Bering Strait Ag Leaders' Summit

Project Overview

WPDP24-023
Project Type: Professional Development Program
Funds awarded in 2024: $99,875.00
Projected End Date: 03/31/2027
Grant Recipient: Rural Alaska Community Action Program
Region: Western
State: Alaska
Principal Investigator:
Iva Karoly-Lister
Rural Alaska Community Action Program
Co-Investigators:
Emily Becker
Rural Alaska Community Action Program, Inc.

Commodities

No commodities identified

Practices

No practices identified

Proposal abstract:

Rural Alaska Community Action
Program’s Growing
Rural Opportunities for
Wellness (GROW)
proposes the
Bering Strait Ag Leader’s
Summit
project. This project will host
1
2-15 ag professional
leaders
from
different communities in the
Bering Strait region of Alaska. The p
articipants
will
convene
annually to learn
about sustainable agriculture practices.
Topics will include building healthy
soil, season extension, instruction on hosting seed starting
workshops in rural communities, and
local plant knowledge about regional
gardening practices.
The project will use culturally and
bio-regionally relevant resources
to disseminate information on sustainable
agriculture practices. The program will collect feedback from
participants after workshops to refine and
devel
op subsequent meetings. Ag professionals from
all corners of the
Bering Strait region will meet, connect, and become long-term
resources for one another to share information on agricultural
practices.
Participants will be empowered
with the skill
s, knowledge and support to pass along
knowledge of sustainable agriculture to other community
members.
This project will
effec
tively
create a network
of ag leaders,
spread sustainable agriculture
practices, and stimulate food security and
employment
in the
region
.

Project objectives from proposal:

The Bering Strait Ag Leaders Summit
will promote sustainable, long-term
local agricultural education in the Bering Strait region. Through
the workshops, Bering Strait community ag leaders will learn and
implement principles and practices of sustainable agriculture,
including the use of local resources for soil creation,
harnessing the waste stream for soil amendments, and simple
technologies for warming soil and extending the growing season.
Participating ag professionals will be empowered with the skills,
knowledge and support to pass along knowledge of sustainable
agriculture practices to other community members. In-person
meetings will create a space for the exchange of innovation and
ideas and build a community of ag professionals. Knowledge will
be passed on by community events, social connection, and
supplemental educational materials produced by this project.
Bering Strait ag leaders will be supported in securing funding
for their community gardens. Ideally,
m
ultiple new part-time
gardening jobs will be created in the Bering Strait region,
boosting employment in those areas.
Participants will meet in person, exchange ideas and
information, and maintain connections, effectively building a
regional network of ag professionals.


 

The project aims to train around 12-15
agricultural leaders in soil creation, composting, and basic
season extension each year. Participants will return to their
communities and host events on sustainable gardening topics
including planting, soil development and care. Currently, the 15
villages in the Bering Strait region have no dedicated
Cooperative Extension Agent. This project will begin to fill that
gap in technical service by training a network of agricultural
professionals.
 

Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.