The "Be The Seed" Grant Program, providing $35,000 in community funding, is sponsored by the Iowa Food & Family Project (Iowa FFP) in cooperation with DuPont Pioneer and the Iowa Soybean Association.
FFA Chapters will partner with an existing community or school group to conduct activities that are the "seeds" of change, innovation or education to enhance their local communities. Chapters will incorporate food and farming themes into their programming, and use the opportunity to educate others on the importance of agriculture, substantiability and community involvement.
The South Tama County FFA will "Be the Seed" by creating an Agriculture Expo for South Tama County students. Industry leaders in the Tama County area will be invited to participate and to promote their career pathway to STC students.
Wes Kalinay (STC FFA vice president), Laura Novotny (STC FFA president), Lydia Chmelik (ALL4ONE president) received the “Be the Seed” grant check during an assembly at South Tama High School on Wednesday, Dec. 11. Making the presentation were Kirk Welton (DuPont Pioneer representative) and Julie Van Manen (Iowa Soybean Association representative). Terri Guenther-Mayer (STC Ag Ed teacher/FFA Advisor) is at right.
By partnering with ALL-4-ONE, an anti-bullying, mentoring, and character building club, the South Tama County FFA will be able to present agriculture awareness demonstrations for elementary and middle school students.
Grant recipients will be recognized in April at the Iowa FFA State Leadership Conference in Ames. One chapter determined to have conducted the most successful activity in partnership with its community will be recognized with a $5,000 Award of Achievement. More than 40 FFA chapters applied for grant funding.
"The tremendous response to this program is an indication of the growing interest there is in FFA and in food production," said Bart Baudler, DuPont Pioneer business director. "The grant program judges were impressed with the quality of the applications. We now look forward to working with grant recipients to implement their successful programs."
Aaron Putze, director of communications for the Iowa Soybean Association and Iowa FFP coordinator, said the "Be The Seed" grant program furthers the goals of the Iowa Food & Family Project by directly engaging people in agriculture and emphasizing the critical link between farms and communities.