Published Apr 9, 2020

Staying Safe and Connected as We Confront Coronavirus Together

By Sally Worley

Dear Members, Friends and Supporters,

As the impacts of COVID-19 continue to mount with dizzying speed, we want you to know that the staff and board of directors of Practical Farmers of Iowa are thinking about you and your safety – and we are committed to being here to support you in whatever way we can during this challenging time.

Protecting the health of everyone in our PFI family is of paramount importance to us. As we continue to monitor developments locally, regionally and nationally, we have heeded calls for social distancing and are taking other steps to ensure we’re doing our part to limit the spread of COVID-19.

While our work may look a little different in the coming days, we want to assure you that we are continuing to work on behalf of our members and our mission while safeguarding the health of our members, friends, families and communities.

What you can expect from us:

  • Starting on Wednesday, March 18, our Ames office will close and staff will work remotely until further notice.
  • We will continue to be available by phone and email. When you call the PFI office at (515) 232-5661, you will be directed to leave a voicemail for the staff member you wish to speak with. Once you have done so, the phone system will automatically send your voicemail as an email message to that specific staff member. Rest assured, we are monitoring our email and will respond to you!
  • We are canceling in-person meetings and events, and will move them online or postpone them until it is deemed safe to reconvene in person again. Please watch for updates on our website (we will update this post on a rolling basis); in Practical News, our weekly email newsletter; on our Facebook page; and if you are a member, on our email discussion lists.
  • We will continue to find ways to bring our network together to learn, share knowledge and support one another through virtual events, meet-ups and other online forums.

We know it’s easy in unprecedented times like these to feel anxious and overwhelmed by the scope of unfolding events. We also know the novel coronavirus is impacting rural communities and farm businesses. In the midst of this uncertainty, we encourage you to lean on the Practical Farmers of Iowa network.

Our supportive community has always been our strength. We were born in a time of crisis – the farm crisis of the 1980s – and together, we forged an enduring network of hope and solidarity. We got through that crisis together, and we will emerge from this one too, stronger and more connected.

While this pandemic will impact everyone in some way – know that you are not alone. As we all practice social distancing, we don’t have to become socially isolated. Take advantage of PFI’s many resources to stay in touch and continue learning from one another as you get ready for the spring planting season.

Watch for pop-up online events, take advantage of our email discussion lists, talk to one another by phone – and remember that we will all come together again to enjoy the beauty and diversity of Iowa farms.

Please be in touch via email or voicemail if you have any questions.

Sally Signature

Sally Worley
PFI executive director

2020 03 17