National Trust Announces New Rural Heritage Development Initiative
The National Trust for Historic Preservation announced the Rural Heritage Development Initiative, a project that will work with two rural pilot regions to implement preservation-based economic development strategies. The new initiative is funded in significant part through a $745,000 three-year grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Proposals are being solicited from regions that have the capacity to work collaboratively to develop cultural and heritage assets for economic benefit.
The Rural Heritage Development Initiative will bring together various multi-disciplinary services of the National Trust for intensive work with partners in the pilot regions over a three-year period. Through preservation-based strategies including heritage tourism, local entrepreneurial and business development, barn preservation, rural land-use planning, and neighborhood housing revitalization, the project will utilize local assets to achieve economic gains in the pilot regions.
By addressing many of the opportunities and issues facing rural regions today, from hot growth to the loss of their traditional agricultural base, we hope that this initiative will inspire rural areas across the United States to consider new strategies and techniques for revitalization through preservation, said Richard Moe, president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. We are grateful to the W.K. Kellogg Foundation for recognizing preservations role in economic development, and for providing lead funding for this important initiative.
The Request for Proposals (RFP) identifies the selection criteria and other requirements for participation in the project. Proposals will need to provide matching funds, as explained in the RFP.
Helping state and local organizations gain knowledge and experience in implementing rural revitalization strategies will help sustain rural economic development efforts beyond the scope and time frame of this particular grant, said Kathleen H. Crowther, executive director of the Cleveland Restoration Society and chairperson of the National Trusts Statewide and Local Partnership program.
The National Trust has a long history of working on rural preservation and revitalization issues through its nationally-recognized National Trust Main Street Center, which originally focused on small towns, its heritage tourism program, the Barn Again! program, and other public policy advocacy.
For additional information about the National Trusts Rural Heritage Development Initiative or to receive the RFP and application, please call the Center for Preservation Leadership, Statewide and Local Partnerships Office, 202-588-6216. The application is also available on the National Trusts web site, http://www.nationaltrust.org/about_the_trust/contracts_rfp_list.html#rhi listed under “Consulting/Other Professional Services”.
The W.K. Kellogg Foundation was established in 1930 to help people help themselves through the practical application of knowledge and resources to improve their quality of life and that of future generations. Its programming activities center around the common vision of a world in which each person has a sense of worth; accepts responsibility for self, family, community, and societal well-being; and has the capacity to be productive, and to help create nurturing families, responsive institutions, and healthy communities.
To achieve the greatest impact, the Foundation targets its grants toward specific areas. These include: health; food systems and rural development; youth and education; and philanthropy and volunteerism. Within these areas, attention is given to exploring learning opportunities in leadership; information and communication technology; capitalizing on diversity; and social and economic community development. Grants are concentrated in the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean, and the southern African countries of Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, Swaziland, and Zimbabwe.