Community gardens are one way of helping ensure food security for residents in remote, rural areas.
Volume X | Issue 1 | Spring 2010
Cover Story

Rural food systems struggle to provide for residents

In the tiny town of Dayville (pop. 138), the general store does a lot more than sell groceries. It’s a feed store, a liquor store, a variety store and—like many rural mercantiles—it also does duty as the community center. Mugs with their owners’ names scrawled on them hang on the wall, waiting for local residents to head to the back room for a little coffee and company. It's a reminder of how important food is to rural Oregon—not just the consuming of it, but its availability and distribution. At the same time, it serves as a reminder of how these food systems are at risk.

Read More

More in this Issue:

Community Vitality is a storytelling publication published since 2000. Send article ideas, questions or requests for past issues to

© 2000-2021 The Ford Family Foundation. Anne Kubisch, President; Mandy Elder, Editor; Megan Monson, Assistant Editor

A statue of two cherubs fighting

True leaders understand civility

Our world has many issues—abortion, war, climate change— that generate intense and often uncivil debate. Our communities also have many issues—taxes, public works projects, zoning—that also can...  Read More

A woman enters scores at a basketball game

School activities provide focus

I grew up in Sherman County in the fourth generation of a farming family. We didn’t have a stop light in the entire county. It was a 75-mile round trip to school on the bus, and we were 64 miles from...  Read More

A woman looks out over a busy community center

Sharing space leverages resources

There’s only one thing better than visiting the offices of a thriving community organization, and that is visiting two at the same address. Or three, or four. Sharing space is a concept that has been...  Read More

The sun shines on a snow-covered meadow.

Collaboration yields results

Differences of opinion about the management of Oregon’s natural resources have led to a lot of very public conflict over the last 20 years. They also have led to the creation of highly collaborative...  Read More

A man wears a stethoscope in an exam room

Making the most of his potential

For 28-year-old Ryan Dutton, the path to higher education has been anything but straight. After graduating from Siuslaw High School in Florence in 2000, Dutton attended one term of school at Lane...  Read More

People work with shovels and rakes

‘taking care of the water’

Participants in the north Curry County leadership class of Fall 2008 faced a bit of a challenge as they tossed around possibilities for their class project. They wanted something that put their newly...  Read More

A safety net for children

Whatever it Takes is a no-holds-barred look at one of the greatest social experiments ever taken: a 97-block laboratory in central Harlem where educator Geoffrey Canada is hard at work exploring new...  Read More

A group of people listen to a speaker in a living room

Civility reigns in living rooms

In 2005, the Coos Watershed Association launched an outreach program directed at landowners in the lowland areas surrounding the Coos estuary. Unlike the large timber acreages of the uplands where...  Read More

Digital Distribution for Community Vitality

We offer both digital and printed editions of this publication. Printed copies are available by individual request only. Please note that we only mail Community Vitality to residents in Oregon and Siskiyou County, California. Residents outside of this geography are welcome to download any issues from this website or subscribe to the online version.

If you’re a graduate of the Ford Institute Leadership Program or a recipient of a Ford Family scholarship, you will automatically receive an online subscription. All others? Don’t miss our next issue.

Be sure to sign up at:

Don't worry. We never share our mailing list, and you can unsubscribe at any time.

Community Vitality is produced by Three60 Communications.

©2010 - 2023 The Ford Family Foundation. All rights reserved. Please direct permission to reprint inquiries here.