Veterans all across America are returning from war with the same challenge – how to transfer their hard-earned leadership experience and industrious skills while transitioning back into society. Meanwhile, American farmers are confronting their own difficulties – high input costs, increased government regulation, and the exodus of the next generation of family farmers and ranchers. Enter Farmer Veteran Coalition, a nonprofit mobilizing veterans to farm American soil with funding from socially responsible companies like Nutiva. Together, Farmer Veteran Coalition and Nutiva are changing lives.
Like most nonprofits, Farmer Veteran Coalition fills a gap in society by providing assistance to those with specific needs not provided in government and private sectors. Through outreach, training and networking, the nonprofit cultivates a whole new generation of farmers and develops viable employment and careers in sustainable agriculture. A belief in this transition to a green and meaningful path is what draws supporters like Nutiva, which gives away 1% of sales to sustainable agriculture programs that nourish people and planet.
Veterans from all eras of the military are eligible to receive assistance from the Farmer Veteran Coalition, although a majority of them are from the most recent conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. They come from all branches of the military, including the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, and Air Force. Besides their common wartime experience, they all share a desire to seed a better future for themselves.
Veteran Farmers Coalition’s Executive Director Michael Gorman believes that farming offers purpose, opportunity, as well as physical and psychological benefits. He is very proud of the young vets who transform their lives under his program. One such veteran is Tia Christopher, one of 14 female soldiers receiving recognition from the White House. “We are, of course, very thrilled at her honor,” he adds.
Nutiva is thrilled as well to be able to support such honorable programs and the men and women they help. In our dedication to nourishing people and planet, we invest in communities and sustainable small farming and have the opportunity to watch positive change unfold.