Helmets To Hives: Beekeeping for Veterans

Studies have shown the positive, therapeutic benefits of agritherapy programs for veterans, especially with beekeeping programs. One veteran has stated; “It’s given me focus and confidence. The way a (bee) colony works is kind of like the military—everybody has their job—it’s all for the better of the colony.”

While programs such as these have been succeeding in West Virginia, Louisiana, Minnesota, and New York City there was nothing comparable here in Western New York. That is until the spring of 2018!

In 2014, a retired horticulturist and Vietnam veteran dreamt up a program where veterans could spend time on a bi-weekly basis working alongside one another in the peaceful presence of bees in an apiary. Unable to find a suitable location for an apiary, he was about to give up on his dream when fate brought him to the Buffalo Niagara Heritage Village.

Buffalo Niagara Heritage Village, a 501c3 non-profit organization, sits on 35-acres and has been actively developing a farm-to-table experience on its grounds. Working with the staff at BNHV, an apiary was constructed and WNY’s first beekeeping for veterans program, Helmets to Hives, was launched in 2018.

Helmets to Hives is enthusiastically supported by the VA Western Healthcare System, the Veteran’s One-Stop Center of WNY, and the Vet Center.

Interested in learning a new skill in a peaceful, supportive setting?
Whether you are interested in beekeeping as a hobby or as a small business
opportunity, the need for trained beekeepers is essential now more than ever!
Veterans are encouraged to join us in this educational and hands-on training
program where you will learn the skills necessary to maintain a healthy, 
productive beehive.
The 2020 Helmets to Hives Program
Beekeeping 101 runs Thursday evenings, 6:30-8:00, March 26th-April 30th
Spring-Fall Apiary Program evenings, 6:30-8:00, 
May 7th, 21st...June 4th, 18th...July 2nd, 30th...August 13th...September 10th, 24th....October 8th

Space is limited to 6 veterans!

For more information and a program application please contact:

Steve Krumm, Helmets to Hives Founder, at 716-903-9342 helmetstohives@gmail.com

Sara Miller, Director of Education and Programs at BNHV, at 716-689-1440 smiller@bnhv.org

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