Ad-Express and Daily Iowegian, Centerville, IA

October 16, 2012

South-central Iowa women farmland owners invited to free conservation workshop Oct. 31 at Rathbun Fish Hatchery

Daily Iowegian

AMES — Women who own or manage farmland in south-central Iowa are invited to participate in a free conservation discussion on Wednesday, Oct. 31, at the Rathbun Fish Hatchery, 15053 Hatchery Place, Moravia. The program, sponsored by Women, Food and Agriculture Network, is called Women Caring for the Land.

The meeting will begin with registration at 8:30 a.m. and end by 2 p.m. Lunch will be provided. Space is limited to 25 participants. RSVP to Diana Williams, Monroe SWCD,, (641) 932-5144, ext. 109, by 4 p.m. Monday, Oct. 29.

Nearly half the farmland in Iowa is currently owned or co-owned by women. WFAN has been working with women landowners for more than a decade, providing opportunities for peer-to-peer, women-only discussions about conservation and other farm management topics.

This meeting is one of five to be held in Iowa this fall for a project being coordinated by Angie Carter, a graduate student in sustainable agriculture and rural sociology at Iowa State University and a board member of WFAN. The project is called “Navigating the Waters,” and aims to develop a guide for agency and nonprofit staff serving women landowners on wetlands monitoring and development. If you have an interest in learning more about how to identify, establish, or protect wetlands on your property, please plan to attend. Your participation will help agencies work better with women landowners on conservation outreach. You do not have to have a wetland on your property right now to attend.

A woman landowner from Cherokee who attended a WCL meeting said, "If I'd have known it would be so interesting, I would've brought a lot of friends along."  Another woman from Chariton said, “Thank you for explaining things in a way I could understand.”

This session of Women Caring for the LandSM is sponsored by Women, Food and Agriculture Network in partnership with the Natural Resources Conservation Service and USDA Farm Service Agency, and is funded by a grant from the Environmental Protection Agency.

The meeting will be in the conference room at the hatchery. For more detailed directions, call Elaine at the Hatchery, (641) 647-2406.