Rural Vermont Heads to D.C.!
The National Young Farmers Coalition Gathering in Washington DC in November brought young farmers from all over the country together to share our stories, explore how to make progress on issues that are critical to our lives and livelihoods and to meet directly with our Senators and Representatives at their offices on the Hill. I was lucky enough to participate in this event as not only as a representative from Rural Vermont, but also as a young farmer.
It was a humbling and inspiring experience to encounter this group of farmers and to see us mobilized by NYFC . We are a diverse, passionate, intelligent, and committed community of young farmers across the U.S. and our approach to agriculture is not just from the perspective of growing food - but with the understanding that agriculture is one of the most potent means of addressing issues of current and historic inequity, environmental justice, climate change, and personal and community resilience. We worked on organizing regionally to address policy making at the State and Federal levels and to address critical issues such as racial justice, immigration, climate change, and mental health.
Sen. Sanders, Sen. Leahy, and Rep. Welch welcomed myself and the other folks traveling from Vermont: Damien Boomhower,a 4th generation organic dairy farmer from Bitter Valley Farm in Fairfield and Jeannie Bartlet, representing Franklin County Conservation District. We spoke to our concerns around farm viability, dairy pricing and challenges, Farm Bill programs in limbo, climate change, land access, and more.
With gratitude to the hundreds of young farmers out there and those who put their time into advocating for young farmers and helping us bring our voices to the national and local level.