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Cascade: No. 57, Spring 2005

FHLB-P Initiative: Blueprint Communities

In a Federal Home Loan Bank of Pittsburgh (FHLB-P) initiative, multisector teams in up to 20 Pennsylvania communities with a population of 1,000 to 20,000 residents will receive training this fall to help them develop vision statements and strategic plans.

As part of the Blueprint Communities initiative, the teams will receive training in leadership skills such as gaining consensus, resolving conflicts, and capacity-building in carrying out neighborhood strategies, financing development projects, fund-raising, and measuring outcomes. The training, which takes five days over a three-month period, will be provided in Pennsylvania by the Heartland Center for Leadership Development, which is based in Lincoln, Nebraska.

To be eligible, a community team must have at least five individuals, including a banker, a community developer, and a person representing residents' interests. Eligible communities have not developed comprehensive strategies within the past two years.

Interested community representatives should contact the FHLB-P by April 28. Communities will be selected by June 30.

Communities participating in the initiative will receive training and expenses with a fair market value of $7,500, according to the FHLB-P. Approved applicants will be required to pay a $500 administrative fee.

The initiative's funding partners include Pennsylvania Rural LISC, Sovereign Bank, and PNC Bank, N.A. Program partners include the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland and the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.

For information, contact the community investment department of the FHLB-P at (800) 288-3400 or blueprint@fhlb-pgh.com; www.fhlb-pgh.com/blueprintcommunities.html. For information on the Heartland Center for Leadership Development, go to www.heartlandcenter.info.