Imagine … the future of the Siuslaw Region
Siuslaw Vision’s Mission and Purpose
Building a better Siuslaw community together
Siuslaw Vision convenes, catalyzes, and connects individuals and organizations who want to improve quality of life for people living in the Siuslaw region. We help people implement locally-owned solutions that address community-identified goals.
Developing the Vision
In April of 2014, a Ford Institute Alumni Celebration was held in Florence, Oregon, reuniting nonprofit and governmental leaders, volunteers, and engaged community members from throughout western Lane County who had participated in Ford Family Foundation leadership opportunities. From that gathering, a strong consensus became apparent: it was time for a shared vision to bring together a rural community on the verge of transformation. A volunteer group emerged from that evening’s activities with a charge to help develop that vision and identify the region it would serve.
Working with the support of the Ford Institute for Community Building, volunteers began by identifying the area that would be the focus of the new community vision: the Siuslaw region. Stretching from coastal Glenada and Dunes City, eight miles south of Florence—the region’s hub at the mouth of the Siuslaw River—to the inland communities of Deadwood, Mapleton, and Swisshome, 30 miles upriver, the Siuslaw region is home to an estimated 18,000 residents and adjoins lands of the Confederated Tribes of the Coos, Lower Umpqua, and Siuslaw Indians. Altogether, more than 1,200 residents of this region participated in the visioning process. Through an area-wide survey, focus groups, community forums, and ongoing meetings, community members have had a voice in creating a Vision of the Siuslaw Region.
The Siuslaw Vision includes six elements, all focused on local people:
- Working People
- Happy People
- Educated People
- Connected People
- Creative People
- Active People
To achieve the Vision, area residents are focusing on several initiatives, including supporting local workforce development and childcare programs, establishing safe and affordable housing options, and promoting public art. Helping to support community champions who are working to turn these dreams into reality is the work of a volunteer steering committee known as the Vision Team. Countless community members are involved in all aspects of implementing the Vision. Click here to become involved.
Once the 10-year Siuslaw Vision document was complete, more local residents stepped up to keep the Vision moving forward. Previously known as Vision Keepers, the Vision Team is a volunteer steering committee that supports those who are turning these community dreams into reality.
The Vision Team shares the Vision with interested groups, makes connections within the region, and helps coordinate resources on current initiatives under the six elements of the Siuslaw Vision.
Many Vision Partners serve as resources for the Vision Team, helping to overcome barriers and find solutions that improve life in the Siuslaw region.
In 2018, the Siuslaw Vision received grant funding from The Ford Family Foundation that made it possible to hire a vision coordinator, financial support specialist, and tech support expert to support the work of the Vision Team and volunteers to help move the initiatives forward.