This funder learning and strategy session will maintain momentum on a range of topics of interest to NEFN participants and deepen learning from place and peers. It will focus on the challenges to and opportunities for building more healthy, vibrant and equitable communities, using Newport and the larger region as a portal for learning.
The meeting will feature local and state leaders, and national experts, addressing a range of issues at the intersection of rural and urban. Like many other places in the Northeast, the Newport region has an image of wealth and privilege that differs significantly from the reality of the lives of most residents. The overall theme of the conference will be how the non-profit, government and philanthropic sectors are addressing this dichotomy, creating more sustainable, prosperous, and connected places that benefit all the region’s residents.
The meeting will begin Thursday morning, June 13 in Newport’s North End neighborhood with a tour and session on the Health Equity Zones work in Newport, a place-based health program attuned to the socio-economic and environmental determinants of health, adjacent to a major redevelopment and park project. The afternoon session will take place in a more rural part of Newport highlighting opportunities for and systemic threats to sustainable agriculture and local food systems in the Northeast. Meeting attendees will have the option of touring between sessions on bicycles.
On Friday June 14, the meeting will reconvene in downtown Newport with time for funder sharing and a session on policy opportunities emerging at the federal and state levels driven by initiatives ranging from the Green New Deal to the recently reauthorized Farm Bill, to the permanently reauthorized Land and Water Conservation Fund. We welcome participation by interested funders.