Grants

For the past four years the Alaska Farm Bureau has awarded grants for small agriculture education projects to increase awareness, knowledge, and appreciation of Alaska agriculture in our youth.

The Alaska Farm Bureau intends to award up to $11,000.00 in grants to individuals or organizations across the state in 2021.

How to Apply

The application period for 2021 has closed. Please check back for 2022 grant opportunities.

For reference, the 2021 application form can be downloaded here: SAEG Application

Past Grant Recipients

Thank you to all applicants for seeing the importance of bringing agriculture to our youth, and congratulations to the grant recipients.

2020

Ag Bootcamp: Alaska Village Initiatives

Developing an educational portal online to deliver agriculture and farming courses to rural communities and schools across the state.

Nikiski Safe Haven Community Garden Program

Working with youth organizations and community members, Nikiski Safe Haven Community Garden will build raised beds and eventually a greenhouse for the community to benefit from.  Providing life skills for youth and adults through building the garden and offering gardening classes.

2019

Alaska Youth Livestock Camp and Fitting Clinic

MS-CR 4-H District Teen Council

The Mat-Su Copper River District 4-H Livestock Committee is devoted to bringing hands-on educational opportunities to the youth in the state. This summer, July 11-13th, 2018, the committee is hosting the first ever Alaska Youth Livestock Camp and Fitting Clinic. This is an exciting hands-on opportunity for Alaska youth to come and learn more about beef, sheep and goats. The multi-day camp will be located in Palmer at the Alaska State Fairgrounds. The youth are encouraged to bring their livestock projects to get the best experience, but it is certainly not a requirement, as we want all youth to be able to participate in this awesome event.

Alaska Ag in the Classroom

Alaska Agriculture in the Classroom is collaborating with Dr. Will Hutto who has received a grant from NASA to conduct research on growing techniques for bringing well tested agriculture techniques on future missions of space exploration and colonization of both the Moon and Mars. We will also continue the AITC program which reaches teachers and students across the state with agricultural literacy lessons through web accessible curriculum; hands-on presentations to classrooms, groups, communities; teacher workshops and partnerships.

Ionia, Inc.

This project aims to teach and inspire youth about low tech innovative greenhouse heating methods using energy efficient wood mason stove called a Rocket Mass Heater(RMH), This project will partner with the village of Ionia by teaching 8 of their youth these in-depth methods by planning and building a RMH slowly over the next year.

Alaska FFA Association

An annual goal of our association is to travel to the FFA chapters across the state and conduct workshops focused on leadership and agriculture. At our recent state convention, we elected five new state FFA officers: State President-Brandon Traini from Palmer, Vice President-Gillain Brinker from Anchorage, Secretary-Matthea Boatright from Kenai, Treasurer-Alexa Regoord from Anchorage and Reporter-Heidi Faulkner from North Pole. These five officers hope to visit each of the FFA chapters in the state, conduct leadership training, and increase our members knowledge of agriculture. By providing FFA leadership training we can help the individual members grow their career potential and continue to expand the FFA organization. The Alaska FFA association will provide multiple workshops to boost the individual members leadership skills and agriculture knowledge. Enhanced by the new leadership training, chapter members can then take the information that they have gained and use it to build their local communities and guide them through the years chapter activities. Ultimately, we hope to show FFA members the unique opportunities that exist in agriculture and how they can grow leaders, build communities and strengthen agriculture through their involvement in FFA.

2018

Human Beings on the Earth: Agriculture as Survival and Culture

Winterberry Charter School

Winterberry Charter School is a Waldorf Methods school, which means, among other things, that the children of each class travel together through the grades together. My current class of second graders will be third graders next year, and the major theme of the year is the study of how human beings have historically survived and created cultures on the earth. We will study many cultures, and many ways of existence, but perhaps the most central question of the year will be: how have people fed themselves, and how does the manner of feeding ourselves impact and shape our culture? Third grade Waldorf schools across the world will be studying this, and here in Alaska we find ourselves with unique challenges and opportunities when we look at this question. For our students, access to bona-fide agriculture production, be it on small farms, home gardens, or at an industrial scale, can be a challenge! Historically, our children visit farms in the Matanuska Valley, and this field trip is one of the most rewarding and eye-opening of all that our children experience in this year.

Birchtree Parent Guild

The Birchtree Parent Guild is expanding the third-grade gardening program at Birchtree Charter School. We are building a greenhouse with an irrigation system. The third-grade gardening project is a big part in our school community. In the spring, the second-graders going into third-grade, are responsible for choosing the vegetation that is to be planted, preparing the soil and area where the planting will take place and keeping the area clean, watered and safe during the summer. With the help from our farming community they learn the aspects of how viable it is to know how to grow an economical and versatile crop. They learn that it takes hard work and dedication to produce usable vegetation in a short amount of time in Alaskan summer months. The third-graders, their teachers and the school community learn the fundamentals of planting, take care of and harvesting the crops. They learn how each plant is used and how to make sure it thrives in Alaska’s weather and soil conditions. The third-graders learn what can cause a crop to fail and what it takes to have a bountiful one.

Kodiak Baptist Mission

Heritage Farms

At Kodiak Baptist Mission’s Heritage Farms we are diligently working to raise a generation of educated youth in the area of Alaskan farming. Each day we strive to create a space for children to learn and make discoveries. Our farm program is bursting at the seams with preschoolers and school aged children visiting and learning at our farm daily. Last summer Kodiak Baptist Mission began a very successful kids farmer’s market as well as a teaching kitchen. This year we are looking to get the entire family involved by having our farm open each Saturday. When parents learn alongside their children often times the new knowledge will more likely be applied at home. We look to encourage families to support local farmers, work towards food sustainability and be active participants, so healthy lifestyles can be established or reinforced. In addition many of our young learners are getting older and want to be part of the daily running of the farm. We plan to start an internship program for a group of these students to begin learning the ins and outs of running a farm. Through this program we hope to encourage youth toward agricultural focused careers. Finally we are excited to have a farm that is kid friendly and would like school classes and youth clubs and organizations to take advantage of this learning opportunity by taking fall and spring field trips.

Ninilchik Community Garden Project

Ninilchik FFA

The Ninilchik Community Garden is a small plot centrally-located in Ninilchik currently not in production. The garden space is fenced, in a premium location near the school and senior housing apartments and has adequate sunlight and water sources. Ninilchik FFA Chapter plans to plant this garden with Alaska-hardy species, host educational harvest and preservation days and use the plot as a community food source.

Tanana District 4H/FFA Livestock Committee

The Tanana District 4-H/FFA Livestock Committee annually sponsors numerous livestock education events to reach our goal to provide exceptional leadership and educational opportunities to not only the 4-H and FFA members we represent but all agriculturalists in interior Alaska. We are ambitious that through this grant and with our continued relationship with the Alaska Farm Bureau Fairbanks Chapter we can maximize our efforts and better provide opportunities to our agricultural community. We look to match or exceed any grant funding we receive to bring in outside experts with knowledge and expertise in large and small stock (beef, swine, sheep, goats, chickens and rabbits), teach livestock herdsmanship and showmanship, provide reproductive health and management instruction, as well as bring in an expert in swine from the Lower 48 to present a seminar on swine trends, breeding, genetics, and conduct farm visits to local producers to provide free consultation.

Reaching Teachers and Students with Agricultural Literacy

Alaska Agriculture in the Classroom, Inc

AK AITC plans to present workshops on the Alaska Indoor Gardening Curriculum, a compendium of lesson plans and information on practical and affordable year-round indoor gardening techniques for classrooms that is now available online. We want to continue to offer our regular Alaska Ag in the Classroom educator workshops which are designed to reach Alaska’s teachers, students and communities with information and education about Alaska’s agricultural industry. We also want to continue our outreach through classroom presentations and participation and community outreach events, social media, curriculum development and standards correlation, as well as establishing partnerships that further the agricultural industry throughout the state.

FFA Leadership Schools – Alaska FFA Association

We hope to continue growing high school agriculture education programs and involving more students in the FFA organization in Alaska. We want to provide an opportunity for the four Alaska FFA officers to travel to as many agriculture and natural resource programs as possible and provide leadership training to the approximately 300 members. Our District Leadership Schools will help chapter members develop themselves individually, give them new leadership training and gain valuable agriculture related skills and knowledge. Members will participate in two days of FFA leadership training activities that are being hosted by state FFA officers. These two days will include Member and Officer Leadership Training on the first day and the second day will be to educate members about agricluture career and leadership events that they will participate in later in the year. Alaska FFA will provide local chapter officers and members an opportunity to have success in their upcoming year and also help members gain a better understanding of agriculture and FFA. One major goal is to continue to grow FFA and educate students in the state of Alaska about the opportunities for a successful career in agriculture and natural resources. Through education we can help build the economic value of agriculture in our state and grow FFA.

Farm Development Project

Palmer High School – Ag Department

Palmer High School has had an agriculture education program that has a history beginning in the early 1950’s. It has the potential to have the largest FFA chapter in the state of Alaska and to serve as a center of community learning about Alaskan agricultures history and future. The Agriculture Education building sits on about 2 acres of land that are currently undeveloped. This land could serve as a learning laboratory of agriculture and natural resources. A plan has been developed with community stakeholders to build a school farm in four phases. The first phase is to be implemented the fall of 2018. This phase is focused on creating berry plots, interpretive signs, and installing irrigation that will be incorporated into later phases. This phase will enable the FFA program to offer summer opportunities and exploration of agritourism.

Growing our Future – Reconnecting with Local Food Production in Haines, Alaska

Takshanuk Watershed Council

For 8 years now, TWC has been managing a school composting and gardening program named ‘Starvin’ Marvin’. As part of this program Haines’ 6th graders compost the school lunch scraps throughout the school year, grades k-6 start plants in their classrooms and then plant them in the garden in the spring. Each grade then harvest in the fall when they return to school. The produce is used for classroom snacks and brought to the school cafeteria. Traditionally there has been little youth involvement in the garden operations throughout the summer, when there tends to be the greatest opportunity for education. With the recent expansion of the garden to include a hoop house and 11 new raised beds, there is ample opportunity for summer education at the Starvin’ Marvin garden. Through this initiative with the Alaska Farm Bureau, TWC will expand these efforts to offer a summer gardening education program for Haines youth and a celebratory community garden event.

Alaska Youth Livestock Camp and Fitting Clinic

MS-CR 4-H District Teen Council

The Mat-Su Copper River District 4-H Livestock Committee is devoted to bringing hands-on educational opportunities to the youth in the state. This summer, July 11-13th, 2018, the committee is hosting the first ever Alaska Youth Livestock Camp and Fitting Clinic. This is an exciting hands-on opportunity for Alaska youth to come and learn more about beef, sheep and goats. The multi-day camp will be located in Palmer at the Alaska State Fairgrounds. The youth are encouraged to bring their livestock projects to get the best experience, but it is certainly not a requirement, as we want all youth to be able to participate in this awesome event.

2017

Alaska Ag in the Classroom

Alaska Ag in the Classroom will be developing a series of lesson plans on practical and affordable year round indoor gardening techniques for classrooms. They will also offer educator workshops to reach Alaska’s teachers, students and communities with information and education about Alaska’s agricultural industry.

Alaska FFA

Alaska FFA is hoping to grow high school agriculture education programs in Alaska, the four Alaska FFA officers will travel to all the current agriculture and natural resource programs in the state and provide leadership training to approximately 300 members. This program will provide leadership training as well as agriculture related skills and knowledge to chapter members. A major goal aims to continue to grow FFA and educate students about opportunities for a successful career in agriculture and natural resources.

Dena’ina & Goose Bay Elementary

Dena’ina & Goose Bay Elementary will provide an opportunity for kindergarten students to experience poultry production first-hand. Specifically; increase student’s knowledge of how a chick develops from fertilized embryo to hatched chick, learn about the conditions required for eggs to hatch (incubator, turning of the eggs, appropriate temperature and humidity), learn to candle an egg to determine if it is fertilized or not, and how to care for a baby chick once it has hatched.

Tanana District Livestock Committee

Tanana District Livestock Committee is committed to providing exceptional leadership and educational opportunities to the 4-H and FFA members in the Interior. A major goal for 2017-2018 is expanding the meat quality assurance program into our market program. Through such national certifications as Beef Quality Assurance and Pork Quality Assurance, we strive to provide our youth the best opportunity to learn and grow as responsible members of the Agricultural Community. We would be able to help cover the cost to bring an expert on quality assurance and meat science to the interior. Sarah Baker is an extension agent with the University of Idaho and specializes in cattle management and meat science. She has a bachelor’s degree in range management from the University of Idaho and a master’s degree in Meat Science from there as well. She is willing to come to Alaska and teach a multitude of classes including a train the trainer course in Beef quality assurance and teach meat quality and meat science classes to the 4-H and FFA members as well as the general public.

Plant Your Future – Covenant House

Covenant House serves homeless, trafficked and at-risk youth that have little connection to their food sources and lack a good understanding of proper nutrition and health. The Plant Your Future agriculture education project will allow homeless youth residing at CHA’s Youth Engagement Center to create a youth-run 200 sq. ft. urban garden on-site at the YEC shelter courtyard. The overall goal is to introduce homeless youth to how their food is sourced and to increase general agricultural knowledge, particularly on how agriculture works in Alaska. Other goals would be to increase their appreciation of farming, to learn more about horticultural science, to learn gardening skills, to expose them to agriculture as a potential career and to allow them to experience the therapeutic benefits of farming. Finally, youth will learn about garden-based nutrition and how a “seed-to-plate” program works. Youth will ultimately benefit from the nutritional value of the garden as harvested vegetables will be used in the meals at the Covenant House shelter.

Thorne Bay School

Thorne Bay School in the Southeast Island School District will be working with students to create a fully functional fiber harvesting business involving live animals. The chosen breed would be Angora Rabbits which can have their fur humanely harvested and processed for sale and are small enough to require less space than a sheep. Students would need to create a business plan involving the purchase of pellets and fresh hay and take into account the added expense of living on an island where items must be shipped to. Students would also be responsible for caring for all the animals, properly harvesting the fiber, spinning the fiber, and selling it as yarn or as a finished product.

Kodiak Heritage Farms

At Kodiak Heritage Farms, part of Kodiak Baptist Mission, we are diligently working to raise a generation of educated youth in the area of Alaskan farming. We are daily transforming our 32 acre campus to serve as a training ground toward these efforts. Thanks in part to the Alaska Farm Bureau Grant of 2016 we have doubled our farm program and will be offering twice as many camps this coming summer. We are also piloting a farm after school program, daily visits from four preschool classes and a “parent and me” farm introduction class. We are excited to take the next step in educating our youth on where their food comes from by beginning a teaching kitchen. This will be a place for our next generation farmers to be active participants in watching their food, which they have had a hand in caring for, planting and harvesting be transformed into healthy meals. We hope to inspire these young people and their families by creating a community climate that values our local farmers and instills the importance of working hard for our food and seeing the direct affect it can have on their lives and their health.

2016

Anne Houseal

Create an educational video and develop a presentation on beekeeping, honey extraction and products from bees to educate students. Video and presentation, created and conducted by Project Coordinator, will be shared with students at Mat Su Central School and Elementary Schools in Mat Su Borough with the focus of educating students on the important role bees have in agriculture and the local economy.

Alaska Ag in the Classroom

This year, Alaska AITC plans to reach Alaska’s teachers, students and communities with information and education about Alaska’s agricultural industry through educator workshops, social media, curriculum development and standards correlation, classroom presentations and participation and community outreach events as well as establishing partnerships that further the agricultural industry throughout the state. We also want to offer financial support to several rural/village schools to send teachers to the workshops.

Kodiak Baptist Mission – Heritage Farm

Our project makes a concerted effort to educate Kodiak’s youth through getting them involved in many different aspects of farming currently working with more than 100 kids on a daily basis year round. We are located on 32 acres of land which provides pastures for animals, room for high tunnels and outdoor garden spaces as well as classroom locations for educating and learning. We have the ability to connect with our local farmers and take field trips to see how they are working to provide a sustainable life in Kodiak. We also would like to take every opportunity to bring in experts from off island to share their knowledge and expertise, which we hope in turn will inspire our next generation to be active participants and activist in the future of agriculture in Alaska and our country.

Alaska Association of Agriculture and Natural Resource Educators

To host a two day update training conference for the newly created (AAANRE) Alaska Association of Agriculture and Natural Resource Educators which includes agriculture and natural resource education teachers/ FFA advisors. The purpose of the conference is to provide training to teachers about agriculture and natural resources, FFA leadership skills and help the teachers continue to build their professional organization for continued learning. We hope to bring teacher trainers from both National FFA and from CASE. Upon completion of the training the participants can utilize agriculture and natural resource information that they have gained and can take it back to their communities to teach their students/ FFA members. Teachers will be encouraged to attend and stay updated on new classroom ideas and changes in the FFA at the national level.

Hydaburg City School District

Hydaburg City School District (HCSD) is a single site K-12 school in Hydaburg, Alaska on Prince of Wales Island. In 1911, Sukkwan, Howkan, and Klinkwan, three Haida villages, combined at the present site for their children to attend school, making Hydaburg the largest Haida village in Alaska. Residents maintain a subsistence and commercial fishing lifestyle. Hydaburg School’s enrollment this year (2015-16) is 82 students and one hundred percent of the students qualify for free and reduced meals. The school district is striving to enhance students’ awareness of how to help provide healthy fresh vegetables in their own community. There is only a small convenience type grocery store in Hydaburg and the nearest regular supermarket is a one-hour drive away. The district has created an area of raised bed gardens in a space measuring about 300’ x 50.’ Students are planting potatoes this spring as well as other seedlings that they have started in their classrooms. What the project needs for more efficiency is a storage shed for garden tools, hoses and other garden equipment so that it stays secure and out of the weather. The other need is for raspberry plants for fall planting.

2015

Reaching Teachers and Students with Agriculture Literacy

Ag in the Classroom

Alaska AITC plans to reach Alaska’s teachers, students and communities with information and education about Alaska’s agricultural industry through educator workshops, social media, curriculum development and standards correlation, classroom presentations and participation and community outreach events as well as establishing partnerships that further the agricultural industry throughout the state. We also want to offer financial support to several rural schools that have expressed interest in providing planter boxes and hydroponic growing systems for their students.

Learning Ecology & Alaskan Farming (LEAF) Program – Cooking in the Garden

Calypso Farm & Ecology Center

The overall goal of the Cooking in the Garden session is to offer a fun, interactive experience involving gardening, cooking and eating fresh produce from the garden. The objectives of the Cooking in the Garden Session are:

  • To serve students between the ages of 12-18.
  • Students will have an increased knowledge of vegetable production
  • Students will have an increased knowledge of techniques for cooking and preparing vegetable dishes
  • Students will meet at least three local chefs
  • Students will emerge more likely to want to grow, cook and eat fresh vegetables

Livestock Evaluation & Student Leadership

Alaska FFA Association

To provide a unique opportunity for teachers from across the state to meet together in Fairbanks, Alaska to develop themselves professionally and give them necessary leadership training and gain new agriculture related skills and knowledge. Ultimately teachers will be able to take these skills back to their classrooms to train additional students who were not in attendance. Students will also be invited to attend this event and gain new leadership skills that they can utilize back at the chapter level. Students and teachers will also participate in livestock evaluation training clinics and leadership activities. Teachers will be provided curriculum materials that they can use for future classroom training. This update conference will provide an opportunity for teachers to build on their newly created professional organization. (AAANRE) still in its infancy with hopes to grow this organization and provide future education to students in the state of Alaska about agriculture and natural resources. Through education we can help build the economic value of agriculture in our state.

No Child Left Inside: Out of the Classroom and Into the Garden

College Gate Elementary

Second grade students received hands-on learning about growing plants and Alaska agriculture. Taking a trip to Campbell Creek Science Center they learned about earth, compost and growing plants and then learned about Alaska vegetables, growing seasons, etc. from a master gardener.