by: Douglas Fritz
CHARLESTON, WV (WVNS) — First responders who work in agriculture or want to get into the business will now have some help from the West Virginia Department of Agriculture (WVDA). The former “Veterans to Agriculture” program from the WVDA is now the “West Virginia Veterans and Heroes to Agriculture” program.
A bill signed into law from the 2020 legislative session expanded the project. Now, in addition to veterans, it includes emergency response personnel.
“We have seen a lot of success from our Veterans to Agriculture program since its inception in 2014. With those successes, we felt we needed to expand the reach of that program to additional groups, which required legislation and a name change,” said Commissioner of Agriculture Kent Leonhardt. “I am excited to see what can be accomplished under this enhanced program.”
The Veterans and Warriors to Agriculture program was created in 2014 but did not receive funding from the state until 2018. It has more than 300 members, created a Veterans Education Series, partnered with Higher Education Institutions for an agricultural training/behavioral healthcare service program and offers scholarship opportunities to members.
For more information on the program and how to become a member, you can call (304) 558-2210. Details are also available by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.