For decades, the USDA-Outreach and Assistance for Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers Program (also known as the Section 2501 Program) has served as the only farm bill program dedicated to addressing the specific needs of minority farmers and was recently expanded to also serve military veterans. The 2501 Program helps institutions and nonprofits provide critical resources, outreach, and technical assistance to serve these historically underserved producers.
The Program is intended to extend Nalwoodi Denzhone Community effort of providing community revitalization and educational services and on-going assistance to socially disadvantaged, veteran, and beginning farmers and ranchers in San Carlos Apache Nation, surrounding rural communities, and other Federally Recognized American Indian Tribes in Arizona. The Program will take holistic approaches to address all five priority areas identified by USDA. It will assist USDA’s commitments to Tribal organizations with outreach and public education, business development and planning, grant writing, and sustainable farming and renewable energy technologies demonstration. In addition, the Program will particularly focus on promoting sustainable agriculture, local food, water education, and renewable energy. Innovative and effective outreach and technical assistance approach will be used to foster collaboration among USDA agencies, Native American Tribal entities, and the socially disadvantaged, veteran, and beginning farmers and ranchers in the communities.
The Overarching Goal of the Program is to assist SDA, veteran, and beginning producers in owning and operating successful agribusinesses, while increasing their participation in USDA programs and services.