers financing to cover down payment and  closing costs when purchasing a home. Potential home owners may be eligible for a deferred loan of up to $10,000. GROW SD has provided more than $650,000 in down payment and closing cost assistance to nearly 200 South Dakota home buyers in the past five years. The funding program recognizes that many people have the income necessary to make monthly loan payments but are not able to save money for a down payment or closing costs. The program provides support in the...
GROW SD Staff Earn Professional Designation

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

Sandy Leiseth and Wade Veflin with GROW South Dakota received certification as a Housing Development Finance Professional (HDFP) from the National Development Council (NDC). HDFP Certification is a professional credential given to individuals who successfully complete NDC’s intensive housing development finance training series. The training provides individuals working in the field of housing development with instruction in single-family home ownership finance, multi-family housing development finance, housing development finance including problem solving and deal structuring, and the creation and implementation of development programs. The four HDFP Certification Program courses range from three to five days in length and concludes with an exam....
Energy Assistance Available

Monday, February 06, 2017

The Low-Income Energy Assistance Program (LIEAP) helps eligible South Dakotans Pay for home heating costs. Energy assistance can be applied for from October 1 through May 15. Eligibility for the program is based on the number of people in the household and the gross income of everyone in the household.   Applications can be obtained by calling toll free 1-800-233-8503 or online at http://dss.sd.gov/economicassistance/energyassistance. Energy assistance funds are distributed on a first-come, first serve basis.
Is Small Specialty Retailing Coming Into Its Own?

Thursday, January 19, 2017

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director   According to some retail experts, we have entered into a new phase of retailing where customers are in the driver seat more than ever.  Accustomed to having an unlimited selection of products at their fingertips, customers are beginning to crave experience over stuff.  The good news is that small independent retailers are better positioned to offer that experience. Consumers are looking for products and services customized to their specific needs and in line with their values and interests.  We have begun to see the decline of mass marketers with store closings by the...
GROW SD Celebrates Anniversary by Giving Back and Paying Forward

Tuesday, January 03, 2017

In 2016, GROW South Dakota celebrated its 50th anniversary of the establishment of NESDCAP and the beginning of its mission of serving the people of South Dakota in housing, economic and community development. In recognition of that milestone, the boards of each GROW SD organization authorized the expenditure of funds to give back to the communities the organizations have supported through the Pay-It-Forward Program. Through the program, each staff member and board member received $50 to donate to a community organization. The program was supported in part through a grant from NeighborWorks America. “We value our board members and staff and...
GROW SD To Participate in the 2017 Homeless Count

Tuesday, January 03, 2017

Every year, the South Dakota Housing Development Authority conducts a one-day count of homeless persons in the state. The count is mandated by HUD. This year, SDHDA contracted with the four CAP agencies in the state to coordinate counts in their service areas, and GROW SD will support the 17 NESDCAP counties. The results of the count are used both to identify the problem and to request funds to address it. The date for this year’s count is January 24. Less than half of South Dakota’s counties participated in the 2016 count, and only eight of NESDCAP’s 17 counties did. To...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to the Eureka Thrift Store

Monday, December 26, 2016

Successful communities depend on organizations and people that make things happen. Sometimes organizations make things happen for other organizations. The Eureka Thrift Store is one of those. The store is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to donate to a community organization. Craig Rau, a GROW SD board member, chose to support the Eureka Thrift Store because it in turn supports the women’s shelter, local food pantry, and ministerial association in...
Marshall County VFW Receives Pay-It-Forward Donation

Thursday, December 22, 2016

America as a whole owes a debt of gratitude for the service of its veterans who have served the country. The same applies at the local level, and many communities rely on local organizations to carry out that sense of appreciation. Service organizations like the Veterans of Foreign Wars are involved in many volunteer and charitable activities to support local communities and veterans in particular. For that reason, Marshall County VFW Post 3507 is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone,...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to Britton Lions Club

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Successful communities are made up of many people and organizations who contribute to the overall good of their hometown. Service clubs are the backbone of many rural communities, and the Britton Lions Club is one of the reasons Britton was recognized as South Dakota’s Community of the Year. The Lions Club is involved in many volunteer and charitable activities to support the quality of life, in Britton and for that reason it is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to the Webster Library

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Libraries are important to communities that want to get ahead. As more and more information becomes available, libraries remain one of the primary places where anyone can have access to information in all kinds of forms. As a result, the Webster Public Library is a vital part of its community. The library is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to donate to a community organization. Katie Rasmus, GROW South Dakota program...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to Miller Helping Hands

Wednesday, December 07, 2016

Successful communities depend on organizations that look out for people in need. Miller Helping Hands is one of those. The food pantry and thrift store is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to donate to a community organization. Lori Finnesand, co-CEO of GROW South Dakota, chose to support Miller Helping Hands because it meets food, clothing and other needs in the Miller area through its food pantry and thrift store. “We value...
South Dakota Community Foundation Awards $10,000 Grant to Northeast South Dakota Economic Corporation

Thursday, December 01, 2016

The South Dakota Community Foundation (SDCF) has awarded a $10,000 South Dakota Fund grant to Northeast South Dakota Economic Corporation (NESDEC). Since 1978, NESDEC has significantly impacted economic development in its 22-county service area by supporting business ownership, jobs, and homeownership. This grant will assist with supplementing NESDEC’s Revolving Loan Fund's Loan Loss Reserve for loans.   Pictured are: Ginger Niemann, SDCF Program Officer and Dustin Bragg, Grow SD   About the SDCF Since 1987, the South Dakota Community Foundation has helped people reach their philanthropic goals and strengthened communities across the state. The SDCF administers approximately $250 million in total assets for over 760...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to Langford Daycare

Monday, November 28, 2016

Childcare is an obvious priority for parents and is becoming more and more important for communities. For two-working parent or single-parent families, daycare is a crucial need, and daycare businesses are growing. The Langford Daycare is the only one in Langford, and is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to donate to a community organization. Rebecca Honl, GROW SD loan officer, chose to support the Daycare because they are fundamental for...
Certified Navigators to Assist During Open Enrollment

Monday, October 31, 2016

With open enrollment for 2017 under away, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), announced $63 million in Navigator grant awards to returning and new organizations.  These awards will support local in-person assistance to help consumers navigate, shop, and enroll in the wide variety of Marketplace coverage options.  “We are committed to making sure consumers have all the resources they need to find the right plan,” said Kevin Counihan, CEO of the Health Insurance Marketplace.  “We know in-person assistance is critical to connecting individuals and families with quality, affordable health coverage that best meets their needs.” Navigators are trained individuals and...
Weatherization Day Celebrated on October 30th

Monday, October 31, 2016

Each year, October 30 is recognized as Weatherization Day. This day marks 40 years of the weatherization program and is an annual opportunity to bring attention to the fact that low-income households spend a disproportionate percentage of their annual incomes on home energy bills. Weatherization provides cost-effective, permanent solutions for reducing the heavy energy burden these families endure. Weatherization programs not only save energy through advanced technologies to improve the energy affordability for low-income families, but also save lives and improve the health and safety of families by identifying carbon monoxide hazards, poor indoor air quality, mold, and other health...
GROW SD Featured in NeighborWorks America Book

Sunday, October 30, 2016

NeighborWorks America recently published NeighborWorks Works: Practical Solutions from America’s Community Development Network.  The book, published in December 2016, inlcudes GROW South Dakota. The book consists of case studies of the outstanding work being done in community development, as well as innovative solutions in affordable housing.  The strength of the NeighborWorks network and GROW SD’s experience and peer-to-peer resources allow it to not only leverage expertise, but also build an elite solution-based platform to improve lives and strengthen communities to overcome even the toughest of challenges.   The GROW SD case study in the book focuses on its work with regional partners to promote...
Customer Service: What to Do When Things Go Wrong

Monday, October 24, 2016

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director As we embark on the busiest retail season of the year, a focus on customer service is important.  Let’s face it, no matter how well trained your staff, things can still go wrong.  While companies providing good service try to limit those occurrences as much as possible, a company can truly set themselves apart by the way a bad situation is handled.  Your response could be the difference between winning over a customer for life and creating a vocal detractor of your business.  Here are some specific steps to Professional Recovery – how...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to the Groton Baseball/Softball Program

Monday, October 24, 2016

Providing recreational opportunities helps build communities in many ways. It develops personal fitness as well as team-building, competition, and cooperation skills. The Groton Youth Baseball/Softball Program supports many age levels in pursuing the national pastime. The Baseball/Softball Program is a recipient of a donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to donate to a community organization. GROW SD Housing loan officer Brenda Waage donated $50 to the Groton Youth Baseball/Softball Program in honor of her own sons’...
Britton Baseball and Softball Program Receives Pay-It-Forward Donation

Friday, October 07, 2016

Community development builds the strengths and resources of a community in many ways. A key resource to build in any community is its youth. The Britton Baseball and Softball Program is a program that does just that by offering recreational opportunities that develop fitness as well as team-building, competition, and cooperation skills. It is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to donate to a community organization. Kristin Hofland, GROW SD assistant...
GROW South Dakota Receives Over $2 Million in CDFI Grants

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

GROW South Dakota was recently awarded more than $2 million in three substantial grants from the U.S. Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institutions Fund (CDFI Fund). GROW SD and NESDEC, both of which are certified CDFIs, received the awards, which will expand their housing and small business lending programs. The grants were announced in late September. CDFI Program: Both GROW SD and NESDEC received a combined $1.8 million in CDFI Financial Assistance grants to support the organizations’ housing and business lending. GROW SD will receive $1 million, and NESDEC will receive $842,584. “We’re obviously thrilled to receive these grants,” said Lori Finnesand,...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to the Sisseton Library

Friday, September 23, 2016

Libraries are important to forward-thinking communities. With information more and more valuable, libraries still remain one of the best places for people of all ages and all means to have access to information in all kinds of forms. As a result, the Sisseton Library is a vital part of its community. The library is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to donate to a community organization. Dustin Bragg, GROW South Dakota...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to the Eden Fire Department

Thursday, September 22, 2016

All communities do their best to maintain safety and security and to prepare for the possibility of something going wrong. Fire departments can seem to be an invisible form of preparation, until they are needed.  In small rural communities, volunteer departments can seem even more valuable, because of the commitment made by people in all walks of life to protect their neighbors. The Eden Volunteer Fire Department is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member...
Beautification Projects Take Shape in Sisseton

Monday, September 19, 2016

A soaring bald eagle will soon grace the north wall of the former Boys and Girls Club on Oak Street. GROW South Dakota, which owns the building, received a grant from the Sisseton Economic Development Corporation to upgrade its façade and has engaged Sisseton Middle School visual arts teacher Alexis Monroe and Nick Blaske to produce a mural that represents the diversity of the Sisseton community. The mural will depict a bald eagle flying against a multi-colored sunrise. In describing the design, Ms. Monroe said, “We chose an eagle design for its symbolism: our national bird, a ruler of the skies,...
Mark Nelson Awarded the Heart of Dakota

Friday, September 16, 2016

Congratulations to Mark Nelson, GROW South Dakota Loan Officer, on being name a Heart of Dakota recipient by the Britton Journal. Mark was one of four recipients who received the honor this year.
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to Fort Pierre Economic Development

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

For decades, South Dakota’s rural communities have seen the need to be proactive about sustaining growth. Since 1986, the Fort Pierre Economic Development Corporation has been promoting business growth and retention, tourism, and quality of life and making a difference in Fort Pierre and Stanley County. The program is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to donate to a community organization. Marcia Erickson, GROW South Dakota CEO, chose to support the Fort...
Are You Looking in all the Right Places for Your Next Employee?

Friday, September 09, 2016

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month and South Dakota is fully engaged in helping businesses make use of this underutilized human resource.  You may have noticed the Ability for Hire ads which have aired in recent months.   With South Dakota’s low unemployment rate, the time may right to broaden your workforce.  Here are some options to help you investigate this opportunity. The SD Division of Rehabilitation Services is a key agency that works with people who have disabilities.  The agency has some very good resources for potential employers which include: Job Site Assessments...
GROW SD Again Named Exemplary Organization by NeighborWorks America

Thursday, September 08, 2016

GROW SD again received an Exemplary rating from NeighborWorks America this year, the top rating the organization issues. This is the third time in a row that GROW SD has achieved the rating. The rating system was established to help NeighborWorks report to Congress, funders and taxpayers on its use of grant funds with network organizations. Based on on-site review results, the Organizational Health tracking System Committee affirmed GROW SD’s Exemplary rating during its June 2016 meeting. NeighborWorks created the rating system in 2006 and reviews its network organizations every three years. The onsite review process evaluates all areas of the organization,...
Regional Roundtable Serves Northeastern South Dakota

Thursday, September 08, 2016

Yesterday, the Regional Roundtable welcomed the Governor’s Office of Economic Development Commissioner Scott Stern. The recently appointed Commissioner addressed the group and took time to answer questions and listen to group concerns. The Commissioner was joined by Deputy Commissioner Aaron Scheible, Research and Community Development Director Joe Fiala, and Finance Director Cassie Stoeser. For several years, GROW SD has facilitated quarterly Regional Roundtable meetings of the group in northeastern South Dakota. Dozens of leaders attend these impactful meetings, which typically include one or two speakers on topics relevant to rural development, followed by discussion and roundtable sharing. Participants share challenges and learn...
GROW South Dakota Participates in Media Relations Program

Wednesday, September 07, 2016

Early this summer, NeigborWorks America notified GROW SD that it had been selected to participate in its regional media relations program. In the program, the NeighborWorks media relations team will work with GROW SD and other network organizations to cultivate editorial and news coverage in print, online and broadcast outlets. Loan officer Rebecca Honl, who also leads GROW SD’s marketing and public relations efforts, is the point person for the project and will participate in a national kickoff in September to launch the program. Honl will also attend a national editorial planning meeting at NeighborWorks in Washington D.C. at the end...
GROW South Dakota Enhances Board Governance with $10,000 Grant from NeighborWorks America

Tuesday, September 06, 2016

GROW South Dakota has received a $10,000 grant from NeighborWorks America to recognize its work building a stronger and more effective board of directors. Effective boards of directors have been shown to be an essential part of a nonprofit community development corporation’s ability to efficiently deliver services and sustain business operations long-term. The Excellence in Governance program involved a small team of board members and the CEOs to lead the process with the full board.  The GROW South Dakota Leadership Team members were Chair Debbie Anderson of Peever, Vice Chair Dwight Hossle of Faulkton, and Secretary Vikki Day of Highmore, as well...
Heartland Region Backpack Program Receives $50 Pay-It-Forward Donation

Monday, August 22, 2016

Strong communities cannot be built without supporting their most vulnerable citizens, especially the youngest. With that mission in mind, the Heartland Region Backpack Program provides supplemental food items to more than 400 children in the Huron area every week. It is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to donate to a community organization. Gene Ellenson, a NESDCAP board member, donated to the Backpack program for its role in supporting the future....
Preparing for the New Overtime Rule Change

Monday, August 15, 2016

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director So you’ve heard about the new overtime rules going into place, right?  If not, the key change to be aware of is a doubling of the salary test from $455 to $913 per week effective December 1, 2016.  How do you go about figuring out what it means for your business?  Here’s a few steps to get you started. No salaried employees in your business?  No problem.  Keep paying overtime as required; this rule change does not affect you. If you have any salaried employees that fall below the new threshold salary of $47,476...
Sisseton Swimming Pool Association Received Pay-It-Forward Donation

Thursday, August 04, 2016

Recreation and fitness are key parts of any community, and the people who provide opportunities for residents to play and get in shape make important contributions to the success of their hometowns. The Sisseton Swimming Pool Association does just that for the people of Sisseton, and it is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to donate to a community organization. Joann Curran, GROW SD program support associate, chose to support SSPA....
South Dakota Community Needs

Wednesday, August 03, 2016

Every few years, GROW South Dakota conducts a survey of South Dakota residents to help it understand how citizens view their state and how GROW SD might contribute through its programs and services. We are still collecting responses for our 2016 Needs Assessment Survey, but it may be interesting to take a look at some of the results found so far. Looking at their communities, respondents rated the need for a variety of types of programs, products, and services. The following were ranked as the greatest needs by combining ratings as high or moderate needs. Business counseling/training Business loan to start or expand...
“Picturing South Dakota” Facebook Photo Contest Winners Named

Monday, August 01, 2016

GROW South Dakota, the statewide community development nonprofit, has announced the winners of its “Picturing South Dakota” photo contest, which invited South Dakotans to submit a photo of their favorite place in the state. Christine Feltes of Yankton won with a photo she called “Beautiful Clouds over Yankton’s Two Bridges.” As the winner, the Yankton Homeless Shelter, the organization she chose, will receive a $50 Pay-It-Forward donation from GROW SD. About her winning entry, Christine said, “I took the photo one evening as I was out for an evening stroll. The cloud formations that evening were beautiful and very unique. I...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to the Aberdeen Area Humane Society

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Most think of community development as being about building the strengths and creating opportunities for the people of a community. While that’s usually the case, sometimes quality of life is improved when non-humans are taken care of, especially pets that can make life better for their humans.  The Aberdeen Area Humane Society takes on the task of caring and finding homes for pets who are left with them. It’s an important service for any community, and the Society is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years,...
New Overtime Rules to Affect 9,000 South Dakotans and Their Employers This Year

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director   In one of the more significant changes of labor laws in recent history, small businesses could be impacted greatly by the new overtime rules that go into effect December 1, 2016.  Currently, the Fair Labor Standards Act exempts certain white collar workers from overtime requirements based on a duties test and a salary threshold.  While the duties test has not changed, the salary level for this exemption will nearly double on December 1 from $455 per week to $913 per week (or $47,476 per year).   It is estimated that this change will...
Sisseton Area Partners for Progress Receive Pay-It-Forward Donation

Thursday, July 07, 2016

Successful communities depend on volunteers who care about their hometowns and make things happen. Sisseton Area Partners for Progress (SAPP) is made up of those people. It is a civic/community club that raises money for school and community projects and does several community service projects. SAPP is a recipient of a $150 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to donate to a community organization. Three GROW SD staff members—NESDCAP Finance Director LeAnn Glynn, Project Director and...
GROW SD Earns FHA Designation

Wednesday, July 06, 2016

GROW South Dakota has received approval from the Federal Housing Administration to provide down payment closing cost assistance to FHA-qualified homebuyers. The US Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Denver Homeownership Center notified GROW SD of its new status in June. GROW SD has limited funding designated for down payment assistance in South Dakota’s urban areas of Sioux Falls and Rapid City. Homebuyers in those cities may be eligible for up to $10,000 in down payment and closing cost assistance – a 0% interest deferred mortgage for the purchase of an owner occupied principal residence. For more information on the down payment...
GROW South Dakota Launches “Picturing South Dakota” Facebook Photo Contest

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

GROW South Dakota, a statewide community development nonprofit, is launching “Picturing South Dakota,” a photo contest on its Facebook page. Beginning July 15, the agency invites South Dakotans to take a photo of their favorite place or thing in their South Dakota community and submit it to the contest. In the spirit of community development, the winner will choose a non-profit of their choice to receive a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota.   Picturing South Dakota runs from July 15 through July 25. Contestants must email their photos to picturingSD@growsd.org and include a brief caption for the photo. GROW SD will...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to Roncalli Junior Achievement

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Youth are the future of any community; that’s a given. But the future won’t be bright if attention isn’t paid to youth today. By bringing business volunteers into the classroom, Junior Achievement of South Dakota helps young people connect with relevant learning and the importance of staying in school. Students learn to own their economic success. The Roncalli fifth grade class program is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to donate...
GROW South Dakota Seeks Opinions

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

GROW South Dakota, the statewide housing, economic and community development nonprofit organization, is conducting its three-year Needs Assessment Survey and invites South Dakota residents to share their opinions. The survey is brief, but its results help GROW SD develop its plan of work. The survey is online at www.growsd.org/survey.   “The survey tells us what’s on the minds of South Dakotans in terms of their communities, and it helps us shape our work,” said Marcia Erickson, GROW SD Co-CEO. “In particular, the survey tells us what South Dakotans’ needs are that can be addressed through our focus areas of housing, economic and...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to Heartland 4-H Rodeo

Thursday, June 09, 2016

The purpose of community development is to build a community’s strengths and resources. One of the most important resources of any community is its youth, and building up youth is a key community development goal. The Heartland 4-H Rodeo is part of the South Dakota 4-H Rodeo program and will be held in Huron on July 16-17. It is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to donate to a community organization....
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to the Webster Diamond Club

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

When we think about our own recreation, we tend to think of something that’s enjoyable and relaxing and don’t consider the community development aspect. Providing recreational opportunities helps build communities in many ways, developing personal fitness as well as fostering team-building, competition, and cooperation skills. The Webster Diamond Club has a special focus on the community’s baseball and softball facilities, having overseen the building of the Veterans Memorial sports complex. The Diamond Club is a recipient of a donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to Pheasants Forever Youth Hunt

Tuesday, June 07, 2016

Pheasant hunting is the national pastime of South Dakota, but it’s not just a recreational activity. The bird represents a major part of the state’s economy and drives significant tourism and economic development support. Pheasants Forever is an organization dedicated to the conservation of pheasants, quail and other wildlife through habitat improvements, public awareness, education and land management policies and programs. The Pheasants Forever youth pheasant hunt is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to the Sisseton Tribal Elderly Program

Monday, June 06, 2016

Communities that are moving forward don’t forget where they’ve been or who got them there. While some might overlook their elderly citizens, the Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate Tribal Elderly Program makes sure that the generations who built their community remain part of it. The program is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to donate to a community organization. Sherri Skjonsberg, GROW South Dakota project coordinator, chose to support the Tribal Elderly Program because...
Celebrating National Homeownership Month

Thursday, May 26, 2016

June is National Homeownership Month, a time to recognize how owning a home relates not just to achieving the American Dream, but also to providing stable lives for families and creating stronger neighborhoods and communities. Homeownership is always a focus for GROW SD, as we provide a variety of products and services to help people purchase or improve their homes. Our talented GROW SD staff members are prepared to help households with their housing goals, and many recently upgraded their skills by attending a variety of training programs at the NeighborWorks America National Training Institute in Los Angeles, May 2-6. All...
GROW SD Pays-It-Forward and Gives Back for NeighborWorks Week

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Across the country, residents and volunteers are doing a variety of projects as part of a weeklong celebration of neighborhood revitalization activities nationally recognized as NeighborWorks Week (June 4-12). For GROW South Dakota, NeighborWorks Week represents a chance to continue its year-long celebration of its 50th anniversary of supporting community and economic development in South Dakota. One way GROW SD is recognizing this milestone has been to invite board members and staff to Pay-It-Forward by giving back to organizations that share its mission of building communities. The organization has provided $50 to each board and staff member to make such donations...
Langford Summer Rec Program Receives Pay-It-Forward Donation

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Community development is fundamentally about building the strengths and resources of a community, and it can occur in a variety of ways. One of the key resources of any community is its youth, and building up youth is a key community development strategy. The Langford Summer Recreation Program is a program that does just that by offering recreational opportunities to develop fitness as well as team-building, competition, and cooperation skills. It is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff...
Family Crisis Center Receives Pay-It-Forward Donation

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years and to celebrate each staff and board member has been given $50 to donate to a community organization. The Family Crisis Center in Redfield received a $50 donation as part of GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative.     Mark Nelson, a GROW South Dakota loan officer, matched it with a personal $50 donation for a combined $100 donation. The Family Crisis Center is a non-profit corporation that provides education, awareness, and temporary housing for domestic violence and assault victims in Spink, Faulk, and Hand Counties. Since completion of the facility in August...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to the Aberdeen Library Project

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Forward-thinking communities need places to think. Information is more valuable than ever these days, and libraries still remain one of the best places for people of all ages and all means to have access to information. In Aberdeen, the community is moving forward with a project to build a 21st century library. The project is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative.   GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to donate to a community organization. Patrick Gallagher, GROW South...
GROW Celebrates 50th Anniversary with Gala

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

On April 7, nearly 180 people attended the Gala for GROW South Dakota celebrating its 50th anniversary as a Community Action Agency. GROW SD invited clients, board members, volunteers, staff, and other supporters to its second Gala, which was held at the Ramkota Convention Center in Aberdeen.   In addition to enjoying food and good conversation, guests enjoyed a great program. Tom Farber, GROW SD Board member, served as MC for the evening and provided a historical overview of the contributions and highlights of GROW’s first 50 years. Farber noted since 1966 more than $63.1 million has been invested in single and...
GROW Celebrates Community Action Month

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

In May, community action agencies nationwide observe Community Action Month, a period set aside to recognize the contributions that nonprofits, volunteers, and other committed citizens can make in improving their communities. NESDCAP dba GROW South Dakota has been at it for 50 years, since soon after President Lyndon Johnson signed the Economic Opportunity Act of 1964, which created Community Action Agencies as part of the War on Poverty.   GROW South Dakota was established to wage the war on poverty by implementing innovative and cost-effective programs to improve the lives and living conditions of families and individuals by providing support and instruction...
Small Business Week Highlights GROW SD Economic Development

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

The U.S. Small Business Administration announced that May 1-7 is National Small Business Week featuring the theme “Dream Big, Start Small.”   Supporting small business has been an integral part of GROW South Dakota’s economic development focus for 50 years. Since it launched in 1966, GROW SD has invested over $64.4 million in small businesses across South Dakota. Through 2015, nearly 2,000 new and existing businesses have received small business loans from GROW, and these investments have helped create or maintain nearly 11,500 jobs. Loans have primarily supported companies in the service, retail, and wholesale sectors as well as several dozen small...
Staff Pay-It-Forward to Sisseton Youth Baseball Association

Thursday, April 21, 2016

GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years and to celebrate each staff and board member has been given $50 to donate to a community organization. This month the Sisseton Youth Baseball Association received a $150 donation as part of GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative.     Three employees (Cory Peterson, weatherization installer, Jared Groos, loan officer, and Wade Veflin, housing loan officer) donated a combined $150 to the Sisseton youth baseball association. The youth baseball association serves to support both the existing area youth baseball teams and to revitalize the Sisseton baseball field. “The association has made a number...
The Idea Is Only The First Step

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director   Having a great business idea is the springboard for getting your business off the ground, but it is only a tiny fraction of what makes a business start up work.  To quote Thomas Edison, “Genius is one percent inspiration, ninety-nine percent perspiration.”  The same could be said of a successful business. Many would-be entrepreneurs underestimate the work is takes to launch, create and maintain a successful business.    Sometimes, people have a great idea and think that alone will get them the support and financing they need to start the business.  If they can...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to the Boys & Girls Club of Aberdeen

Monday, April 11, 2016

GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years and to celebrate each staff member and board member has been given $50 to donate to a community organization. This month the Boys & Girls Club of Aberdeen received a $50 donation as part of GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative.    Rod Fouberg, a GROW South Dakota board advisor, made the donation to the Aberdeen, SD area club. The Club provides guidance-oriented character development programs on a daily basis for youth ages K-18 years old. Over the last 12 months overall membership at the club was 1,008 youth with an average daily...
2015 BUSH PRIZE Winner Video

Monday, April 11, 2016

On November 10, 2015, GROW South Dakota was one of eight organizations in the Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota region to be awarded the Bush Prize for Community Innovation from the Bush Foundation.  This prestigious annual award honors and supports innovative organizations with a track record of making great ideas happen. This is a tremendous opportunity for GROW South Dakota to celebrate our breakthroughs in addressing rural community needs more effectively, equitably and sustainably.    As a winner of the Bush Prize, GROW South Dakota receives a package of recognition, networking opportunities to create new partnerships, and a grant of...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to the Hyde County Food Pantry

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

GROW South Dakota is celebrating a half century serving South Dakota. To mark our 50th anniversary, each staff member and NESDCAP board member has been given $50 to donate to a community organization. Throughout the year there will be fifty recipients throughout the GROW South Dakota’s service area.   Recently, Vikki Day, a board member, made a donation to the Hyde County Food Pantry. The pantry is run by volunteers and is available to residences of Hyde County. “Volunteers give of their time to shop for groceries, stock the shelves, and serve people who use the food pantry,” said Day. “The volunteers at the...
Breaking The Myths of Small Business Funding

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director   Over the years I have worked with hundreds of existing and prospective business owners. There are some common myths that I hear, particularly from those new to small business financing.    Grant Money – In general, there is NOT grant money to fund for-profit business activities.  Two exceptions exist in very niche areas:  persons with a qualified disability and businesses doing research focused on Federal agency priorities.  Beyond this, “free” money may come in the form of prizes for business plan competitions or other contests offered randomly by private organizations.   Personal Credit – Your personal...
Doland Housing Receives $50 Pay-It-Forward Donation

Monday, March 07, 2016

This month Doland Housing received a $50 donation as part of GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years and to celebrate each staff member and NESDCAP board member has been given $50 to donate to a community organization.   Jim Becker, a GROW South Dakota Governor’s House representative, has a passion for housing and serves on a number of local housing initiatives including the Grow Spink board of directors. Becker said, “Doland has done a great job of using the governor’s house to create housing. They’ve developed a number of homes and a daycare...
2015 Annual Report

Thursday, March 03, 2016

We hope you will take the time to read our 2015 annual report detailing our statewide efforts to improve housing, impact communities and support economic development in South Dakota. For nearly 50 years GROW South Dakota has provided consistent, reliable, services to improve the quality of life for low-income and rural communities.      
Supplemental Food Boxes

Wednesday, March 02, 2016

For most of us, when we need food we head to our local grocery store.  However, for some of our elderly population, this may not be an option.  Many elderly members of our community live on a very limited, fixed income and food can become scarce.  To help meet their needs, GROW South Dakota offers a monthly supplemental food boxes for qualifying elderly individuals in Roberts, Marshall and Sully counties.    “I was recommended for the program by a social worker,” said one of GROW South Dakota’s monthly food box recipients.  The local woman had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease and was...
Staff Member Pays-It-Forward to the Roberts County 4-H Community Center

Tuesday, March 01, 2016

This month the Roberts County 4-H Community Center received its very fist donation thanks to GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years and to celebrate each staff member and NESDCAP board member has been given $50 to donate to a community organization.   Sandy Leiseth, a GROW South Dakota Housing Officer, made the first donation to the Roberts County 4-H Community Center building fund. Leiseth, formerly the Roberts County Extension Educator/Agriculture/Youth (from September 1991 to November 2000) matched the Pay-It-Forward donation with personal $50 donation. Leiseth said, “I am passionate about the project and...
GROW SD Acquires Mid-Dakota Economic Development Corporation Loan Fund to Strengthen Rural Businesses

Friday, February 19, 2016

GROW South Dakota, a non-profit agency, received $250,000 in funding from Mid-Dakota Economic Development Corporation to support small businesses in central South Dakota. “We’re grateful for Mid-Dakota’s investment in our revolving loan fund for businesses. It allows us to support entrepreneurs with affordable business loans in South Dakota communities,” said Lori Finnesand, GROW South Dakota CEO. The funds from Mid-Dakota Economic Development Corporation are available to small businesses in Buffalo, Campbell, Corson, Dewey, Haakon, Hughes, Hyde, Jones, Lyman, Mellette, Perkins, Potter, Stanley, Sully, Todd, Tripp, Walworth and Ziebach counties.   Jim Protexter, Executive Director of Mid-Dakota, says GROW South Dakota is the...
Cash Flow Pitfalls

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director   Perhaps you have heard the phrase “Cash is King”.  You may have also heard that a major reason for business failures is not having enough capital.  The type of capital often missing is ‘working capital’, that is, cash available to pay for day-to-day operations.  Even profitable, successful businesses can suffer from cash flow problems.  So what are the major causes of this small business challenge?   For new businesses with no history, it is easy to get in trouble if you have overestimated revenue or spent more than available on expenses or both.  Forecasting...
GROW South Dakota to Host 50th Anniversary Gala

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

GROW South Dakota is cordially inviting friends, clients, and partners of the organization to attend our 50th Anniversary Gala, to benefit the GROW South Dakota Foundation. The event will take place on Thursday, April 7, 2016, at the Ramkota Convention Center in Aberdeen, South Dakota. You may purchase your tickets online for $50 each or a table of 8 at the discounted price of $350.   The evening’s events will include a social, with a wine pull and raffle at 5:30 p.m., dinner and dessert at 6:30 p.m., with the main event at 7:00 p.m.; consisting of a program and guest speaker,...
GROW South Dakota Pays-It-Forward to the Britton Youth Wrestling Program

Friday, February 05, 2016

Community development aims to build strengths and resources, and it happens in many ways. Vital to any community is its youth, and building up youth is a key community development strategy. The Britton Youth Wrestling Program is a program that does just that by offering young people educational and athletic opportunities and developing fitness as well as team-building, competition, and cooperation skills. It is a recipient of a $50 donation from GROW South Dakota’s Pay-It-Forward initiative. GROW South Dakota has been helping communities for fifty years, and to celebrate that milestone, each staff member and board member has received $50 to...
Staff Pay-It-Forward for 50th Anniversary

Thursday, February 04, 2016

  We’re celebrating a half century of serving South Dakota. To mark our 50th anniversary, each staff member and NESDCAP Board member has been given $50 to donate to a community organization. Throughout the year there will be fifty recipients throughout the GROW SD service area, the first of which was Sisseton Community Transit, a non-profit public transportation service in Sisseton, SD. “We value our staff and the passion they have for the communities we serve. This Pay-It-Forward event is a small token of our appreciation toward all of the local organizations that make communities better places to live and work,” said GROW...
Otter Tail Power Company Supports GROW SD

Tuesday, February 02, 2016

Thank you to Otter Tail Power Company for their continued support of GROW South Dakota's Community Services. Pictured are Ottertail staff Cindy Essington and Collin Kremeier. And GROW South Dakota staff Lori Finnesand and Sherri Skjonsberg.
GROW South Dakota Celebrates 50 Years in 2016

Thursday, January 07, 2016

The evolution of GROW South Dakota as a statewide nonprofit was all started in 1966 through the creation of the Northeast South Dakota Community Action Program (NESDCAP) servicing three counties. The community action program approach was a result of President Lyndon B. Johnson’s 1964 legislation to battle the war on poverty. Funded by federal, state and local resources the agency opened its doors in Sisseton, South Dakota, to provide a means to assist low-income individuals and families become more self-reliant and improve daily living. NESDCAP’s first expansion in 1974 added service to seven counties and seven more counties were new...
NESDCAP Elects New Board Officers

Monday, January 04, 2016

Deb Anderson is taking on the leadership role as Chair of the Northeast South Dakota Community Action Program (NESDCAP), Board of Directors. Tom Farber, previous board chairman, has served as the board chairman for 20 years and will continue to serve as a board member.   Tom Farber has served as the Chairman of the Board of Directors for NESDCAP since 1996. Tom’s leadership skills have successfully lead the NESDCAP board and business ventures, volunteer activities, and community development projects. Tom is highly respected for his knowledge of housing, community and economic development and is always looking for new opportunities that will...
Winners Announced for BIG Idea Competition

Tuesday, December 08, 2015

(December 3, 2015, Aberdeen, SD)  The 9th Annual BIG Idea Competition was a BIG success with 263 entries involving over 400 students from 37 schools.  The event wrapped up Thursday, December 3rd, on the campus of Northern State University and the winners were determined from among the eight final entries with over $5,000 in cash and scholarships awarded.   Haley Ketteler of Pierre T.F. Riggs High School took first place with Bent Perspective, an Origami store focusing on teaching the customers how to make origami artwork.  Her prizes included a $1,000 cash prize, a $1,000 scholarship to NSU, and a $1,000 scholarship...
GROW South Dakota Helps Strenghten Rural Communities

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

By Jennifer Jones, South Dakota Public Radio An organization in Sisseton is working to impact towns in the northeast part of the state through housing, community, and economic development.    Listen Listen Listening...   2:14 Full story GROW South Dakota Co-CEO Marcia Erickson says you can see the organization’s impact up and down Sisseton’s main street.   “A business loan with that second business down there,” Erickson says. “We had a business loan with this restaurant. He has paid off, very successful, thriving business. We have done a business loan over here on this side of the street.”     During a tour of her community, Erickson points out several homes that have...
GROW South Dakota is proud to be named a winner of the 2015 Bush Prize for Community Innovation!

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

The Bush Foundation awarded the 2015 Bush Prize for Community Innovation to eight organizations with a track record of making great ideas happen.  GROW South Dakota is proud to be named one of the eight organizations selected.  The Bush Prize winners receive a package that includes promotional support and materials, and an unrestricted grant equal to 25 percent of the organization’s prior fiscal year budget, up to $500,000. The Foundation received 110 applications for the 2015 Bush Prize. Panels of community members within each of the three states chose the winners from their respective state. The 2015 Bush Prize winners are: Minnesota Hope...
Want Customers? Meet Their Expectations

Monday, November 09, 2015

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director   Customer loyalty is not a given.  If you want to get and keep customers you must meet (or exceed) their expectations.  Whenever we make a purchase of any kind, we enter the transaction with certain expectations.  For instance, when we walk into a restaurant, we expect to be seated and have our order taken within a certain period of time; we expect our order to be correct and properly prepared when delivered.  If our expectations are exceeded, we are happy; if they are not met, we are dissatisfied.    Businesses that are successful not...
My Silicon Valley Tour - Small Business Focus For Big Tech Companies

Thursday, October 29, 2015

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director                  I was recently part of a small group of SBDC staffers from around the nation to tour three tech giants in Silicon Valley:  Intuit, Google and Facebook.  Each of these companies are reaching out to the small business community in ways that can hugely effect the success of a small business. Here’s a few things I learned on the trip.       As the maker of QuickBooks, the most widely used small business accounting software, Intuit has had a long standing relationship with small businesses.  Their research shows that the average small business spends...
GROW South Dakota Celebrates Weatherization Day

Monday, October 26, 2015

GROW South Dakota Celebrates Weatherization Day   Upkeep on a home can be difficult at times, especially when things seem to break down or need replacing all at once. This can be even more of a struggle when your health is on the decline, and you are unable to work.  GROW South Dakota was contacted by a client who happened to be in this very predicament.  Her stove, refrigerator and furnace all needed replacing at the same time, but she didn’t have the means to make the necessary repairs on her own.  The Weatherization Program allowed GROW SD staff to come in...
GROW South Dakota recognized as NeighborWorks Green Organization

Monday, October 19, 2015

Program honors organizations with sustainable business practices   Sisseton, SD – GROW South Dakota in Sisseton, SD, has been recognized as a NeighborWorks Green Organization for its comprehensive commitment to sustainable operations. To achieve this designation, GROW South Dakota was required to demonstrate adherence to a set of green business practices across its operations and all of its program areas.   This is the fourth consecutive year that NeighborWorks America has recognized member organizations for their efforts to create healthier, energy-efficient environments for homeowners, renters, community residents and employees. To date, 81 NeighborWorks organizations – or nearly one-third of the network - have...
GROW SD Recognized as NeighborWorks Green Organization

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

GROW South Dakota in Sisseton, SD, has been recognized as a NeighborWorks Green Organization for its comprehensive commitment to sustainable operations. To achieve this designation, GROW South Dakota was required to demonstrate adherence to a set of green business practices across its operations and all of its program areas.   This is the fourth consecutive year that NeighborWorks America has recognized member organizations for their efforts to create healthier, energy-efficient environments for homeowners, renters, community residents and employees. To date, 81 NeighborWorks organizations – or nearly one-third of the network - have achieved this designation.   GROW South Dakota which focuses on housing, community...
Down Payment/Closing Costs Assistance Available

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Currently, the GROW South Dakota office, located in Sisseton, SD, has funding available for Down Payment/Closing Costs for individuals and families looking to purchase, or construct a home.  These funds are available to individuals in the Rapid City and Sioux Falls areas, as well as all other residents in South Dakota.  The Down Payment/Closing Cost assistance program can provide eligible homebuyers purchasing or constructing a home in South Dakota with two opportunities:   Rapid City or Sioux Falls Residents- up to $10,000 down payment/closing cost, 0% interest deferred mortgage, for the purchase of their owner-occupied principal residence. All Other South Dakota Residents- up to...
Senator John Thune and Senator Mike Rounds Celebrate Statewide Housing Grants with GROW South Dakota

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

(Aberdeen, South Dakota) -- Twenty-five years ago, Congress created the Affordable Housing Program (AHP) of the Federal Home Loan Banks, with the purpose of providing safe and decent housing for families across the country.   Senator John Thune and Senator Mike Rounds joined FHLB Des Moines in Aberdeen on August 13, 2015, to celebrate partnerships with FHLB Des Moines member financial institutions and community partners, GROW South Dakota, Homes Are Possible, Inc. and the Sisseton Wahpeton Housing Authority. Collectively, these three organizations have received a combined $12 million in Strong Communities Fund grants over the 25-year history of the grant program. According...
GROW South Dakota Helps to Revitalize the Community

Monday, July 27, 2015

GROW South Dakota Helps to Revitalize the Community Celebrating NeighborWorks Week 2015   As a NeighborWorks® America chartered member, GROW South Dakota hosted a NeighborWorks Week  open house and volunteer work day on June 8, 2015, for a home being revitalized at 1290 Kansas Ave SE, Huron, South Dakota. The home was donated to GROW South Dakota by the National Community Stabilization Trust through the support of Wells Fargo Bank for the purpose of revitalizing the home and reselling the property to an eligible home buyer.   As part of the day’s events, Tim Carl and Cory Peterson, Weatherization Installers for GROW South Dakota, demonstrated...
Easing Economic Hardship through Small Business Lending

Monday, July 13, 2015

Sisseton, SD – April 20, 2015.  GROW South Dakota has announced a $991,657 loan from the USDA Rural Development Intermediary Relending Program.  This low-interest loan will recapitalize GROW SD’s statewide revolving loan fund in order to increase small business activity and employment in a rural service area through the provision of affordable loans and technical assistance to new and expanding South Dakota small businesses in partnership with local lenders and USDA Rural Development. “The development and growth of this needed revolving loan fund will initially focus on serving those small businesses in a statewide 14-county service area including: Lawrence, Stanley, Hughes,...
GROW SD Awarded Down Payment Funds

Monday, June 22, 2015

The South Dakota Housing Opportunity Fund (HOF) has awarded GROW South Dakota $550,000 for the purpose of expanding GROW South Dakota’s Down Payment/Closing Cost Assistance Program and to build a program that will foster sustainable homeownership statewide and assist qualified homebuyers to purchase or construct a home.  Two down payment/closing cost loan products are available:   RAPID CITY or SIOUX FALLS RESIDENTS | A $10,000 down payment/closing cost, 0% interest deferred mortgage, for the purchase of their owner occupied principal residence.  ALL OTHER SOUTH DAKOTA RESIDENTS | A $5,000 down payment/closing cost, 0% interest deferred mortgage, for the purchase of their owner occupied...
EDPP Provides Matching Funds to GROW South Dakota

Monday, June 01, 2015

GROW South Dakota has received a $250,000 grant from the Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) Partnership Program. This serves as matching funds for USDA Rural Development loan funds which replenishes the organization’s business revolving loan fund.   The development and growth of GROW South Dakota’s statewide revolving loan fund focuses on serving those with the greatest need who are underrepresented, low-equity, or low-income. “GROW SD has designed and implemented strategies to improve our rural communities as a whole, through community capacity building, job creation, housing and economic development,” stated Lori Finnesand, GROW South Dakota Chief Executive Officer.Through the provision of affordable...
Revitalized Home in Huron SD

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Tour and Open House Part of NeighborWorks® Week On Monday, June 8, 2015, GROW South Dakota will engage volunteers and showcase the improvements that have taken place to-date in the home located at 1290 Kansas Ave SE, Huron, SD. The public is invited to our open house which begins at 11:00 a.m. until 12:00 p.m. and includes an energy audit demonstration.  PLEASE NOTE - in order to attend the energy audit demonstration, you must be inside the home before the demonstration takes place.  Due to the process, the doors will not be allowed to be opened during the demonstration. “This kicks off GROW...
Aberdeen director honored for helping businesses

Friday, May 22, 2015

Kelly Weaver has been honored as the SCORE Champion of the Year in South Dakota for helping small businesses.   Weaver is the regional director of the South Dakota Small Business Development Center (supported by GROW South Dakota) in Aberdeen. SCORE used to stand for the Service Corps of Retired Executives. However, SCORE volunteers include active as well as retired business leaders, so the organization now promotes itself as America’s Counselors to Small Businesses.   “Our members enjoy helping small business owners see more clearly the pathway to success,” says Pierre bank manager Cari Fossum, district director for SCORE in South Dakota. She nominated Weaver...
GROW SD to Host Cyber Security Workshop

Monday, May 18, 2015

On Tuesday June 9, 2015 GROW South Dakota will be hosting two half-day workshops on cyber security in Britton and Webster, South Dakota. Helix Security will present the same information at the Marshal County Community Building from 9:00 am to noon in Britton and from 1:00 to 4:00 pm at the Lake Region Business Center in Webster.    During the workshop Helix Security will teach business owners about protecting business and client information from unauthorized access. Topics will include: underground fraud, the types of attacks hackers use, and how to ensure a business is protected. The training is free and open to...
Get Your Message to Stick

Friday, May 15, 2015

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director   One of the hardest things for a business to do, especially when starting up or launching a new product line, is finding a message that will capture the hearts of their customers and potential customers.  Think about how much information bombards your customers everyday.  If you don’t give them a strong and clear cut reason why to shop your business or choose your product, they are not going to take action.   The book entitled Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die written by brothers Chip and Dan Heath outlines six...
Celebrating National Small Business Week

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

For more than 35 years, GROW South Dakota has been working hard to assist South Dakotans in starting, and growing, their own businesses. May 4-8 is National Small Business Week, a week to honor small business owners across the nation and to recognize the entrepreneurs who provide vital services to our towns and communities. As part of the week-long celebration, the Small Business Administration will be hosting free panel discussions and webinars on a variety of business topics.   Join GROW South Dakota this week by thanking local business owners for their willingness to take a risk and making each of our...
Native Homeownership Coalition Focuses on Financial Education Training for Native Communities

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Thirty participants from across the state of South Dakota are currently participating in a three-day intensive train-the-trainer session in Pierre, South Dakota focusing on financial education for Native communities. The training was sponsored by the South Dakota Native Homeownership Coalition (Coalition), which works to increase homeownership opportunities for South Dakota’s Native people to build strong and healthy communities. Rosemarie Dillingham of the Oglala Sioux Tribe Partnership for Housing and a training participant, stated, “We appreciate the faith the trainers and the SD Native Homeownership Coalition members have in our organization’s purpose: getting families into homes.” Participants representing nonprofit organizations, tribal housing entities,...
Help for Your Business Workforce Needs is Nearby

Monday, April 13, 2015

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director   Hiring and keeping employees is one of the biggest struggles for businesses of all sizes and even more so for small businesses with no dedicated human resource staff. Workforce is a hot topic in the state, and many communities have initiatives that are just getting off the ground. At a recent workforce forum, I was reminded of some great resources that can assist small businesses.   The South Dakota Department of Labor is often thought of as a place for job seekers but they offer a number of services to businesses as well.  They...
GROW South Dakota is Recognized by Citi Foundation for their Commitment to Homeownership

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

The Citi Foundation has announced a $50,000 grant to GROW South Dakota to support the Section 502 Direct Loan Packaging Program. “We value the important work GROW South Dakota is doing to increase homeownership in rural areas, persistent poverty counties, and reservation areas and are pleased to be able to support them in these efforts,” stated Ruth Christopherson, Senior Vice President of Citi Community Development.   GROW South Dakota is dedicated to helping low-income residents achieve long-term home ownership goals through the USDA Rural Development 502 Direct Loan Program which is paired with other GROW SD housing loan products and services.  “Since...
What’s in a Name (for your Business)?

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director   One of the hardest decisions a new business owner can make is choosing a business name.  It is important to pick a name that reflects your business activity without being too restrictive. The name must also be available to be properly registered (both offline and online) and protected as needed.  Here are some things to consider in choosing your business name:   Keep the long term in mind.  While you may be the only employee or offering limited services to start, is that the long term vision for your business?  Choose a name that...
GROW South Dakota to Host Premiere Philanthropy Gala

Friday, March 06, 2015

GROW South Dakota is cordially inviting friends, clients, and partners of the organization to attend our premier philanthropic event to benefit the GROW South Dakota Foundation. The event will take place on Saturday, April 11, 2015, at the Ramkota Convention Center in Aberdeen, South Dakota. You may purchase your tickets online for $50 each or a table of 8 at the discounted price of $350.   The evening will include a social and silent auction beginning at 5:30 p.m. with a dinner and guest speaker, Bob Sutton, to begin at 7:15 p.m. Bob Sutton is currently the Regional President and CEO at...
GROW South Dakota Receives NeighborWorks® America Funding to Strengthen Communities through Housing, Community, and Economic Development Initiatives

Thursday, March 05, 2015

GROW South Dakota, an exemplary member of the national NeighborWorks® network, is receiving $458,250 in funding from NeighborWorks® America that will support its affordable housing, community, and economic development activities. “We are grateful for our relationship with NeighborWorks® America and their financial support that will boost affordable housing and business lending through our revolving loan fund.  This capital will also allow GROW South Dakota to provide improvements to rental real estate in rural communities,” says Marcia Erickson, GROW South Dakota CEO of Housing and Community Development.   "NeighborWorks® grant dollars invested in South Dakota communities resulted in total direct investment of almost...
Looking for Success? Don't Do This!

Thursday, February 12, 2015

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director   While there are many steps one can take to be successful in business, we can also get in our own way by not paying attention to certain unhelpful habits.  Below is a discussion of things that will NOT bring you success in operating a business and life in general.   Poor Me Attitudes - Being jealous, dwelling on past mistakes and making excuses are things that take energy away from pursuing your success.  Use the success of others as a motivator for yourself.  Their success doesn’t have to take away from yours.    Don’t make...
Home Improvement Grants Available for North Dakota and South Dakota Homeowners

Thursday, January 29, 2015

The Federal Home Loan Bank of Des Moines has awarded a $487,500 grant to GROW South Dakota, a nonprofit housing organization, in partnership with the Peoples State Bank, Summit, South Dakota, "Member FDIC" an Equal Housing Lender.    The purpose of the Affordable Housing Program is to provide one major improvement to a homeowner’s primary residence which may include, but is not limited to:  Roof repair/shingles; siding; plumbing; minor foundation repair; handicapped accessibility; or wiring.  The grant funds will rehabilitate 75 homes in the following counties:   Five Southeastern North Dakota counties:  Cass, Dickey, Ransom, Richland and Sargent   Eastern & Central South Dakota counties:   Aurora,...
2014 Annual Report

Thursday, January 22, 2015

We hope you will take the time to read our 2014 annual report detailing our statewide efforts to improve housing, impact communities and support economic development in South Dakota. For more than 45 years GROW South Dakota has provided consistent, reliable, services to improve the quality of life for low-income and rural communities. Read GROW South Dakota's 2014 Annual Report.
Using Your Business Numbers for Success

Friday, January 09, 2015

Using Your Business Numbers for Success by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director   As one year comes to a close, it’s a good time to make a plan for the year to come.  Fortunately, it’s also the time of year when businesses are forced to look at their numbers because Uncle Sam requires them to. (For the record, I am a strong proponent that you look at the numbers for your purposes and more often than once a year.)   While numbers may not ‘be your thing’, successful business owners figure out a way to understand their numbers and use them to...
Area Groups Meet in Pine Ridge

Monday, January 05, 2015

In September 2014, an advocacy group met in Pine Ridge to discuss and tour the new housing initiatives and challenges being faced in the Pine Ridge area.  GROW South Dakota was awarded a Rural Community Development Initiative (RCDI) grant to support the efforts of the South Dakota Native Homeownership Coalition.  Recipients of the USDA Rural Development RCDI grant include: Thunder Valley Community Development Corporation, South Dakota Housing Development Authority, Neighborworks Dakota Home Resources, Mazaska Owecaso Otipi Financial Inc., Four Bands Community Fund, Wild Horse Butte Community Development Corporation, Oglala Sioux Tribe Partnership for Housing Inc., Lakota Fund Inc., and the...
Wells Fargo Housing Foundation Grants GROW South Dakota $5,000 to Create Sustainable Homeownership Opportunities through Homebuyer Education

Thursday, December 11, 2014

GROW South Dakota today announced it has been awarded with a $5,000 grant from the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation to create sustainable homeownership opportunities for low- to moderate-income communities through homebuyer education. “GROW South Dakota realizes education is the key to starting and maintaining successful homeownership.  If new homebuyers are well informed and knowledgeable about the responsibilities of homeownership before they purchase their home, the likelihood of successful home ownership is much greater.” stated Lori Moen, Chief Operating Officer of GROW South Dakota. GROW SD's goal in homeownership education is to offer a continuum of strategies to ensure successful sustainable...
East River Electric and REED Fund award $1 million loan to GROW South Dakota

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

SISSETON — East River Electric Power Cooperative’s Rural Electric Economic Development (REED) Fund has announced a $1 million loan to GROW South Dakota. The loan was officially closed Nov. 19 and will provide supplemental funding to the organization’s housing loan programs which provide affordable housing options to low-income families. “East River Electric, its member cooperatives and the REED Fund work to grow our rural communities and make a positive impact in South Dakota and we’ve always been appreciative of the work GROW South Dakota has done to assist people in rural areas of the state,” said REED Fund manager Linda Salmonson. “We’re...
GROW South Dakota December 2014 Newsletter

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Free, Confidential Homebuyer Support Because your List is Long Enough Pick up the kids, get milk, don't be late for the doctor's appointment, life is crazy - but buying a house doesn't have to be. GROW South Dakota is here to help you navigate the home buying process no matter what stage you are in. Click here to view the complete newsletter.
NeighborWorks Supports GROW South Dakota’s Statewide Home Mortgage Lending

Monday, November 10, 2014

Knowing where to look for financing when making the decision to purchase a home is key in the home ownership process, but what happens when you hit an obstacle in your journey?  In rural communities, obtaining financing can prove to be challenging, especially since mortgages collateralized by these properties don’t always fit the ‘cookie cutter’ mortgage lending requirements.  Thanks to a partnership with NeighborWorks America, GROW South Dakota is able to assist with mortgage lending when obtaining traditional financing may not be an option.   “With the support of NeighborWorks America through a $100,000 Expansion Grant, GROW South Dakota will expand their...
Selling Your Business

Thursday, October 16, 2014

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director   Most people do a lot of planning when they are starting a business.  Unfortunately, the same is not often true of selling their business.  This lack of planning can sometimes limit the selling price of the business and lengthen the time it takes to it sold.  If you are looking to sell your business as a going concern, here are few tips to consider in preparation for a sale.    Be prepared to prove it.  Any educated buyer who is serious about buying a business will want to see the financial records of the...
WEATHERIZATION AND HOME IMPROVEMENT FUNDS AVAILABLE THROUGH GROW SOUTH DAKOTA

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

NEWS RELEASE GROW South Dakota 104 Ash St. Sisseton, SD 57262 605-698-7654   The Department of Energy’s (DOE) Weatherization Assistance Program, South Dakota Housing Development Authority (SDHDA) HOME and Housing Opportunity Funds (HOF) , Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLB) and our local GROW South Dakota office work together to help reduce the energy burden on low to moderate-income families by installing cost-effective, energy efficiency measures and assisting with needed home repairs.  GROW South Dakota currently has several home improvement funds available to help make your home more energy efficient or repair such items as roof, siding, plumbing electrical, handicap accessible features, etc. Current funding sources available through GROW...
Schaefers Honored For 40 Years of Service

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

JoAnn Schaefers was honored by GROW South Dakota for her 40 years of combined service as a member of their Board of Directors. GROW South Dakota serves northeast South Dakota through housing, community and economic development.   Schaefers served on the Northeast South Dakota Community Action Program (NESDCAP also known as GROW South Dakota) Board of Directors for 10 years, including a number of terms on the State Community Action Board. Following her tenure on the NESDCAP Board she began serving on the Northeast South Dakota Economic Corporation (NESDEC also known as GROW South Dakota) since 1984. “JoAnn’s dedication to rural communities...
USDA Celebrates Homeownership Month: Two Rural Families Recognized in Sisseton

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Sisseton, SD, June 18, 2014 – Across the nation, events and celebrations are underway to recognize the American Dream of homeownership.  In Sisseton, SD, Myron Doud and Stephanie Richards, and Joe and Danielle Donnell families are being highlighted for receiving Rural Development Section 502 Direct Single Family Housing Loans to purchase their homes.  Doud and Richards – a family of eight – had previously been living with his parents in a four bedroom house.  Donnell – a family of three – had previously been living with her family. “Homeownership is a critical step on the ladder of opportunity.  Homeowners are the...
Pricing your Products and Services

Thursday, June 19, 2014

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director   One of the hardest jobs for a small business is effectively pricing their products or services.  Effective pricing requires research on your costs, your customers, and the market.   Overhead costs, those reoccurring costs of insurance, rent, utilities, advertising, etc., are pretty clear cut.   What is more difficult to determine is the cost of your products and labor, especially if the business makes its own products or provides a service.  Beyond the actual cost of the product or raw materials, one must consider additional costs of freight, carrying costs of inventory, waste/shrinkage.  These items...
GROW South Dakota Receives Grant

Monday, June 16, 2014

Northeast South Dakota Community Action Program dba GROW South Dakota was recently awarded a $9,000 grant from the Wells Fargo Housing Foundation.  This grant will assist in continuing to achieve GROW South Dakota’s  goal to ensure all families have a chance at successful and sustainable home ownership. This grant will help to ensure that families have the appropriate tools and knowledge at their disposal to make informed decisions in regards to home ownership, financing options and home maintenance.  GROW South Dakota offers clients the following options for potential homebuyers to become informed consumers: Pre-Purchase Education Homebuyer Counseling Loan Origination Down Payment/Closing Cost Assistance Post-Purchase Education Retention of...
NeighborWorks America Launches 31st Annual NeighborWorks Week

Friday, June 06, 2014

On June 7, GROW South Dakota (located in Sisseton, SD) in conjunction with NeighborWorks America, kicks off the 31st annual NeighborWorks Week.  NeighborWorks Week is a weeklong celebration in which thousands of volunteers come together to help make their communities healthy, sustainable places. This is a record-setting year for NeighborWorks Week, with more than 200 groups holding more than 300 events across the country. NeighborWorks America, which creates opportunities for people to live in affordable homes, improve their lives and strengthen their communities, supports a network of more than 240 nonprofits, located in every state, the District of Columbia and...
SBDC offers valuable service to small business community

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director Across the United States, there are over 1,000 Small Business Development Center (SBDC) offices providing management and technical assistance to more than one million small business and aspiring entrepreneurs each year. SBDC’s offer no fee face-to-face business consulting and low-cost training on writing business plans, accessing capital, marketing, regulatory compliance, international trade and more. A partnership of federal, state, local resources make these services available to the small business community. Over 96% of the businesses in South Dakota are classified as small businesses. America’s SBDC program studies the economic impact of in-depth clients,...
March 2014 Newsletter

Monday, March 17, 2014

In this issue: GROW South Dakota Receives Funding to Strengthen Rural Communities Housing Funds Available!!! GROW CEO Completes Leadership Program   GROW South Dakota Receives Funding to Strengthen Rural Communities GROW South Dakota, an exemplary chartered member of the national NeighborWorks® network, is receiving $391,500 in flexible grants from NeighborWorks® America – a much-needed boost that will support its affordable housing, community, and economic development activities. continue reading...   Housing Funds Available!!! If you are purchasing a home or are in need of housing repair, GROW South Dakota is your one stop shop for anything housing related. Here are a few of the housing programs GROW South Dakota has...
Housing Funds Available

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

If you are purchasing a home or are in need of housing repair, GROW South Dakota is your one stop shop for anything housing related. Here are a few of the housing programs GROW South Dakota has to offer:   Veterans Home Loans:  Specifically assisting Veterans.  Down Payment Assistance, Home Improvement Loans and Home Purchase Loans.   Homeowner Improvement Loans: Forgivable and low cost loans available to help with improvements such as: shingles, siding, plumbing, energy efficiencies, etc.   Homeownership Education Classes: Learn the ins and outs of purchasing a home. Topics include: shopping for a home, money management, understanding credit, protecting your investment and more.   Housing...
Affordable Care Act Update For Small Businesses

Friday, February 21, 2014

by Kelly Weaver, Small Business Development Center Regional Director   As implementation of the Affordable Care Act kicks into high gear, here’s a few items that small business owners should keep in mind.   If you are a sole proprietor with no employees, you can apply for coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace as an individual.  At this point, no business is required to provide health insurance.   If you insure your employees now, you can keep the coverage you have. Businesses with less than 50 full time equivalent employees can apply for coverage for your employees through the Small Business Health Options Plan (SHOP).    By using the SHOP,...
GROW South Dakota Receives $132,500 to Strengthen Neighborhoods through Housing and Community Development Initiatives

Friday, March 29, 2013

Sisseton, South Dakota – GROW South Dakota, a member of the national NeighborWorks® network, is receiving $132,500 in flexible grants from NeighborWorks® America – a much-needed boost that will support its affordable housing and community development activities. The NeighborWorks network is supported by NeighborWorks America and consists of more than 240 independent nonprofit organizations committed to strengthening communities in all fifty states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. "For every dollar in NeighborWorks grants, an average of $34 is in invested in America’s communities like the ones served by GROW South Dakota resulting in a total direct investment of almost $4.7 billion in communities in 2012,” said NeighborWorks America...
Business Owners Need to be Lifelong Learners

Friday, July 20, 2012

Each of us has a need for continuing education no matter what profession we are in. For small business owners, this need is heightened. There are so many things a business owner needs to know and so many demands on your time. It's not likely the boss (i.e., you) is going to send you off to a week-long training session. Fortunately, the Internet is a great source of information available 24/7 whenever your schedule allows - even if it's between midnight and 2 a.m. Online training comes in various shapes and sizes ranging from an electronic work, a talking slide...
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GROW South Dakota

GROW South Dakota
104 Ash Street East | Sisseton, SD  57262
Phone (605) 698-7654 | Fax (605) 698-3038 info@growsd.org