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Bridge Into Agriculture: A Program for African Nova Scotians
Increasing diversity in the agricultural industry is crucial for the future resiliency of our food system, said Nova Scotia Agriculture Minister Greg Morrow of the Bridge into Agriculture program which began earlier this week on the Dalhousie Agricultural Campus.
Bridge Into Agriculture is a program hosted by the Extended Learning Department of the Dalhousie Faculty of Agriculture to help bridge the gap between African Nova Scotian communities and agriculture through the production of a small vegetable garden.
“The Department of Agriculture is excited to participate in the Bridge into Agriculture training project to help increase food growing skills in the African Nova Scotian community and to inspire community members to consider agricultural careers and entrepreneurship,” he added.
This new, 22-week online course is a partnership between African Nova Scotian Affairs, the Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture, the Nova Scotia Department of Agriculture and Dalhousie University Extended Learning and students will receive a certificate upon completion.
“We are very excited about this program and were met with outstanding community interest,” said Tracy Kittilsen, manager, Extended Learning. “Learners will explore job opportunities and agricultural careers including entrepreneurship opportunities In Nova Scotia.”
Learners will receive materials, seeds, and transplants to plant a backyard vegetable garden and apply the knowledge learned throughout the course including soil health, garden preparation, maintenance and harvesting.
“Our hope with Bridge into Agriculture, is that it will not only provide participants with training and education on food production, but also help improve food security in our communities,” said Carolyn Van Den Heuvel, Executive Director of the Nova Scotia Federation of Agriculture. “We hope this program will spark interest in entrepreneurship and encourage folks to take a look at all of the career possibilities in agriculture.”
The course highlights the history of African Nova Scotians and their rightful connection to agriculture. Through readings from Farming While Black by Leah Penniman and reflective discussions, learners will explore their own connection to agriculture and the land.
“African Nova Scotian Affairs is proud to be a supporter and partner in the Dalhousie Bridge Into Agriculture: A Program for African Nova Scotians,” said Dwayne Provo, Associate Deputy Minister, African Nova Scotian Affairs. “This program will provide students with better insight into the agriculture industry. Important initiatives like this one help open doors and increase African Nova Scotian representation across the sectors of our provincial economy.”
The program will help to build a community of like-minded individuals and will include profiles of successful African Nova Scotians in agriculture along with guest speakers and farm tours.
For more information on the course please contact Extended Learning at 1 902 893 6666
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