The loss of our rural communities is not inevitable, not the result of some unseen, unstoppable force of nature. We can do better. Much is lost when a town ceases to exist; history, heritage, stewards of our natural resources, and people who produce safe food for our nation are lost. If the people that care about rural places are no longer there to take care of the natural resources and food producing land - who will? Perhaps it will be giant corporations and outside investors who are more concerned with profits than the health of the land and the safety of the food produced on it. The vitality of America's rural areas should be a concern for everyone, not just those that reside in rural communities. All Americans - rural and urban alike - benefit from vibrant rural communities and thriving family farms and ranches. Not all is doom and gloom. Some rural communities refuse to give up when the going gets tough. They work harder, invest in their infrastructure, devote time and resources towards youth and entrepreneurs, and develop the assets and amenities the region provides. We all benefit when rural communities use forward thinking. For more on insuring the health and vitality of food and natural resources: www.cfra.org.