The Walton Foundation launches new strategy for Arkansas and the Mississippi Delta

The Walton Family Foundation has launched a new collaborative effort to support people and communities in the Arkansas-Mississippi Delta region, an initiative that will focus on three key areas: education and youth engagement , creating economic assets for individuals and families, and high- impact coalition building. The plan would be part of Strategy 2025, the foundation’s five-year commitment to tackle challenging social and environmental issues, and a long-term approach to expanding access to opportunity.

The Walton Family Foundation is a family foundation, made up of three generations of the Walton family who work together to create access to opportunity for people and communities. The Foundation works in three areas: improving K-12 education, protecting rivers and oceans and the communities they support, and investing in its home region of northwest Arkansas as well. than in the Arkansas-Mississippi delta.

“Every community is different and so are the challenges they face, which is why it’s essential to follow local leadership and vision,” said Annie Proietti, chair of the Walton Family Foundation board of trustees. “We recognize that building a vibrant and equitable Delta will not happen on its own. Achieving this vision means associating with partners and supporting each other towards common goals.

The Foundation will help lay the foundation for a new generation of success by investing in the teaching workforce, unlocking academic and professional pathways, and improving access to educational options. With a focus on reducing the region’s inequalities, the Foundation will also seek ways to provide residents with the resources needed to build financial security through the creation of economic assets and stimulate upward mobility by offering life development. labor and skills training to strengthen small businesses. Finally, the Foundation will form coalitions of local, regional and national partners to develop the next generation of community leaders and achieve greater equity and opportunity in the region.

The Walton Family Foundation has a proven track record of working with communities in Phillips County, Ark. and Coahoma County, Mississippi, to advance opportunities in the delta. With this new strategy, the Foundation is expanding its efforts in the region to Jefferson County, Ark.

The Foundation has also recruited local leader Abe Hudson as a program officer focused on the Delta region. Hudson currently resides in Clarksdale, Mississippi and will spend time facilitating new partnerships in the area. Prior to joining the Foundation, he was a Mississippi State Representative and worked with Delta State University as a visiting professor at the College of Business and Aviation. He was also program director of the DEBTS program (Debt Education for Business Transformation and Sustainability).

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