Rural Community Resiliency to Climate Change

Our current rural community resiliency project is entitled:
Enhancing rural community resiliency to climate change and ecosystem disruption (CCEDARR):
Building on lessons learned from the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic to strengthen rural community health and health services

Project Background

While the COVID-19 pandemic has exposed vulnerabilities in rural health, it has also highlighted strength and resilience. Lessons learned from rural community responses to COVID-19 may be applied to other community-level health challenges. Rural community resilience is a function of reducing vulnerability to unexpected events including disasters or disease outbreaks and enhancing community capacity to respond to these threats. Recognizing resilience means selecting strengths and capacities needed for coping, adapting, and transforming weaknesses from the previous system. Physician leadership is an important component of community resiliency, and the Society of Rural Physicians of Canada (SRPC) is an organization that provides system-wide influence to improve rural care. The CCEDARR study will directly engage physician leaders through stories of resilience and strategies for strengthening rural health. By engaging with rural community physicians, healthcare professionals, Indigenous partners, and rural youth we aim to obtain a dynamic picture of how to build resilient rural communities in the face of climate change and ecosystem disruption.


  • Identify the characteristics of signal rural communities that have demonstrated resilience in the first year of the pandemic and understand the strategies and innovations that enabled these communities to cope
  • Develop a framework and toolkit for enhancing rural community resilience using the responses to the COVID-19 pandemic that can be applied to a range of threats
  • A pre-intervention survey of rural communities across Canada to assess the emergence of these strategies and innovations
  • Create an educational intervention to engage and disseminate these findings and stories from resilient communities at the April 2022 Society of Rural Physicians of Canada conference
  • Evaluate the research program through demonstration projects and a post-intervention survey 

Contact Us

If you have any questions about the CCEDARR study, please email Alex Bland at


Principal Investigator: Stefan Grzybowski;

Research Coordinator: Alex Bland;


Funded by: The Foundation for Advancing Family Medicine