CORONA VIRUS UPDATE

Cornell Cooperative Extension of Schuyler County (CCE Schuyler) finished a revision to our Strategic Plan late last year and through that process developed a set of values that are important to the Board of Directors and staff. We made it an acronym, RISE, standing for Resilience, Innovation, Sustainability and Education. Little did we know at the time how important those four values were going to be as we headed into 2020. Today, those values are more important than ever as we all RISE to the challenge that is COVID 19.

CCE Schuyler’s offices are currently closed. We have shut down all our horticultural, nutrition, 4-H and youth programming where people would normally gather together. Staff are working remotely, continuing to provide critical services in parenting education, nutrition, energy assistance and agriculture and forestry work as we find our way through these difficult times.

Like many other non-profits and service-based organization we are looking for ways to maintain our connection with the community and the people we serve. We will soon be starting a new daily blog to help people cope with these unusual circumstances and we are happy to refer our clients to other websites and other on-line resources that might help during these times. A listing of those resources is found in the Note to the Schuyler County Agricultural Community shown below.

Now more than ever we should be thankful for the beauty and bounty that is our Finger Lakes region. Our agricultural sector is the backbone of our community and increasingly important as we look for local foods and resources to sustain us during times of national crisis. We will get through these tough times if we support each other, practice our RISE values and use this time to expand our consciousness. CCE Schuyler has been helping people for over 100 years and we’re not going to let some nasty virus take us down. Please be safe, healthy, and check back for updates!

Phil Cherry, Executive Director

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Food Planning During the Corona Virus Pandemic- USDA tips

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Schuyler County Agricultural Community,

Despite the recent closure of our office and other “non-essential” businesses, Schuyler CCE continues to support our community and farms during this period of uncertainty. Below is a list of useful resources that will be periodically updated. And starting Monday, March 23rd check out our daily updates through the http://cceschuyler.org website for additional timely information. In the meantime, remember that we can still be reached by phone or email! For a list of the Schuyler CCE staff: http://cceschuyler.org/staff

Please also know that Schuyler county has formed a special Cabinet Committee to help businesses through this difficult time. CCE has urged county officials to include our agricultural and food production businesses to the list of those who may need assistance as this crisis deepens. If you are a farmer and you have specific finance or government related needs, we urge you to contact this new committee and to fill out their survey which can be found at http://odessafile.com/forum.html .

Farm Resiliency

To support you in this trying time, the Cornell Small Farms Program would like to offer you free access for any two of our online courses through the end of April. These learning opportunities can help build local food security during the COVID-19 pandemic, and beyond. They have set up a farm resilience resource page that brings together information and resources from our partners in CCE and other agencies, as well as learning opportunities to help you adapt for this season. They will also be hosting some themed farmer-to-farmer discussions starting next week. Stay tuned by ensuring you subscribe to our emails, or check their website and social channels often! Learn more: http://ow.ly/XWWo50yQitt

Protecting Yourself & Loved Ones Financially from COVID-19

The Consumer Financial Protection Board has information ranging from what to do if you have trouble paying your bills, are facing income loss, or have a problem with a financial service: https://www.consumerfinance.gov/…/protect-yourself-financi…/

The Attorney General of New York State has detailed information on Coronavirus resources and warnings on current consumer scams: https://ag.ny.gov/

On-Line Resources

FLX To Go was founded as a one-stop resource for information on how businesses are adapting to the COVID-19/social distancing world, FLX To Go is a service of the Watkins Glen Area Chamber of Commerce but spreads the word about businesses and organizations throughout the Finger Lakes Area. https://www.facebook.com/flxtogo/?__tn__=%2Cd%2CPR&eid=ARBNU0JbchGln4sF0CU_g2jJwlaLdDB6RMzNvSN5v3hWKZ_w_nxXLXtQizwwsvEzk6M0zkpzBAIs1r7_

Finger Lakes Farm Country

There is nothing better than produce, meats, eggs, dairy, and more straight from the farm. Support local farmers and visit the farms in Finger Lakes Farm Country to pickup local, fresh products. Be sure to call ahead or check online for hours and availability. #fingerlakesfarmcountry or https://fingerlakesfarmcountry.com

Buy Local Guide -Local Foods within Your Reach-

Local Foods Within Your Reach… find farm-fresh food that is “within reach”— sold at a price within your food budget and from near where you live. This directory and tips will show you that buying food directly from a farmer is easy and affordable. Check out our directory now! Learn more about the Buy Local Program. https://buylocalfoodny.org/

Meat Suite is a website designed to help you find locally produced, high quality meats in bulk. No matter your buying preference the Meat Suite aims to help you find your farmer! https://www.meatsuite.com/

NY’s Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN): https://eden.cce.cornell.edu/

Small Business Administration Economic Industry Disaster Loans:

Eligible small businesses may now apply for SBA Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) online at: www.sba.gov/local-assistance Businesses can take advantage of free assistance offered by SBA’s network of Resource Partners for help with preparing their loan applications. They may visit: www.sba.gov/local-assistance to find local help. The NYS Small Business Development Center network recommends submitting a request for assistance online at http://nyssbdc.org/appointment.html

Direct Marketing from the Farm - The Farmers’ Market Federation of New York has provided helpful information as NYS Department of Agriculture & Markets as this continues to develop. New York State has not imposed any travel restrictions and all industries essential to the food supply chain, including grocery stores, gas stations, retail food stores, food processors and related food businesses, etc., are exempt from the workforce reduction guidance issued today. Please see the guidance and exemptions here: https://agriculture.ny.gov/system/files/documents/2020/03/essentialservicesexception.pdf.

Mental Health & Health NY FarmNet: https://www.nyfarmnet.org/ Hotline : 1-800-547-3276 (24 hr service) 

New York State Department of Health: https://www.health.ny.gov/

New York Center for Agricultural Medicine and Health (NYCAMH) www.nycamh.org

Farm Partners (part of Bassett Health Care system and NYCAMH) 1-800-343-7527 NYS Agricultural Mediation Program: https://www.nysamp.com/

Labor Issues Cornell Agricultural Workforce Development: https://agworkforce.cals.cornell.edu/

NY Farm Bureau: https://agworkforce.cals.cornell.edu/

NY Department of Labor: https://agworkforce.cals.cornell.edu/

Agricultural Support Organizations USDA: https://www.usda.gov/ USDA (Farm Service Agency): https://www.usda.gov/

NYS Ag and Markets: https://www.usda.gov/

Empire State Development: https://www.usda.gov/

 FDA Food Safety: https://www.usda.gov/

Cornell Cooperative Extension Schuyler County (CCESC) has been in business for over 100 years, helping farmers with critical agricultural research and extension needs, teaching young people life skills through 4-H, fostering adult based knowledge in homemaking and gardening and providing enrichment activities through Hidden Valley Camp,after school programs and youth clubs. We want to continue those services and more, but very much want to know what the community thinks of CCE and where we can be of service in the future. Please take a few minutes to fill out the following survey and help us plan for the next 100 years.

Last updated April 6, 2020