What We Do : Healthy Communities

(e2) education emPowers® Initiative


Get involved, have fun, and make a meaningful difference.e2-Full Equation_R

Do you feel it is imperative that our rural and suburban region remains viable in attracting and retaining jobs in a fiercely competitive global market? Join a group of individuals from all walks of life who are working together to find new, collaborative solutions that lead to better jobs, better wages, healthier people, and thriving communities.

Educational attainment and being connected to the community are the most important determinants of a person’s life chances in terms of employment, income, health status, housing, and other amenities. Help us spread this knowledge by getting involved in one of the following action teams:

  • e2 Bridging Team: Involves the chairs of all e2 Action Teams, Healthy Communities Regional Investor Partners, Heartland Foundation Servant Leadership Team members and other volunteers from all sectors of the regional community focused annually on the planning and coordination of: regional Think Ahead Forums, Spark Awards, e2 Communications, character education emPowers program, and other bridging opportunities.
  • e2 Pathways to Early Learning Action Team: Volunteers from all sectors of the regional community focused on promoting interactive parenting and quality early childhood education in preparation for successful lifelong learning.
  • e2 STEAM Action Team: Volunteers from all sectors of the regional community focused on promoting K-12 science, technology, engineering, art/design, and math programs, resources, collaborations, competitions, and camps involving both youth and adults.
  • e2 Pathways to Prosperity Action Team: Volunteers from all sectors of the regional community focused on promoting high school graduation, work readiness skills, and partnerships between employers, employees, and educators in both secondary and post-secondary organizations.
  • e2 Fellowship Advocacy Action Team: Volunteers from all sectors of the regional community focused on promoting this intergenerational leadership program and resulting service-learning projects of collaboration and education emPowers advocacy.
  • emPowerU Advisory Team: Volunteers from all sectors of the regional community focused on uplifting this program focused on civic empowerment, collaboration, critical-thinking and 21st century skills for Grades 6+ through adults and Jump Starters youth-led service-learning projects.
  • Youth Servant Leadership Team: Youth volunteers from throughout the region working together on regional projects, networking, and active civic engagement.
  • ign!te Investment Campaign Council: Volunteers from all sectors of the regional community focused on raising the necessary funds and resources to ign!te a movement uplifting the (e2) education emPowers® message.

Download an outline of today’s (e2) education emPowers volunteer opportunities.

Volunteer Now

Interested in how these teams got started?

The Healthy Communities movement has promoted region wide initiatives to empower children and adults to build healthier, more livable communities since 1994. As a strategic action of Heartland Foundation and the other Healthy Communities Regional Investor Partners in 2007, a P-20 Council was formed to bring people from all sectors of the region’s community together to discuss the importance of education from pre-school to age 20. Strongly desiring an opportunity to dig deeper in their brainstorming discussions to identify the best “breakthrough big ideas” for improving the region’s statistics related to education, Heartland Foundation led the evolution of the P-20 Council to a much broader structure of volunteer action teams working on a wide variety of projects. Promoting lifelong learning and opening the conversation up to even more people has been the goal.

This structure, created in 2011, was branded as the (e2) education emPowers® initiative and several action teams were formed to focus on early learning, K-12, higher education, and workforce development. An overall strategic leadership action team and a communications action team were also meeting regularly to raise awareness of the importance of education. Many of their collective “big ideas” have moved forward with the opportunity to move them even further and faster with the backing of financial resources…resources now being raised through the ign!te Investment Campaign.

While we begin to move those big ideas forward and raise funds to move them further faster, the action teams have once again evolved into a structure that best serves the momentum of their conversations. Contact us today if you are interested in learning more and getting involved in one or more of the action teams listed above.

Download an outline of this timeline.