In 2015, the GWRPC seven-county region was selected to participate in a USDA Rural Development program entitled: Stronger Economies Together (SET). The SET plan was approved by USDA/RD in 2017.
The region mirrors the GWRPC region and is comprised of the Southern Illinois counties of: Edwards, Crawford, Richland, Lawrence, Wabash, Wayne and White.
Pursuing community economic development as a single rural county in isolation from other nearby counties is becoming increasingly ineffective and finding ways to create, attract and retain jobs is a challenging process. As a general rule, progress is more likely to be realized when rural counties work together as a multi-county region to assess, design, and implement plans that build on their assets and comparative strengths.
The purpose of SET is to strengthen the capacity of communities / counties in rural America to work together in developing and implementing a community economic development blueprint for a multi-county region.