The Oklahoma Association of Conservation Districts (OACD) and the Oklahoma Black Historical Research Project (OBHRPI) are partnering to increase participation of USDA programs in agriculture and conservation among socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers (SDA).
CARE Champion: Pershon Davis
Pershon Davis has been involved in agriculture his entire life, but started his own cow/calf operation in 2009 after retiring from the U.S. Army. Born to a farming family, he says his family's involvement in agriculture was primarily for personal consumption.
Pershon has utilized the FSA ownership and operating loan programs, allowing him to increase his operation from 160 to 260 acres. He has also participated in the EQIP program, helping him add a water well on his land.
"There are a lot of people who just don't have the startup income, but have the experience," he says. "If more people knew about the opportunities available, maybe more people would be involved in agriculture."
CARE Project Goals
- Provide information, training, funding opportunities and technical assistance to socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers producers.
- Build relationships between socially disadvantaged producers, USDA and conservation districts at the local, state, regional and national levels.
- Cultivating leadership of socially disadvantaged producers to increase their knowledge of and participation in USDA programs.
- Provide educational information and training opportunities to socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers in larger geographic areas across Oklahoma.
- Educate traditional farmers, ranchers and conservation district leaders and employees about the unique barriers that socially disadvantaged farmers/ranchers face.
CARE Project Focus Areas
The project will focus on six counties with a substantial population of African American/Black and Native American current/prospective farmers and ranchers.
For more information, contact Sarah Blaney at 517-763-8609.