FILMORE and HOUSTON, Minn. — Extension has a long history of working with farms transitioning between generations. Yet, year after year Extension’s local advisory committees tell us about the need for more local farm transition support. Especially for young people and families returning to the area.
So how can Extension best support these needs? That is a difficult question to answer when we do not have a clear picture of what these individuals, families and farms need.
Historically, Extension has put on daylong workshops that cover a range of topics related to farm transitions. However, we understand that six-hour workshops do not always work well in busy schedules. New this year, Extension is partnering with Minnesota State College to provide retreats where families or farms in transition can begin to work through the process (find more information at z.umn.edu/farmtransition). While this is a great opportunity for some, not everyone is to this stage of transitioning their farm yet.
So how can Extension support those who cannot attend the aforementioned events? What does the 25-year-old, just returning from college and looking for a farming opportunity, need to get back onto a farm? How can Extension help families with two working parents and kids who cannot attend daylong or longer meetings?
I do not know the answers to these questions. And the only way I will ever begin to address these questions is if I hear from you. So here is my request. Contact me. Give me a call – Fillmore 507-765-3896, Houston 507-725-5807. Email me – email@example.com. Send me a letter and let me know what you need and what is missing. Let me know how Extension and our partners can help you accomplish your goals.
— Michael Cruse, University of Minnesota Extension Educator
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