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University of Montana Rural Institute

The Rural Institute promotes equal opportunity for people with disabilities
through Education, Research and Direct Service

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Honoring Chris Clasby

Chris Clasby


On Monday April 5, our friend and colleague, Chris Clasby, passed away. For those who knew and worked with him, he was a remarkable, kind, witty and passionate colleague. Many who didn’t know him have benefitted from his community leadership. Chris loved the outdoors and worked tirelessly to ensure that others could hunt, fish and enjoy nature as much as he did. More than anything, we will miss his friendship and gentle leadership.

In lieu of flowers, Chris wanted memorial contributions to be made to Camp Bullwheel, an organization with a mission that was very important to him. He recently spoke about Camp Bullwheel during a disability and health webinar.

We wish Chris happy trails in his new adventures!

Apply for the MOMS Rapid Response Mini-Grant

infographic with Montana Obstetrics & Maternal Support (MOMS) logo and value statments Addressing uique challenges of rural healthcare, connecting providers with expert consultation, improving access to obstetric care, mental health and SUD for Montana women, and promoting innovation in maternal care

According to the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Montana has the 6th highest maternal mortality ratio in the nation. Racial and rural health disparities plague Montana’s health system with 52 of Montana’s 56 counties having at least one Medically-Underserved Area (MEA) designation.

The Montana Obstetrics and Maternal Health Support (MOMS) program connects rural providers to obstetrical/gynecological, perinatal, mental health and substance abuse specialists to support perinatal providers. MOMS is a Health Resources & Services Administration (HRSA)-funded grant to improve maternal health across the state of Montana.

The Rural Institute is the Research and Evaluation partner for the MOMS program.

Learn more and apply!

2021 Community Investment Fund

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Applications for the 2021 Community Investment Fund are now being accepted! The Community Investment Fund is made available annually for innovative projects that help people with disabilities live, learn, work and play in their communities alongside people without disabilities. Any Montana organization, agency, non-profit group, or individual with a creative idea developed by/with people with disabilities to promote community inclusion is eligible to apply. Please note: due to University contracting requirements, successful applicants will be required to have liability insurance and either Workers’ Compensation coverage or a Workers’ Compensation exemption certificate. To learn more, watch the CIF video and visit the CIF website.

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