The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

"Love La Harpe" applying for the "Peace Corps Fellows" program

This past spring, the community of La Harpe completed a strategic visioning and planning process through the MAPPING the Future of your community program.

The MAPPING the Future Program is a unit of the Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs at Western Illinois University.

Approximately 30 community volunteers participated in five, 3-hour sessions to develop an action plan for community and economic development in La Harpe.

The Love La Harpe organization was created out of this program with three primary goals identified for the community. The three goals are: community beautification, retail development, and industrial development.

Over the summer, the new organization has completed various beautification projects at the park and throughout downtown, helped organize community events and started a Farmers' Market.

Love La Harpe is planning several community events, beautification projects, and more for this fall and winter and is applying to host a Peace Corps Fellow in La Harpe to serve an 11-month internship.

The Peace Corps Fellow program through the Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs, places returned Peace Corps volunteers who are graduate students at Western Illinois University in rural communities for full time 11-month internships to work on community and economic development projects.

This intern would work closely with the volunteers of Love La Harpe to implement the initiatives outlined in the MAPPING action plan. The internship is supported in part from USDA Rural Development: additionally a soup supper is planned for November 7th at the American Legion with doors opening at 4:30.

The community is invited to join Love La Harpe for delicious homemade soup and other goodies and all for a good cause.

If you are interested in learning more about Love La Harpe or the Peace Corps Fellows programs, you are invited to the next planning meeting which is scheduled for October 20, 2015, at City Hall.

For more information, contact Elaine Hrabal at or 217-357-7099.