Special to the Register & Bee

Middle Border Forward is currently accepting applications for its leadership development fellowship.

This free, year-long program is designed to introduce emerging leaders to the opportunities and challenges within the Middle Border region — including the Danville, Pittsylvania County and Caswell County, North Carolina — encourage civic engagement and create a network of grassroots leaders.

“Being a Middle Border Fellow has taught me there is so much I don’t know about the beautiful region I live in,” said Felice McWilliams, a Middle Border fellow in 2018. “It has opened my eyes to many opportunities, people and places that I wouldn’t be exposed to had it not been for Middle Border Forward.”

Over the course of a year, fellows meet monthly for day-long sessions on a variety of topics and work collaboratively to complete a community impact project prior to graduation. The fellowship is designed for individuals at 18 who are civic-minded, live or work in the Middle Border region, and eager to make a positive impact in their community. No minimum education level or experience is required.

“For one thing, my network has grown significantly which is a benefit to my work,” said Ryan Millner, a Middle Border fellow in 2018. “Secondly, my eyes are more open to opportunities within the region to help make a difference,”

This year, to offset the costs associated with participation, Middle Border Forward will provide fellows a stipend of $100 per month.

“We recognize that ‘free’ does not always mean ‘without cost,’” said Jennifer Gregory, executive director of Middle Border Forward. “So, we’re offering an annual stipend of up to $1,200 to allow more people in our region access to this opportunity. We do not want financial barriers to prevent anyone from realizing their leadership potential.”

Applications are available online at www.middleborder forward.org until Aug. 19. Sessions for the 2019-20 cohort will be held every second Thursday of the month, beginning Oct. 10. More information is available online or by calling (434) 483-2894.

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