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Rural Commonwealth is focused on strengthening the 170 rural towns in Massachusetts through network development, effective communication of community needs, on-the-ground research, and local problem-solving projects.
Every resident of rural Massachusetts deserves to make a good living in an environment that provides a good life. This belief is at the core of our economic development work. Rural Commonwealth provides programs for rural entrepreneurs to launch and improve their businesses, and that allow rural job seekers to gain access to high-paying jobs that often can be done remotely. We hold all of our programs in rural communities, near the businesses and homes of participants.
We organize workgroups to explore and develop solutions to problems facing the small communities of Massachusetts, such as our current Growing Older in the Hilltowns workgroup. We also conduct research that highlights the economic conditions of rural communities around Massachusetts. Rural Commonwealth also coordinates the Small Town Summit, a series of meetings for rural municipal leaders on topics of common concern.
In May 2018, our work on behalf of the state's rural communities was recognized with a citation by the Massachusetts Senate. The 8 Town Economic Development Center, a facility we are developing in a former Western Franklin County dairy barn, was included in the Economic Bond Bill passed by the Massachusetts legislature and signed by the governor in the summer of 2018.