Armed to Farm: Sustainable Agriculture Training For Military Veterans

What is Armed to Farm?

Armed to Farm is Sustainable Agriculture Training For Military Veterans
Learn more about current opportunities, technical assistance, and online tutorials.

Help Us Spread the Word!

Note: NCAT's Armed to Farm information is also available in PDF format for easy printing and sharing. Thank you!

ATTRA ATF logo

Veteran Resources

How Can NCAT Help You?

Farmers and ranchers are looking for reliable information on sustainable and organic agriculture, on how to get started in farming, on how to qualify for government programs that reward land stewardship and resource conservation, and on how to pursue such profitable niche markets as organic meats and grains or agriculture tourism. The answers to these and many other similar questions are available free from an NCAT program called ATTRA - Sustainable Agriculture.



Current Opportunities

  • October 9 - 13, 2017 ~ Armed to Farm ~ Charlo, Montana ~ Apply!

Publications

ATTRA publications cover a wide range of topics, including:


Visit www.attra.ncat.org to view a complete list of our publications. Most are available to download in PDF format.


Tutorials

ATTRA offers free, online self-instruction courses to help beginning farmers and producers who want to diversify their operations or expand their markets. The courses include a variety of educational tools such as worksheets, narrated PowerPoint presentations, videos, and tip sheets.

 

Technical Assistance

ATTRA's friendly staff members are knowledgeable about livestock, horticulture, agronomy, organic farming, marketing, farm energy, and many other sustainable agriculture topics, and are available to provide free assistance. ATTRA offers several ways producers can contact an agriculture specialist, who will research questions and send the client a report, including sources of more information.

 

Website

In addition to over 300 publications, ATTRA's website contains webinars, videos, searchable databases, plus tools to keep you up-to-date on what's happening in sustainable agriculture:


What participants say about Armed to Farm training:

"This was one of the best workshops, if not the best, in any field I have been involved in. It was a great mix of hands-on and classroom instruction. The instructors were very experienced and knowledgeable."

"As a Wounded Warrior Project Alumni, two-time Iraq veteran, and beginning farmer I can, without hesitation, recommend the Armed to Farm program to any veteran seeking knowledge in a wide variety of agricultural topics."

"Thank you! I feel that this program has changed the way we will farm in the future."

Ann with goat Participants in the Armed to Farm training held in Jackson, Miss., Sept. 22-26, 2014.

What is Armed to Farm?

Armed to Farm is Sustainable Agriculture Training for Military Veterans.

NCAT has been involved in targeted veteran outreach and assistance since 2010. NCAT agriculture specialists have hosted and been involved in at least 17 veteran focused trainings, reaching over 800 veterans across the US.

NCAT has partnered with the USDA Agricultural Research Service, Farmer Veteran Coalition, University of Arkansas, Growing Warriors, and other sustainable agriculture organizations to train veterans interested in sustainable agriculture careers.

The goals of Armed to Farm are:

  • To train veterans and their partners to operate sustainable crop and livestock enterprises
  • To create a network of veterans and their families who are starting careers in sustainable agriculture
  • To provide technical assistance to participants as they start and improve their farming operations

Trainings range in length from conference presentations, two-day workshops, and week-long training events. The multi-day programs include a mix of educational classes— covering topics such as risk management, business planning, and marketing—and hands-on activities at successful livestock, crop, and agritourism operations.

NCAT Sustainable Agriculture specialists will teach the training sessions. Additional contributors will include staff from the University of Arkansas, Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and experienced crop and livestock producers.

Contact Margo Hale at 479-442-9824 or margoh@ncat.org for more information about Armed to Farm

Please note:

  • Attendees are responsible for their travel to and from the event. Please let us know if travel cost is an issue.
  • Space is limited and NCAT reserves the right to select those people it deems would benefit most by this event.

Partners:

 

USDA logo ATTRA Logo

Funding for Armed to Farm has come from NCAT's ATTRA - Sustainable Agriculture program, USDA Rural Business Cooperative Services, USDA Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program, projects with the University of Arkansas and Cornell University, USDA Risk Management Agency and Swords to Plowshares.

 


 

Armed to Farm News

Apply Now! Applications Available for October Armed to Farm Veteran Training in Montana

Apply Now! Applications Available for October Armed to Farm Veteran Training in Montana

The National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) is now accepting applications from military veterans who want to attend our week-long Armed to Farm (ATF) Training. ATF allows veterans and their spouses to experience sustainable, profitable small-scale farming enterprises and explore agriculture as a viable career.

ATF’s engaging blend of farm tours, hands-on experience, and interactive classroom instruction gives participants a strong foundation in the basic principles of operating a sustainable farm. Participants learn about business planning, budgeting, recordkeeping, marketing, livestock production, fruit and vegetable production, and more. In addition, attendees gain a network of supportive farmer-veterans and agricultural advisors.

NCAT Sustainable Agriculture specialists and partners from the Community Food and Agriculture Coalition’s Farm Link MT program will teach the training sessions. Additional contributors will include staff from USDA Agencies, plus experienced crop and livestock producers.

Applications are available at https://www.ncat.org/armed-to-farm-events/ and are due by August 18th.

The number of participants will be limited. NCAT will notify selected participants by August 25th. We encourage spouses to apply as well; running a farm will impact their lives even if they are not directly involved in the day-to-day operation.

Dates, Location, and Cost

Armed to Farm will take place October 9-13, 2017, in Charlo, Montana. Participants will attend classroom sessions and several local farms will provide hands-on learning experiences.

The event is free for those chosen to attend; lodging, transportation to local farms, and most meals will be provided. Participants must pay their own travel costs to and from the event.

Sponsors

NCAT organizes and hosts Armed to Farm. Financial support comes from NCAT’s ATTRA program and USDA’s Beginning Farmer and Rancher Development Program and Northwest Farm Credit Services.

Questions?

Please contact Tammy Howard at tammyh@ncat.org or 406-494-8683.

Arkansas Armed to Farm Trains 30 Veterans

Arkansas Armed to Farm Trains 30 Veterans

We recently trained our largest Armed to Farm class since the program began in 2013: 30 veterans from 15 states spent June 12-16 in Fayetteville, AR, learning about small-scale sustainable farming. If you’ve ever wondered exactly what we do all week, check out our detailed recap below! Monday: We spent the morning in the classroom,… Continue Reading

Armed to Farm Alumni Spotlight: Eric Grandon

Armed to Farm Alumni Spotlight: Eric Grandon

In 2011, Eric Grandon was searching his land for an answer. Eric served nearly 20 years in the Army, completing six deployments to the Middle East including combat tours during Operation Desert Storm and Operation Iraqi Freedom II. In 2011, Eric found himself in the middle of a PTSD flashback that left him unable to… Continue Reading

American Heroes Charity Challenge

American Heroes Charity Challenge

Armed to Farm: Sustainable Agriculture Training for Military Veterans This week, NCAT joined other nonprofits across the country in a friendly fundraising contest, the American Heroes Charity Challenge. Launched by the Craig Newmark Philanthropic Fund, the challenge invites organizations working to assist veterans, firefighters, and other first responders to compete to see who can raise… Continue Reading

Deadline is This Week! Applications Available for June Armed to Farm Veteran Training

Deadline is This Week! Applications Available for June Armed to Farm Veteran Training

The National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) is now accepting applications from military veterans who want to attend our week-long Armed to Farm (ATF) Training. ATF allows veterans and their spouses to experience sustainable, profitable small-scale farming enterprises and explore agriculture as a viable career. ATF’s engaging blend of farm tours, hands-on experience, and interactive… Continue Reading

Applications Available for June Armed to Farm Veteran Training

Applications Available for June Armed to Farm Veteran Training

The National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) is now accepting applications from military veterans who want to attend our week-long Armed to Farm (ATF) Training. ATF allows veterans and their spouses to experience sustainable, profitable small-scale farming enterprises and explore agriculture as a viable career. ATF’s engaging blend of farm tours, hands-on experience, and interactive… Continue Reading

Armed to Farm Veteran Training,Fayetteville, Arkansas,June 12-16

Armed to Farm Veteran Training,
Fayetteville, Arkansas,
June 12-16

The National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) is now accepting applications from military veterans who want to attend our week-long Armed to Farm (ATF) Training. ATF allows veterans and their spouses to experience sustainable, profitable small-scale farming enterprises and explore agriculture as a viable career. Armed to Farm will take place June 12-16, 2017, in… Continue Reading

Calling Military Veterans!

NCAT will hold an Armed to Farm training in August for military veterans and their spouses in the West. This FREE week-long training includes classroom and on-farm instruction that will give participants a strong foundation in the basic principles of operating a sustainable farming enterprise. Deadline to apply is July 22, so click here now… Continue Reading

Are You A Veteran Living in New York State?

If so, here’s your chance to attend our next Armed to Farm training. Set for August 8 through 12 in Hamilton, New York, the FREE week-long training will include a combination of classroom sessions, farm tours, and hands-on activities. Click here to learn more and to apply. Hurry – deadline to apply is July 1! Continue Reading