Creating sustainable communities workshop

Needless to say this is a very critical time in our history. A paradigm shift in thinking is needed to enable Upper Peninsula communities to become more sustainable and transition to renewable energy, produce more food locally and manage natural resources to lessen the impacts of climate change and increased tourism.

Recently a group of community-minded Yoopers started raising funds to send a team of up to seven persons to attend a three-day course on Feb. 11-13, 2020, at the National Conservation Training Center, called “Balancing Nature and Commerce in Rural Communities and Landscapes”


This course has been presented by The Conservation Fund for over 15 years assisting over 700 communities to become more sustainable. The goal of the group is that attendees will bring the information back to the U.P. and share it, both in their local communities and through additional training.

If, after reading this article, you would like to be a part of the team attending the training, contact David Kronk at dbkronk@gmail.com. If you would like help raise funds to send these Yoopers to this training and please visit the GoFundMe site on the Internet, search for “Train 4 Yoopers About Community Sustainability” (gf.me/u/w7pvrb) and make a donation. Thanks!

The goal of these workshops offered by The Conservation Fund is help communities forge solutions for both conservation and economic development goals. Their workshops focus on the economics, community character, natural resources and partnership building skills necessary for creating sustainable communities.

Their focus is on strengthening rural communities: places defined by landscapes and natural resources-farming, forestry, ranching, renewable energy, rural manufacturing, recreational destinations, and the gateway communities to our great American parks, forests, and other public and private resource lands. The Balancing Nature and Commerce Program works with communities to capitalize sustainably on local assets, helping them safeguard their unique sense of place, create and retain jobs, and attract entrepreneurs, while commanding the attention of new funders, resources, and partners. In rural communities across the country, The Conservation Fund’s Conservation Leadership Network’s field of experts start by asking the questions to help communities frame solutions that are right for them, then create the infrastructure to implement their vision. Each community is unique, so they tailor their services to complement local qualities and needs, thus ensuring that the community is “thriving, not just surviving.”


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