Veterans' Ecological Trades Collective, 501c3
Studies in Conservation, Agriculture, Forestry and Ecology
Nick Lorax, USMC, presents on natural access and boundary control for the 2012 VETS_CAFE PDC.
2021 VETERANS' SUMMER CAMP & PERMACULTURE DESIGN COURSE (PDC)
This Two Week Campout is a deep dive in to ecological literacy. This hands on training will offer skills development and build community.
Two Week Intensive Course
August 14-29, 2021.
WHAT TO EXPECT?
Our A Two Week Camp Out is held on a private, undeveloped oak savanna nested between 60ac of prairie and 60ac of forest. You'll spend your time with about a dozen other veterans. Meals will be provided from onsite and local Ag operation. Our daily deep dives into ecosystems management will take place in nature, with content focused largely on conservation. Partners such as Audubon, Conservation Northwest, local farmers, and forestry professionals will visit giving depth to the topic of the day. Field trips to local farms and conservation sites will provide demonstrations, and opportunity for development, of skills. Evening campfire sessions will offer a chance to connect deeply and reflect on the days course material. The Camp will conclude with a party, potentially roasting a whole pig grown on site for veterans guests coming from across the region - as Covid phases allow.
Valued at $1,250 THIS PROGRAM IS FREE TO VETERANS THANKS TO GRANTS FROM THE WDVA AND USDA
Sponsored allies (Significant Others, Immediate Family Members, Business Partners and Caretakers) may also join the certification course for a fee of $500 and 30 hours of worktrade, mostly working with our kitchen and trail crew.
WHY TAKE THE COURSE?
Perhaps you simply want a chance to do something out of the ordinary and in nature. Perhaps you want a chance to connect deeply with other veterans. You may be considering a career in conservation, agriculture, forestry, or ecological design. There are many good reasons.
For those who want to develop a career in the field, VETC has some next level opportunities. Graduates of the PDC who develop a business plan with our our partners such as Enterprise for Equity and/or the Northwest Agriculture Business Center will be able to submit that plan for placing their business among the Stewarding Members of our 120ac #VetsFarm. Our Veterans Business Incubator is unique: instead of building a business here and being asked to move just as your business becomes viable, Stewards will be able to develop a long term (25+year) lease, and in some cases even buy the land they work- at rates substantially below the market value. We will also talk about that during the course.
Course facilitators and other details will posted Prior to June 21.
Please Follow the instructions on the Application at this link
and we will send registration forms as they become available.
Timber, Non-Timber Products, Conservation,
Education, and Recreation
Partnering with WSU Extension Small Forestry, the Washington state Chapter of the Farmer Veteran Coalition, USDA/NRCS, Stihl Corp, and other qualified organizations, VETC is arranging our first foray into the woods. If you are a veteran land owner with an warm and well seasoned passion or a kindling interest, this will be a chance for you to meet and inquire and learn with some of the regions best. This series will be include casual walkabouts in local timber stands owned by veterans, each with a different management priority. From VETC's Educational and Recreational holdings to Designated Forestry Lands held by the Loucks Family, to Conservation holdings and horse trails Held by the Newman Family, we will explore different priorities and management practices through 2-4 hour casual site walk through with local foresters and industry pros. We well also be having a chainsaw maintenance training day with Professionals from Stihl Corporation. Don't worry if your equipment isn't Stihl; two stroke power-heads is the focus, whether chainsaws, weedwhackers, or whatever!
Our first walk through is June 5 at the VETC farm. Following dates are June 19, July 24, August 9 and September 18th.
Registration will be posted in April with more details TBA!
Please follow the instructions on the Application at this link
and we will send registration forms as they become available.
Internships do not require membership in VETC; they are offered in conjunction with Partners and Institutions of Higher Learning for the benefit of veterans and the land we live on. As internships come on line they will be announced by partners and included in updates to our Social Media. If you are a College student interested in pursuing a career in one of the following fields, please follow the instructions linked below.
From a focus on individual species to holistic habitat conservation and management, working with partners such as Conservation Northwest and the Center For Natural Lands Management, we offer internships and internship support ranging from Wildlife and Game Tracking to Garry Oak Savanna and Prairie restoration., as well as wetlands management and regenerative agriculture and silviculture. In fact, no internship at VETC is complete without a conservation approach- all of the following internship offerings also include conservation as a core value.
Interested in staring a farm? Committed to "beyond organic" practices? Our Farm internships provide space to learn and grow. With Food Bank production and small scale livestock management as core skill building activities, you can work through the basics and move into deep knowledge of integrated practices such as cover cropping, no-till, and managed intensive grazing practices, which will, when you are ready, provide a firm ground for the launch of your production career.
Our 60ac+ forest provides an ample lab for your skills improvement. Farms across the region have shelter belts, woodlots, windrows, and riparian zones that require management. Build the skills necessary to maintain healthy productive stands and most importantly, go home and sleep in your own bed. Forestry is one of the handful of professions that is more dangerous than being n the armed forces. Learn to use the tools safely and effectively so you can rest assured that your work is done well and safely.
In the words of a VETS_CAFE PDC Graduate:
"The biggest takeaway for me was a newfound understanding and enthusiasm for the importance of a secure food systems. The lessons were simple, practical, and applicable. Together, we built a garden that demonstrated the principles that we were taught, which in turn encouraged our creativity- a truly revolutionary action. The experience has solidified my belief that living in and with nature is the secret to happiness."
WRAY HARRIS, Army, OIF, VETS_CAFE 2012 Graduate, and Founding member of the Central Oregon Veterans' Ranch.
ECOLOGICAL DESIGN INTERNSHIPS
Did you know that one acre of grain can produce enough fiber to build a 2000sf home in one year, about 1/20 of what it takes for a forest acre to make enough wood to do the same? Extra Points: Strawbale is are also insulative, and stick frame isn't. Whether you are interested in Solar Power, the energy solution that rises every day, or you are down to earth and want to build homes of earth, our Ecological Design Internships meet the standard of the axiom, "There is no reason to fear slowing down. We have the technology"
Please follow the instructions on the Application at this link and we will send
a registration form as they become available.