In Her Boots: Sustainable Farming For Women, By Women
Since 2011, In Her Boots workshops uniquely provide an on-farm, women-led sharing of resources, experiences and inspiration to support women launching farm businesses. These day-long workshops provide women farmers and food-focused business owners with an inspiring blend of practical information, skill-building, farm tours, resource connections and networking opportunities to encourage and support this growing segment of organic farmers, entrepreneurs and agricultural leaders.
Drawing on the expertise and perspectives of both seasoned and beginning female farmers, participants will dive into pragmatics and practicalities of successfully running farm and food-based enterprises, including value-added enterprises, land stewardship, risk management through income diversification, and integrating children and family. The 2013 field day season has come to a close, but check in next summer! Look below for some frequently asked questions.
Soil Sisters: South Central Wisconsin Women in Sustainable Agriculture Farm Tour
From eggplants to emus, sheep to solar energy, bed & breakfasts to beef – seven Wisconsin farms offer a unique diversity of farm experiences in one afternoon, all led by women committed to local, sustainable agriculture and communities.
The free Soil Sisters farm tour highlights a cross-section of women farmers in south central Wisconsin who prioritize small-scale, diversified, community-focused agriculture. This annual event gives families a chance to see (and buy) what’s growing on the farms.
Over 50 percent of rural land is now owned by women. That’s the motivation behind these free workshops in partnership with WFAN that provide conservation training for women and connect women with local resources, program and networks.
Frequently Asked Questions about In Her Boots workshops:
Q: Do I need to pre-register?
A: Yes. Space is limited and we need a count for lunch. Please note there is an “early bird” discount for registering at least two weeks prior.
Q: I’m registered. What should I bring?
A: Please bring a chair (one of those portable folding camping chairs work great), water bottle and paper for taking notes. Dress for the weather and walking for the farm tour. As networking and connections with other women farmers is a key component of the day, bring business cards and any materials you want to share.
Q: What’s the general flow for the day?
A: The session kicks-off promptly at 10:00 am. As it is understandably hard to judge exact driving times, please aim to arrive anytime between 9:30 am and 10:00 am. The day kicks off with a farmer-led panel, networking lunch, farm tour and small group breakout sessions. The day wraps up around 4:00 pm.
Q: I have this dream to start a farm or food-based new career venture but have never been to a sustainable agriculture event before. Will I fit in?
A: The majority of Boots attendees are just like you and have not yet started their new business venture but are at the information and resource gathering phase. The rest of the women coming range from beginning to seasoned farmers and lots of networking and idea sharing take place.
Q: Are the three Boots workshops related or in a series? Can I attend more than one?
I attended a Boots workshop in the past. Can I attend again?
A: While the Boots workshops follow the same general format (opening panel, farm tour, lunch, breakout sessions), each workshop is distinctly different based on the location and speakers involved. Women often attend more than one and folks who attended in the past are welcome to return.
Q: Is lunch included?
A: A casual picnic lunch is included, featuring product from Organic Valley Family of Farms, Organic Prairie, and local farms. It’s a buffet format with some options to cover various dietary needs.
Q: My male partner/spouse is a part of my business venture and plan. Can he come?
A: Anyone is welcome to attend these Boots workshops; however, the difference between these In Her Boots workshops and other MOSES programming is these cover topics of interest to women not covered elsewhere and focus on connecting women with each other (research has show that women farmers learn best from connecting with each other). Attendees are just about all women.
Q: Can kids come?
A: Children can attend (no charge) but there is no childcare or activities. You are responsible for your child and they will need to be physically with you throughout the day.
Q: Can I bring my pet?
A: No and please to not leave pets in cars. Our farm hosts often have their own pets and livestock and this isn’t a good mix.
Q: Are scholarships available to cover the registration fee?
Scholarships are available. Please e-mail Lisa Kivirist with a note on your situation.