The Farm Journal Foundation today announced plans to renew its commitment to the "FFA: Food for All" grant program for a second year. The Foundation’s Farmers Feeding the World initiative is wrapping up a successful first year of its partnership with the National FFA Organization’s Feeding the World—Starting at Home program to help fight world hunger. As the cornerstone of the partnership, Farmers Feeding the World, along with a match from the Howard G. Buffett Foundation, provided $500,000 to support the competitive "FFA: Food for All" grant program, which funds local FFA chapters’ long-term sustainable projects to fight hunger.
"Farmers Feeding the World’s mission is educating the public on the importance of modern agriculture’s role in the fight against hunger and, moreover, doing something about it. Collaborating with FFA is one of the most impactful ways we can fulfill that mission," said Andy Weber, Farm Journal Foundation chairman. "This grant program empowers the next generation of leaders who will continue the effort to feed our world."
Dr. Dwight Armstrong, National FFA Organization CEO, agreed. "Anyone who has seen the face of hunger in the United States or abroad will understand why FFA members are committing to fight it. These students will be tomorrow’s leaders and innovators in agriculture. FFA members know that ‘Living to Serve’ is more than just the last line of the FFA motto. It’s a call to action, and a pledge to lend a hand and support every person’s right to safe, affordable and nutritious food."
In the grant program’s first year, nearly 140 FFA chapters throughout the U.S. initiated sustainable hunger programs in their local communities or other communities in need. While the full impact of the grants will not be tabulated until October, many of the "FFA: Food for All" projects have already begun to transform the communities they serve. Some have inspired other community members to get involved; others have attracted additional financial investment to the fight against hunger. To capture the impact being made by the "FFA: Food for All" grants, Farmers Feeding the World is producing a mini-documentary highlighting five FFA chapters that will be featured on the "U.S. Farm Report" and "AgDay" TV programs.
In the second year of this landmark partnership, Farmers Feeding the World and the Howard G. Buffett Foundation will fund another $500,000 to support both the "FFA: Food for All" grant program and the National FFA’s inaugural "Rally to Fight Hunger." The Rally will engage as many as 10,000 FFA members from across the country, as well as local volunteers, during the 2012 National FFA Convention and Expo. Its goal is to package one million meals at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis to combat hunger. FFA chapters can start applying for "FFA: Food for All" grants in October 2012.