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ARS Home » Southeast Area » Fayetteville, Arkansas » Poultry Production and Product Safety Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #335997

Research Project: Antibiotic Alternatives for Controlling Foodborne Pathogens and Disease in Poultry

Location: Poultry Production and Product Safety Research

Title: Armed to farm: Soldiering the success of military veterans in new poultry, livestock and agroforestry enterprises

item WRIGHT, SARAH - University Of Arkansas
item Donoghue, Ann - Annie
item ARSI, KOMALA - University Of Arkansas
item HALE, MARGO - National Center For Appropriate Technology
item SPENCER, TERRELL - Across The Creek Farm
item O'GORMAN, MICHAEL - Farmer-Veteran Coalition
item GOODWIN, HAROLD - University Of Arkansas
item JOSE, SHIBU - University Of Missouri
item FANATICO, ANNE - Appalachian State University

Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/2/2016
Publication Date: N/A
Citation: N/A

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Farming offers a viable avenue for returning veterans to transition into society and capitalizes on skills that made them successful in the military. The goal of this project is to develop and expand on a personalized comprehensive/integrated educational program that provides military veterans beginning farmers with relevant information and practical skills to succeed in agricultural enterprises. The objectives of the program are to: 1) Enhance existing course materials and add training modules to our New Farmer Online Training Program and develop customized materials specific to veterans; 2) Provide experiential learning opportunities including Armed to Farm Workshops and trainings, on-farm demonstration and internships; and 3) Develop and expand on networking and mentoring opportunities to effectively support a new generation of farmers. In the first year of the project, over 300 participants were impacted through on-farm, face-to-face workshops, and conferences. Additionally, our online training program has been accessed >20,000 times since the beginning of the grant. Farmer participants increased knowledge through multiple hands-on workshops; focusing on agroforestry practices, lectures surrounding business and financial plans, and on-farm training focusing on sustainable livestock production. Over 80 veterans were sponsored through our program to attend the 2015 and 2016 Southern Sustainable Agriculture Working Group conferences and attended networking sessions focused on veteran farmers’ needs. To date, our military-veteran farmer mentors have hosted more than 12 on-farm interns with >5,500 internship hours logged. As more programs develop for veterans in agricultural disciplines, lessons learned from our partnership with veterans has proven to be beneficial to those working with this population of farmers. Funded by USDA-NIFA-BFRDP 2014-07424