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Farm Center announces Future Fields program
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MADISON - Future Fields, a program to help farmers find off-farm employment to replace or supplement farm income, is open for enrollment in southwestern Wisconsin, the Wisconsin Farm Center has announced.

The program brings employment related services to farmers, meeting them one-on-one in their homes to determine their needs. Schools, libraries, colleges and job centers collaborate to offer training and computers for use in the job search. Participants will get help with job seeking skills, resume writing, additional work skills and career exploration.

The program is set to go statewide by this summer, and is initially available in the following counties: Columbia, Dane, Dodge, Grant, Green, Iowa, Jefferson Lafayette, Marquette, Richland, Rock, and Sauk.

Farmers interested in the Future Fields Program should contact Program Coordinator Mike Exum at (800) 942-2474.

A staff member (Jennifer Hasburgh, Chris Eickhoff, Tom Sawyer or Mike Exum) will arrange a time to visit at the farmer's home to discuss their off-farm employment needs, set goals and develop an action plan. Future Fields staff will continue working with the farmer, helping them connect with available resources as they implement their off-farm employment plan.

Future Fields is funded through a Workforce Innovation in Regional Economic Development (WIRED) grant. It is a collaborative effort of the Southwest Wisconsin Workforce Development Board, Workforce Development Board of South Central Wisconsin, The WIRED Initiative and the Wisconsin Farm Center of the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection. WIRED is supported by funding from the U.S. Department of Labor via the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development.