News & Updates

Presenting our New Logo:

We wanted a logo concept that expressed a sense of energy, progress, diversity, and innovation, yet harkened back to traditional rural imagery. Thank you for your patience as we transition our logo and begin moving forward! Happy 30 years to the NC Rural Center!

The 2017 NC Rural Assembly, November 16-17

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Claiming our Future: Inspiring leadership, driving change was two days full of content and conversations focused on how communities can engage the next generation of rural leadership to build the foundation for a better and brighter tomorrow. 
Presentations, materials, and videos will be available on the Rural Asssembly website shortly.
The future is what we dare to make it. Will you help lead the way. 

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Rural Center Announces New Rural Church Initiative

The NC Rural Center has received a five-year grant from The Duke Endowment to work with United Methodist churches in rural North Carolina to build more economically dynamic and socially inclusive communities.

The Faith in Rural Communities initiative will initially partner with 64 Methodist churches throughout the state to assess their congregational assets and opportunities for community engagement. A smaller subset of congregations will then receive in-depth coaching to develop local outreach projects that support community growth and nurture laity and pastoral leadership in rural communities. 

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The Rural Center Launches Small Business Recovery Program

(Flooded downtown Fair Bluff after Hurricane Matthew. Photo credit: Jody Johnson)
The North Carolina Rural Center has selected Fair Bluff, Kinston, Lumberton, Pembroke, Princeville, Roseboro, and Whiteville to participate in the new Small Business Recovery ProgramEach participating community will receive an initial $100,000 investment in a local loan fund. Additional resources are available to increase those funds to nearly $300,000 to meet the local demand for small business loans.  
Rural Center business coaches will help each community create a tailored program to expand their capacity to identify, build, or invest directly in the assets needed to create an entrepreneur-friendly infrastructure in their community and to rebuild and strengthen their small business economy. The Small Business Recovery Program is part of the Rural Center's larger effort in helping rural communities through disaster recovery, for more information click here.


The Economic Impact of Closing the Insurance Coverage Gap

The NC Rural Center has launched a new county-level database that lets users explore who would benefit from closing the health insurance coverage gap, and the possible economic impact it could have for the state.


On Tuesday, May 9, we hosted the first-ever statewide Rural Day. Attendees were able to learn about the issues facing rural North Carolina, meet with state leaders, and network with other rural champions. Speakers included Governor Roy Cooper, Lt. Governor Dan Forest, Commissioner Steve Troxler, and many more state leaders working towards improving rural North Carolina. Learn more how we put rural NC's best foot forward!
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ImpactReport Copy

The numbers are in and we are pleased to share with you our 2016 Impacts Report! Take a look and learn more about our programs, people, and the communities we work with across rural North Carolina. Together we will continue to improve the quality of life of all rural North Carolinians, from the mountains to the coast.
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Bridging the Rural/Urban Divide Webinar, April 5th

Missed the webinar? Click below to listen to the discussion about breaking down the idea of the "divide" between rural and urban, and giving ideas about how to incorporate messages about the important connections among all our communities in your advocacy.
Watch Here 

Community Allies for Disaster Recovery

On Tuesday, February 28th, the Rural Center and a group of partner organizations hosted a training event for local nonprofit and grassroots leaders serving communities affected by Hurricane Matthew. The event provided updates on immediate recovery needs, connected participants to experts and resources, and explored long-term community revitalization strategies. The gathering started a partnership between community leaders and the key agencies leading the recovery process.
Click Here For More Information 


 Post-Election Webinar December 15th

The Rural Center hosted the first in a series of ongoing advocacy webinars designed to inform and engage rural communities across the state. We introduced the center's new Advocacy Director, John Coggin, and analyzed the outcome of  the national and state election and the impact they may have on rural communities. We looked ahead at what we anticipated from upcoming sessions of the General Assembly and Congress. We discussed the status of long-term hurricane recovery packages at the federal and state levels (action anticipated in early to mid-December).  We also gave the latest information on court ordered legislative redistricting and the 2017 special election. 

Click Here For More Information 


Letter to Congressional Delegation

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This week, the Rural Center hand-delivered letters to members of the North Carolina Congressional Delegation supporting federal emergency supplemental funding for disaster recovery. Hurricane Matthew made landfall on October 8th and record-breaking rainfall followed causing devastation for families, infrastructure, businesses, and whole communities. The letter outlines specific priorities including the Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery Fund, multiple USDA programs and other critical needs for recovery in eastern North Carolina. 

Click here to view a copy of the letter.



Emergency Bridge Loan Program Activated for Small Businesses Impacted by Hurricane Matthew

Derria and Barry Dixon (left) are working to recover from flood Damage at the offices of Dixon Social Interactive Services in Kinston (right).

The Rural Center made the first loan from the N.C. Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program to Derria and Barry Dixon of Dixon Social Interactive Services. Dixon Social Interactive Services is a provider for Mental and Behavioral Health offering counseling, day treatment, and therapy to individuals as well as families with offices in Greenville, Kinston, New Bern, and Rocky Mount.

Click here to continue reading this story.

Click here to apply for the Emergency Bridge Loan.


The 2016 N.C. Rural Assembly


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On behalf of the Board of Directors and the entire staff of the N. C. Rural Center, we want to thank you for making the 2016 N. C. Rural Assembly a success.  Our front porch conversation with rural leaders continued with great speakers, great resource organizations and presentations from the candidates seeking to lead our state in the years to come as Governor and United States Senator.  We managed to celebrate some rural success through our six annual award winners, and we even enjoyed a trip down memory lane with Andy, Barney and Aunt Bea as we previewed a new documentary on "The Real Mayberry".  It reminded us all of why we love and cherish our small rural North Carolina towns.  We'll be posting all our conference presentations and content online shortly, and we'll be sending you a survey seeking your feedback in helping us plan for the 2017 N. C. Rural Assembly.  It's less than a year away!


All the best from all of us,



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Check out our #RuralCounts download center

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The Rural Center has released its first-ever comprehensive advocacy agenda,
Rural Counts: 10 Strategies for North Carolina's Future.

           Download the 10 Strategies for North Carolina's Future.

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