TOOLKIT: Launch a Women’s Farmer Network
This toolkit focuses on building connections between women farmers, particularly in rural areas, who share a commitment to sustainable agriculture, conservation and land stewardship. It also seeks to support those interested in developing on-going, lasting connections in their home region.
• Provide practical resources and ideas to start gathering women in your region with a goal of building an on-going, lasting network.
• Offer tangible guidance on how to facilitate such gatherings, based on potlucks and the learning circle model where research has shown women learn best.
• Highlight insights and advice from women farmers seasoned in such work through first-person stories.
This Toolkit draws insights from the founding Soil Sisters network in Southern Wisconsin—women farmers involved from the inaugural first meeting, 15+ years ago. It also includes perspectives from women new to the area as well as guidance from the seven new pilot networks launched during this SARE project. While some of the information presented relates to opportunities to start a Soil Sisters group, the ideas are intended to be universal and helpful in any setting.