Veter­ans sought for agri­cul­ture project

The Taos News - - SPORTS - Not­for­got­te­ —Sub­mit­ted re­port

Two Taos non­prof­its have joined forces to launch a pro­gram train­ing veter­ans in agri­cul­ture.

Not For­got­ten Out­reach, Inc. and Rocky Mountain Youth Corps have launched VetCorps, a pro­gram spon­sored by Amer­iCorps that gives veter­ans and mil­i­tary fam­ily mem­bers a paid na­tional ser­vice op­por­tu­nity to grow food for their com­mu­nity.

“Through eco-ther­apy projects, VetCorps mem­bers will train and build agri­cul­tural skills in tra­di­tional and tech­no­log­i­cal en­vi­ron­ments, sup­port NFO com­mu­nity events and de­velop healthy cop­ing mech­a­nisms,” for deal­ing with post-trau­matic stress disor­der and other in­juries, ac­cord­ing to a press re­lease from the or­ga­ni­za­tion.

VetCorps is ac­cept­ing ap­pli­ca­tions for the VetCorps lead­er­ship crew. This crew of five will train el­i­gi­ble veter­ans and mil­i­tary fam­ily mem­bers in agri­cul­ture and food pro­duc­tion.

The VetCorps pro­gram was born from NFO’s Taos Veter­ans Farm­ing Project. The goal is to use farm­ing and agri­cul­ture as a pos­i­tive tran­si­tion force for veter­ans while pro­vid­ing lead­er­ship skills, agri­cul­ture knowl­edge, busi­ness plan de­vel­op­ment, and peer-to-peer men­tor­ship, ac­cord­ing to in­for­ma­tion from the or­ga­ni­za­tion.

“NFO’s VetCorps pro­vides what NFO’s par­tic­i­pants have been ask­ing for since 2013: agri­cul­tural train­ing while re­ceiv­ing a liv­ing wage stipend,” said Don Peters II, NFO’s ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor, in a state­ment. “With our es­teemed part­ner, Rocky Mountain Youth Corps, we were able to start a New Mex­ico VetCorps that we plan to du­pli­cate across the na­tion.”

RMYC’s ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Ben Thomas said the project is an op­por­tu­nity for the two or­ga­ni­za­tions to work to­gether. “We are able to harness the ex­per­tise of each or­ga­ni­za­tion to bring a pow­er­ful pro­gram off the ground, this is a win-win,” said Thomas.

The project is sup­ported by The LOR Foun­da­tion, The Con­ser­va­tion Fund, Quail Roost Foun­da­tion and the New Mex­ico Com­mis­sion for Com­mu­nity Vol­un­teerism.

For more in­for­ma­tion and po­si­tion de­scrip­tions visit NFO at

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