The Central Appalachian region is experiencing an economic transition that presents unprecedented opportunities to set a new course for our economy and communities. The growing Appalachian Transition movement is a response to several challenges, including the decline of the coal industry as a source of employment and economic growth, a pervasive public health crisis, the undervaluing of natural resources, and prolonged under-investment in our region’s organizations, businesses, community capacity, and youth. Appalachian Transition is about overcoming these challenges by capitalizing on the current vision and leadership across the region. The Transition movement is gaining traction as it pulls in a diverse and growing coalition of actors who share a common vision: a region of healthy communities and locally-rooted economies that promote sustainable and broadly-shared prosperity.
While the momentum towards a new path forward is strong, we recognize that the change we envision will take long-term partnerships, shared leadership, and sustained investments to be fully realized. We are excited to use the Appalachia Funders Network as a vehicle to help funders deepen their analysis, build constructive relationships, and make strategic investments that strengthen our communities and economy for a lasting transition.