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The battle to win votes in rural America is closer than expected and rural voters will play a critical roll in determining the outcome of the 2004 presidential election, according to a poll of rural voters in the most hotly contested states.
A Place in the Country is a one-hour television documentary, narrated by Ray Suarez, that examines the impact of seven rural community development organizations located throughout the United States.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is deciding whether to open up vacant TV channels - also known as white spaces -- to communities, nonprofits, and entrepreneurs for wireless broadband and advanced communications. Opening up these vacant channels presents a valuable opportunity to bring broadband to rural communities.
The Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) encourages banks to provide a modest amount of loans, investments, and services to poor and marginalized communities in their service areas. CRA has helped both hard-hit rural and urban communities create for themselves the services and facilities that more affluent communities take for granted.
In 2003 the Center for Rural Strategies and thousands of other individuals and organizations across the country stopped CBS Television from producing "The Real Beverly Hillbillies," a proposed reality show based on the old situation comedy. The idea was to find a poor rural family, move them to a Hollywood mansion, and make a reality TV show out of their encounters with affluence and hip culture.
All communities, no matter how poor they might seem, have assets they can invest in themselves. "Donors Ourselves" is the story of how people in two very different places – East Africa and East Tennessee – built on their assets of leadership, local knowledge, and capital to create a brighter future for their communities.
The Center for Rural Strategies produced, as part of the Rural Desk News Initiative, video news pieces about issues that face today's rural Americans. The videos were distributed for free to local television stations across the country, so that they could provide their viewers with compelling, accurate, and balanced information about rural issues. They were produced and aired in the fall of 2003.
The rural vote can be decisive in national and state elections. Rural Strategies has tracked the rural vote through a series of public opinion polls during presidential and congressional elections.
The flood that destroyed New Orleans temporarily revived American journalism. For a few weeks, journalists rediscovered the power of words and images to affect public policy. But as Americans witnessed the catastrophe of New Orleans, an equally troubling story largely escaped notice. In the lower parishes of Louisiana and along coastal Mississippi, hundreds of thousands of rural people fought a similar battle for their lives. These events received far less attention at the time. And today, now that the story of New Orleans has dropped off the front page, the story of the destruction of the rural Gulf Coast has disappeared almost entirely. Rural Strategies is completely a documentary video that continues to tell that story.