Developing Rural Leaders
RDI’s flagship program provides a foundation to grow vital communities by training a critical mass of connected leaders. Program participants learn to identify community needs, work together to identify priorities, and ensure community projects are implemented.
Rural Development Initiatives’ proven Rural Community Leadership program builds collaboration, collective action, and fundamental skills; connecting a critical mass of emerging and existing local leaders.
In rural communities we understand that leadership is not a position, it’s an activity! Anyone has the opportunity to grow the skills to be a leader. RDI’s Rural Community Leadership Program (RCLP) connects rural Pacific Northwest residents to each other and to efforts and organizations in their communities. It does so in ways that encourage involvement, collaboration, and collective action while building fundamental skills – and promoting vitality in rural places.
Over the past 2 years community involvement has decreased by 66% and demands are at a historic high. RDI firmly believes that local people getting involved in the organizations and groups that make up the tapestry of their community is foundational for rural vitality. The underlying premise is that who comes to the table matters. With a focus on action and connection rather than position the Rural Community Leadership Program engages emerging and existing leaders in activities that honor and strengthen local visions and efforts.
The spark of leadership catches where we live, learn, work, and play.
- A broad base of diverse, knowledgeable, skilled, and connected local leaders
- Effective organizations
- Productive collaborations among all voices in a community.
- Four in-person intensive workshops
- Two virtual skills trainings and peer mentoring
- Community engagement and investments
- Cohort celebration
- Ongoing coaching and peer mentoring
“The moment you educate someone… a spark of understanding flashes in their eye. They become invested and responsible. They realize that they have the power to do something to help our community. And if we are lucky, that spark is just the beginning to bigger and greater things.”
~ Rural Community Leadership Program Participant
Why participate in this program?
- Leadership in Community: gain a deeper understanding of yours and others leadership styles and identify your strengths and weaknesses.
- Community Centered Interests: explore your community’s interests and build upon current efforts.
- Appreciating & Working with Differences: build your capacity to work with people in your community who have a different perspective.
- Moving to Action: strengthen your ability to host effective meetings, build consensus, and move teams to action towards community vitality.
- Navigating Conflict: learn to navigate difficult situations and conversations to create the best possible outcomes for all parties involved.
- Community-Led Initiatives: practice authenticity, vulnerability, and equity; and effectively strengthen your community.
“Every day I feel more empowered about our project as well as future projects just by implementing what we have applied and getting back to our questions of “who is not in the room”?”
~ RDI Program Participant
“In this course I learned so much, I became convinced that a person can grow a concept into a team effort to help their community!”
~ Rural Community Leadership Program Participant
The leadership program results in:
- 7 years of increased and diversified local engagement
- 92% increased collaboration, communication, and connection between people & organizations
- 85% increased investment in local priorities and projects
- Increased capacity for succession and leadership transfer to new and existing leaders
This leadership program is for:
- people who want to be involved and make a difference.
- people who are interested in taking a larger role
- people who want to strengthen their teams
- people who want to see more coordination in community efforts
- people who want to feel more connected to their community.
UPCOMING AND CURRENT TRAININGS
Sweet Home Community Leadership Program
RDI is excited to be offering leadership training for Sweet Home community members! Applications are now being accepted for the first multigenerational community leadership program in Sweet Home and will begin in October 2023. Apply today.
Othello Community Leadership Program
RDI is excited to be offering leadership training for Othello WA, as part of the USDA Rural Placemaking Innovation Challenge and are now accepting applications. The first Othello Community Leadership program will begin in October 2023. Apply today.
Milton-Freewater Community Leadership Program
Now in it’s 20th year, RDI is partnering with Sherwood Trust to offer Community Leadership training in Milton-Freewater Oregon in 2024. Registration is now open!
Ahora en su vigésimo año, RDI se asocia con Sherwood Trust para ofrecer capacitación de liderazgo comunitario en Milton-Freewater, Oregon durante el 2024. ¡La inscripción ya está abierta!
Clallam County Leadership Program
If you are interested in learning more about the program and how to bring it to your community, click the button below and we will be in touch!
MEET OUR TEAM
Leadership Services Business Manager cgilmore (at) rdiinc.org
hkhokhar (at) rdiinc.org
Ada Márquez Acevedo
Bilingual Program Training Associate amarquezacevedo (at) rdiinc.org