- Education and Training: demonstration, display, farmer to farmer, mentoring, networking, workshop, youth education, technical assistance
- Energy: energy conservation/efficiency
- Farm Business Management: whole farm planning, marketing management, e-commerce, agritourism
- Sustainable Communities: community planning, leadership development, local and regional food systems, new business opportunities, partnerships, public participation, public policy, urban/rural integration, community services, employment opportunities, social capital, social networks, social psychological indicators, sustainability measures
The Live Green and Prosper Community Education and Outreach Initiative began in September 2009. The initiative has allowed WCTE to become a trusted partner in the agricultural community by creating links between community organizations directly involved in sustainable agriculture, community leaders, government agencies, and local farmers. During the second phase of the initiative, it was our goal to use the partnerships we have formed as a platform to further strengthen the connections we’ve made. With the grant received from SARE, WCTE was able to continue to be an active resource working to advance economic sustainability for family farmers by teaching regional agriculture producers about digital media and free public media resources as well as teaching a new generation of young people to support the local food movement through our on air broadcast of Live Green Tennessee; our distribution of the Local Table magazine as a print media resource; and by our community outreach efforts.
WCTE has just completed the second phase of a five year initiative with the purpose of working with community partners to expand local markets, raise consumer awareness, and advance economic sustainability for agriculture industries thusly impacting communities in rural Tennessee.
The focus of this project was to utilize WCTE’s produced series Live Green Tennessee and its subsidiary website, Facebook, You Tube, and print media resources to do direct marketing of agriculture commodities and green/renewable technology throughout the State of Tennessee. Furthermore the project was designed to teach local farmers how to use online digital media and social media in marketing.
Broadcast & Print Media:
WCTE worked with agricultural related organizations (Tennessee Department of Agriculture: Pick Tennessee Products, Tennessee Agriculture Enhancement Program, UT Extension, Tennessee Farm Fresh, and Tennessee Technological University’s College of Agriculture) to produce stories showcasing local producers and themes associated with agriculture for the program, Live Green Tennessee, produced by WCTE and broadcast free throughout Middle Tennessee and Southern Kentucky in digital transmission via antenna, cable and satellite network providers reaching WCTE’s broadcast audience of 1.3 million people. WCTE worked with Lisa Shively publisher of the magazine Local Table: a guide to food and farming in Middle Tennessee as a print media resource. WCTE utilized this resource for promotion of local agriculture and distributed the magazines free during all education and outreach events. Furthermore, WCTE utilized our own program guide Close Up for the same purpose and also distributed the magazines free during all education and outreach events.
Online Digital Media:
WCTE developed the initiative as a multi media campaign utilizing local farmers to produce “Life as a Farmer” stories about agriculture in rural Middle Tennessee. WCTE worked with Tennessee Technological University’s Business Media Center, USDA Rural Development and Lisa Shively Publisher of Local Table magazine in the establishment of a two courses to teach local agricultural producers how to utilize digital/social media in advertising and marketing.
“Life as a Farmer”
By working with Lisa Shively, producer of the Local Table, WCTE selected six farmers to be the pilot group of farmers who took the first digital media class. Each farmer was given a flip video camcorder and was provided with free training courses that taught the use of the camcorder and the online You Tube Video Editor.
“Digital Media for Farmers”
Building on the work WCTE did with the “Life as Farmer” group we were able to create a second workshop for farmers that focused on the study and practice of how to use social media for marketing. Students learned introductory skills using Facebook as a marketing tool.
- Create stronger links between producers, key consumers and resources on a local level through an effective network of community partners mobilized through WCTE.
Create innovative content and publish it through digital media platforms (website, Facebook, You Tube, and broadcast/print media outreach to make agriculture visible within the community.
Be an active educational resource working to advance economic sustainability for agricultural producers by teaching them about digital media and how to utilize digital media in marketing and advertising.
Grow both the initiative and the understanding of sustainable agriculture by recruiting a new generation of local foods enthusiasts.