For the 2016 Partnership Grant Program, SARE awarded almost $300,000 to 10 projects in the 12-state North Central Region. NCR-SARE’s Partnership Grant Program is intended to foster cooperation between agriculture professionals and small groups of farmers and ranchers to catalyze on-farm research, demonstration, and education activities related to sustainable agriculture. Two proposals from UW Extension educators were funded:
- Erin Silva with the University of Wisconsin in Madison, Wisconsin was awarded $29,813 for the project, “Partnering to Refine Organic No-Till Production in Wisconsin.”
- Claire Strader with FairShare CSA Coalition in Madison, Wisconsin was awarded $29,998 for the project, “Use of High-Residue, Winter-Killed Cover Crops in No-Till Organic Tomatoes.”
In addition, Keefe Keeley with the Savanna Institute in Urbana, Illinois and a PhD student at UW-Madison was awarded $29,951 for the project, “Evaluating and Sharing Techniques in Silvopasture Establishment.”
You can read descriptions of these and other projects online at http://www.northcentralsare.org/Grants/Recent-Grant-Projects.
The focus for each of the NCR-SARE grant programs is on research and education. Funding considerations are based on how well the applicant presents the problem being addressed, the project’s relevance to sustainable agriculture in the 12-state North Central region, and how well it aligns with NCR-SARE’s goals, among other factors specific to each grant program.
NCR-SARE’s Administrative Council (AC) members decide which projects will receive SARE funds. A collection of farm and non-farm citizens, the AC includes a diverse mix of agricultural stakeholders in the region. Council members hail from regional farms and ranches, the Cooperative Extension Service, universities, federal agencies, and nonprofit organizations.
Since 1988, the SARE program has helped advance farming systems that are profitable, environmentally sound and good for communities through a nationwide research and education grants program. The program, part of USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture, funds projects and conducts outreach designed to improve agricultural systems.