Western SARE: Professional Development Program Grants

Western SARE

Grant amount: Up to US $75,000

Anticipated deadline: Nov 1, 2018 11:00am PDT

Applicant type: Individuals Organizations

Funding uses: Conference, Education / Outreach

Location of project: Micronesia, Federated States Of; Alaska; American Samoa; Arizona; California Expand all

Location of residency: Micronesia, Federated States Of; Alaska; American Samoa; Arizona; California Expand all

View website    Save Need help writing this grant?


Professional Development Program (PDP) Grants are aimed at helping Cooperative Extension Service, Natural Resources Conservation Service and other agricultural professionals in the Western Region increase their understanding and proficiency in sustainable agriculture. SARE is a USDA competitive grants program that supports agricultural systems that are economically viable, environmentally sound and socially responsible.

Professional Development Program Grants are designed to educate agricultural professionals about sustainable agriculture so that they, in turn, can help educate and train farmers and ranchers. Funded PDP grants must help achieve this long-term outcome:

Cooperative Extension, Natural Resource Conservation Service and other agricultural professionals are conversant in sustainable agriculture principles and systems.They have ready access to resources that can help producers make informed decisions about adopting sustainable approaches with greater certainty and less risk.

Projects must improve the ability of agricultural professionals to conduct educational programs and activities in sustainable agriculture principles and systems and to respond to inquiries on the subject from farmers, ranchers and the public. 

Approaches can include:

  • Workshops
  • Conferences
  • Development of materials or curricula
  • Demonstrations
  • Web-based courses
  • Tours

Subject matter can include any sustainable agriculture endeavor, including animal agriculture, agronomic or horticultural crop production or the effects of sustainable practices on quality of life for producers or rural communities. Projects with a scope beyond a single state or area are encouraged.  

Grants can run for up to three years, with the final year to be focused on project evaluation. 

Program Goals for Projects Funded by Western SARE

  • Promote good stewardship of the nation’s natural resources by providing site-specific, regional and profitable sustainable farming and ranching methods that strengthen agricultural competitiveness; satisfy human food and fiber needs, maintain and enhance the quality and productivity of soil; conserve soil, water, energy, natural resources and fish and wildlife habitat; and maintain and improve the quality of surface and ground water.
  • Enhance the quality of life of farmers and ranchers and ensure the viability of rural communities, for example, by increasing income and employment, especially profitable self-employment and innovative marketing opportunities in agricultural and rural communities.
  • Protect the health and safety of those involved in food and farm systems by reducing, where feasible and practical, the use of toxic materials in agricultural production, and by optimizing on-farm resources and integrating, where appropriate, biological cycles and controls.
  • Promote crop, livestock and enterprise diversification.
  • Examine the regional, economic, social and environmental implications of adopting sustainable agriculture practices and systems.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • PDP projects should:
    • Increase agricultural professionals’ sustainable agriculture knowledge, skills and action.
    • Have outreach plans that demonstrate how the project will effectively deliver this knowledge. 


  • Projects using multiple techniques or methods are preferred, as are efforts whose results can be applied to wide and diverse audiences.
  • Projects requesting significantly less than the maximum allowable amount generally have a greater likelihood of being funded.
    • This is especially true if the geographic scope of the project includes only a single state.