WyFB members donated the equivalent of 8,235 meals to help Wyoming families in need
Wyoming families facing hunger received a boost mid-November with the Wyoming Farm Bureau Federation Young Farmer & Rancher Committee “Harvest for All” project. The 20th annual fund drive and raffle to benefit the Food Bank of Wyoming raised $2,745 which is the equivalent of 8,235 meals for Wyoming families.
During the state annual meeting Nov. 10-12 in Casper, county Farm Bureau Federations and Wyoming farmers and ranchers donated money to help the food bank in their work with hunger-relief programs across the state of Wyoming. A raffle for a livestock vaccine cooler and an impact wrench also raised funds for the Harvest for All project.
In addition to the fund drive, WyFB YF&R Committee members volunteered at the Food Bank of Wyoming in Casper. Eleven members participated on Nov. 9 where they packed food boxes for the Evergreen Boxes program of the Food Bank of Wyoming. In just under one hour, these 11 volunteers packed 216 food boxes. According to the Food Bank of Wyoming, that amounted to a record three boxes per minute.
Campbell County rancher Toni Swartz is the immediate past chair of the sub-committee that oversees the “Harvest for All” project. “Seeing our group of Young Farmers and Ranchers working together to fill boxes and move them down the assembly line reminded me of working cattle down an alley and out a chute,” Swartz said. “Both require a community of people helping people. That’s probably why we were so quick and able to work well together!”
Food Bank of Wyoming Director of Development Jill Stillwagon shared their appreciation for the group’s help and also noted the boxes per minute set a new record. “Food Bank of Wyoming was pleased to host the Wyoming Farm Bureau Federation Young Farmer and Rancher committee on Nov. 9 while visiting Casper,” Stillwagon said. “The Young Farmer and Rancher committee helped pack 216 food boxes for the EverGreen Box program, which provides a monthly delivery of food for older adults.”
Regarding the fund drive, Swartz noted the total donation of funds from county Farm Bureau Federations and individual members did not surprise her. “We are the people who have made it our lives work to feed the world,” she continued. “Whether that be through donations to food banks or raising the best quality food we can. We believe that no one should go hungry and are willing to provide what we can to help those facing hunger.”
The WyFB Young Farmer & Rancher Committee is in its 20th year of joining with the American Farm Bureau Federation YF&R Committee in what is called a “Harvest for All.” Throughout the program’s 20 year span, the WyFB YF&R Committee has partnered with Farm Bureau members to raise 6,044 pounds of food, $33,864 and 91 hours of volunteer time to help those facing hunger in Wyoming.
“For the last 20 years, Wyoming Farm Bureau Federation has partnered with Food Bank of Wyoming by giving their time and donations to provide meals to Wyoming communities facing hunger,” Stillwagon concluded. “Incredibly grateful for their continued partnership as we work together to nourish Wyoming neighbors.”