• 20 Mar 2019 10:02 AM | Deleted user

    Honored and excited, I drove to Mitchell, IN last month to deliver the John Niederman Rural Leadership Award to David Miller, CEO of Hoosier Uplands, a Community Action Agency, Area Agency on Aging, licensed Home Health Care and Hospice agency, and Community Housing Development Organization serving Crawford, Lawrence, Martin, Orange and Washington Counties. David was unable to attend our 2019 Summit where we officially recognized our annual awardees, so delivery of his award was a good excuse and opportunity to learn more about one of our members. New to Prosperity Indiana and the community development industry, I was about to meet the man that John Niederman himself described at the Awards Luncheon by saying “this award could just as easily be named the David Miller Award.”

    Located in the heart of Mitchell, I met David at the Hoosier Uplands office. We drove to lunch and then stopped by the Mitchell Opera House, which Hoosier Uplands restored, and then visited Serenity Now, a mental health clinic that Hoosier Uplands operates in Bedford, Ind. I learned the history, saw patients in the waiting rooms, and met the staff. And I was moved. For three hours, David and I talked about community development, life, challenges, commitment, and action, and I left that day changed for the better.

    It became clear to me that day that Hoosier Uplands leads the community with integrity, high expectations, and a call to action. Their mission statement reads in part “All endeavors are pursued with the client in mind, never forgetting the value of every human being or the importance of our responsibility to the public which we serve.” And it’s obvious they do just that.

    I am incredibly proud to work for Prosperity Indiana and want to learn more. This year, I am visiting member organizations every month and highlighting my experiences in this newsletter. Please let me know if you are interested (rodonohue@prosperityindiana.org), and I’ll get it on the calendar!

    Rita O'Donohue
    Relationships Manager

    P.S. John Niederman… you were right!

  • 22 Feb 2019 3:41 PM | Deleted user

    Over the past several months, federal agencies have been coordinating to prioritize their own financial and programmatic resources to communities with, and projects in Opportunity Zones. Through an Executive Order, the agencies have a mandate to explore all of the ways they can support the Opportunity Zones incentive, including

    • the reduction of regulatory burdens for loan and grant applicants in Opportunity Zones;
    • the assistance of community-based applicants in identifying and applying for federal assistance;
    • and implementing inter-agency strategies to support comprehensive planning and advanced regional collaboration.

    To advance the conversation and facilitate a greater understanding of how federal resources can be layered to support the Opportunity Zones incentive, the Council of Development Finance Agencies (CDFA) is renewing its Federal Financing Webinar Series with a focus on Opportunity Zones. The CDFA Federal Financing Webinar Series: Opportunity Zones is an exclusive, four-part online offering that will convene finance experts, federal agencies, and local development finance practitioners to discuss the variety of ways federal grants, loans, guarantees and credit enhancements can leverage greater investment in Opportunity Zones. The webinar series will address issues related to the following areas:

    • Opportunity Zones and Rural Development featuring USDA and EPA
    • Opportunity Zones and Affordable Housing featuring HUD and USDA
    • Opportunity Zones and Transportation featuring DOT and EDA
    • Opportunity Zones and Small Business Development featuring SBA and EDA

    CDFA encourages all stakeholders to participate in the webinars and bring project questions and ideas to our expert panelists. The four-part series will be offered throughout the year, and those interested in attending can register for each webinar individually or all at once as a package deal.

    >>>Learn More About the Webinar Series 

  • 14 Feb 2019 9:33 AM | Deleted user

    Prosperity Indiana has been thinking a lot about the Social Determinants of Health lately. Our entire 2018 Summit was dedicated to the intersection between Health and Community Development. We have partnered with the CareSource Foundation to bring funding to our members for innovations in the social determinants of health. It is even explicitly mentioned in our new identity statement.

    Why are the social determinants of health (SDOH) important?

    Medical care is estimated to account for only 10-20 percent of the modifiable (i.e., not genetic) contributors to health outcomes for a population. Another 30 percent can be attributed to health behaviors such as diet, exercise, and drug use. The remaining 50-60 percent is determined by the SDOH – the conditions of the physical and social environment. (Source)

    But what exactly are the SDOH?

    The SDOH are the conditions in the places where people live, learn, work, and play that affect a wide range of health, functioning, and quality-of-life outcomes and risks (Source). These conditions include both the physical attributes of a place, as well as the patterns of social engagement and sense of well-being of the people who live there.

    Lists vary based on the source, but generally the SDOH fall under five key categories:

    • Economic Stability
      • Employment
      • Food insecurity
      • Housing instability
      • Poverty
    • Education
      • Early childhood education
      • High school graduation
      • Enrollment in higher education
      • Language and literacy
    • Social and Community Context
      • Civic participation
      • Discrimination
      • Incarceration
      • Social cohesion
      • Social acceptability of risky behaviors
      • Isolation and loneliness
    • Health and Health Care
      • Access to health care
      • Access to primary and preventative care
      • Health literacy
    • Neighborhood and Built Environment
      • Access to healthy food
      • Crime and violence
      • Environmental conditions
      • Safe housing

    Do you have a project that addresses one of these areas? Click here to learn how you can apply for up to $50,000 through our Empower Indiana Grant Challenge, funded by the CareSource Foundation.

  • 04 Feb 2019 8:53 AM | Deleted user

    On January 30, Prosperity Indiana announced the winners of its annual leadership and program awards at its annual Summit. The Prosperity Indiana Summit was an occasion to celebrate the leaders and innovators in the community economic development field. The 2019 winners come from a pool of committed community leaders and innovative programs across Indiana. Winners are nominated by their peers and chosen by a judging committee based on criteria established for each award.

    Prosperity Indiana Executive Director Jessica Love said, “We’re so proud of the work of all of our members, who are dedicated to strengthening our communities. That’s why we take an opportunity each year to recognize a few of the people and programs that stand out for their excellence. We are proud to honor such an amazing group this year. Congrats to the 2019 winners of the Prosperity Indiana awards.”

    Award winners include: Indiana Supportive Housing Institute; George Okantey, Purdue Extension Community Development; David Miller, Hoosier Uplands Economic Development Corporation; Tom Fodor, Morning Light Inc.

    Key Award for Program of the Year - Sponsored by Merchants Bank of Indiana

    Presented to Indiana Supportive Housing Institute

    The Program of the Year Award honors excellence and innovation in a service-oriented community development initiative. This award recognizes a unique program model that leads in the area of service provision and/or volunteerism.

    IHCDA and CSH’s Institute for Supportive Housing builds the capacity of supportive housing providers to develop and implement service plans that are based on national best practices and Supportive Housing Dimensions of Quality. The program is unique in that it requires participation from service providers, developers, advocates, and other local partners from the very early stages of project concept, creating cross-collaboration and building partnerships for long-term success.

    Over the last nine years, 58 teams have completed the Institute, resulting in the creation of 44 developments containing 1,035 units of supportive housing with an additional 14 developments in the pipeline for funding.

    Other Key Award nominees:

    • Holding Hands with Our Future

    Photo by Al Bracken Photography. From Left to Right: Carol Gassen of Merchants Bank of Indiana, Jessica Love of Prosperity Indiana, Lori Phillips-Steele of CSH and Matt Rayburn and Jacob Sipe, both of IHCDA.

    Robert O. Zdenek Staff Member of the Year Award - Sponsored by Brightpoint

    Presented to George Okantey, Purdue Extension Community Development

    The Staff Member of the Year Award honors an extraordinary individual who contributes to his or her organization and to the community economic development field as a whole. This person shows leadership, personal initiative and is a public servant.

    George Okantey has been a Community Development Extension Educator for 20 years. He is passionate about convening diverse audiences across the state and increasing the capacity of local people, organizations and institutions to come together for the purpose of acting on current and future opportunities and challenges. Okantey is a coveted speaker, facilitator and trainer who makes an impact wherever he goes. In 2018 alone, he traveled widely across the state delivering more than 150 hours of instruction to nearly 550 adult learners.

    Other Staff Member of the Year Award Nominees:

    • Judith Essex, Old Southside Neighborhood Association
    • Leigh Riley Evans, Mapleton Fall Creek Development Corporation
    • Erin Macey, Indiana Institute for Working Families
    • Stephanie Roland, Old National Bank
    • Jeffrey Sparks, Sagamore Institute
    • Christal Stephenson, New Albany Housing Authority
    • Evan Tester, King Park Development Corporation

    Photo by
    Al Bracken Photography. George Okantey of Purdue Extension

    John Niederman Rural Development Leadership Award - Sponsored by First Financial Bank

    Presented to David Miller, Hoosier Uplands Economic Development Corporation

    The Rural Development Leadership Award honors an individual who has demonstrated outstanding leadership in improving the quality of life, influencing policies, and fostering opportunities for growth and development for the betterment of rural Indiana.

    David Miller is said to spend every day striving to drive the mission of Hoosier Uplands Economic Development Corporation, and his commitment to innovation can be seen in the services, changes and overall impact that he and the organization continue to make every year. Under his leadership, Hoosier Uplands has been able to support other local organizations with mini grants to improve, create and sustain their services. They also assisted over 550 patients in their home health and hospice programs and over 1,400 in their Serenity Now clinic in Bedford. They continue to serve as an Area Agency on Aging, Community Action Agency, licensed Home Health Care, and a Community Housing Development Organization, as well as oversee Head Start programs.

    Other Rural Development Leadership Award Nominees:

    • Brenda Myers, Hamilton County Tourism

    Photo by Al Bracken Photography. From Left to Right: Jessica Love of Prosperity Indiana, John Niederman of Pathfinder Services (accepting on behalf of David Miller of Hoosier Uplands), Angela Byer of First Financial Bank

    Image result for fifth third bankMichael Carroll Community Economic Development Leadership Award - Sponsored by Fifth Third Bank

    Presented to Tom Fodor, Morning Light Inc.

    This Leadership Award, jointly presented by Prosperity Indiana and the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority, honors an individual who has exhibited exceptional advocacy to further support the community economic development field.

    Since his hire as Executive Director and CEO of Morning Light Inc. in 2012, Tom Fodor has focused his leadership on improving staff quality and retention, increasing hospice house occupancy, developing affordable housing programming and activities, and developing partnerships with other prominent programs in the community. Fodor continues to lead in the realm of health and housing, including national recognition and awards for health system innovation and policy. Morning Light has also led successful pilot projects to expand the field’s approach to addressing terminally ill homeless individuals.

    In addition to national advocacy on behalf of affordable housing, Fodor served on the Indiana CHIP Continuum of Care Planning and Investment Committee for two years. He also served as an advocate for family shelters through his leadership of two programs at the American Red Cross Chapter in Dayton, OH.

    Other Leadership Award nominees:

    • John Franklin Hay, Near East Area Renewal
    • Michael Howe, Community Alliance of the Far Eastside
    • Sister Dorothy Rasche, The Connecting Link

    Photo by Al Bracken Photography. Tom Fodor of Morning Light Inc.

  • 01 Feb 2019 12:45 PM | Deleted user

    Prosperity Indiana is excited to announce the launch of the Empower Indiana Grant Challenge in partnership with the CareSource Foundation. This grant program is designed to fund innovative solutions to unique community challenges that involve the social determinants of health.

    Along with nearly 200 dedicated members, Prosperity Indiana believes in a society where all persons are able to live and work in an environment that provides equitable access to economic and social opportunity. This exciting new program provides yet another opportunity to help inspire the Prosperity Indiana network to find new ways to strengthen Hoosier communities.

    Prosperity Indiana Executive Director Jessica Love said, “The more we learn about the social determinants of health, the more we recognize innovative interventions and partnerships with the health community are absolutely essential to changing the quality of life for our low-income neighbors. We are absolutely thrilled at the opportunity to partner with CareSource to make positive change on health outcomes in member communities and are thankful for the Foundation’s leadership in this realm.”

    CareSource was launched 30 years ago in Dayton, Ohio, as one of the only nonprofit health plans in the United States designed to address both health and life issues of low-income individuals and families. Since then, they have expanded into four other states (Kentucky, Indiana, Georgia and West Virginia) providing Medicaid, Marketplace and Medicare Advantage services.

    The CareSource Foundation has committed $100,000 to fund grants to nonprofit members of Prosperity Indiana in areas of greatest need, impact and innovation.

    According to Cathy Ponitz, Vice President with CareSource, acknowledges great synergy between their organizations. “The CareSource Foundation is focused on working in parallel with our business mission by tackling critical health issues, strengthening the social safety net and developing relationships with great community partners. Prosperity Indiana and their exceptional member network are doing impressive work. We’re excited to launch the Empower Indiana strategy to continue moving forward with positive change for all Hoosiers.”

    Interested applicants are encouraged to attend a free informational webinar being held at 10 am February 28. Proposals are due April 4, 2019, and grant recipients will be announced in May. For more information about the grant program and to register for the webinar, visit www.ProsperityIndiana.org/EmpowerIN.

  • 14 Jan 2019 3:04 PM | Deleted user

    Looking for funds to do a community mural, support your town's concert series or kick start a downtown festival? 

    Then you need to check out Arts Project Support Grants from the Indiana Arts Commission - city, town and county governments are eligible and encouraged to apply!

    Arts Project Support grants may be applied to any activities that support the arts including one-time events, single theatre productions, exhibitions, educational seminars, festivals, and more.

    Last year we supported:

    Interested in an Arts Project Support grant for your town? Here are some links to help you get started.

    Download the guidelines

    Start your application

    Meet your Regional Arts Partner

    Have questions? Contact Paige Sharp (psharp@iac.in.gov) or your Regional Arts Partner representative.

  • 27 Dec 2018 12:15 PM | Deleted user

    Prosperity Indiana has lots of members-only resources that you can access simply by logging in on our website!

    Go to ProsperityIndiana.org and click on Log in. Forgot your password? No problem! It’s easy to reset it!

    Once you’ve arrived at the Member Portal, explore all of the benefits available to you! In the Resource Library you can access all kinds of resources around affordable housing, comprehensive community development, management and leadership and so much more! Search the Member Directory to connect with your peers in the Prosperity Indiana network. The Legislation Tracker gives you the latest updates on legislation related to your work. You can also get quick access to our webinar library and the most recent edition of our Piece of the PI newsletter!

    If you have any questions about logging in to the Member Portal or any of your other Prosperity Indiana Member Benefits, contact our Relationships Manager, Rita O’Donohue, at rodonohue@prosperityindiana.org.

  • 06 Dec 2018 11:54 AM | Deleted user

    The National Alliance of Community Economic Development Associations (NACEDA) has opened early bird registration for the People & Places 2019 conference. The event will take place April 15-17 in Arlington, VA. 

    Join people from different regions, cultures, and national networks as we share what's working to strengthen places and advance racial equality. We'll inspire each other, strengthen our skills, unite our networks, and raise our voices on behalf of the communities we serve. 

    NACEDA will also host a pre-conference workshop, Claim the Torch: Community Organizations Advancing Racial Equity, on the morning of April 15.

    Register here 

    Scholarships are available for registration, hotel, and/or transportation. Those interested in a scholarship can contact Michelle Johnson at mjohnson@prosperityindiana.org.


  • 06 Dec 2018 10:16 AM | Deleted user

    The future looks bright in Martindale-Brightwood as the neighborhood celebrates the groundbreaking of a permanent branch of the Indianapolis Public Library and new KIPP charter high school, as well as the official opening of Edna Martin's Leadership and Legacy Center. 

    Edna Martin Christian Center executive director Tysha Sellers said the development is a step toward fulfilling the neighborhood’s quality of life plan and “listening to residents, businesses and those who want Martindale-Brightwood to be the best place to be.”

    Read the full article in the Indianapolis Business Journal. 

  • 30 Nov 2018 11:30 AM | Deleted user
    John Boner Neighborhood Centers is co-hosting the 2019 National Alliance for Strong Families and Communities in Indianapolis October 16-18, 2019. This conference will be held at the Westin Hotel in downtown Indianapolis. The conference is the Alliance's largest event and provides an opportunity to showcase practice, policy, and research that advances knowledge and action in the following areas: 

    A Thriving and Vibrant Nonprofit Sector: Advancing practices and policies that ensure a well-resourced and financially sustainable nonprofit sector that is resilient, able to manage risk effectively, and positioned for innovation and growth.

    Health and Well-Being: Advancing an integrated, holistic, prevention-first health model that responds to the social determinants of health and achieves improved outcomes, particularly for populations experiencing disparities. 

    Educational Success: Advancing a continuum of educational supports from cradle-to-career to prepare children and youth to succeed in the 21st century.

    Economic Opportunity: Advancing policies, programs, models, and systems that advance living wages and pathways to financial well-being that support economic mobility and reduce poverty. 

    Safety and Security: Advancing systems working together to ensure that children, adults, and families thrive and are safe from abuse, neglect, violence, and exploitation. 

    Click here for more information about content focus areas, presentation formats, and submission requirements. The deadline for submissions is December 12. 

Policy News

Prosperity Indiana
1099 N. Meridian Street, Suite 170
Indianapolis, IN 46204 
Phone // 317.222.1221 
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