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USDA invests $11 million to expand healthcare and improve food access in rural Kentucky


The U.S. Department of Agriculture is investing $11 million dollars to help expand healthcare and improve the food supply chain in rural Kentucky. The money comes from a larger fund totaling more than $394 million dollars to be spread across the country.

Tom Carew is the State Rural Development Director for the USDA in Kentucky. He told WEKU $1 million dollars of this money will go to the Grace Community Health Center in Pineville in southeast Kentucky to add on to their facility.

“Which is going to provide quite a few diverse services, including behavioral health, mental health services, pharmacy, dental and medical. If you know much about eastern Kentucky, dental clinics are very hard to come by and so we’re really pleased about this provision for them.”

The other $10 million dollars in a Meat and Poultry Intermediary Lending Program Grant will go to Community Ventures Corporation. Carew said it will be used to create a revolving loan fund.

“This is where Community Ventures will make loans to private and/or non-profit businesses who want to get into or who are already in the meat and poultry processing business.”

Carew said the COVID-19 pandemic showed the need for a more stable supply chain when it comes to food in rural areas.

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Stan Ingold is WEKU's News Director. He has worked in public broadcasting for 18 years, starting at Morehead State Public Radio before spending the past 10 years at Alabama Public Radio. Stan has been honored with numerous journalism awards for his public radio reporting.
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