The Arkansas Farm Bureau announced today a commitment of $300,000 to the FFA and 4-H over the next five years to support the development of new facilities and the growth of these youth leadership programs. Each organization will receive a total of $150,000.
The funding for these donations comes from the Arkansas Farm Bureau Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit created in 2016 to further understanding of agricultural and rural issues, and support the agriculture and rural communities through financial assistance for education, research, litigation and disaster relief.
“Supporting youth in agriculture is at the heart of our mission and the mission of the Arkansas Farm Bureau Foundation,” said ArFB Executive Vice President Warren Carter. “Arkansas 4-H and FFA provide valuable experiences for young people that help prepare them for higher education and professional careers and they are critical for developing future leaders in our industry and the state.”
The $150,000 commitment to the Arkansas 4-H Foundation will be used for the construction of a pavilion at the C. A. Vines Arkansas 4-H Center located in Ferndale.
“The Rose Garden Pavilion will be a great functional addition to the Arkansas 4-H Vines Center and an added draw for potential guests,” said John Thomas, Arkansas 4-H Foundation development officer.
The five-year commitment to Arkansas FFA will support improvements at Camp Couchdale in Hot Springs and will include the naming of the auditorium at the Camp’s Fletcher Leadership Center in honor of Troy Buck, former Arkansas Farm Bureau board member and FFA leader, for his 55-year career in agriculture education.
“This investment in our Phase 1 improvements at Camp Couchdale will not only serve FFA members and agriculture teachers for decades to come, but Arkansas Farm Bureau will use the naming rights to our auditorium as an opportunity to honor Mr. Troy Buck from Alpine for his 55-year commitment to teaching high school agriculture,” said Jennifer Cook, executive director of Arkansas FFA.
Initial donations of $30,000 were made to each organization this month, with special check presentation ceremonies at the Arkansas Farm Bureau Center in Little Rock. The groups will receive $30,000 annually over the five-year span of the commitment.
Arkansas Farm Bureau is a nonprofit, private advocacy organization of almost 190,000 families throughout the state working to improve farm and rural life.
On hand to present the FFA Foundation donation at the ArFB Center were (left to right) Amanda Williams, ArFB director of women’s leadership & foundation; Warren Carter, ArFB executive vice president; Jennifer Barber Cook, Arkansas FFA Foundation, and Chuck Tucker, ArFB senior vice president.
On hand for the 4-H Foundation donation were (left to right) Amanda Williams, ArFB director of women’s leadership & foundation; Martha Ray Sartor, UAEX Associate VP – FCS & 4-H; Warren Carter, ArFB executive vice president; J.J. Pitman, director of the Vines Center; Chuck Tucker, ArFB senior vice president, and John Thomas, Arkansas 4-H Foundation Development Officer.
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