FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin says applications are being accepted for a new leadership initiative that focuses on helping young professionals in the state's Appalachian region.

Bevin says the Appalachian Regional Commission approved a $500,000 grant for the Leadership Kentucky Foundation. The grant is meant to help create a new program called BRIGHT Kentucky that seeks to help next-generation leaders innovate, collaborate, and advance community and economic development.

BRIGHT Kentucky plans to offer non-partisan, ethical leadership training, expanded networks and mentors to those who participate. The initiative is aimed at residents in the 54-county Appalachian region.

Applications can be filled out online and are being accepted through June 28.

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