Gene L. Theodori, Sam Houston State University
Across the nation, the desire for rural and small town community and economic development stakeholders to solve local problems and reduce socioeconomic disparities is increasingly recognized by state policymakers, local elected officials and citizens. Moreover, the need to attract and retain sufficient levels of human capital in rural areas to improve the overall quality of life is often a major priority for many communities. In the southern United States, county Extension agents (hereafter referred to as CEAs), particularly those located in nonmetropolitan counties, are increasingly being called upon to provide leadership for community and economic development efforts.
Currently, Center Fellows are implementing a Community-Based Planning Process with residents of Grimes County, Texas.
The Center previously implemented this curriculum in Rosebud, Texas. This process was made possible through the Heart of Texas Council of Governments. The Center also previously implemented this curriculum in Crockett, Texas with the Mary Allen Museum of African American Art and History, Inc. For more information click here or visit the MAM website here. The project involved empowering the organization to work to with the community in the process of restoring and transforming the Mary Allen College building into a state-of-the-art museum.
Community-Based Planning: Grimes County, Texas
The Center for Rural Studies team has been excited to facilitate community-planning sessions in Grimes County, Texas. The basic premise of these sessions was to ultimately develop a 5-year plan aimed at improving critical infrastructure as well as developing new projects/programs to aid in the development of community.
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