Fahe is excited to once again partner with Rural LISC to offer leadership development opportunities to young professionals in Appalachia through the Community Housing & Economic Fellowship (CHEF) Internship Program. The CHEF Program offers quality summer internship opportunities in the region for Appalachian students, where they will benefit from service, hands on learning, and mentorship with nonprofit organizations across the region in the Fahe Network.
In June, Interns and Service Site staff met at the Fahe office in Berea for a two day convening to participate in program orientation, networking, and a mission tour of nearby Fahe Member projects. The 2018 CHEF Interns are working with Fahe Members Kingsport Housing & Redevelopment Authority, Mountain TOP, Appalachia Service Project, and Clinch-Powell RC&D, as well as Fahe’s Advocacy Department and Strategic Initiatives’ Appalachia HEAT Squad® program.
Many of Fahe’s Member organizations have been embedded in the rural communities they serve for years, making an impact through the services they offer and the resilient leadership they bring to their communities. However, rural communities are retaining fewer and fewer prospective leaders from the next generation, leaving their organizations and the communities in potential crisis as key leaders need to plan for their succession. In this regard, the CHEF interns not only gain valuable insight and training into Appalachia and the nonprofit world, but they also provide needed expertise and capacity to Fahe Members in areas of business, communication, and other professional services.
Fahe would like to thank Rural LISC for the funding and dedication to America’s rural places, which makes the CHEF program and others like it possible. With their support, Fahe is working to develop strong, innovative leaders and create opportunities for our region’s brightest and best to invest their expertise back into their Appalachian communities.
Over the next few weeks, the Fahe blog will feature insights and reflections from our 2018 CHEF interns about their experiences participating in the program this summer.