DONATE NOW TO SUPPORT YOUTH IN SOUTHERN AND EASTERN KENTUCKY
Youth in Southern and Eastern Kentucky face many obstacles in their journey to adulthood. The persistent cycle of poverty in Appalachia, and the recent layoffs in the coal mining industry, have only exacerbated the feelings of hopelessness that many youth say they have experienced. At a recent Shaping our Appalachian Region (SOAR) meeting facilitated by the Rural Policy Research Institute, adults and youth alike expressed concern about the lack of employment, educational opportunities and access to healthcare in the region.
The Center for Rural Development, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that serves a 45-county area in Southern and Eastern Kentucky, believes that the development of youth in Appalachia is key to its long-term growth and sustainability.
Rogers Scholars, The Center’s flagship youth program, provides leadership and college scholarship opportunities to help upcoming high school juniors in Southern and Eastern Kentucky develop the skills they need to seize their potential as the region’s next generation of business and entrepreneurial leaders.
During this intensive week-long program, Rogers Scholars work on building their leadership skills, participate in a series of team-building exercises; receive hands-on instructional training from professional experts in engineering, healthcare, and video production; and interact with nationally recognized business leaders and entrepreneurs. The program focuses on developing skills in leadership, technology, entrepreneurship, and community service.
Since the program’s inception in 1998, 936 high school students have graduated from Rogers Scholars, and potential scholarships valued at more than $7.2 million have been offered to graduates by 17 participating colleges and universities.
“The Rogers Scholars program was the little shove that I needed to do something big. I was definitely not required to do a 250 hour project to build a community park. But it was totally worth it. My communication skills are improved. I learned how much others want to help. I learned how to prioritize my time. I learned what things are the most important. I am grateful that I could be the leader of a project that will make the lives of people happier now and for generations to come.”
-Faith Call led efforts to build Firebrook Park in Somerset, KY
PLEASE DONATE NOW TO THE CENTER FOR RURAL DEVELOPMENT AND SUPPORT THE ROGERS SCHOLARS PROGRAM.
Your donation as part of Kentucky Gives Day will go directly to support the Rogers Scholars program. No contribution is too small. Together, with your help, we can ensure that our youth develop the skills they need to be leaders and innovators in our Appalachian communities, and that they never have to leave home to find their future.