Farming offers a viable avenue for returning veterans to transition into society and capitalizes on skills that made them successful in the military. However, these opportunities may be missed due to a lack of targeted training programs, guidance, and information for the veteran community. Programs directed toward educating beginning farmers, along with increased awareness and demand for local food production, have provided an opportunity for individuals interested in farming. However, few programs have focused on the needs of veterans interested in agriculture. Since 2007, our team has directly supported approximately 300 veterans interested in farming through workshops, internships, research, and training opportunities and an additional 650 veterans nationally through the Farmer Veteran Coalition. As more programs develop for veterans in agricultural disciplines, we believe lessons learned from our partnership with veterans may be beneficial to those working with this population of farmers.
Donoghue, Dan, Harold Goodwin, Angela Mays, Komala Arsi, Margo Hale, Terrell Spencer, Michael O’Gorman, Shibu Jose, Ondieki Gekara, Joan Burke, and Ann Donoghue. 2014. "Armed to Farm: Developing Training Programs For Military Veterans in Agriculture." Journal of Rural Social Sciences, 29(2): Article 5. Available at: https://egrove.olemiss.edu/jrss/vol29/iss2/5