Housing is a basic need that all Minnesotans share and is essential to creating resilient communities. Meeting that need, however, can be a complex challenge. A new community-university project seeks to design resilient and affordable housing solutions that embrace Minnesota’s ecological, economic and cultural diversity.
An interactive resource guide published this summer from The Department of Public Transformation and partners showcases an artist-led approach that uses deep community engagement to reimagine vacant spaces in small towns and rural areas, drawing on a case study of The YES! House, in Granite Falls.
New oilseed cover crops like winter camelina and pennycress protect water and soil, provide income to farmers, and supply exciting end products. The Forever Green Initiative and RSDP recently hosted virtual field days – available for viewing by all – which showcase the new crops.
In mid-March, RSDP's five regional boards invited community ideas for rapid responses to COVID-19. The goal was to identify innovative ideas across Greater Minnesota that could benefit from partnership and a small infusion of support. Within a month, RSDP boards had reviewed more than 50 ideas.
Ojibwe prophecy foretells a crossroads. At this point, humans can choose to turn away from a path of environmental degradation and toward one of stewardship of the earth and each other. If we choose the path of stewardship, the earth heals and all groups of people prosper together. A group of Northeast Minnesotans hopes a Great Lakes Cultural Interpretive Center would help us choose the latter.
Central RSDP has undertaken an intentional effort to grow the diversity and inclusivity of the board and community partners which has resulted in projects with Somali, Latino and tribal communities, including projects undertaken in a bilingual context.