Northeast Iowa Food and Fitness Initiative

Northeast Iowa Food and Fitness Initiative

Join the growing number of people in Allamakee, Chickasaw, Clayton, Fayette, Howard and Winneshiek counties working together to create vibrant communities where the healthy choice is the easy choice.

The healthy choice means that every day all people in NE Iowa have access to healthy, locally grown foods and abundant opportunities for physical activity and play.  Food and fitness is important  because no matter where we are, the places where we live, learn, work and play affect our health and quality of life.

This effort is part of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation Food & Community program.  Food & Community invests in community-driven policy and system change projects.  NE Iowa is one of nine projects across the country working to transform our food and fitness systems. For more information contact Rachelle Howe.

Active Living Work Group

Ensuring that people use the natural and built environment for physical activity, play and active transportation

Active Living Work Group

"Active Living" means to integrate physical activity, such as walking and other active body movements, into our daily routine. Being physically active positively impacts our health, our community and our environment. From trails to parks to bluffs and beyond, Northeast Iowa provides an exceptional environment for physical activity.

The Northeast Iowa Food and Fitness Initiative's (FFI) Active Living Work Group aims to increase use of Northeast Iowa's natural and built environment by encouraging people of all ages and abilities to be active outdoors. The Active Living Work Group is made up of key individuals from multiple sectors working together to make the group's strategy a reality:  parks and natural resources, city engineering, physical therapy, county conservation, trail enthusiasts, public health, community and transportation planning and Safe Routes to School.

As the core partner invested in FFI's Active Living and Safe Routes to School efforts, UERPC convenes the Active Living Work Group. The work group meets quarterly and always welcomes new members! Please contact Ashley Christensen to learn more.

News Headlines

UERPC August Newsletter

Posted: Tue, August 18, 2015

Some of the headlines you can read about this month:

  • Apprenticeships
  • Board Member Spotlight-Charles Frana
  • CDBG Trainings and Upcoming Workshops
  • School Traffic Picking Up
  • Searching for Grant Wood
  • Great Partnerships
... [ Read More ]

UERPC July Newsletter

Posted: Tue, July 21, 2015

Some of the headlines you can read about this month:

  • First Time Homebuyer Funding Available
  • Board Member Spotlight-Les Askelson
  • Protect Iowa Habitat-Observe Mowing Restrictions
  • UERPC Employees Attend Workshop
  • Oelwein IRP
  • SRTS Annual Report Now Available
... [ Read More ]

Housing Program Meeting Being Held

Posted: Wed, May 6, 2015

Housing Program Meeting Being Held
Tuesday, May 19th at 11:00 a.m.
Oelwein Chamber and Area Development
25 West Charles, Oelwein, IA

Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission (UERPC) is hosting a meeting regarding housing programs that are available in Northeast Iowa.  Guest speakers include Jeremy Babcock and Steve Benne with Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA), Jerry Floyd and Rita Eble from the Iowa Finance Authority (IFA) and Kathy Pfiffner from USDA.

Hot Topics include:

  • IEDA Workforce Housing Tax Incentive Program (WHTIP) is to provide financial incentives for the development of housing.
  • IEDA Owner Occupied Rehabilitation to assist with rehabilitation assistance for low-to moderate income homeowners in their community.
  • IFA First Time Homebuyer or Qualified Veteran program to assist with down payment and rehabilitation assistance.
  • USDA-Repair and Rehabilitation Program to assist applicants with 1% loans and those 62 and older with grants for homeowner rehabilitation.
  • USDA Direct and Guaranteed loan programs for help in purchasing homes.
  • USDA Multi-Family Housing to assist with rental assistance in rural development financed apartments.
  • UERPC Housing Trust Fund Programs-Funding available to assist homeowners and landlords with rehabilitation assistance.
  • UERPC-Housing Choice Voucher program provides rental assistance to those under 50% of HUD’s income guidelines.


This meeting will be held on Tuesday, May 19, 2015 at 11:00 A.M. at the Oelwein Chamber and Area Development office at 25 West Charles Street, in Oelwein.  If you are interested in attending this meeting or would like more information please contact Mary Huinker at 563-864-7551 ext. 111 or by emailing Lori Brockway at lbrockway@uerpc.org.

... [ Read More ]

FREE Informational Session on Financing Sources for Businesses

Posted: Fri, May 1, 2015

Clayton County Development Group in Elkader the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) in Cedar Rapids and Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission in Decorah are holding an informational session on various sources of financing for start-up & existing businesses.  SBA, a federal government agency devoted to assisting small & medium-sized businesses, will have a representative discussing business loan options, and Clayton County Development Group and Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission will have a representative discussing RLF funds available for businesses.  The 1-1/2 hour session, including questions & answers, will take place on Tuesday, May 12th starting @ 5:30 PM at Clayton County Office Building at 600 Gunder Rd. in Elkader, Iowa.  Register today to attend contact Darla Kelchen at 563-245-2201.

WHAT:       Free informational session on sources of money for businesses
WHO:        New/start-up and existing business owners/managers
WHEN:      Tuesday, May 12th, 2015 starting @ 5:30PM & wrapping up by 7PM
WHERE:    Clayton County Office Building 600 Gunder Rd. Elkader
COST:        Free

Join Clayton County Development, Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission and SBA to learn more about the options available for financing your business.  Also, discussed briefly will be government contracting opportunities and free counseling along with low cost training resources available for businesses.  Get your questions answered.  Register by contacting Darla at the CCDG office at 563-245-2201.

... [ Read More ]
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