The information below has been supplied by dairy marketers and other industry organizations. It has not been edited, verified or endorsed by Hoard’s Dairyman.

The Central Plains Dairy Foundation (CPDF) is accepting applications for the Dairy Innovators Grant through January 31, 2021.

The Dairy Innovators Grant was created as a funding source for nonprofit organizations leading the way in providing innovative programs and solutions to challenges facing the people of dairy and the future of the industry. The CPDF looks for projects addressing economic development, community development, workforce development, or industry promotional need that are inclusive, collaborative, and effective. Grant awards range from $500 to $10,000 and will be awarded to projects focusing on Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, or South Dakota.

A recent grant recipient was the “Community Welcoming and Integration in Rural South Dakota” project led by Athena Ramos, PhD, of the University of Nebraska. Ramos and her team endeavored to better understand community welcoming and integration among immigrant agricultural workers in the South Dakota communities of Beresford, Centerville, and Viborg.

“Many times, immigrants are drawn to rural communities for jobs in agriculture,” says Chris Maxwell, Executive Director of the Central Plains Dairy Foundation. “They play an important role in our South Dakota dairies and we want to make sure they feel like part of the community in which they live.”

This project did just that. After ample dairy industry research, community member surveys, and interviews with immigrant agricultural workers and leaders in the respective communities, Ramos and her team offered recommendations to improve integration.

Some of these recommendations have already been implemented in Beresford. One of the local churches offers a weekly Spanish service, the Mexican restaurant in Centerville opened a second location in Beresford, the school has an ESL teacher as well as two other teachers that are fluent in Spanish, and the school is also working on a grant to further its ESL offerings.

Applications for a Dairy Innovators Grant must be submitted by January 31, 2021. More information is available online at