I Believe Impacts Stuart FFA Along with Over 70 Other Chapters

Nebraska FFA Chapters have began collecting funds for the “I Believe in the Future of Ag” campaign. Every chapter in Nebraska is eligible to raise funds to be sent into the Nebraska FFA Foundation to be apart of the campaign. Last year, 74 chapters across the state raised over $301,000! 40 of those chapters raised over $1,000. The chapters that take part in the “I Believe” program to receive 100 percent of their local donations back and a portion of the $35,000 matching pot. 23 corporate partners are participating in the “I Believe in the Future of Ag” campaign to provide these funds to FFA chapters all over Nebraska. A great example of this campaign is the Stuart FFA Chapter.

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The Stuart FFA Chapter is halfway to their fundraising goal of building a greenhouse thanks to their donors and the “I Believe in the Future of Ag” campaign. By 2019 they hope to have constructed a greenhouse to provide Supervised Agricultural Experience opportunities to their FFA members. The food they grow will be produced to supply school lunches with fresh foods or donated to their local nursing home and food pantry. Other funds they raise go towards state and national convention fees and travel expenses for their 40 members. 100 percent of their high school is a part of the agricultural education program. The school sends out a monthly newsletter to parents, businesses and patrons in the district that includes information about what the chapter is currently working on or accomplishing. The newsletter is also a way to promote the “I Believe in the Future of Ag” campaign at their school.

Many other FFA chapters across Nebraska are doing projects or activities like Stuart with their funds they earn. If you would like to donate to the “I Believe in the Future of Ag” campaign contact your local FFA chapter or click here. 

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I Believe in the Future of Ag Campaign Kicks Off

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September marks the official start of the seventh annual I Believe in the Future of Ag fundraising campaign. This campaign serves as an outlet for local FFA chapters to raise money for innovative projects in their classrooms, leadership programming, community service projects and field trips to advance agriculture education in their schools.

This year, Aurora Cooperative, BigIron Auctions, Central Valley Ag, CPI, DEKALB/Asgrow and Verdesian committed $20,000 each to the campaign. Other sponsors, contributing $10,000 each, include Bayer CropScience, CoBank, Country Partners Cooperative, CHS Foundation, GrainBridge, FMC, Farm Credit Services of America, Farmers Cooperative, First National Bank Omaha, Frontier Coop, Koch Fertilizer, Lindsay Corporation, Nebraska Farm Bureau, Pinnacle Bank, Producers Livestock, Valley Irrigation and WinField Solutions.

100 percent of each local donation will be sent back to the designated chapter at the end of the campaign and the Nebraska FFA Foundation, along with its corporate partners, will provide extra incentives to participating FFA chapters. This year, $35,000 in matching funds will be distributed to participating chapters.

“Nebraska FFA chapters have raised over a million dollars for their local agriculture education and FFA programs since the inception of the I Believe in the Future of Ag campaign. Seeing the growth of agricultural education and the many innovative and educational programs that chapters are fundraising for makes me proud of the work of this campaign and I encourage everyone who has been impacted by agriculture education to make a donation to their local FFA chapter to enhance learning for every student, in every classroom, every day,” says Stacey Agnew, Nebraska FFA Foundation Executive Director.

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Ahrens Family Believes In Agriculture

By Nebraska Teach Ag Intern Miranda Paitzahrens- 3

The Ravenna FFA Chapter is thankful to have an SAE scholarship, which is funded by the Milton and Mary Jo Ahrens Memorial. This scholarship is offered to the freshmen FFA members who are wanting to expand and/or improve their enterprises.

Agriculture and FFA have always been a large part of the Ahrens family. It started when Milton was in high school and became a member of the Shelton FFA program. He worked hard with his agriculture projects as very involved in the program and was President of theahrens- 1 ahrens- 2.pngchapter his senior year in 1961.  At the banquet his high school sweetheart and future wife, Mary Jo was elected the Shelton FFA Sweetheart.  In 1963, Milton Ahrens was one of six FFA members to receive his American Farmer Degree.  Three of their children Meri Lynn Pehrson, Marc Ahrens and Heath Ahrens were able to achieve their State Degrees and Heath also received his American Degree in 1999.

Milton and Mary Jo were able to raise their family south of Ravenna and were active in farming for the remainder of their lives. Both Milton and Mary Jo have been avid ahrens- 4supporters of agriculture and FFA and their children have been able to make their own impacts on agriculture because of their guidance. The Ahrens children and grandchildren have been involved in FFA since 1978 to current.  Agriculture is the common bond of the Ahrens family; they wanted to offer younger students the opportunity to grow their enterprises and through the I Believe In Agriculture Campaign, they are able to accomplish their goals.

As part of the statewide effort, local donors select which chapter receives their donation. The entire donation and a portion of matching funds go directly to the chapter to use for innovative projects in their classrooms, leadership programming, community service projects and field trips to advance agriculture education in their schools. The annual campaign runs from August through February each year. FFA-I-Believe-Logo

 

Read Your 2016 June Newsletter Online

The printed version of True Blue Nebraska News will arrive in mailboxes soon! Get full details of the 2015-16 I Believe in the Future of Ag campaign, a past State FFA Officer update and find out what a UNL fraternity and sorority did to support the FFA Blue Jackets. Bright Futures. campaign in this issue. Click below to enlarge and read it online.

Auburn FFA Starts Off Strong with “I Believe” Program

Auburn FFA Officers

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In just their second year participating in the “I Believe in the Future of Ag” fundraising campaign, the Auburn FFA Chapter helps with local hunger problems in their community by using funds donated from community members.

The Auburn FFA Chapter took the initiative to help support the

local BackPack Program to send out approximately 50 backpacks per week. The FFA chapter not only helps with the food aspect, but also collects coats and hats to give to the families.

“The ‘I Believe’ campaign is a great way for FFA chapters to raise money because students interact with community members and business leaders while providing funds for their chapter. It truly engages the community and the FFA chapter,” Ashton Bohling, Auburn FFA Chapter advisor said. Most of their campaigning for the “I

Believe” fundraising was through word of mouth, letters and their Facebook page.

The “I Believe in the Future of Ag” campaign educates the public on the importance of agricultural education in Nebraska schools through an educational marketing campaign and serves as a fundraising campaign to grow the capacity of Nebraska FFA at both the state and local levels.

23 corporate partners challenged Nebraska’s FFA members to raise $300,000 at the local level in the 2015-16 campaign. This year FFA Chapters went past the goal to raise over $301,000. The corporate partners not only provided $35,000 in matching funds

for Nebraska FFA chapters during the 2015-16 campaign but also gave funds to develop the campaign and educational marketing pieces.

“The beauty of this campaign is that it gives a local FFA advisor the opportunity to ask for a tax-deductible donation to do things they couldn’t otherwise afford. It also helps them develop a group of community supporters,” Stacey Agnew, executive director of the Nebraska FFA Foundation said. “We’re seeing some really cool initiatives in our FFA chapters.”

The Auburn FFA Chapter along with all other Nebraska FFA Chapters would like to thank all of the corporate sponsors and local donors for donating to the “I Believe in the Future of Ag” campaign.

Red Cloud FFA Strengthens Ag Education through “I Believe” Funds

The Red Cloud FFA Chapter is thankful to have a new agricultural career education building and equipment donated by the Sherwood family and other community members through the “I Believe in the Future of Ag” fundraising campaign.

The “I Believe in the Future of Ag” campaign educates the public on the importance of agricultural education in Nebraska schools through a marketing campaign and serves as a fundraising campaign to grow the capacity of Nebraska FFA at both the state and local level.

23 corporate partners challenged Nebraska’s FFA members to raise $300,000 at the local level. This year 74 FFA Chapters went past the goal to raise over $301,000. The Red Cloud FFA Chapter is one of several chapters to rise to the challenge. The Sherwood Family wanted to give back to the community that has supported them for the last 125 years. The FFA chapter decided to use the Sherwood Family donation towards the agriculture building because it was last updated 75 years ago.

“The students are very much looking forward to the new experiences they will be having in shop and class,” Joe Strickland, Red Cloud FFA advisor said.

Sponsors not only provided $35,000 in matching funds for Nebraska FFA chapters during the 2015-16 campaign but also gave funds to develop the campaign and educational marketing piece.

“The beauty of this campaign is that it gives a local FFA advisor the opportunity to ask for a tax-deductible donation to do things they couldn’t otherwise afford. It also helps them develop a group of community supporters,” Stacey Agnew, executive director of the Nebraska FFA Foundation said. “We’re seeing some really cool initiatives in our FFA chapters.”

As part of the statewide effort, local donors select which chapter receives their donation. The entire donation and a portion of matching funds go directly to the chapter to use for innovative projects in their classrooms, leadership programming, community service projects and field trips to advance agriculture education in their schools. The annual campaign runs from August through February each year.

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“I Believe in the Future of Ag” Projects Are Underway

Nebraska FFA Chapters have already started planning what they will do with their funds from the “I Believe in the Future of Ag” campaign. Each chapter in Nebraska is eligible to raise funds to be sent into the Nebraska FFA Foundation to be a part of the campaign. The chapter will receive 100 percent of their local donations and a portion of the $35,000 matching pot. 23 corporate partners are participating in the “I Believe in the Future of Ag” campaign to provide these funds to FFA chapters all over Nebraska. A great example of this campaign would be the Thayer Central FFA Chapter.

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The Thayer Central High School started their first FFA program this year. The FFA chapter has already began planning a project to take place this year. They decided to raise funds to help support their future garden that will take place this spring. They recently purchased ground right across from the school for the garden. All of the plans are tentative on what they might grow in their garden, but the produce they grow will be served at the school cafeteria. Any produce grown during the summer will be donated to the local food bank. The FFA members will be in charge of taking care of the garden, but they may have some involvement with other organizations. The garden will be a great way for Thayer Central FFA to use their “I Believe in the Future of Ag” funds because it will benefit the FFA members, school, and community.

Many other FFA chapters across Nebraska are doing projects or activities with their funds they earn. If you would like to donate to the “I Believe in the Future of Ag” campaign click here.