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PA-WAgN 2010 Annual Report

Posted: May 26, 2011

PA-WAgN releases 2010 Annual Report

This has been an excellent year for the Pennsylvania Women’s Agricultural Network.  We continue to work on our major mission of providing educational programming and network connections for women farmers to improve the success of their farm operation and agricultural businesses. 

Many women and men attended the 18 events we held throughout the state that brought together farmers, agricultural professionals, students, and others to learn and share information about their farm enterprises.   Our events covered a range of topics including direct marketing, urban farming, business planning, and many others. 

We are constantly working hard to improve the quality of our educational events and are proud that about 85% of attendees at our field days reported that they have improved their knowledge of topics covered at our field days. 

In 2010, we worked closely with our farmer regional representatives and steering committee to hold both formal and informal educational opportunities.  The Southwest regional representatives organized a wonderful day-long conference on Harmonious Farming:  Balancing Plants, People and Animals.  Other regional representations organized informal potlucks and get-togethers that provided wonderful networking contacts for many PA-WAgN members.  As part of our effort, we have conducted research on women farmers and provided this information to national and international audiences on the benefits of women’s agricultural networks.  We received a grant from USDA New and Beginning Farmer Program which has supported many of our activities.  With this new grant, we have held a variety of field days specifically geared to new and beginning farmers. 

Our network model offers enormous opportunities for mentoring and sharing information between “old” and “new” farmers.  We are also developing on-line curriculum and resources.  If you have not had a chance to attend certain field days, please go to our website and you can vicariously experience the field day and pick up on the important information from each field day.  Also, we now stay in touch with our network through social networking avenues including facebook and twitter.  Please join us on facebook and twitter to find up-to-the-minute information about our latest and upcoming educational programming.  

I would like to extend my sincere thanks to everyone who has helped to make PA-WAgN strong with a special thanks to all of the work of our steering committee and regional representatives and Ann Stone and Linda Moist, who keep everything moving forward every day. 

Carolyn Sachs
PA-WAgN/Penn State University