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Family Economics News - September 2009

The Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service (CSREES) works with land-grant university partners and others to advance knowledge for agriculture, the environment, human health and well-being, and communities through national program leadership and federal assistance. Among the agency’s goals is to support increased economic opportunities and quality of life in rural areas. Family economics aligns with this goal by focusing on how individuals and families obtain and use resources such as money, time, human capital, material resources, and community services; by exploring the relationship between individuals and families and the larger economy; and by studying the impact of public issues, policies, and programs on family economic well-being.

Research/Program Evaluation

  • Journal Focuses on Extension Evaluation

  • Uninsured Farm and Ranch Families

  • America’s Children: Key National Indicators of Well-Being, 2009


  • Social Networking Feature of 2009 AFCPE Extension Pre-conference

  • New on eXtension

  • Today’s Consumer


  • What to Do if You Lose Your Job

  • NASSA Targets Workplace Investment Fraud

  • FINRA Investor Alert on Municipal Bonds


  • Call for Papers:

    • Family and Consumer Sciences Research Journal

      Journal of Consumer Affairs

    • Journal of Personal Finance

    • Journal of Financial Counseling and Planning

    • The Journal of Youth Development

    • Journal of Family and Economic Issues

    • W.K. Kellogg Foundation/Family Income and Assets

    • Family Relations - Special Issue

    • In Search of Social Wealth Conference Proposal

    • Eastern Family Economics and Resource Management Association

    • 2010 ACCI Annual Conference

    • Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Family Business

    • Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Health, Economics, and Family Role

    • Annual Conference on Consumer Interest (ACCI)      

  • Funding:


    • Southern SARE Sustainable Community Innovation Grant

    • FINRA Investor Education Foundation

    • Children, Youth and Families at Risk 4-H Military Partnership

    • The Family and Youth Services Bureau (FYSB)

    • National Endowment for Financial Education®

    • U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

    • FY 2009 AFRI RFA

    • MMI Financial Education Foundation



Journal Focuses on Extension Evaluation

The Journal of Extension, Volume 47, Number 3, June 2009, focuses on a quarter of a century of Extension Evaluation. The September 1983 issue of the Journal of Extension was devoted entirely to the topic of program evaluation, marking the beginning of a new emphasis in extension programming. This "call to action" was based largely on the need for program accountability; extension educators could no longer afford to assume their programs worked or that their worth was self-evident. In the years since, evaluation in extension has developed considerably. This contemporary issue of the Journal of Extension explores a new call to action for evaluation in extension, with a focus on more "logical" logic models, organizational evaluation capacity and support, and a greater emphasis on evaluation use.

Uninsured Farm and Ranch Families

A new report released by The Access Project found that farm and ranch operators, like many self-employed Americans, cannot afford the cost of health insurance offered to small business owners. While family farmers and ranchers are insured at a rate higher than the general population, still one in ten was uninsured, or had an uninsured family member, sometime during the previous year. The survey found that more than one-third of the uninsured farm and ranch operators spent more than 10 percent of their income on health care costs. They were also four times more likely to have incomes under $20,000 than those with insurance.

The Access Project's report is the fifth in a series of issue briefs based on a 2007 survey of farm and ranch operators in seven Great Plains states—Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, and South Dakota. The Access Project and its partners at Brandeis University and the University of North Dakota School of Medicine's Center for Rural Health contracted with the USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service to survey more than 2,000 non-corporate farm and ranch operators (those operating as sole proprietors or partnerships).


America’s Children: Key National Indicators of Well-Being, 2009

In 1994, the Office of Management and Budget joined with six other federal agencies to create the Federal Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics. America's Children: Key National Indicators of Well-Being, 2009 is a compendium of indicators illustrating both the promises and the difficulties confronting our nation's young people. The report presents 40 key indicators on important aspects of children's lives. This year's report continues to present key indicators grouped by the seven sections identified in the restructured 10th anniversary report (2007): family and social environment, economic circumstances, health care, physical environment and safety, behavior, education, and health. The key indicator of Economic Circumstances provides information on the financial resources of children’s households and on their food-related well-being.



Social Networking Feature of 2009 AFCPE Extension Pre-conference
Using Social Networking in Financial Education is the theme of the 2009 AFCPE Extension Pre-Conference, held in conjunction with the AFCPE Annual Conference, November 18-20 in Scottsdale AZ. The objectives are for extension educators to gain a basic understanding of social networking tools; view examples of social networking in progress by extension; learn how to apply selected tools to evidence-based financial education; and obtain a national extension update on the financial security program. Anne Adrian, Auburn University, will lead the social networking workshop. The planning team (Joan Koonce, University of Georgia; Barb O’Neill, Rutgers University;  Becky Travnichek, University of Missouri;  Liz Gorham, South Dakota State University; Karen Varcoe, University of California; Suzann Knight, University of New Hampshire; and Jane Schuchardt, CSREES national program leader) is planning the pre-conference to be highly interactive with resources extension educators can use. The pre-conference meets November 18, from 7 a.m.–1:30 p.m.

New on eXtension

During these last days of summer, two new resources on eXtension are available throughout the year. The first is Low Cost Summer Activities for Kids and Families. The site contains a number of interesting and low-cost summer activities for children and families that will help families keep their hard-earned money in their pockets.
The second New on eXtension feature this month is a Chat on Family Time and Vacationing on a Shoestring Budget. Family time and time away is always important, especially when times are stressful due to the economy. However, there are many ways for families to have fun, vacation, and do things together for little or no money. Panelists from different states and many others joined together in a chat room session to discuss the possibilities.

Today’s Consumer

Today’s Consumer is a quarterly electronic newsletter produced by the University of California Cooperative Extension’s Consumer Economics Program for the staff of Cooperative Extension and other organizations to help consumers better manage their resources.  Previous issues are available online.

What to Do If You Lose Your Job

AARP’s “What to Do if You Lose Your Job” article highlights the rise in the unemployment rate and provides coping strategies.

NASSA Targets Workplace Investment Fraud

The North American Securities Administrators Association has a new investor education initiative to equip millions of union and employee association members with the knowledge and skills they need to protect themselves from investment fraud.

FINRA Investor Alert on Municipal Bonds

FINRA issued a new alert, "Municipal Bonds—Staying on the Safe Side of the Street in Rough Times", along with a Muni-Bond Investor Checklist (linked to from the Alert). The alert outlines the basic characteristics, risks, and benefits of investing in municipal bonds and aims to help the investing public better understand and mitigate the risks of investing in these instruments.  While municipal bonds have historically been considered relatively low-risk investments, investors should be aware that they carry certain risks—defaults, while quite rare, do occur and information about financial problems that affect the bond's issuer has not always been readily available to investors.

Visit the FINRA Web site to access the news release that summarized the alert and other actions FINRA is taking in this area.


  • - this is your source to find and apply for more than 1,000 grant programs offered by all federal grant-making agencies.
  • Southern SARE Sustainable Community Innovation Grant. The deadline to apply is October 5, 2009. Proposals must be submitted through an online template.
  • FINRA Investor Education Foundation. The deadline to apply for June 2010 funding is November 5, 2009.
  • Children, Youth and Families at Risk 4-H Military Partnership. Deadline is July 31, 2009
  • The Family and Youth Services Bureau (FYSB) is accepting applications for a 5-year demonstration projects targeted to young people ages 16-21 in rural areas (including tribal lands and other rural Native communities. Deadline is August 3, 2009.
  • National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE) - the deadline for NEFE’s April 2010 grant cycle is December 1, 2009. To learn more about the NEFE grants program, visit the NEFE Web site and click on the Grantmaking section.
  • U.S. Department of Health and Human Services - grantees provide financial literacy training to enable low-income individuals and families achieve economic self-sufficiency. Deadline is June 25, 2009.
  • Agriculture and Food Research Initiative AFRI FY 2009 RFA - the deadline for FY 2009 AFRI competitive grants programs RFA is September 30, 2009. Visit to see the synopsis and application package.
  • MMI Education Foundation - the foundation uses its resources to serve the public interest and strengthen the communities where we live and work. The foundation provides periodic announcements and grant guidelines.





  • CSREES Contact: Jane Schuchardt, National Program Leader, CSREES-USDA

  • eXtension (pronounced ee-eXtension) Financial Security for All provides reliable, research-based, and up-to-date financial and consumer information, including learning lessons, fact sheets, and unbiased peer-reviewed answers to frequently asked questions. Consumers can access eXtension 24/7/365 on any Internet-ready device.
    Contact: Debra Pankow, family economics specialist, North Dakota State University, or go to and click on Personal Finance.

  • National Initiative "Financial Security in Later Life" Contact: Nancy M. Porter, Family Resource Management Specialist, Clemson University

  • Financial Literacy for Youth Contact: Erica Tobe, Program Leader for Youth Financial Literacy, Michigan State University Extension

Back issues of Family Economics News
are available.

To submit items for consideration for this newsletter, contact Jim Terry, Program Analyst, CSREES-USDA.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) prohibits discrimination in all its programs and activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, and where applicable, sex, marital status, familial status, parental status, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, political beliefs, reprisal, or because all or part of an individual’s income is derived from any public assistance program. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.) Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication of program information (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.) should contact USDA’s TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TDD).  To file a complaint of discrimination, write to USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, DC 20250-9410, or call (800) 795-3272 (voice) or (202) 720-6382 (TDD). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Mention or display of a trademark, proprietary product, or firm in text or figures does not constitute an endorsement by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and does not imply approval to the exclusion of other suitable products or firms.