Farmer & Rancher Grants: Farmer Grants are for commercial producers who have an innovative idea they want to test using a field trial, on-farm demonstration, or other technique. A technical advisor--often an extension agent, crop consultant, or other service professional--is required as a project participant. Projects should seek results other farmers can use, and all projects must have the potential to add to our knowledge about effective sustainable practices. Proposal deadlines are in December with awards announced in March. Starting with the 2010 grant cycle, these awards are capped at $15,000.
Partnership Grants: Partnership Grants are reserved for agricultural service providers--extension and NRCS staff, consultants, state departments of agriculture, and others working in the agricultural community--who want to conduct on-farm demonstrations, research, marketing, and other projects with farmers as active cooperators. The purpose of the Partnership Grant program is to support agricultural service providers who work directly with farmers to do on-farm demonstrations, research, marketing, and other projects that will add to our understanding of sustainable agriculture. Sustainable agriculture is understood to be agriculture that is profitable, environmentally sound, and beneficial to the community. Proposal deadlines are in December with awards announced in March. Starting with the 2010 award cycle, these grants will be capped at $15,000.
Sustainable Community Grants: Sustainable Community Grants make a direct connection between community revitalization and farming. Projects must address specific key issues such as farm finance, marketing, land use, water use, enterprise development, value-added product development, or other delineated topic areas. To apply, you must be affiliated with Cooperative Extension, NRCS, a municipality, a state department of agriculture, a college or university, a community organization, or other institutional entity. Proposal deadlines are in December with awards announced in March. Starting with the 2010 award cycle, these grants will be capped at $15,000.
Professional Development Grants: The Professional Development program funds outcome-based projects that train Cooperative Extension educators and other agricultural service providers in sustainable techniques and concepts. Projects must be directed toward increasing the skill and understanding of these service providers, and be consistent with SARE's larger goal of broad farmer adoption of sustainable practices. These grants are for organizations to develop and deliver training, specifically agricultural training with sustainable content. In any given year, SARE awards about $500,000 in Professional Development Grants, with awards ranging from $60,000 to $200,000. These grants are not for individuals who hope to attend training and need money for tuition or travel.
Research and Education: The Research and Education program funds outcome-based projects offering research, education, and demonstration projects that engage farmers as cooperators in the exploration of sustainable farm practices. Projects should be directed toward research results that will translate quickly into farmer benefit, and farmers, extension staff, and other stakeholders should be involved in planning project content. Northeast SARE seeks proposals for research, education and on-farm demonstration projects, and the emphasis is on projects that lead directly to improved farming practices and an enhanced quality of life for farmers and rural communities. Projects must involve farmers and other stakeholders in planning, implementing, and evaluating a potential project; we also fund projects where research, Cooperative Extension, and education are closely linked.
Agroecosystems Research Grant: The Agroecosystems Research Grant program funds long-term research that explores the ecological interactions that are the basis of sustainable agriculture. The emphasis is on projects that improve understanding of these interactions and to promote new models of farming that future farmers can adopt. Northeast SARE seeks preproposals for long-term research projects that will explore the ecological interactions that are the basis of sustainable agriculture. The goal is to develop a greater understanding of these interactions and to promote new models of farming systems designed around them so that in the future farmers will be able to minimize the use of external, energy-dependent inputs while optimizing the use of on-site natural resources to maintain productivity. Northeast SARE expects that only a few project preproposals will be selected to submit proposals for a full review. We anticipate that a single three-year project, in the $300,000 to $400,000 range, will be funded in any given cycle.