Farmers & Growers

Agent to Farmer SARE Training Modules

Various workshops developed for farmers interested in entering and competing in Higher Value Markets. See Ag Professionals for additional information.

SARE National Database

Search the SARE National Database to see if your topic of interest has been funded already.

Grant Opportunities

NE SARE Farmer Grants (NE SARE, 2012, website)
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. Application materials for the 2015 Farmer Grants grants will be released in the late summer; the deadline is December 2 with awards in the spring.

If you have questions about the SARE Farmer grant contact your County Extension Agent, Dee Singh-Knights, WVU SARE Coordinator Dee Sing-Knights, Barbara Liedl, WVSU SARE Coordinator Barbara Liedl, SARE Outreach Leader Nola Wilson , or SARE Farmer Grant Specialist Carol Delaney.

There are resources available that can help support you through the grant writing process. To learn more about writing a SARE Farmer Grant, visit the NE SARE website.

Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF) Request for Proposals for 2014 (OFRF, 2013, website)
OFRF offers funding for research on organic farming and food systems and the dissemination of these research results to organic farmers and the greater agricultural and research communities. Proposals must involve farmers or ranchers in project design and implementation and must take place on certified organic land, ideally on working organic farms or ranches. Applicants should articulate how the proposed research project will foster the improvement or adoption of organic farming systems, as well as ways in which organic farmers or ranchers can utilize proposed results in their operations. Research projects must include strong education and outreach components and contain measurable objectives. OFRF particularly encourages farmers, ranchers, researchers, and Extension personnel to consider applying for funding. The deadline for proposals is Thursday, May 15, 2014.

Grant Writing Tips

Applying for a grant can seem very intimidating, particularly if you are inexperienced at grant writing, however, the process does not need to be a daunting experience. Here are a few general tips on how to get started and be successful!

  • Make sure your idea fits in with the funding agencies mission, that you’re not trying to adapt the grant to meet your needs
  • If you are eligible for the grant, you should go for it. Consider this, the money is there, and it is going to be given to somebody. So why not you?
  • Carefully read and follow all guidelines and instructions. Many times applications are turned down for not following directions
  • Take a systematic approach to writing a grant
  • Remember grants are highly competitive, have good data to establish a strong baseline and support your proposal
  • Make sure your idea is feasible, keep in mind the grant reviewers are your peers and professionals in the industry
  • Reviewers will be looking for the Why, What, Where, When and How
  • Think like a reviewer “is/does your proposal ?”
    • Too long or too short
    • Have an attention grabbing title
    • Clear and concise
    • have at least one attribute that stands out
    • maintain the attention of the reviewer
    • describe itself as a tool for change
  • Have your proposal reviewed prior to submitting
  • Make sure you submit your application before the deadline, proposals submitted after the deadline are not considered
  • Overall, if you have a good idea, have credible data to support it, don’t write a lot of jargon, have a reasonable budget, use good language writing skills and are able to clearly demonstrate what you are trying to accomplish then you are on your way to submitting a successful proposal