America’s Farmers Grow Communities making positive impact in Mid-South

$3.3 million available for community non-profits. Farmers can nominate local charities for the awards. Nomination process open from Aug. 1 through Nov. 30, 2015.

America’s Farmers Grow Communities will partner again with farmers to award more than $3.3 million to community nonprofits across the country. In Arkansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi and Tennessee, 151 organizations will receive donations in 2016.

Sponsored by the Monsanto Fund, the program’s purpose is to make a positive impact in rural communities by giving farmers a chance to direct $2,500 donations to eligible nonprofit organizations of their choice. Farmer enrollment for Grow Communities kicked off on Aug. 1 and runs through Nov. 30, 2015.

Since the program’s inception, Grow Communities has helped fund a broad cross-section of organizations which reflect the makeup and character of rural America. For example, in Lawrence County, Tennessee, farmer Cowart Jennings directed a $2,500 donation to God’s Storehouse in Lawrenceburg. The organization used the funds to purchase food for a mobile pantry that can serve 300 families in the community in one day.

“God’s Storehouse helps many families in the community,” said Jennings. “As a farmer, I produce food, so it made sense to direct the donation to the food pantry.”

Farmers have also directed donations to help fire departments purchase equipment and complete training, send FFA and 4-H groups to contests and conventions and boost agriculture curriculum in rural school districts. Other beneficiaries of the program have included health care organizations, youth and community centers, state parks and economic development programs, among many others.

“Thanks to the participation of farmers from across the country, more than 7,000 nonprofit organizations have received donations through Grow Communities in the past five years,” said Deborah Patterson, Monsanto Fund president. “We are excited to team up with farmers once again to help support the causes that mean the most to them and strengthen rural America.”

Southeast farmers can enroll in the program and find a complete list of program rules and eligibility information at www.GrowCommunities.com or by calling (877) 267-3332 toll-free. New this year, farmers in Dallas County, Alabama are eligible to participate. Program winners will be announced in January. Follow Grow Communities’ new Facebook page to learn more about the program and connect with past winners at facebook.com/AmericasFarmersGrowCommunities

America’s Farmers Grow Communities is part of the America’s Farmers initiative. Since 2010, the America’s Farmers campaign and programs have advocated on behalf of farmers and their efforts to meet society’s needs through agriculture. Today, consumers are more interested than ever in agriculture and how food is grown. Farmers and others in the industry are joining in on the conversation to help raise awareness about agriculture and share their stories with their communities. Learn more at cfiengage.org.

To learn more, visit America’s Farmers at www.americasfarmers.com.

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