Craig wins bid to host next year’s Rural Philanthropy Days |

Craig wins bid to host next year’s Rural Philanthropy Days

Sasha Nelson
The last day of Rural Philanthropy days includes funders meeting to hear two minute pitches from non-profits looking for support of their programs, projects and causes.
Courtesy Photo

— The Northwest Colorado Rural Philanthropy Days Marketing Committee learned Tuesday that it was successful in a bid to bring hundreds of nonprofit leaders to Craig for the 2017 Rural Philanthropy Days conference that will occur Sept. 27 to 29 in 2017.

The local economy will receive a boost from hundreds of visitors during the event, and it will help area nonprofits develop relationships and compete for grant dollars offered by funders attending the event.

“I am so excited to welcome 250 to 300 conference attendees to our beautiful community and showcase the unique culture and economy we have here,” said Michelle Balleck, executive director of Craig/Moffat Economic Development Partnership and co-chair of the Rural Philanthropy Days marketing committee. “This can mean a great deal for our community thanks to the lodging nights, event service contracts and retail and restaurant spending.”

The event is a statewide project of Community Resource Center that provides resources for leading effective organizations by bringing nonprofits together with funding sources and local government to collaborate on ways to address regional social issues.

“Bringing the funders to the region allows them to see what kind of work we are doing and our challenges,” Balleck said.

The Center of Craig, Moffat County Fair Grounds Pavilion, Colorado Northwestern Community Collage, Boys & Girls Club of Craig and Yampa Valley Fiberworks are all expected to act as venues for the multi-day event.

The final day of the conference has been described as speed dating for nonprofits as funders listen and provide feedback to organizations looking for funding.

“Between 2009 and 2014, the top 12 funders granted 367 grants to the Northwest Colorado region, totaling more than $12.5 million,” said Amanda Arnold, executive director of Moffat County United Way. “That’s a great return on investment for hosting this conference in our community. This will be a truly meaningful event for Craig, Moffat County and all of the Northwest region’s communities.”

The Northwest conference happens every four years with Grand, Jackson, Moffat, Rio Blanco and Routt counties in the region. Past conferences occurred in Winter Park in 2013, in Steamboat Springs in 2009, in Granby in 2005 and were shared between Steamboat Springs and Craig in 2001.

“There is an incredible amount of enthusiasm around this event and it being hosted in Craig and Moffat County,” said Maria Fabula, executive director of Community Resource Center. “We are excited to bring this impactful event to one of our state’s quintessential small towns and see firsthand the strengths and challenges that come with operating nonprofits in rural settings.”

David Pressgrove of Bear River Young Life filmed and edited a video for the presentation that was pitched to the committee to bring the philanthropic event to Craig,

The video is available at:

Representatives for a number of entities helped to support the proposal including the Craig Chamber of Commerce, Moffat County Tourism Association, the Boys & Girls Club of Craig and Moffat County Commissioners.

For more information about Rural Philanthropy Days conference visit

Contact Sasha Nelson at 970-875-1794 or or follow her on Twitter @CDP_Education.

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