This past May the Livability Leadership Team hosted the well-attended NRV Funders Forum which brought together funders and interested community members to discuss what project readiness looks like when seeking funding for a community development project. Eight different funders participated in the day-long session, including The Department of Housing and Community Development, The Appalachian Regional Commission, USDA Rural Development, Go Virginia, Virginia Commission for the Arts, Virginia Tourism Corporation, Virginia Housing and Development Authority, and Virginia Community Capital as well as 70 participants from the local government, nonprofit, and for-profit sectors. Funders provided an overview of the types of funding available through their organizations and what participants can expect the review process to include. There was also a panel discussion between all funders on common mistakes and what funders wish that applicants knew beforehand. A key recommendation echoed by many funders was to build a strong, collaborative, and cross-sectoral team of partners that can provide the diversity of capacity needed to oversee the design, application, funds awarded, implementation, and evaluation of the proposed work. This may require redefining what leadership looks like, being more expansive in who you invite to the table, building trust, and working to leverage a diversity of financial resources to see the project through. The Prices Fork redevelopment project in Montgomery County was touted as a successful example of a collaborative community development project. The Livability Leadership team is continuing discussions on how it can help increase capacity and project readiness throughout our region to better support the implementation of the goals and projects identified in the NRV Livability Initiative’s plan. Stay tuned! To see the agenda and funders contact information, click here and to see the powerpoint slides from the event, click here.