Founded in 2005, FarmStart works to support and encourage a new generation of farmers to develop locally based, ecologically sound and economically viable agricultural enterprises. FarmStart’s role is to provide practical support, provincial leadership and a voice for a new generation of farmers.
A grant from the Foundation will give FarmStart staff the capacity to work with new partners and to develop, adapt and implement new programs. In addition to managing the creation of new farm incubator facilities in its home region near Brampton, FarmStart will disseminate its model and share learning with other communities across Canada.
FarmStart will create two grant pools that focus on:
- Incubator advisory services involving small grants for organizations interested in starting new farmer support programs. Interested organizations will be able to contract for support, materials and training from FarmStart staff, comprised of such activities as farm tours, workshops and personalized presentations, and phone or in-person consultations.
- Training and Resources involving a ‘train the trainer’ approach, where FarmStart will train, support and contract course facilitators (primarily farmers) to encourage and train prospective and new farmers to develop viable farm businesses. Regional partners will coordinate these efforts and promote the program in other parts of Canada.
FarmStart will also lead work with partners in government and the private sector to improve policy and practice around ecological and viable local farming. An additional component of this project is an evaluation of FarmStart’s model as a method of introducing sustainable farm and food systems across Canada.
Visit www.farmstart.ca for more information