The Be Well Farming Retreat Experience for Farmers will be held both virtually and in person in December 2021. Click here for information about the virtual event.
How do we feed and care for ourselves while we feed others? What types of practices and connections support us to be our best selves in the challenging work of managing a farm business? The Be Well Farming Project invites you to join us this December for a farmer-centered retreat experience where we’ll consider how we cultivate wellbeing for ourselves and for those we work alongside on the farm.
Our goal is to create a welcoming space for participants to explore new ways to improve personal and farm health and overall wellbeing. Being in community with other producers can foster deeper social connections among farmer participants and invite our collective wisdom in the room to offer practical strategies to advance wellbeing. Participants will use the space together to enliven their personal and professional commitment to wellbeing, equity, and social connection.
December 10-12, 2021 at the Friendly Crossways Retreat Center in Harvard, Massachusetts.
Retreat Programming will consist of a series of full-group and small-group conversations, space for personal reflection, communal meals, and physical activities like nature walks, yoga and meditation. The retreat will be facilitated by the Be Well Farming team and is intended for commercial farmers and farm employees who have at least three years of experience managing or working on a crew on all types of operations in the Northeast. A limited number of spaces for agricultural service providers are available.
The program begins at 4 pm on Friday, December 10th and concludes on Sunday, December 12th at 3:30 pm (final schedule still in development). All meals and snacks will be provided and dietary restrictions can be accommodated.
In both the online and in-person sessions, participants will be invited into a supportive environment, where there is a sense of comfort, community and connection that fosters authentic dialog and self-reflection. Potential participants are asked to consider the following commitments:
Participants are asked to be available to attend and engaged in all three days of the in-person retreat and during each of the sessions of the online program. Attendees should come prepared to be fully present to take full advantage of this opportunity.
In-person participants are expected to follow the required health and safety protocols throughout the retreat
COVID-19/Delta Safety Considerations: All in-person participants will be required to upload proof of completion of a COVID vaccination. Masks will be required indoors at the retreat facility in accordance to MA health requirements. Accommodations will include single rooms with access to shared bathroom facilities. In the event that the in-person retreat is not possible, both sessions will be offered online.
A participation fee of $50 is requested for both the online and in-person retreats. The remainder of registration (a value of $500/person for in-person) is supported by a grant from Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education. Need-based scholarships (as funding allows) will be available to participants of both retreats to support full participation. Possible expenses for scholarship applications could include child care, work release, or supplementary staffing. Indicate this need on the application form.
Who is the retreat for?
We encourage applications from:
- Commercial producers and farm employees who have at least three years of management experience on all types of operations in the Northeast.
- Producers representing diverse backgrounds, identities, and farm enterprises.
- Producers who identify as community leaders and are committed to continuous learning, change-making, and self-reflection in order to improve health and well-being for themselves and their broader farm team.
- Those who want to learn more about specific strategies to improve health, well-being, and fairness and equity on the farm.
- Those who are committed to carrying the work forward and applying what they have learned to take future action (either personally, within the farm business, and/or in the broader agricultural community).
How to apply
Please complete the application form. It may take approximately 15 minutes to complete. Deadline to apply is October 25, 2021. Applications will be reviewed and decisions on acceptance to the retreat series will be communicated by November 1, 2021 at which time we will provide a payment link to reserve and confirm your space.
If you have further questions about the retreat or the Be Well Farming Project, please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org.