USDA StrikeForce for Rural Growth and Opportunity
There's a whole series of success stories in the StrikeForce States - that's why we're trying to expand this opportunity in other states, so we can send the message that USDA is focused not just on places where there has been prosperity recently in rural areas, but also focusing on trying to address the challenge of persistent poverty. - USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack
Growing the economy by investing in rural communities and increasing opportunities for families is key to our Nation's future. In 2010, Secretary Vilsack established USDA's StrikeForce Initiative for Rural Growth and Opportunity to address the specific challenges associated with rural poverty. Since then, StrikeForce teams have collaborated with more than 500 community partners and public entities across twenty states to bring targeted assistance to rural areas experiencing chronic poverty.
StrikeForce efforts have helped direct over $16 billion in investments to create jobs, build homes, feed kids, assist farmers, and conserve natural resources in the country's most economically challenged areas. In 2015, StrikeForce expanded to include Oklahoma and Puerto Rico. Now, USDA StrikeForce teams operate in 880 counties in 21 states and Puerto Rico. Each StrikeForce project is a commitment to America's economic future.
Learn more about StrikeForce efforts in Alaska, Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, North Dakota, New Mexico, Nevada, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia and West Virginia.
StrikeForce at Work Across the Country (PDF, 304KB)
In 2014, USDA StrikeForce teams were at work in twenty states to facilitate:
Creating or retaining 5,144 jobs
Assisting 125,000 homeowners with loans to purchase or repair their homes
Helping 8,006 farmers with loans and access to capital
Creating 11,864 conservation, water and land management projects
Providing more 69 million meals to low income children in StrikeForce states through SFSP