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Our Theory of Change

Our Theory of Change is the roadmap to our vision of sustainable, equitable futures. It will shift us toward work that moves communities beyond recovery from recent crises and chronic disparities, to being stronger and more resilient than before.

We continue to view work in our Home Giving Area and our statewide rural work as two distinct but interwoven threads, each informing and improving the other.

Current Conditions

Realities rural people live with, every day. Disparities and discrimination. Undervalued and underfunded. Untapped creativity and unrivaled grit and determination.

Home Giving Area

Disparities remain and are projected to widen in the Home Giving Area.

Rural MN

Rural Communities aren’t adequately resourced by philanthropy and public investments. Disproportional responsibility lands on rural leaders.

Our Approach

These keep us laser-focused on aligning our work and resources to best meet the unique needs of rural communities. They guide our efforts to integrate work inside our walls, and as we work with rural doers and dreamers.

Integration Across Programs

Using research and reliable data.

Connect and inspire leaders to build capacity.

Fund to support innovation and to propel development.

Advocate with and for Minnesota’s small towns and rural places.

Our Strategies

Intentional ways we will assist rural folks as they work on issues that matter most to them, and advocate for the resources they need to address those issues.

Home Giving Area

Build capacity, leverage new resources, catalyze innovation and promote sustainability.

Lead on issues of high strategic importance.

Rural MN

Catalyze flow of new resources into underserved rural communities.

Community work we support is informed by marginalized people.


We will measure our work against them to assure we’re making the progress we hoped for – and adjusting when it’s clear we’re not.

Home Giving Area

Leaders are using advanced skills as conduits of change to better address disparities.

Leaders are leveraging new resources, catalyzing change and advancing sustainability.

Rural MN

Rural communities are accessing the power and resources needed to actualize change and drive development toward a more equitable Minnesota.


We seek shifts in the conditions that hold problems in place, so rural people have the connections and resources they need to move their rural places forward toward sustainable, equitable futures.


Rural Minnesota places welcome diversity, address injustice, and embrace change to create a sustainable and equitable future.

More About Our Strategic Direction

Contact Us

Your feedback strengthens our programs. Contact us to share your thoughts. You may also subscribe to our mailing list, or contact the following team members.

Jaci David_CasualGreen_WhiteBkgd.3.23_web

Jaci David

Senior Director of Programming

Send an Email

Direct: 218-327-8705

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