Collaborative Regional Alliance for Farmer Training
KY CRAFT is an exciting initiative that will support farm intern/apprentice networking, collaboration and education for Kentucky. We have been hosting interns on our farm for 6 years, and have interned on many other farms prior to that. These experiences as mentors and interns have been vital in our careers as organic farmers and very important in the development of our regional CRAFT group.
KY CRAFT is a growing group of Kentucky organic and biodynamic farmers and gardeners who share a mission to strengthen interns’ awareness of the diversity of sustainable agriculture initiatives in Kentucky and provide interns/apprentices access to a variety of regional operations through an established cooperative. To fulfill this mission the following objectives will be met:
Broaden future farmers’ exposure to Kentucky’s farms with organized monthly KY CRAFT workshops along with a community calendar inviting member farmers and their interns/apprentices to join in on field days and other events hosted at KY CRAFT farms.
Promote the role interns/apprentices play in the greater sustainable agriculture community by participation in these events.
Enhance awareness of Kentucky’s efforts in sustainable agriculture by connecting farmers, apprentices/interns and volunteers to the beauty and diversity of Kentucky’s farming community.
The Kentucky CRAFT program is modeled after successful CRAFT programs in the Upper Midwest and Hudson Valley; KY CRAFT broadens the scope of experience for both the farmer and aspiring farmer.
“CRAFT is a support for the farmer to connect with other folks committed to sustainable agriculture. It broadens the horizons of the interns where they see beyond the farm they are working on and realize they are part of an important group of stewards of the earth. Socially, CRAFT is a time to relax and share with other folks who make their living off the land. It gives opportunities to learn more about sustainable agriculture and see a variety of farms and approaches to growing and marketing food.” Farmer, Wellspring Farm, West Bend, WI.
2004 was the first year for CRAFT in our State. Four workshops were hosted and many interns were able to expand their knowledge and experience during their stay in our region. Year Round Growing, Multi-species grazing, Farm Diversification and Soil Building were all presented in depth at member farms. The 2005 and 2006 seasons provided even more diversity in the programming and more collaboration with the member farms. Learn more on how to join if you are a KY farmer and are interested in the program.