Source: HOLISTIC MANAGEMENT INTERNATIONAL submitted to
EMPOWERING BEGINNING WOMEN FARMERS IN THE NORTHEAST THROUGH WHOLE FARM PLANNING
Sponsoring Institution
National Institute of Food and Agriculture
Project Status
TERMINATED
Funding Source
Reporting Frequency
Annual
Accession No.
0219592
Grant No.
2009-49400-05967
Project No.
NMW-2009-03858
Proposal No.
2009-03858
Multistate No.
(N/A)
Program Code
BFRDP
Project Start Date
Sep 1, 2009
Project End Date
Aug 31, 2012
Grant Year
2009
Project Director
Adams, A. J.
Recipient Organization
HOLISTIC MANAGEMENT INTERNATIONAL
1010 TIJERAS AVE., NW
ALBUQUERQUE,NM 87102
Performing Department
(N/A)
Non Technical Summary
This Standard BFRDP Project will empower beginning women farmers in the Northeast by teaching them entrepreneurship and business planning skills, whole farm planning, and profitable sustainable livestock and crop farming practices. Beginning women farmers are our target audience as they are a growing population of principal operators in the northeast and many are supported through existing networks such as Women's Agriculture Networks (WAgN) and Beginning Farmers groups. These existing networks provide a community to continue skill building after the project is complete, thus offering an element of post project sustainability. Up to 270 women farmers throughout the Northeast will be trained in the topics identified above using an experiential curriculum and mentored through their state associations. Six participants will also be trained as whole farm trainers for the ongoing success of this program. Our program seeks an 80% participant retention over the three years and the continued participation in association meetings after the end of the grant. This program will measure success in a variety of manners, but the primary targeted outcomes include an increase in the participants' farm profitability, improved quality of life on their farms, and improved farm environmental conditions. These three primary outcomes will achieve the stated purpose of this program, "to provide beginning farmers and their families with the appropriate knowledge, skills and tools needed to make informed decisions, with the goal of enhancing their success." We believe that our program will help these farmers to be successful in both the short and long term.
Animal Health Component
100%
Research Effort Categories
Basic
(N/A)
Applied
100%
Developmental
(N/A)
Classification

Knowledge Area (KA)Subject of Investigation (SOI)Field of Science (FOS)Percent
60160303100100%
Goals / Objectives
The program teaches an intentional whole farm planning framework which helps farm families integrate the dynamic relationships of the economic, social, and ecological factors into their management decisions. Infused in this program are sessions to help farmers learn and implement sustainable cropping and livestock production skills in addition to the whole farm planning and entrepreneurial focus. The Empowering Beginning Women Farmers in the Northeast Through Whole Farm Planning project's long term goals are to: 1) Expand the knowledge of whole farm planning among beginning women farmers in the Northeast. This newly acquired knowledge will be translated into management actions that will improve the participants' land stewardship practices, their farm profitability, and the quality of life on their farms. 2) Improve land health and water quality on Northeast farms by developing a beginning farmer program in WAgN networks that specifically focuses on whole farm planning and environmental monitoring and record keeping. 3) Strengthen healthy, safe, local food production by training beginning women farmers in profitable sustainable agricultural practices and whole farm planning skills resulting in more viable farms. 4) Building community for the growing population of women farmers so they can assist each other during and after this program. 5) Create a successful model for teaching beginning women farmers whole farm planning, so this model can be replicated in other states and regions. Supporting objectives for this project are: 1) Up to one hundred and eighty beginning women farmers will be selected from throughout the Northeast. 2) These women will be trained and mentored in whole farm planning over the course of three years in six states. 3) During the second and third year of training, program participants will share their knowledge within their women's networks. 4) Six whole farm planning trainers will be trained during years two and three of the program. These trainers will be selected from people skilled at working with beginning women farmers. 5) Online support such as webinars will provide a forum for continued education between trainees and throughout their learning communities during years two and three. 6) A conference will be held at the conclusion of the program to share participants' learnings and to continue to build community for these participants.
Project Methods
The approach taken for this program is four-fold: 1) Offer local instruction and mentorship in whole farm planning and sustainable farming practices to beginning women farmers (more details of curriculum are noted in timeline below). 2) Work with already established women's networks 3) Train key individuals within the women's/small farm network in the Northeast to continue to service the program after grant funding terminates. 4) Continue to build the program over the three-year period in that region Farmers will be recruited via flyers, listserves, meetings from within the network of WAgN, land grant institutions, NRCS, RC&D, Small Farm Programs, Beginning Farmer Programs, and NGO's. A total of 90 farmers will be recruited initially. 15 farmers from the six states where we have Local Coordinators committed (ME, VT, CT, MA, NH, & NY). Other states in the Northeast (particularly PA & RI) will also be notified of this opportunity, so women from those states can also apply for this program. These 90 women will have the opportunity to continue throughout the three-year program, in turn serving as mentors or support to other women in the community who may also choose to come into the program. A total of 270 women farmers will potentially be influenced through this program as participants who will share this information with other farmers. Throughout the three-year program, we will also be offering webinars for beginning women farmers from other regions. Likewise, a conference at the end of the program will be advertised through a variety of outlets so beginning women farmers and those who serve that population can learn from this experience. Moreover, six whole farm trainers will complete a two-year training program to provide continued support to each of the six states after the grant period. Some of the programming will take place onsite at farms, such as field day tours, but with no hazardous activities planned. Four of these farm tours will be held each year and will integrate more of the land-based curriculum during those visits as well as including such activities as pasture walks, observation of sustainable cropping practices, or new techniques and technologies used by regional farmers. Evaluation of this program will be three-fold: 1) Formative Evaluation: This will focus on assessing the effectiveness of the educational methods, the program format, assess whether the learning objectives were met. 2) Summative Evaluation: This will focus on assessing the action outcomes resulting in terms of new behavior changes and the impacts that result from these behavior changes, such as increased profitability, improved quality of life, and improved environmental conditions. 3) Evaluation of Network Success: Evaluation of networks created for these programs and networks' abilities to self-sustain. The end-of-session evaluations and web-based surveys will be done using HMI staff skills and knowledge in evaluation. Tool development and follow-up phone surveys will be assisted through a contracted evaluation consultant.

Progress 09/01/09 to 08/31/12

Outputs
OUTPUTS: From 2009 through 2012, 270 beginning women farmers were trained in 6 states (Connecticut, New Hampshire, Vermont, New York, Massachusetts, Maine). 180 one-day training sessions were held to help these farmers develop a whole farm plan (72 of these sessions were on-farm). Curriculum included: Whole Farm Goal, On-Farm Decision-Making, Time Management, Financial Planning, Business Planning, Marketing, Leadership and Communication, Land Planning, Grazing Planning, Biological Monitoring and Soil Fertility. One end of program, two-day conference was held in March 2012 with over 200 participants attending. 11 Whole Farm Planning Trainers were trained to the curriculum to support this program moving forward. 15 webinars/teleconferences to support instructors and participants were offered with an average of 8 participants attending. There were 13 collaborating organizations to support the program. One listserve was managed for the 3 years to allow for cross state communication with over 2000 messages sent during that time. Six management clubs were started by participants and supported by collaborators to continue the farmer-to-farmer learning after the program. Six state coordinators were trained to coordinate the program for their state. 16 biological monitoring sites of participant farmers were developed to monitor environmental improvement on their land. 22 articles and 92 web pages referencing the program and/or participants in the program were written and disseminated. Revision of goal setting and financial planning manuals from lessons learned from the program and those manuals made available to the public as free downloads from the HMI website. HMI developed a beta version of an online course for financial planning using the curriculum from this program to support beginning farmer and rancher education. PARTICIPANTS: Project Director was Ann Adams from HMI. Project Evaluator was Seth Wilner of University of New Hampshire. Phil Metzger of Central New York RC and D was Regional Director. Lauren Lines later took over his role from the same agency. State Coordinators were: Jessie Schmidt (VT), Gail Chase (ME), Kate Kerman (NH), Devon Whitney-Deal (MA), Lauren Lines (NY), Deb Legge (CT). Whole Farm Planning Trainers trained and or used as instructors for the program were: Mary Johnson (MA), Lucy McKain (MA), Jessie Schmidt (VT), Calley Hastings (VT), Gail Chase (ME), Diane Schivera (ME), Ellen Gibson (ME), Elysa Bryant (CT), Dean Bascom (NH), Kate Kerman (NH), Lauren Lines (NY), Erica Frenay (NY), Phil Metzger (NY), Seth Wilner (NH), Crystal Stewart (NY), Sherry Simpson (CT). Collaborating Organizations were: University of Vermont Extension, University of New Hampshire Extension, Community Involved in Supporting Agriculture (MA), Central New York RC&D, Small & Beginning Farmers of New Hampshire, Women's Agricultural Network-Maine, Cornell University, Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA)-Connecticut, New Hampshire NRCS, Maine Organic Farming & Gardening Association, Maine Agri-Abilities, University of Massachusetts , Hudson-Mohawk RC&D. Professional development opportunities was for collaborators and instructors to be trained as Whole Farm Planning Trainers (a two-year program that focuses on effective facilitation of the Holistic Management framework as a whole farm planning tool. TARGET AUDIENCES: The primary target market for this program was beginning women farmers. All were considered small farm operators or farm workers. Efforts of this program was to produce knowledge change, leading to intended behavior change and finally actual behavior change that resulted in improved quality of life, finances, and land production. HMI's curriculum is experentially based with a strong component of small group work and mentoring that results in actual plans developed and the opportunity for attendant results (as evidenced in post survey responses). Management clubs for continued learning after the program are also established to encourage on going practice and reinforcement. Lastly, outreach and dissemination efforts were developed to increase knowledge of the results achieved by the program and encourage other beginning women farmers. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: Nothing significant to report during this reporting period.

Impacts
Results from the program are as follows. Percentage averages of participants who increased their knowledge for the following management skills over 3 years (based on N=270 to N=180 depending on course) were: Whole Farm Goal Setting (97); On-Farm Decision Making (93); Time Management (97); Financial Planning (89); Marketing (56); Business Planning (71); Land Planning (67); Soil Fertility (90); Leadership and Communication (100); Planned Grazing (67). Highest percentage of behavior change in one year of training (as based on a post-survey instrument with 52 percent response) included (average of N=45): 97 percent developed a whole farm goal; 88 percent developed a financial plan; 86 percent developed a business plan; 74 percent developed a marketing plan; 62 percent developed a land plan; 60 percent implemented biological monitoring; and 51 percent developed a grazing plan. Of the 270 participants, 92 percent increased their farming network because of the program. Key results achieved from the program as noted in a retrospective post-survey(based on N= 141)were: Clearer sense of what you are managing farm towards (72 percent); Improved decision making (67 percent); New and improved recordkeeping systems (62 percent); Enhanced understanding of farm finances (62 percent); Clearer sense of how your business is projected to grow in future years (52 percent). Biological Monitoring Site results on some sites included: 21-65 percent increase in organic matter, 50-300 percent increase of plant diversity, 300 percent increase in soil cover, 24 percent increase in plant age diversity, 38-100 percent decrease in bare soil, and 100 percent decrease in capped soil. Graduation rates (based on completing 7 out of 10 classes) averaged 90 percent across all states. 94 percent of conference attendees said they learned something new.

Publications

  • Ackoff, S. 2012. A Holistic Management Approach Improves the quality of life for beginning women farmers. www.youngfarmers.org.
  • Adams, A. 2012. Building Market Demand-The Kitchen Garden. IN PRACTICE, HMI. (145): 7-8.
  • Adams, A. 2012. From Fashion to Farming-Kate Bogli of Maple View Farm. IN PRACTICE. HMI. (144):3-4.
  • Adams, A. 2012. Green Valley Farm-Farrow to Finish. IN PRACTICE, HMI. (143): 6-7.
  • Adams, A. 2012. Growing the Business-Creekside Meadow Farm. IN PRACTICE. HMI. (144): 3-5.
  • Adams, A. 2012. Holistic Training Helps Women Farmers Thrive. Small Farm Journal, Cornell University. (Fall 2012): 14.
  • Angelini, A. 2012. Getting Started in Southeastern Connecticut: Introducing Full Heart Farm. www.youngfarmers.org.
  • Brooks, E. 2012. Using Social Media Effectively to Make the Most of Your Farm Business. IN PRACTICE, HMI. (145): 2-3.
  • Bryant, E. 2012. Starting From Seed-Lessons that Multiply From a Beginning Woman Farmer. IN PRACTICE. HMI. (144): 1-2.
  • Frenay, E. 2012. Farm Profit: Making a life and a living from your farm. IN PRACTICE. HMI. (146):1-2.
  • Frenay, E. 2012. Growing Soil as Our Primary Crop-Shelterbelt Farm. IN PRACTICE. HMI. (144):10.
  • Holistic Management International. 2012. Improving Results on Farms and Ranches with Holistic Management Manual. Albuquerque, New Mexico. (Printed).
  • Holistic Management International. 2012. Planning for Financial Success: Holistic Financial Planning Manual. Albuquerque, New Mexico. (Printed).
  • Johnson, M. 2011. Tools for Effective Financial Planning. IN PRACTICE, HMI. (136): 5.
  • Johnson, M. 2010. Integrating Holistic Management and Permaculture for Land Planning. IN PRACTICE, HMI. (133): 7.
  • Kerman, K. 2011. Phoenix Farm-Learning Whole Farm Planning. IN PRACTICE, HMI. (139): 4.
  • Kure-Jensen, S. 2012. Ground rules for summer intern and apprentice programs. www.examiner.com.
  • Kure-Jensen, S. 2012. Managing a goat dairy. Country Folks New England. (4.30.12): 3.
  • Kure-Jensen, S. 2012. Market your farm products effectively. www.examiner.com.
  • Kure-Jensen, S. 2012. Marketing to restaurants. www.examiner.com.
  • Kure-Jensen, S. 2012. Networks are important are an important resource for women farmers. www.examiner.com.
  • Sergent, D.J. 2012. New farmer finds her niche by building community. www.lancasterfarming.com.
  • McCrory, L. 2012. Nutrient Dense Grazing. IN PRACTICE, HMI. (145): 10-12.
  • Schmidt, J. 2011. Beginning Woman Farmer Profile: Spring Chicken Farm. IN PRACTICE, HMI. (140): 5.


Progress 09/01/10 to 08/31/11

Outputs
OUTPUTS: 60 one-day training sessions (of which 24 were also on farm field days for participants); 92 women farmers recruited to program with 16 mentors; 1 Yahoo Group for group with calendar of events, file sharing, self-assessment, and email service; 9 webinars on marketing, grazing planning, land planning, biological monitoring, business planning, time management, leadership and communication, and gross profit analysis; 1 Excel financial planning spreadsheet to support implementation of financial planning; 10 biological monitoring sites with data collected; 11 Whole Farm Planning Trainers trained in 3 additional training sessions with monthly webinar support; 1 Program Coordinator meetings; 10 agendas for courses (with facilitator notes) revised based on participant and local coordinator feedback; 12 powerpoints for instructional use revised; 1 decision case for instructional use including financial planning examples; and 11 evaluation tools to determine knowledge and behavior change from each class and at year's end. To publicize the program, we had four internal newsletter article and 30 websites noting this training opportunity funded by NIFA. To advertise the program to prospective participants, we also used email lists extensively with an electronic flyer. PARTICIPANTS: Project Director was Ann Adams of Holistic Management International. Regional Coordinator was Phil Metzger of Central New York RC&D. Local coordinators included Kate Kerman of Small and, Beginner Farmers of New Hampshire, Devon Whitney-Deal of Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture (CISA) & Massachusetts WAgN, Lauren Lines of Central New York RC&D, Gail Chase of WAgN Maine, Jessie Schmidt of UVM Extension/VT WAgN, and Bill Duesing and Deb Legge of Connecticut NOFA. In addition we had instructors for the trainings which included: Erica Frenay of Cornell Small Farm Program, Seth Wilner of New Hampshire Cooperative Extension, Phil Metzger of Central New York RC&D, Sherry Simpson a farmer from Connecticut, Lisa McCrory from Vermont NOFA, Dean Bascom of New Hampshire NRCS, Diane Schivera of Maine Organic Farm and Garden Association, Crystal Stewart of Cornell Cooperative Extension, Donna Murray of Hudson-Mohawk New York RC&D, Ellen Gibson of Agri-Abilities, Calley Hastings a farmer from Vermont, and Mary Johnson an International Permaculture Design Consultant and farmer from Massachusetts. This program was a professional development training for 90 women farmers in whole farm planning as well as the beginning of the professional development opportunity for 11 people to be trained as whole farm planning trainers. TARGET AUDIENCES: At project start we intended to reach a total of 180 women by the end of the program, with a yearly goal of 90 women. Year 2 we recruited 92 women. Total number of people involved in Year 2 (coordinators, instructors, mentors, participants) was 126. Combined with Year 1 we have trained 183 women. Total number of women who completed 7 or more trainings out of the 10 offered was 61 (66%). The demographics of the participants was 100% of all women participants are considered to be socially disadvantaged, limited resource, female farm workers (they work on their own farms). The specific breakdown by state as to whether they have been farming for less than a year or more than a year are as follows: Connecticut had 38% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 62% with more than one year of farming experience. New York had 27% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 73% with more than one year of farming experience. Massachusetts had 40% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 60% had more than one year of farming experience. Maine had 7% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 93% had more than one year of farming experience. Vermont had 0% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 100% with more than one year of farming experience. New Hampshire had 25% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 75% with more than one year of farming experience. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: Nothing significant to report during this reporting period.

Impacts
From the Whole Farm Goal Setting Session 97% of participants learned the value of a whole farm goal and how to create one. 85% also learned how to evaluate decisions using a testing filter toward their whole farm goal. In the Financial Planning Sessions, 95% learned how to plan for profit and prioritize expenses. From the Marketing Session, 50% improved their ability to do market planning. The Business Planning session showed a 37% increase in knowledge about business planning. The Land Planning session showed that participants had a 33% increase in knowledge on how to prioritize land planning decisions and integrate natural resource issues and assess management considerations. 100% of the participants in the Soil Fertility Session increased their knowledge in indicators of effective mineral cycle, benefits of covered ground, value of soil testing, and optimizing solar energy harvest. 56% of the participants in the Grazing Planning Session increased learning in how to assess recovery periods, determine grazing periods, determine quality of forage, and understand the value of grazing planning. 100% of participants in the Leadership & Communication session better understood communication patterns and principles as a result of this session. 73% increased conflict resolution skills and 85% are better able to engage with others on the farm. 33% of participants in the Time Management session increased their ability to differentiate how their time was spent in effective vs. ineffective time management categories. Evaluating behavior change showed that 73% of participants in the Marketing session plan to use their whole farm goal to prioritize their marketing decisions through such techniques as develop a market survey, use research techniques, adapt marketing based on competition, and develop pricing strategies. 100% of participants in the Business Planning session intend to write or revise their business plan. 85% of the participants in the Land Planning Session intend to use land planning techniques they learned such as mapping, use of overlays, and develop written/visual land plans. 51% of participants in the Soil Fertility Session intend to use monitoring techniques such as soil testing and biological monitoring. 84% of the participants in the Grazing Planning session intend to change grazing practices to improve ecosystem processes. 94% of participants in the Time Management session intend to use the tools they learned such as time management systems and techniques to manage employees more effectively. Moreover, 75% intend to use their whole farm goal to help prioritize time. When surveying Year 1 participants for actual behavior change, we received responses from 68% of participants. Of those participants, 83.7% have developed a whole farm goal, 65.3% have defined the resources available to manage their farms, 42.9% have developed a financial plan, 34.7% have developed a land plan, 24.5% have developed a grazing plan, and 87.8% have improved their decision making skills as a beginning farmer. Moreover, 84.9% of participants said they had forged relationships through this program that have positively impacted their farms.

Publications

  • No publications reported this period


Progress 09/01/09 to 08/31/10

Outputs
OUTPUTS: 60 one-day training sessions (of which 24 were also on farm field days for participants); 91 women farmers recruited to program; 1 Yahoo Group for group with calendar of events, file sharing, self-assessment, and email service; 2 webinars on financial planning for livestock producers; 10 biological monitoring sites with data collected; 11 Whole Farm Planning Trainers selected; 1 Program Coordinator meetings; 10 agendas for courses (with facilitator notes); 12 powerpoints for instructional use; 1 case study for instructional use; and 10 evaluation tools to determine knowledge and behavior change. To publicize the program, we had one internal newsletter article and one PR announcement in the Albuquerque Journal. To advertise the program to prospective participants, we used email lists extensively with an electronic flyer. We also posted an announcement on the HMI website. Demographics of program were that 100% of all women participants are considered to be socially disadvantaged, limited resource, female farm workers (they work on their own farms). The specific breakdown by state as to whether they have been farming for less than a year or more than a year are as follows: Connecticut had 45% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 55% with more than one year of farming experience. New York had 20% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 80% with more than one year of farming experience. Massachusetts had 5% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 95% had more than one year of farming experience. Maine had 25% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 75% had more than one year of farming experience. Vermont had 20% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 80% with more than one year of farming experience. New Hampshire had 7% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 93% with more than one year of farming experience. PARTICIPANTS: Project Director was Ann Adams of Holistic Management International. Regional Coordinators included Seth Wilner of University of New Hampshire Agricultural Resources and Phil Metzger of Central New York RC&D. Local coordinators included Kate Kerman of Small and, Beginner Farmers of New Hampshire, Devon Whitney-Deal of Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture (CISA) & Massachusetts WAgN, Lauren Lines of Central New York RC&D, Gail Chase of WAgN Maine, Jessie Schmidt of UVM Extension/VT WAgN, and Bill Duesing and Deb Legge of Connecticut NOFA. In addition we had instructors for the trainings which included: Erica Frenay of Cornell Small Farm Program, John Thurgood of New York Watershed Program, Dean Bascom of New Hampshire NRCS, Diane Schivera of Maine Organic Farm and Garden Association, Crystal Stewart of Cornell Cooperative Extension, Gabe Clark of Cold Spring Ranch in Maine, Steffen Schneider of Hawthorne Valley Farm in New York, and Mary Johnson an International Permaculture Design Consultant and farmer from Massachusetts. This program was a professional development training for 90 women farmers in whole farm planning as well as the beginning of the professional development opportunity for 11 people to be trained as whole farm planning trainers. TARGET AUDIENCES: At project start we intended to reach a total of 180 women by the end of the program, with a yearly goal of 90 women. We did recruit 90 women. Total number of people involved in Year 1 (coordinators, instructors, mentors, participants) was 116 with total number of participants who attended trainings at 91.Total number of women who completed 7 or more trainings out of the 10 offered was 63 (70%). The demographics of the participants was 100% of all women participants are considered to be socially disadvantaged, limited resource, female farm workers (they work on their own farms). The specific breakdown by state as to whether they have been farming for less than a year or more than a year are as follows. Connecticut had 45% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 55% with more than one year of farming experience. New York had 20% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 80% with more than one year of farming experience. Massachusetts had 5% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 95% with more than one year of farming experience. Maine had 25% of participants with less than one year of farming experience 75% with more than one year of farming experience. Vermont had 20% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 80% with more than one year of farming experience. New Hampshire had 7% of participants with less than one year of farming experience and 93% with more than one year of farming experience. PROJECT MODIFICATIONS: Nothing significant to report during this reporting period.

Impacts
Percentage change in knowledge for Introduction to Holistic Management was 100 %. The first Financial Planning session showed 100% increased knowledge with 70% total correct answers. The second Financial Planning Session showed 100% increased knowledge with 72% total correct answers. The Marketing session showed an 18.5% increased knowledge. The Business Planning session showed 100% increased knowledge with 84% correct answers. The Time Management session showed that 97% of the participants acquired skills that will help them better focus on tasks that are urgent and important (better time management skills/prioritization). The Soil Fertility session showed 100% increased knowledge with 80% total correct answers. The Land Planning session showed 100% of attendees gained increased knowledge with 71% correct answers. The Integrating Livestock and Holistic Planned Grazing session showed 100% of attendees gained knowledge with 47% correct answers. The Leadership and Communication session showed 100% increase in communication awareness. Percentage change in attitudes was demonstrated in the Business Planning sesssion with 95% of participants noting they had gained confidence about writing a business plan and indicated they understood the value of a written business plan beyond its usefulness for obtaining a bank loan. The percentage of planned change in behavior/approach was demonstrated in the Introduction to Holistic Management session with just under half of participants (44%) reporting that the testing questions would be helpful to them on their farms. Other helpful information included: how to develop a holistic goal (40%), understanding the role of decision-makers (23%), understanding the value of a written holistic goal (22%), and understanding whole-farm planning (19%). The Marketing session showed 83% will tie their marketing decisions to their holistic goal/farm mission statement. The Time Management session showed that 100% would use the life planning/time management tools as a result of the class. The Soil Fertility showed that 82% of participants were committed to monitoring soil health on farm as a result of class. The Integrating Livestock and Holistic Planned Grazing showed that 58% of participants will use some method to assess forage based on knowledge they learned in the class. The Leadership and Communication session showed that 88% of participants would structure their farm or family meetings differently based on what they had learned in class. 76% also increased their conflict resolution skills as a result of their training.

Publications

  • No publications reported this period