State Outreach Program

Developing Community Programs in Kansas

Assisting Kansas towns in developing community education/development programs since 1979

CRA logoUFM's State Outreach Program began in 1979 as the result of legislation called the Community Resource Act (CRA). Funding from this program allows UFM to assist Kansas towns in developing community education/development programs to meet the needs of their specific area. Learn more about the history of this program.

The Community Outreach Program assists in two ways:

Mini Grants - Small matching grants ranging from $300 to $6,000 assists communities in the process of organizing community education, recreation or cultural programs using UFM's volunteer model.

Technical Assistance - Technical assistance is also available to help communities with grant applications, training on program development, volunteer recruitment, fund raising, publicity and other areas that will assist in their growth, development and stabilization.

Grant applications are due to the UFM office in the Fall each year. Grants are reviewed and awards made each Spring . For information, call (785) 539-8763, e-mail or, or write to CRA, 1221 Thurston St, Manhattan, KS 66502.

Grant Applications for 2015 funding are due by October 15, 2014.

Currently Funded CRA Communities:

For information about the Community Resource Act Program, or grant writing assistance, call UFM at (785) 539-8763, write at 1221 Thurston, Manhattan, KS 66502, or e-mail, or

Since its development in 1979, CRA has assisted over 100 communities with mini-grants. Here is the list of programs currently receiving assistance.

First Year Award in 2013:
1st year: Peabody Basic Computer Skills Training
Peabody Township Library

Funded for Second Year:
Olsburg and Rural Education Opportunities (O.R.E.O.)
Email OREO

Funded for Third Year:
Marysville - Pony Express Community Education Program
Email Pony Express Community Education

Haysville Educational Assistance Partners (HEAP)
Email Haysville Library Foundation

CRA History:

The Community Resource Act State Outreach Program began with the receipt of a small grant from the Kansas Committee for the Humanities in 1974. That fall, three communities, Abilene, Clay Center, and Marysville, hosted forums on the Future of Small Towns in Kansas: the Case of Abilene, etc. and included a session in each place about what a free university-community education program might look like. A major grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE) 1975-77 and from VISTA (which provided 12 volunteers a year for two years) allowed the creation of 12 local community education programs in Central and Western Kansas; 10 of these programs were taken over locally. A second FIPSE grant 1977-79 facilitated training groups in fifteen additional communities to start local community education programs. These activities, in part, culminated in the Community Resource Act passed by the Kansas Legislature in 1979 to facilitate the development of community education programs across the state. Funding from this program continues to allow UFM to assist Kansas towns in developing community education/development programs to meet the needs of their specific area. Over 100 communities have taken advantage of the grant funds and program development consultations.


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