Published Sep 18, 2014

Savings Incentive Program – It Isn’t All About the Money, Honey.

By Julie Wheelock

Over the past couple weeks, I’ve had the opportunity to visit with most of the Saving Incentive Program participants from the 2015 class.  Try as I may to not sound like a telemarketer, starting out any conversation with, “Hi.  Is so-and-so there?” always elicits the polite, yet distant response of, “Yes, this is so-and-so.”  But as soon as I explained I was the new SIP coordinator for PFI it was like I was talking to a long lost friend.  What an awesome welcome!

I had an especially nice conversation with Janna Feldman from Honey Creek.  Janna and her family run Doe and Diva’s Dairy on their Pottawattamie county farm and currently make soap from goat milk.  They plan to start making cheese from goat and sheep milk in the near future.


Janna getting some of the good stuff from one of her goats.

My phone call to Janna was perfectly timed as she was just making a deposit into her SIP savings account.  Our conversation started with a little farm background from her, but quickly turned to the impending storm coming her way and running kids to and from events.  The visit made me realize that there are certain aspects of farming that are a given: planting, harvesting, choring, record keeping, business planning, etc.  But don’t forget the importance of relationship building.  Getting to know one another makes the conversation easy, and fun, when you need some input for your farm business.  And sharing information and asking for real-life advice are a couple of the best ways to strengthen a farm’s potential for success.  I asked Janna what was the one thing that she has gained most from the SIP program and this is what she shared:  “I think what I’ve gained the most from being in SIP is the vast network system of support.  I read most of the emails and with so much advice on various topics, I feel connected to a huge web of information.  I don’t have to re-invent the wheel because someone else has already been there and done that.”

So while the Savings Incentive Program encourages saving money AND has a match to money saved, I’m quickly beginning to realize the information sharing part of the program and PFI in general is worth more than the money.  And often, it’s free.

Don’t miss out on an opportunity to tap into a gold-mine of knowledge through the Savings Incentive Program.  It’s worth it!  Fill out an application by clicking here.

Applications due October 3 – only a little over a week away!