The Rural Ontario Institute is pleased to announce the 2020 cohort of the Rural Change Makers pilot project. Eighteen participants, aged 18 to 29, will have the opportunity to make an impact in their rural community. They will develop a systems thinking approach and become catalysts for community led development. The vision of the Rural Change Makers Program is to grow the capacity of young adults to serve as change-makers and strengthen rural community development by providing leadership opportunities through sustainable, experiential learning. ”The focus on young adults in rural areas is vital for the resilience of rural communities “, said Gabrielle Ferguson, Leadership Programs Director at Rural Ontario Institute, “future focused leaders keep actions relevant and rural living attractive”. By the end of the program, participants will be given the opportunity to facilitate sessions which discover high priority community issues and create plans to act. This program will provide them with support systems and coaching to aid them in their success. “The Change Makers were selected with the understanding that they have already [acquired] impressive innovative qualities and know-how,” says Norman Ragetlie, Executive Director of Rural Ontario Institute. “We want to help accelerate and support these qualities so that they can be impactful within their community.” For a full list of the candidates and their profiles can be found at https://www.ruralontarioinstitute.ca/currentparticipants. The Rural Ontario Institute is a non-profit organization committed to developing leaders, initiating dialogue, supporting collaboration and promoting action on issues and opportunities facing rural Ontario.