Field of Hope: Cultivating a Country of Farmers

Vivayic Cares’ first partnership is about more than learning

To those who have been given much, much is expected.

Vivayic exists to help others – whether in a corporate office or a third world country. Through our giving program, Vivayic Cares, we do just that.

An important part of that program is our partnership with Field of Hope (FoH). Field of Hope is dedicated to helping Ugandan farmers not only grow their own food but also understand how to store and sell their products to provide money for their families. As a team, we spent the last few months donating our time and specialized skills to develop a 200-level production agriculture curriculum to support the Field of Hope organization.

Field of Hope April 2014

Basic knowledge that we take for granted – like storing and irrigating crops and understanding supply and demand – are not common knowledge in Uganda. This life-giving curriculum trains people in Uganda to become self-sufficient and profitable through tractor ownership and farming.

This was not just a “good idea” or an exciting outreach effort. This was about empowering people who are in desperate need of good agricultural practices right now, so that they can feed their families.

Our partnership with FoH was born in August 2013 when the group shared their mission with us during our August 2013 meeting in Minnesota. Our whole team was immediately excited about the chance to contribute to outreach in developing countries. 21 questions game We saw this collaboration as a perfect fit not only because of our learning solutions, but also because of our backgrounds in agriculture, whether it was growing up on a farm, majoring in agriculture, living on a farm, or working with our clients in the agriculture industry.

Our relationship with FoH employees, especially Mike Hafner and Brandy Young, was a great fit right from the start. Mike, FoH president, said that he felt the same way.

“Vivayic is an organization that not only knows the content but also knows how it should be presented so that it will impact the lives of the farmers meaningfully,” he said. “I feel very blessed and grateful for all Vivayic has done for Field of Hope, especially all they have done for the farmers with whom we work.”

Brandy, FoH co-founder, feels humbled and grateful to have found the perfect partner in Vivayic.

“We were just looking to hire a company to develop training,” she said. “Instead we found a partner.”

Vivayic feels the same way. The work the FoH team is doing on the ground is inspiring. We are blessed to be part of it and the impact it has on the everyday life of an Ugandan farmer. Through this partnership, we are teaching the farmers to fish for a lifetime, not giving them fish for a meal.

There’s something about being brought back to the very basic field-to-plate concept. If crops fail, people go hungry.

While creating the lessons, time was at the front of everyone’s minds. We wanted to maximize every minute of time these farmers spent in training to increase their likelihood for success. Being efficient and effective is always important, but it took on extra significance for this project.

Like all projects, we were focused on the end user. We put quite a bit of thought into who would be taking these courses and what their daily life and experiences were so we could present things in a way that would be most relevant to them.

It was a humbling experience. We had to try and put ourselves into their shoes, which was a tough task given the many blessings we enjoy daily.

This project just reinforces that Vivayic is a company that truly does give back. We did this project as a service project, without pay, and everyone on the team was so into it. Of course, we gained much as a result – in ways that are hard to measure.

Our hearts warmed knowing we truly helped cultivate their knowledge and empowered them to improve their lives. We were rewarded with the learners’ excitement. The Ugandan farmers’ appreciation and thankfulness affected us deeply. We’ve cried tears of joy and gratitude and understanding.

We’ve been pulled in the direction of giving more and plan to continue to be partners in this journey with FoH. The FoH group presented our curriculum in April 2014 in Uganda with 25 participants, most of whom participated in the 100-level training.

And we want to continue to support their efforts – whether it’s creating a 300-level training, or developing a “train-the-trainer” program where the participants learn the materials so they can share it with their neighbors/friends. The goal is to help them understand how to best operate their farm.

The Field of Hope project was the first Vivayic Cares project that we worked on as a team, but it won’t be our last. We’re looking forward to continuing to help with this project and build upon the strong foundation we have created.

“The Vivayic team has a heart to serve and bless others,” Mike said. “They have accepted us as a part of their team, and these wonderful people have become our friends.”