Golden Age Farming began as a University Extension class for farm families 55+ years of age in Missouri in 2005. The class was designed by University Extension based upon topics that would help farmers pass on the farm to the next generation or liquidate the farm at retirement. The goal of Golden Age Farming is to empower farm families to plan for their future, using the compiled class manual, a network of class participants and appropriate professionals.
During 2004-05, an instructor manual was developed by University Extension personnel. The manual includes multiple risk management areas, while focusing on estate planning, retirement issues, succession of the farm and adaptations on the farm. Also, it includes instructor notes, resources, handouts, sample exercises, evaluation pieces and suggested ideas. The manual was developed to be shared and to allow customization to local agriculture. Additional instructors were trained in Missouri this past year.
Golden Age Farming was designed to be taught in four sessions, with a variety of teaching methods. The manuals for both instructors and students have been placed on the Golden Age Farming website, so that others have easy access to materials. Also, electronic versions allow for easy updates/additions to the manual.
The program, Golden Age Farming has appealed to audiences of varying ages. Initially, the target was 55+ years of age, but enrollments indicated it was growing in popularity with younger farm families too. The classes were taught by University Extension educators.
|2008 National Women in Agriculture Educators Conference