How did it all start?

In the early 2000s, I (Marci) was going to every incorporated city in Kansas to research for the first Kansas Guidebook for Explorers. At some point I became very aware of a trend. Towns where young people were in leadership or were active business leaders seemed to be thriving in a way that other cities were not.

I kept track of these bright young people and when I was done with the book I brought a small group of them together. That group of five was so enthused that we invited more to the circle and the excitement and numbers grew. Members of the group were asked to speak at annual banquets and conferences, they were invited to be on panels. They met with legislators. They became identified (instead of hidden) as conference audience members. Their voice was desired, people wanted to hear what they had to say about living in rural communities.

The Kansas Sampler Foundation will be hiring a PowerUp coordinator to focus on all the opportunity associated with empower, engaging and connecting 21-39 year olds who are rural by choice. Let's power up!