Spend any amount of time talking to farmers, and you’re sure to hear some inspiring stories: people working with their hands… people working with nature… people working for better communities. And while growing food is often something that’s passed down from generation to generation, some of the best stories come from men and women for whom farming is a second career.
And there’s a growing legion of farmers who are putting down roots and feeding this country… after defending it in uniform.
If you are a veteran or know someone who is, you know deployment to hostile territory can be challenging and frightening at the very least. The physical and psychological details of such duty for those veterans coming home can be equally if not more traumatic.
For many, one of the biggest challenges upon return to the states is that you’re not the same person. From physical limitations to emotional scars, re-entering the workforce and life as it used to be, is not the same. And it’s those changes that often make it difficult for those seeking employment, to find meaningful work and a purpose in life.
Fortunately, there are many organizations that have formed in recent years to address these challenges. Many exist specifically to help returning veterans find that purpose and renewed sense of self-worth, and validation.
One such organization is the Farmer Veteran Coalition (FVC). In this episode, we feature them and its founder, Michael O’Gorman in a firsthand account of how and why it was formed. From the early days and endless miles, with Michael driving to see how the FVC could assist a returning veteran to
enter a career in agriculture or farming, to where they are today, and the literally thousands of veterans they’ve helped to find new life in a meaningful career in farming.
We also feature the touching and impactful stories of three beneficiaries of FVC’s efforts. Their stories are just the tip of the iceberg of so many more like them.
On a personal note, our entire team here at Growing a Greener World was deeply touched by the work of the FVC, its founder and staff, and especially those veterans we had the honor and pleasure of working with as we produced this episode. Our lives were touched in an indelible way. We are grateful to everyone involved in allowing us to tell their stories.
And special thanks to all our veterans, past, present, and future. Words cannot adequately express our gratitude for your service. We are especially thankful to those of you who are finding new opportunities to feed our country, after serving it in uniform indeed.
Helpful links related to this episode:
Veterans Farm (blueberry farm mentioned in this episode)
Our episode 318 on Veteran Farmers (featuring Adam Burke mentioned in this episode 807)