A provincial government investment will help the new Rural Ontario Institute make a strong, smooth transition during the amalgamation of The Centre for Rural Leadership (TCRL) and The Ontario Rural Council (TORC).
Grants totaling $200,000 will come from the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.
The provincial money includes $160,000 for the transition to the Rural Ontario Institute, and an additional $40,000 investment in the Advanced Agricultural Leadership Program – a program of The Centre for Rural Leadership that will continue under the Rural Ontario Institute.
The Rural Ontario Institute will officially begin operations on Apr. 1, with a mandate to provide rural leadership development and a mechanism to engage rural and multi-sector stakeholders for the purposes of informing and influencing rural policy development. Three core services will be provided – leadership training, stakeholder engagement and third-party program delivery.
“These resources will ensure the Rural Ontario Institute has a tremendously strong start, right out of the gate,” said Harold Flaming, executive director of The Ontario Rural Council. “We expect initiatives focusing on stakeholder engagement covering a wide range of emerging rural issues and opportunities to benefit from this critical investment in the Rural Ontario Institute. Partnerships with universities and other organizations will be enhanced as a means of more effectively articulating the rural voice on issues impacting rural Ontario.”
The Rural Ontario Institute will soon be announcing its 12-member board of directors, CEO and staff members.