Solutions in rural America are just as varied and diverse as the communities who live there. Too often, rural America is used as shorthand for rural white America, an assumption that drives our understanding not just of who solutions should serve, but what problems are in need of remediation. While rural counties as a whole are less diverse than their urban and suburban counterparts, communities of color still call rural America home;
The stories in this collection highlight solutions targeted towards rural communities of color, ranging from issues of environmental justice disproportionately impacting Black people in the Deep South to locally-created databases that collect information about Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women when law enforcement will not. In Colorado, students are the focus, as the children of migrant workers find assistance in pursuing their educations with the Migrant Education Program and young women and people of color are able to join targeted programs to learn more about field science and wilderness. And for some towns, changing demographics and immigration patterns have brought about economic benefits, encouraging entrepreneurship and innovation in places like Luna County, New Mexico. Together, these stories give a glimpse of the many rural communities creating solutions to some of their most pressing local issues - and providing a roadmap for others to follow as they continue to see success.