CORTLAND, NEW YORKCortland County SWCD announced it was awarded an urban agriculture conservation grant through a partnership with the National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to boost technical capacity nationwide. While our assistance has always been available to any county resident, promoting agricultural conservation in an urban setting is an important and exciting new initiative for SWCD.

Chairman of the Board, Eugene Wright states “This new project will help us to create resources that will enhance our program and services while establishing partnerships that will sustain our involvement in this new area of conservation opportunity.”

Workshops on a variety of urban agriculture and conservation topics will be held throughout the year.  SWCD will also be assisting the Town and Country Garden Club with rehabilitation of the herb garden at Dwyer Park and the Youth Bureau with its raised beds.  In partnership with Main Street Farms, SWCD will be promoting local foods and urban agriculture by organizing gleaning events at Main Street Farms throughout the summer and fall, providing local fresh food to Loaves and Fishes, the Youth Bureau, and others.

Cortland County SWCD was one of 20 conservation districts across 14 states to receive funding. NACD and NRCS established the Urban Agriculture Conservation Grant Initiative in 2016 to help conservation districts and their partners provide much-needed technical assistance for agricultural conservation in developed or predominantly developing areas.