Harnessing the power of conservation-focused women farmers and landowners, representing one third of U.S. farmland, to achieve broader implementation of better farming practices
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Today, American Farmland Trust, the organization behind the national movement No Farms No Food®, announces a women-dedicated learning circle for Virginia women farmland or forest land owners located in Spotsylvania, Orange, Culpeper and Louisa counties. Learning Circles provide women the opportunity to meet other landowners, share their farm successes and challenges, discuss their goals for their land and access advice and technical assistance to help them implement conservation practices on their land.
“AFT’s recent research shows learning circles work. Women reported taking action as a result of attending these sessions, including talking to family members about conservation, speaking with their farmer specifically about conservation or implementing conservation measures on their land themselves,” said Caroline Wade, AFT Mid-Atlantic director.
She continued, “We were thrilled to learn 72 percent of the women who attended learning circles were inspired to take action. But even more exciting is for 23 percent of these women, their efforts resulted in an immediate change that benefited their land – after attending just one learning circle!”
Women have shared their personal stories with AFT confirming the critical nature of this work:
“I was excited about having questions answered that I didn’t even consider that I had. Farming has traditionally been a male profession, and so it gave me more confidence to voice my own opinions,” said previous learning circle attendee, Marlila Hickin, Virginia farmer.
Nearly 301 million acres of U.S. land – about a third of the nation’s land in farms – are now farmed or co-farmed by women and at least 87 million additional acres are in the hands of women landowners. Over the next 20 years, the numbers of women farming and or taking on a management role on farmland is likely to increase as 340 million acres of farmland are expected to change hands when farmers retire or leave their land to the next generation.
The learning circle will offer women landowners the opportunity to hear local agriculture and conservation experts talk about conservation and farming practices that promote healthy and productive farms by nurturing life in the soil and discuss application of these practices on their own land.
Women for the Land Conservation Learning Circle for Spotsylvania, Orange, Culpeper and Louisa County Women Landowners
Conservation on My Land, Where Can I Find Help?
When: Friday, June 14, 2019 8:45 a.m. – 5:15 p.m.
Location: Historic Brackett’s Farm
1790 Nolting Road
Gordonsville, VA 22942
Please direct any further questions to womenforthelandMD@farmland.org
If you need an accommodation, please notify us when you RSVP.
American Farmland Trust is the only national organization that takes a holistic approach to agriculture, focusing on the land itself, the agricultural practices used on that land, and the farmers and ranchers who do the work. AFT launched the conservation agriculture movement and continues to raise public awareness through our No Farms, No Food message. Since our founding in 1980, AFT has helped permanently protect over 6.5 million acres of agricultural lands, advanced environmentally-sound farming practices on millions of additional acres and supported thousands of farm families.
AFT offers learning circles focused on assisting women through its Women for the Land initiative.