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Providing Education that Supports Vibrant and Livable Communities

Learn how we make a difference with ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT


Boosting the local economy

When a local small business owner proposed that a shuttered elementary school serve as the future home of his growing business, Village of Elderon Board members were enthusiastic. But the cost of renovating the old building was a major hurdle. That’s when the Marathon County UW-Extension community development agent identified a source of funding that brought the plan to life.

Revitalizing a small community’s downtown

The Town of Mercer’s downtown area suffered years of neglect in the decades following mine closures. To restore the area and boost tourism, the UW-Extension Iron County community development educator and local partners helped form the Mercer Downtown and Community Development Group. UW-Extension also provided grant writing assistance that netted the community more than $3 million in grants. Today, Mercer is being transformed into a wonderful place for residents and an attractive tourist destination in the heart of Wisconsin tourist country.

Learn how we make a difference with NATURAL RESOURCES

Volunteer time valued at $1.5 million in Wisconsin

Volunteers add substantially to the human capital in communities needing support that would otherwise be beyond budgets of agencies and non-profit organizations. CNRED educators and specialists reported over 32,000 hours of volunteer time in support of Extension programs and an additional 73,000 hours of volunteer time through organizations and communities supported by CNRED programs. Such volunteer time comes from programs as varied as stream monitoring and lake monitoring for water quality to local non-profit community development initiatives. Using a standard calculation for the value added of volunteer hours, Wisconsin received a $$1.5 million benefit from volunteer time supported by CNRED programs.

CNRED researchers help shape Wisconsin natural resources policy

UW-Extension specialists contribute to policy on issues and trends that affect the future of Wisconsin’s outdoor recreation. The 2011-2016 Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan (SCORP), a collaboration between UW-Extension, the University of Wisconsin System and the Department of Natural Resources was described as “the best of the best” by the National Park Service and the Society of Outdoor Recreation Professionals.

Learn how we make a difference with LEADERSHIP DEVELOPMENT

Building tomorrow’s leaders

Many Wisconsin counties host county-based leadership programs that are intended to build leadership skills of county residents across a diverse spectrum of participants. These programs typically run nine months and focus on both community issues and leadership skill development. CNRED educators teach and provide organizational and evaluation support. Across all of these programs, participants reported a statewide total of 5,005 new leadership roles or opportunities undertaken. Below are two examples of CNRED programs that help build new leaders.

The Wisconsin Lake Leader's Institute -- Training Leaders to Take Care of Wisconsin's Lakes


Teaming Up with Communities to Create Opportunities

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