A large crowd of local officials, library patrons and staff filled the children’s section of the Pittston Memorial Library in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, on a hot May afternoon to hear good news from Senator Robert Casey. Smiles abounded as Senator Casey announced that the library is receiving a $48,000 USDA Rural Development Community Facilities grant for library improvements.
According to Senator Casey, the funding will be used to purchase 14 new computers, a new selection of children’s, nonfiction, large print, local history and audio books, bookcases, furniture, carpeting and other improvements. With the Luzerne County unemployment rate at 9.5 percent, (higher than the state average), the library’s computers and internet connection are a valuable resource for job seekers. Senator Casey also heralded local libraries as the “beginning of job creation–the beginning of education” where families can come for “tranquility, safety and peace of mind.” Read more »
Tonya Clyde, a single mother of two young children was in the process of a divorce and living in a home owned by her soon to be ex-husband. She needed to find a home for herself, her children, and her 86-year old grandmother. Since she had always been a stay at home mom and never held a job, she was desperate to find employment and a new home.
With the help of her grandmother to watch the children, Tonya obtained a full-time job as a sales associate. Becoming employed was a huge accomplishment, and the possibility of owning her own home and providing a better life for her family convinced her to check into USDA’s housing program. Read more »
Today was an exciting day at USDA as I was joined by First Lady Michelle Obama and Surgeon General Dr. Regina Benjamin to unveil USDA’s new food icon, MyPlate. The icon is a departure from MyPyramid and serves as a quick, simple reminder to all consumers, built off of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for all Americans.
We all know that what we eat matters – MyPlate offers a visual reminder to make healthy food choices when you choose your next meal. MyPlate can help prioritize food choices by reminding us to make half of our plate fruits and vegetables and shows us the other important food groups for a well-balanced meal: whole grains, lean proteins, and low fat dairy. Read more »
APHIS recognizes Ingram Carner with a certificate of appreciation for being the first person in the United States to spot the Asian Longhorned Beetle (ALB).
ALB experts Joseph Gittleman of APHIS’ Plant Protection and Quarrantine program and Joan Mahoney of the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets recognized Carner in April. Read more »
U.S. Ambassador to Afghanistan Karl Eikenberry (front in white) and Afghan Agriculture Minister Asif Rahimi (on truck) load seed At Badam Bagh Farm in Kabul.
In Afghanistan, wheat is not only a diet staple but is also the country’s most widely grown crop.
When an invasive fungus known as Ug99 threatened to damage and destroy Afghan wheat, the USDA joined forces with U.S. Central Command and U.S. Forces-Afghanistan to help stop it. Together in late 2010, they delivered 150 tons of USDA-donated Ug99-resistant wheat seed to Afghanistan. The seed arrived in October 2010 and entered Afghanistan’s seed multiplication program. Read more »
Elizabeth Bonner’s new, energy efficient Kentucky home, funded in part by USDA Rural Development.
To Elizabeth Bonner, the single greatest thing about her new home is the serenity she feels as she sits on her covered back porch, listening to the water as it rolls over the rocks that line the creek bed bordering the back of her property. Read more »