About Us

Waushara County is a small rural community located in the heart of Wisconsin. Economic insecurity has challenged our community for decades.  Many residents are employed in service and seasonal agricultural occupations or travel outside of the county for work.

The Vision 2020 committee was established in July 2008. Concerned with the impact of economic insecurity in Waushara County and seeking solutions, committee members work to increase awareness about the complex causes, conditions and impact of economic insecurity in our community and facilitate action.

Community-driven needs assessments, review of data and consumer input help identify priority areas for action. In addition to on-going community awareness and educational activities, committee workgroups currently offer the following activities:

Vision 2020 Backpack Nutrition Program – This program offers weekly weekend meals for elementary students attending high needs schools in Waushara County.  Students who qualify for free/reduced lunch programs are eligible. Weekly meals are packed by disabled adults and delivered to the schools by volunteers. Weekly meals consist of five to six non-perishable food items and a coupon for free fresh food. During the 2015-2016 school year, weekly participation exceeds 120 students. Workgroup chair: Jan Novak jan.novak@co.waushara.wi.us



Waushara Food Connections – This workgroup addresses issues related to food hardships and the process by which local residents obtain food.  Steps to increase access to affordable and nutritious foods undertaken include: publishing a Fresh Food Atlas, providing technical assistance to local grocery stores to increase their economic stability, supporting area food pantries and establishing community gardens in partnership with local groups. Workgroup chair: Patrick Nehring patrick.nehring@ces.uwex.edu


Resource Awareness – Working and responding to changing community needs and resources for the past two decades, the work group believes knowing where to find assistance is critical to living a healthy, productive life. Helping residents find local resources to take charge of life’s everyday challenges or navigate an unexpected crisis is the primary goal of the Resource Awareness workgroup.  The group updates and publishes Waushara County’s resource listing and pocket resource cards in English and Spanish, for quick reference of resources most often requested by community members. The group also publishes “Help for Hard Times”   a directory designed for individuals recently unemployed or struggling financially. The documents are distributed throughout Waushara County and are available on this website by following the “Area Resources” button. Workgroup chair: Jan Novak jan.novak@co.waushara.wi.us


For more information, contact Jan Novak at 920-787-6600, 888-250-4331 or jan.novak@co.waushara.wi.us