Revising the Rural Narrative

Thursday, November 18
9:00-10:00 a.m. via Zoom (1 CEU)

FREE program open to NASW-MN members and social workers in the Northwest region
Presented by NASW-MN and Northern Access

Presenter: Ben Winchester, Rural Sociologist, University of Minnesota Extension, Center for Community Vitality

It seems the rural story has already been told. Small towns keep getting smaller. Churches, schools, clinics, businesses, and now post offices, have closed their doors as the lucky few migrate out to the big cities. This deficit framework dominates how we discuss and envision our rural communities. However, the story of rural America since 1970 is rich and diverse, with positive trends occurring under the radar.

Learn how positive changes around migration, community involvement, economic development, and regional living have diversified this landscape - and how we are required to rewrite the narrative of rural community change. To this strengths perspective on rural communities, we will be adding local resources for building rural communities.

About the Presenter

Ben has been working both in and for small towns across the Midwest for over 25 years. He lives in St. Cloud, Minnesota with his wife and two children. Ben is Senior Research Fellow for the University of Minnesota Extension, Center for Community Vitality where conducts applied research on economic, social, and demographic topics surrounding a theme of “rewriting the rural narrative” that are vital to rural America. He was a founding employee at the Center for Small Towns, an outreach and engagement program at the University of Minnesota, Morris and specializes in community development, demographic analysis, data visualization, and moving communities away from anecdata. Learn more about the presenter:

Registration is closed.

NASW-MN Board Representative

Lance C. Egley, Ph.D., LADC, LICSW (he/him/his), Private Trainer and Consultant at Northern Minnesota Training and Consulting Collaborative

Counties in this Region

  • Beltrami
  • Clearwater
  • Hubbard
  • Kittson
  • Lake of the Woods
  • Mahnomen
  • Marshall
  • Norman
  • Pennington
  • Polk
  • Red Lake
  • Roseau