DAVIS, Calif. (AgPR) — Farmer Veteran Coalition (FVC) announces their 2020 National Stakeholders Virtual Conference will be held Nov. 18-19, 2020.
It’s the leading symposium for the military-to-agriculture movement – the growing movement to support the veteran men and women who choose to continue their service to the country by feeding it. The gathering returns for the sixth year.
A national non-profit that helps veterans pursue careers in agriculture, FVC mentors members of our Armed Forces who seek new ways to stay in communities they left in order to serve. When FVC was established in 2008, no one was connecting veterans with the farming community. Today there are more than 250 organizations supporting this movement. The Stakeholders Conference brings all the players together.
“A study showed that ever increasing numbers of our all-volunteer military are coming from rural areas,” said Founder Michael O’Gorman. “We want to help them have a meaningful career when they return home. Farming has become their new mission.”
FVC has assisted thousands of veterans with everything from equipment and grants, business plans, training and peer collaboration.
The conference connects veterans who are geographically isolated and sometimes separated from access to services. It’s a forum for members to share their stories – their triumphs, struggles, lessons learned, and successes gained. It also serves as an introduction to resources available to veterans – from government, higher education, and partner organizations. Farmer veteran members benefit from exchanging ideas, and building their own community, together as individuals with unique goals, but in a united spirit of camaraderie.
America’s farmer veterans have been severely impacted by Covid-19. This year’s conference features two days of resources crucial to members during this time, through education, workshops, distinguished speakers, guest panels, networking, and development of FVC’s 25 state chapters.
FVC welcomes veterans – including those still serving – who are currently farming, interested in farming, or just want to learn more about the movement. They also welcome non-veterans who would like to show their support of these brave men and women and tune in for the agricultural education.
“While nothing can replace the energy of an in-person gathering, we are thrilled that this likely will be the largest gathering of our community,” shared Natalie Monroe, Communications Director. “A virtual platform means every single one of farmer veterans has the real possibility of attending without having to travel away from their farms. They can even tune in from the seat of their tractor!”
Even in this virtual capacity, FVC has plans for attendee interaction so that the experience is beyond simply tuning into a screen.
With the whole nation taking a new interest in the health of our rural communities and economies, the collaborative effort of these farmer veterans becomes even more important for making a greater impact in their home towns.
“I think people who join the military feel called to be part of something bigger than themselves. Farmers are the same way,” reflects FVC member Rachael Taylor-Tuller of Lost Peacock Creamery in Washington. “When you’re in the military, you’re helping keep your community safe. When you’re in farming, you’re helping keep your community fed. You go from national security to food security. I am very proud to call myself a farmer and I consider it an honor to nourish my neighbors.”
For more details on the conference visit: http://conference.farmvetco.
About Farmer Veteran Coalition
Farmer Veteran Coalition is the nation’s largest nonprofit organization assisting veterans and active duty members of the U.S. Armed Forces to embark on careers in agriculture. With the mission of mobilizing veterans to feed America, it provides education, resources and small grants to help veterans launch their own farming operation or find employment in related agricultural professions. Established in 2008, Farmer Veteran Coalition’s network of more than 20,000 veteran members from all 50 states and U.S. territories are served by mentors in the areas of agricultural production, law, business planning and career counseling. Its in-house programs include the Farmer Veteran Fellowship Fund small grant program, and the nationally recognized Homegrown By Heroes label for veteran-grown products. FVC has been successful in getting millions of dollars of USDA funds appropriated for farmer veteran and the groups that support them. They have built an extended community of organizations that look to them for leadership and guidance as the pioneer in this military-to-agriculture movement. Learn more at: www.farmvetco.org.
–Farmer Veteran Coalition
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