New How-To Guide on Engaging Communities Through Issues Forums

Several members of a team funded by NERCRD’s small-grant program in 2017-2018 have recently published a guide that builds on their NERCRD-funded project and explores the use of forums as a community engagement tool in Extension work. The comprehensive how-to guide is designed to help Cooperative Extension professionals develop issues forums in both onsite and online settings.

The publication is the culmination of several years of the authors’ work engaging the public in responding to health and health insurance issues impacting the farming population, including the work conducted in their NERCRD-funded project, “Developing a Coordinated Community Risk Management Approach to Health and Health Insurance among Farm Enterprises.” This new publication adds to an impressive list of outcomes and impacts stemming from this project. The team also was recognized for their community forums work with the Priester Award for Community Development, awarded at the National Health Outreach Conference on May 3. Congratulations to all!

The guidebook, titled “Engaging Communities Through Issues Forums: A How-To Guide for Onsite and Online Community Engagement,” was written by Maria Pippidis, University of Maryland Extension; Bonnie Braun, University of Delaware Cooperative Extension; Jessie Ketterman, University of Maryland Extension; and Shoshanah Inwood and Nicole Wright, both of The Ohio State University. It was published by the Extension Foundation and is available online here.

NOTE: On June 9 at 2:00 p.m. ET, the authors will be presenting a webinar, “Building Community Resilience and Engagement Through Issues Forums.” Registration is required – register at:

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