Corporate contributions to the National FFA Foundation to support national FFA programs and agricultural education climbed to more than $16.2 million this year!
This year’s total exceeded the $15.8 million donated in 2011 and $15.6 million in 2010. Individual giving also rose to $558,000, up from $475,000 a year ago and $292,000 two years ago.
Pfizer Animal Health gave $1.27 million to FFA to link veterinarians in local communities with FFA members planning careers in animal health.
Monsanto provided more than $890,000 to support national student leadership conferences, educational awards, awareness campaigns and more.
“Financially backing FFA and agricultural education creates critical educational opportunities for our students as they grow and learn about the science, business and technology of agriculture,” said National FFA Foundation executive director Rob Cooper. “Corporate and individual donations help ensure our students will become leaders with the core skills necessary to help feed a growing world population, put an end to hunger at home and abroad and meet the needs for food, fiber and renewable energy in ways that preserve natural resources.”
Individuals also stepped up to support FFA in 2012. A group of eight people who advise FFA in matters concerning individual giving created a pool of donations to serve as matching-fund incentives. The group will give more than $312,000 over the next three years. Each new donation of $1,000 to $100,000 will be matched by the group.
Nebraska business owner and former FFA member Ron Grapes established a major endowment that will provide grants to help FFA members complete their required supervised agricultural experiences (SAE), marking the first time in the 85-year history of FFA that an endowment was established to support the organization’s SAE program.
Funds donated to the National FFA Foundation help sponsor leadership development training initiatives, national award and recognition programs, scholarships, service-learning activities, global engagement programs, nationwide teacher training and more. Since its inception, the foundation has raised more than $260 million.
Created in 1944, the National FFA Foundation is the fundraising arm of the National FFA Organization, which provides leadership, personal growth and career success training through agricultural education to 557,318 student members in grades seven through 12 who belong to one of 7,498 local FFA chapters throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.