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Farm Asset Builder 2017 : Receive matched savings and sharpen your financial skills

Angelic Organics Learning Center is now accepting applications for the fourth year of its Farm Asset Builder program. Farmers who are accepted into Farm Asset Builder will receive a dollar-for-dollar match for every dollar saved up to $2,000. In addition, farmers will receive one-on-one technical assistance to develop their business planning, financial literacy, and financial management skills. Program savings can be used to purchase a farm asset. Past participants have used savings to purchase a brush washer, a skid steer loader, a mulch layer, a moveable composting toilet (long story), greenhouse and infrastructure improvements, a transplanter, a draft horse, and, most recently, a cultivating tractor (pictured here).

 

To date, the Learning Center has provided $19,200 to match participants’ savings of over $14,000, helping to add more than $33,000 to the local farm economy in assets that will continue to make these farm businesses more profitable and sustainable for years to come.  Some past Farm Asset Builder participants have leveraged the financial planning work of the program to help them receive Kiva microloans endorsed by AOLC, providing them with up to $10,000 each in additional interest-free financing.

 

2017 program participants will work with Learning Center staff and our partners on improving their financial and business planning skills. At the same time, participants will be able to save up to $175 each month. AOLC will provide a minimum 1:1 match for all participants. A new partnership with the Department of Health & Human Services will allow us to provide income-eligible farmers with an even greater match of 2:1; through an Assets For Independence (AFI) grant from the Administration for Children & Families, applicants who qualify for the additional match funds through AFI will receive a $2 match for every $1 saved. This is the the first year of a five-year AFI grant, and we look forward to being able to provide this additional opportunity for those farmers who need it most. An additional grant from the Oberweiler Foundation will allow Farm Asset Builder staff to continue offering a veteran scholarship to military veterans entering the field of sustainable agriculture.

 

For the complete list of application questions, please click here.

For the monthly expectations for program participants, click here.

To apply, click here.