Now is the perfect time for American foundations and private donors to invest in rural communities.
It is true that there are fewer people and there is less “built” infrastructure in rural America. Rural areas cover 97 percent of the nation’s land area but contain less than one in five people (about 60 million). Rural America is where natural resources are harvested and processed, where most of our clean water originates, and where we go for recreation. Rural residents are more likely to own their homes, live in their state of birth, and serve in the military than their urban counterparts.
In the face of the Covid-19 pandemic, we are witnessing the kind of resilience that rural places are known for. Take the nearly 1,000 small businesses we’ve provided financing support and business advice to over the last month that have been hit hard and are fighting to find a path forward. Right now, loan modifications and clear and accurate advice can make the difference between a business closing its doors and laying off its workers or hanging on through the crisis to recovery.
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