Applications being taken for Savings Incentive Program

Practical Farmers of Iowa is now accepting applications for the 2015-2016 Savings Incentive Program. The two-year program seeks to help beginning and aspiring farmers achieve success with their farm start-ups by pairing participants with experienced mentors; offering business plan support and the chance to save money and receive matching funds; access to learning opportunities; and connection to a network of supportive farmers.
Applications will be accepted now through October 3. To access an application online, visit www.practicalfarmers.org, or call the PFI office at 515-232-5661 to request a copy through the mail. Up to 25 beginning farmers will be admitted to this fifth round of programming. Those admitted will be part of the Class of 2016, and are selected by a committee of PFI members using a scoring system that rewards a noticeable commitment to developing applicants’ independent farming goals. Selections will be made in early November. To date, 74 beginning farmers have been or are currently active in the program.
The Savings Incentive Program works by encouraging enrollees to save up to $100 per month for two years. After 24 months and completion of all program requirements, participants will earn a dollar-for-dollar match on money saved up to $2,400, for a possible $4,800 to use toward the purchase of a farm asset.
To be eligible for the Savings Incentive Program, applicants must either be farming on their own now and have farmed for five or fewer years, or have some experience working for a farm business. Applicants must also reside in Iowa or farm in the state, and be members of Practical Farmers of Iowa. Those who are not currently members can join at www.practicalfarmers.org or by calling 515-232-5661.
 

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