|Phillips County Economic Development|
|Written by Julie Worley, PCED executive director|
What can you do to promote Phillips County?
Many rural communities across America are facing the same problem: the out-migration of their youth and an increasingly aging, senior population. Municipal and regional leaders are continually faced with the question of how to prevent such population decline. Is it possible for small towns to recruit young adults and families to live and work in a rural setting?
Many rural leaders and economic development professionals view the recruiting of alumni and young families to their communities as a vital tool for community growth and sustainability.
Craig Schroder, director of youth engagement for the Center for Rural Entrepreneurship in Lincoln, Neb., has some suggestions on how local folks can encourage young adults in the community to stay or to come back to live, work and raise their families.
The first step is to inventory any existing alumni recruitment activities in the community. Ask yourself what’s working and what can be improved? It’s often easier to build upon alumni functions and events presently in place than to begin a new program.
Next, consider how current alumni-focused events can be used to send clear messages about opportunities for those folks to move home. Brainstorm simple ways to welcome young families when they are home for the holidays and community festivals.
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