NCR-SARE's 2021 Youth Educator Grants

May 12, 2021
In Dayton, Ohio, The Foodbank, Inc. has distributed more than 4 million pounds of food since the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak. With support from an NCR-SARE Youth Educator grant, they also help area youth learn more about sustainable growing, local food systems, and food insecurity. Photo courtesy of Lee Lauren (Alder) Truesdale.

Youth Educator Resources

Did you know that SARE has a collection of resources, programs, curricula, and learning modules that can be used for youth educational programming and planning?

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NCR-SARE is pleased to announce the projects recommended for funding for the Youth Educator competitive grant program. For the 2021 Youth Educator Grant Program, NCR-SARE awarded more than $60,000 to 16 projects. The competitive Youth Educator Grant Program supports educators who seek to provide programming on sustainable agriculture for youth. Those selected to receive funding included (in order alphabetically, by state):

  • Heather Tarczan with Urban Autism Solutions in Chicago, Illinois was awarded $3,905 for the project, “Growing Solutions Farm.”
  • Victoria Beaty with Growing Places Indy in Indianapolis, Indiana was awarded $4,000 for the project, “Growing Places Indy ‘Grow Getters’ Program.”
  • Tim Hallman with the YMCA of Greater Fort Wayne in Fort Wayne, Indiana was awarded $4,000 for the project, “Seeds Of Change Project.”
  • Jennifer Thomas with KC Farm School at Gibbs Road in Kansas City, Kansas was awarded $4,000 for the project, “Lessons To Go: a Supplement to On-Farm, Hands-On Activities.”
  • Jessica Albertsen with the Douglas Soil and Water Conservation District in Alexandria, Minnesota was awarded $4,000 for the project, “Douglas County Kids Groundwater Festival and Multi County Outreach.”
  • Cole Grotting with the University of Minnesota Duluth (UMD) Land Lab in Duluth, Minnesota was awarded $3,550 for the project, “Sustainable Agriculture and Healthy Lives Day.”
  • Rick Hall with Northern Plains Sustainable Agriculture Society (NPSAS) in Moorhead, Minnesota was awarded $4,000 for the project, “Multicultural FOOD and ECOLOGY Youth Initiative.”
  • Lakisha Witter with Live Organically in Oak Grove, Minnesota was awarded $4,000 for the project, “Grow Organically Education Program.”
  • Dwayne Morrison with Jackson County Extension Council in Blue Springs, Missouri was awarded $3,994 for the project, “Engaging Youth in Sustainable Agriculture through Hands-On Experiences.”
  • Rebecca Brown with Franklinton Farms in Columbus, Ohio was awarded $4,000 for the project, “Sprout it Out Loud! Urban Farmer Apprenticeship (Sprout).”
  • Sue Burleson with Terra Cotta B&B and Burleson Farms in Gallipolis, Ohio was awarded $3,964 for the project, “Where Does your Food Come From? A Farm-to-table Project.”
  • Molly Gassaway with Community Food Initiatives in Athens, Ohio was awarded $3,984 for the project, “Sprouts School Garden Programming: Planting the Seeds of Sustainable Agriculture at an Early Age.”
  • Weston Lombard with Solid Ground Farm in Millfield, Ohio was awarded $3,975 for the project, “Sustainable Agriculture Business Development for Youth: A Comprehensive Online Video Tutorial.”
  • Navreet Kaur Mahal with South Dakota State University in Brookings, South Dakota was awarded $4,000 for the project, “Farm-to-Fork: Educating Youth in Sustainable Agriculture for Healthy Food and a Healthy Environment.”
  • Zachary Markhardt with Green Bay East High School in Green Bay, Wisconsin was awarded $1,478 for the project, “Hydroponic & Aquaponic Pergola: Classroom Inquiry Meets Local Food Needs.”
  • Kyle Richmond with Friends of Silverwood Park in Edgerton, Wisconsin was awarded $4,000 for the project, “Silverwood Park's Sustainable Agriculture Summer School.” 

Read descriptions of these projects online at
The focus for each of the NCR-SARE grant programs is on research and education. Funding considerations are based on how well the applicant presents the problem being addressed, the project's relevance to sustainable agriculture in the 12-state North Central region, and how well it aligns with NCR-SARE's goals, among other factors specific to each grant program.

NCR-SARE’s Administrative Council (AC) members decide which projects will receive SARE funds. The AC includes a diverse mix of agricultural stakeholders in the region. Council members hail from regional farms and ranches, the Cooperative Extension Service, universities, federal agencies, and nonprofits. 

Since 1988, the SARE program has helped advance farming systems that are profitable, environmentally sound and good for communities through a nationwide research and education grants program. The program, part of USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture, funds projects and conducts outreach designed to improve agricultural systems.

Related Locations: North Central