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AFT’s Brighter Future Fund provides direct support to farmers – AGDAILY

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For the fourth year, American Farmland Trust is opening the Brighter Future Fund to help farmers and ranchers across the U.S. improve farm viability, access, transfer, permanently protect farmland, or adopt regenerative agricultural practices.
AFT’s Brighter Future Fund provides grants of up to $10,000 per project. A project may involve one or more individual farmers or farm families, and projects will be awarded on a one-per-farm basis.   
The last day to submit applications is July 15. To apply, farmers should submit a completed electronic Brighter Future Fund application to AFT.
“Farmers and ranchers work hard to provide for their communities, their families, and their land.  But they sometimes need our help — the Brighter Future Fund can provide that help,” said Nathan L’Etoile, AFT’s Managing Director of Farm Viability. “The Brighter Future Fund invests in the viability of America’s farms and ranches, helping to make them resilient and viable.”  
The Brighter Future Fund was launched in 2020 to help farmers launch, grow, and sustain farms despite forces impacting the food and agricultural system, including the COVID-19 pandemic, changing markets, severe weather, and climate change.
Tillamook County Creamery Association helped launch the fund in 2020 and has underwritten the program ever since.  Continued support of the 2023 grant round is made possible by Tractor Supply, which donated $850,000 to the program to celebrate the company’s 85th anniversary. The donation will provide 85 grants of $10,000 each.   
The impacts of Brighter Future grants ripple beyond individual awardees. Microgrants help drive new solutions for resolving key challenges facing our society by:   
Scaling up the adoption of regenerative farming practices and increasing the resilience of farms to climate change
Strengthening local food systems to be more resilient to disruptions caused by global events as well as providing equitable access to healthy food
Creating more significant equity in opportunities for historically underserved farmers
Ensuring the availability of sufficient clean water and habitat for threatened wildlife
“As a farmer-owned cooperative, TCCA wanted to focus our impact where it makes a tangible difference — on the farm,” said Jocelyn Bridson, TCCA Director of Environment and Community Impact. “Over the last three years, we have proudly sponsored American Farmland Trust’s programs to protect farmland and support farmers across the U.S. Our underwriting of the Brighter Future Fund ensures that all donations will go straight to farmers in need to make critical advances to their businesses, such as improving irrigation or accessing new markets. We’re looking forward to seeing the next crop of BFF grantees!” 
Additional supporters of the 2023 fund include Domino’s Pizza, Giant Food, iHeart Radio, and members of American Farmland Trust.     
Applications will be reviewed and awarded in the order the applications they are received based on eligibility.  
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