August 02, 2013

As part of the Advanced Agricultural Leadership Program (AALP), a program of the Rural Ontario Institute, Class 15 participants will again be expected to complete an “action based leadership project”, within the agriculture and agri-food sectors and rural communities in Ontario.  To this end, we would like to offer your organization (or one you may know that could use this help) the opportunity to partner with a team of three to five class members in an effort to help solve a pressing issue, concern or problem identified as significant by your organization.

If selected, over the course of 12 to 14 months (November 2013 through early spring 2015) class members will work with your organization in a consultative role with the objectives of the project being to:

1.  Help to solve an agri-food industry or rural community issue/ problem using acquired skills or knowledge by:

  • a.  Identifying the issue or issues at play
  • b.  Identifying the players, positions and their interest
  • c.  Collecting and summarizing pertinent information
  • d.  Developing, defining and evaluating alternative solutions
  • e.  Recommending a plan of action
  • f.   Implementing that plan of action (when possible), and
  • g.  Evaluating the impact of the project and the team’s involvement

2.  Demonstrate the key elements of effective teamwork within the AALP class team and with the selected client organization

3.  Gain knowledge and expertise in an area/ on an issue that is important and specific to the agri-food industry and/or the rural community

4.  Contribute to the success of the agri-food industry and rural communities in Ontario

5.  Profile the AALP Program and Class 15 participants

As in the past, we are excited about the opportunity to work with a number of Ontario’s rural organizations and communities.  At this time we are requesting letters of intent/ participation from those organizations who would like to partner with the Rural Ontario Institute and Class 15 of the Advanced Agricultural Leadership Program and work with class teams to solve issues of significance within their organization.  The projects are intended to help organizations resolve issues that have been identified by organization boards, staff and members.  There is no cost to the partnering organizations involved.

Based upon the number of organization responses received, ROI staff will identify the partnering organizations and the issues to be dealt with in October/ November 2013.  Anticipating significant interest in this project, please note that it may not be possible to partner every interested organization with a class consultant team.

 Your organization’s letter of intent (in email or letter format) should be sent to the attention of:

Rob Black

Chief Executive Officer

Rural Ontario Institute

5653 Highway #6N

R.R. #5 Guelph, ON  N1H 6J2

E-mail:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The letter or email should be no longer than two (2) pages maximum and include the following:

o    Organization Name

o    Contact information – Name of primary contact for the project

o    Summary of Issue

  •   What is the unique issue?
  •   Why it is an issue?
  •   Historical context of the issue?
  •   What is the concrete AND ACHIEVABLE outcome or deliverable to successfully ‘deliver’ on the issue

o    Objectives/ results the organization would like to achieve from this project.

o    Available resources – people, information, money etc. to solve the problem

o    Expected timeline for the project

In order to gauge the interest in this project and match class teams to partnering organizations, your organization’s letter of intent should be received no later than Friday, September 20, 2013.  All organizations will be informed of the outcome in later October/ November 2013 and information will be provided at that time with respect to the AALP consultant teams.

Should you have questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me at 519-826-4204.  We anticipate strong interest again, in this exciting opportunity to partner with AALP class participants to solve/ deal with issues of significance within rural Ontario.   We hope you will want to be involved and we look forward to hearing from you.