Post Secondary Partners


Years in Operation


Rural Communities


Projects Completed

What is ARDN?

ARDN uses the combined expertise of Alberta’s post-secondary institutions to support rural development in Alberta and help rural communities grow through research and learning.

ARDN supports rural communities and community-based organizations by:

  1. Providing a resource to help communities develop capacity, identify community needs and follow through on opportunities to build stronger futures in rural Alberta;
  2. Facilitating strategic research on economic, environmental and social issues affecting the well being of people in rural communities;
  3. Expanding access to training and education in rural communities

How does ARDN work?

ARDN creates mechanisms whereby rural stakeholders can identify common areas of interest, link to resources, and build a shared base of expertise and knowledge from which communities can draw. The goal of the ARDN is to seed strategic initiatives and mobilize the expertise of member institutions without creating ongoing dependencies.  

ARDN has three key pillars: vulnerable populations, workforce development and municipal sustainability. ARDN works to fill gaps and facilitate access to services inrural communities. ARDN helps achieve this by coordinating and integrating stakeholders and services to build capacity.

ARDN works with communities throughout Alberta, with a focus on communities outside of Alberta’s seven largest centres (Calgary, Edmonton, Lethbridge, Red Deer, Fort McMurray, Grande Prairie and Medicine Hat). ARDN has projects in more than 50 rural communities, and that number continues to grow.  

In 2018, ARDN received the prestigious ROOPH (Recognizing Outstanding Organizations and People in Housing) award from Homeward Trust in Edmonton. We were also previously recognized with the Premier’s Award of Excellence for our work to reduce the social isolation of deaf Albertans.

ARDN's Initiatives

Some of ARDN's current and past key initiatives include:

  • National Coalition on Rural & Remote Homelessness
  • Sustainable Housing Initiative (SHI)
  • Government of Canada’s Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS)
  • Rural Homelessness Estimation
  • Alberta Rural Coalition on Housing & Homelessness (ARCH2)
  • Business Retention & Expansion (BR&E)
  • Student Mental Health
  • Transportation
  • University of Lethbridge Rural Gambling Addictions Treatment Study
  • Alberta Rural Law Opportunities (ARLO)
  • Rural Community Opioid Outreach Program
  • Canadian Rural and Remote Housing and Homelessness Symposium