The Farmer Veteran Coalition Ups Funding for 2022 Grant Cycle; Rachel Petitt, Jeanette Lombardo, and David Volkman Share
SACRAMENTO, CA - Looking back over 2021, the Farmer Veteran Coalition (FVC) can say that it made a huge impact in the lives of many veteran farmers throughout the industry. Now, with its focus on 2022, the coalition is setting an ambitious goal as its new funding cycle opens.
“Our sights are set high for 2022: we anticipate raising $500,000 to give out to this year’s class of Fellows,” said Rachel Petitt, Program Director. “We recognize this is a lofty goal, but we are really close, so it definitely feels achievable.”
In its 11th year, the Farmer Veteran Fellowship Fund has granted over $3.5 million in support to more than 800 military veterans pursuing careers in agriculture, according to a release. One of the FVC’s central programs helps beginning farmers and ranchers with one of the greatest challenges—accruing start-up capital.
“As FVC starts this next round of funding, the stories of 2021 are a wonderful reminder of the importance of our mission,” explained Executive Director Jeanette Lombardo. “These stories drive our efforts every day as we seek new funding and create programs to help our Farmer Veterans throughout the country.”
Over the past year, FVC awarded 138 farmer veterans with farming equipment through its Fellowship Fund small grant program. This included big ticket items such as greenhouses and grow tents, walk-in coolers and cold storage units, water filtrations, honey extractors, and milking systems.
“It was taking me four hours to fill up my 1,100-gallon leg tank, and now, with my Generac pump, I can fill the tank in about 15 minutes,” commented David Volkman, an Army veteran who served for nearly three decades before starting Ohio Valley Hops, and a recipient of one of the grants.
Now, FVC is welcoming the arrival of its next funding cycle, with applications having opened on January 3, and remaining open until February 14. To apply, click here.
Funding for the 2022 cycle is made possible by organizations including Wounded Warriors Project, Kubota, Tractor Supply Company, Homestead Implements, Tarter Farm and Ranch Equipment, Vital Farms, Sugar Bottom Farm, Barreras Family Farm, and Northwest Farm Credit Services.
Cheers to FVC for continuing to make a difference in the lives of veterans in agriculture!