The Children, Youth, and Families At-Risk (CYFAR) is a national initiative that provides funding for Sustainable Community Projects (SCPs). These projects are developed to meet locally identified needs, are research based, and provide quality programs for vulnerable, at-risk, low-income, and low-resource children, youth, and families to promote positive life outcomes. The CYFAR Professional Development and Technical Assistance (PDTA) Center is comprised of the University of Minnesota, the Pennsylvania State University, and eight coaches representing 1890 and 1862 land-grant universities. The CYFAR PDTA Center was developed in 2013 as part of the United States Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture’s (NIFA) commitment to promote rural prosperity, rural-urban interdependence, and the social contributions of youth and families. The CYFAR PDTA Center has played a key role in building connections, competency, and capacity so that SCPs can advance NIFA’s strategic goals by

  • more effectively integrating CYFAR programming into Extension, 4-H, and Family Consumer Sciences;
  • cultivating the skills of future generations through education and science literacy (Research, Education, and Economics Action Plan Goal 6 and NIFA Strategic Plan Goal 1); and
  • promoting nutrition and physical activity to prevent and reduce childhood obesity (Research, Education, and Economics Action Plan Goal 4).