Finishing an enlistment and returning to the civilian world can a stressful transition for many veterans, particularly when there is no reliable support system in place and no employment prospects. The transition can seem like an overwhelming prospect. Archi’s Acres is a small farm in Southern California helping veterans to not only make the transition to the civilian world, but to learn valuable employment skills at the same time.
Colin Archipley is a Marine veteran with three tours of Iraq under his belt. He is also the owner of Archi’s Acres, a 3-acre farm strategically situated in the San Diego hills, close to Camp Pendleton. Archipley is an organic farmer, and he is teaching the veterans working his farm how to plant and harvest food in a sustainable agricultural environment.
There is more to the farm than farming, however. Veterans leaving the military need more than a paycheck in the civilian world. Just as the military gave them a purpose, they need one in their civilian life a well. According to Archipley, this farm does that very thing. The Veterans Sustainable Agriculture Training Course is 6-weeks long and Camp Pendleton’s Transition Assistance Program has given its stamp of approval.
Many veterans may never have considered farming. Getting outdoors, working on the land among other veterans attempting to adjust to civilian life serves to change many minds, however. Just as many Marines enlisted to serve their country, being able to produce sustainable, organic food serves their community. This service has been recognized for its value and organizations like the Farmer-Veteran Coalition provides scholarships so some veterans can attend the program.
Organic farming is not an easy career, which is why many veterans will succeed. For many former Marines, launching a career in organic farming will just serve as their next challenge, and one that will be overcome, providing them a much needed sense of purpose.
If you are a disabled veteran who has been denied disability compensation or have not yet applied for benefits from the VA, contact Veterans Help Group. You may be entitled to certain programs and benefits so contact our veterans disability rights firm today.