Learn more about the values the organizations was built on.

Meeting communities and people where they are.

Strengthen ND’s belief is that every community is different, every organization is different and every individual professional is different; therefore, a blanket approach will not best support ND. We demonstrate this belief by customizing our professional development and coaching to best fit each specific situation so we can “meet them where they are” in terms of available skills, capacity and other resources. Furthermore, “meeting communities and people where they are” translates into a physical approach to our work. Strengthen ND believes it is critical to be invited into and a part of the communities in which we work. This is demonstrated by the amount of time spent out of the office, on-site with organizations and community representatives and the amount of miles driven per year; Strengthen ND traveled over 25,000 miles in 2019 to communities in ND.

Deploying a pragmatic approach.

Strengthen ND approaches supporting communities, organizations and professionals with practical and applicable tools and approaches that can be implemented quickly and efficiently to support long-term successful outcomes.

Being resourceful.

One of our often-utilized mottos is “Bloom where you’re planted.” We utilize this phrase to encourage nonprofit organizations and communities to be the very best them that they can be. This methodology translates into day-to-day work like developing their own fundraising stories, supporting them to lean into their programmatic and organizational strengths to reduce competition fears and to re-utilize vacant spaces or otherwise overlooked assets to support community building and growth.

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Rural ND matters. We as farmers feed the world! Caring, compassionate, communityminded. Neighbors = Family


Strengthen ND is a dynamic, multi-faceted and well-connected organization that works across North Dakota (ND) to elevate nonprofits and rural communities to support a high quality of life and resources for vulnerable populations through community development. In 2015, Megan Langley Laudenschlager founded Strengthen ND in response to the growing disparities being faced by rural North Dakota communities. By focusing on providing nonprofit and rural community capacity building opportunities, advancing regional issues and facilitating community solutions, Strengthen ND has been able to support and accelerate community development through its day-to-day work.

Strengthen ND has specifically been working throughout ND to aid nonprofits and rural communities with action planning, strategic planning, fundraising, project management, budgeting and financial management, succession planning and grant writing through workshops and one-on-one coaching. Additionally, Strengthen ND has worked as an intermediary for several grantmaking organizations to facilitate proposal recruitment and development for charitable investments. Since September 2015, Strengthen ND has generated over $5.8 million of project proposals from rural communities for funding consideration from the Rural Community Grant Fund. Additionally, Strengthen ND has worked with Equinor (formerly Statoil) and the Northwest ND Community Foundation to help shape their short- and long-term community investment strategies. Furthermore, Strengthen ND was selected as the partner for ND Change Network, a systems change and leadership program developed by National Arts Strategies, because of its vast knowledge of ND.

 Since 2017, Strengthen ND has worked with the community of Tuttle (central ND – population ~60) to obtain a $200,000 Bush Foundation Community Innovation grant to support the development of local foods strategies for economic development and vulnerable populations support. Through this work, Strengthen ND engaged with the National Endowment for the Arts to host the first Citizens’ Institute on Rural Design workshop in ND. Through this workshop, Strengthen ND was able to contract with national subject-matter experts to develop a robust economic development strategy based on local foods for the greater Kidder County area through the programming and amenities of the Tuttle Rural Innovation Center. Finally, Strengthen ND has undertaken advocacy initiatives at the local and state level, including serving as a founding member of the ND Local Foods Development Alliance and working with Northwest Landowners Association (private property and environmental rights) to craft their 2017 legislative agenda.

Rural life, rural communities are the backbone of North Dakota and strengthen North Dakota’s economy.