Homesteading, be it farming or fermenting, isn't as common as it once was. "Over 200 years ago, 90% of the U. S. Population lived on farms and produced their own food to eat" according to an www.AnimalSmart.org article, Comparing Agriculture of the Past with Today. Now, we are turning back to our roots to have more control over what we eat and our overall health. Women in agriculture is growing so much that even the USDA.org has recognized this unique community by offering mentorships to women.
Our founder, Cyndi Ball, started with a simple vision. She wanted to fill the gaps between workshops and conventions on various aspects of homesteading by creating a network of women with similar interests within her own community in Statham, GA. This small vision has expanded into a national community of women within the past five years aptly named, Ladies Homestead Gathering.
Everyone has something to offer and something to gain from coming together. Each chapter holds monthly meetings to teach through demonstrations anything from backyard gardening to how to use the latest power tool. They also hold workshops where members receive a discount to learn a new aspect of sustainable living. And, as mentioned above, the awesome retreats!
Each chapter gets involved in their local community to offer help with everything from donating our skills for a community landscaping project or helping a sick neighbor harvest their garden. National Ladies Homestead Gathering also gives back 20% of each members' yearly dues to their local chapter. This allows the local chapters to give back to their members and so on. And, as NLHG grows, we hope to offer scholarships to women in hardship situations trying to get started in homesteading.
As a member, you receive discounts to local workshops and national retreats. As your local chapter grows, we negotiate with local businesses to offer discounts to our members.
As a member, you are able to list your business in homesteading or agriculture on our national website, www.ladieshomesteadgathering.org. Plus, local chapters have a Facebook Swap and Shop page where any member, nationwide, can sign up to either buy or barter or sell their homesteading wares.
Because the term homesteading covers a wide array of skills and interests, no doubt you will find someone who makes something you need for your area of interest. Maybe you like to make Jun Kombucha and need raw honey on a regular basis. You could trade your Jun Kombucha for raw honey within the group. Or purchase the raw honey and sell your Jun Kombucha to each other. However you do it, you have a reliable source from someone you know personally.
Fellowship with other women, especially ones who are on a similar path, has a calming effect. A stress relieving hormone, oxytocin, is released when women come together. "Oxytocin is released when people have a sense of connection," according to Larry Young, a research at Emory University (see article from www.verifymag.com, Does Oxytocin Give Women and Edge?). Ladies Homestead Gathering offers a sense of connection to all women who are yearning to live closer to their roots, closer to the earth and closer to each other. You are not alone!
Tell us what you have gained from being a part of a community or member of LHG. We would love to hear from you.
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