BROOKINGS, SD – The blue corduroy jacket is a familiar symbol of the FFA organization, worn as part of official dress during most FFA activities. But during the South Dakota FFA convention in Brookings, as part of a SD FFA Living to Serve Day, members removed their jackets and rolled up their sleeves to help stop hunger.
This service project, supported by Pioneer-Corteva and Feeding Brookings, exemplified the portion of the FFA motto which states “Living to Serve” by teaming up with industry to fund a Meals of Hope, hands-on project that combats hunger.
SD FFA members and Pioneer-Corteva staff measured, poured, sealed, and boxed 50,124 meals in assembly line fashion throughout the day-long event. Members stopped in between workshops and competitive events throughout convention and left the event knowing that by giving a few minutes of their time they would make a significant difference in the life of a person less fortunate then themselves.
For just$.28/meal, Meals of Hope food packages include a hardy Beans and Rice Casserole (rice, pre-cooked dried beans, soy protein, six dried vegetables and 21 vitamins and minerals). Some of the 50,124 meals were taken home by FFA chapters for their local food pantries, and the rest will be distributed across the state through Feeding South Dakota and Feeding Brookings.
Jennifer Stensaas with Feeding South Dakota says “We are very grateful for our partnership with FFA and Meals of Hope and for securing these meals to feed those who are facing hunger in our state. Meals of Hope recognizes the need to start with charity at home, and focus on offering more than nutrition, providing a bit of hope to carry those in need through another day.”
South Dakota FFA Foundation President Sandy Osterday said shared manpower and interaction between members and supporting industries is an important part of FFA. “The event gives students the opportunity to work together with FFA members from across the state to make items that will help those in need. Knowing we are helping those in need across our state is a great feeling.”
For more information about the South Dakota FFA Foundation and South Dakota’s FFA programs, visit www.sdffafoundation.org or follow on Facebook.