The Nature Conservancy Seeks Cover Crop Farmers in the Maumee River Watershed

By:  Stephanie Singer, TNC Western Lake Erie Basin Outreach Education Specialist, Stephanie.Singer@tnc.org,

DEFIANCE, Ohio (June 9th, 2020) – The Nature Conservancy is looking for farmers who are currently utilizing cover crops on their farms in the Maumee River Watershed of the Western Lake Erie Basin.  We are looking for a diverse group of farmers; large acreage, small acreage, corn and soy, small grains, livestock, new and experienced, willing to reach out and share their knowledge and experiences with other farmers in their area.  Selected farmers will be compensated for their time.  If you are interested in being part of this exciting farmer-led outreach project and would like to apply as a Farmer Advocate for Conservation please complete the online application form by using this Link.  Or by contacting Stephanie Singer, Stephanie.Singer@tnc.org, Phone: 419-782-0652.

The Nature Conservancy will work with multiple partners including the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation, American Farmland Trust, National Wildlife Federation, and The Ohio State University to train farmers in the Maumee River Watershed to become technical experts and community leaders for sustainable agriculture.  The project with train 60 farmers, 20 per group in three groups over a 3-year period in the Maumee River Watershed to engage another 3,000 farmers in education and outreach activities, which may lead to wider adoption of the new best management practices aimed at improving soil health and water quality management at the farm level.

“This is an opportunity for farmers to take the knowledge they’ve gained on their own farm and make an impact in a larger area.  We want people (farmers) who realize the importance of soil health goes beyond their own farm and who want to see farming be successful.  The future of farming depends on soil health.” said Stephanie Singer, outreach education specialist at the Western Lake Erie Project Office.

The application window for the first round of advocate selection is open from the beginning of May till the end of July 2020.  The top 20 candidates will be notified of their acceptance as Farmer Advocates for Conservation in the fall when they will be given a complete schedule of training sessions to being in January of 2021.  This project is funded by the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative which will allow Farmer Advocates to be compensated for their time.

Farmers interested in participating as a Farmer Advocate for Conservation can complete the online application form.  To nominate a farmer you believe would be an excellent candidate as Farmer Advocates for Conservation please complete the online nomination form, or please contact Stephanie Singer, Stephanie.Singer@tnc.org. Phone: 419-782-0652.

The Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world’s toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters, and oceans at an unprecedented scale, providing food and water sustainably, and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in 72 countries, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit www.nature.org or follow @nature_press on Twitter.

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